“Astrology has evolved from the crude, superstitious worship of the planets
to the present sophisticated, superstitious worship of the planets” ~Raymond Harris
Just look in the daily paper or online and it is easy to find your daily horoscope. Many people read their horoscope “just for fun” while others truly believe in what the horoscope predicts. Either way, we must realize what we are doing; and if what we are doing is pleasing to God. In this blog entry, we will be discussing the origins of horoscopes and what the Bible says about such things.
It is true that many people will define themselves by their horoscope. Have you ever heard anybody say, “I’m a Gemini” or “I’m an Aries”? They actually believe that their future, personality, traits, likes and dislikes hinge upon the stars in the sky. People are so consumed by it that they will have their zodiac sign tattooed on their body. It sounds absurd that anybody would do believe in horoscopes – but people are deceived by them every day.
There is nothing inherently evil about the moon, stars, sun, or sky because they are the handiwork of our Creator God. However, when we try to become mediums or fortune-tellers by them – that is when and where we cross the line. Unfortunately, the line has been blurred between what is holy and unholy. Even many church-going Christians will read their horoscope in the daily newspaper. What happened to “being in the world but not of the world”? (See John 15:19). It is a sad commentary when Christians aren’t content to “be ye separate” from the world. 2nd Corinthians 6:17 says, “Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the Lord. Don’t touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you.” So, is reading your horoscope sinful? Let’s continue to find the answer.
Dictionary.com defines a horoscope as this: “a diagram of the heavens [skies], showing the relative position of planets and the signs of the zodiac, for use in calculating births, foretelling events in a person’s life, etc. [AND] a prediction of future events or advice for future behavior based on such a diagram.” In order to determine if astrology and horoscopes are sinful, we must not rely upon human opinion or what the majority of people think; rather, we should see what the Holy Bible has to say.
Deuteronomy 4:19 – “And when you look up into the sky and see the sun, moon, and stars–all the forces of heaven–don’t be seduced into worshiping them. The Lord your God gave them to all the peoples of the earth.”
Isaiah 47:13-15 – “All the counsel you have received has only worn you out! Let your astrologers come forward, those stargazers who make predictions month by month, let them save you from what is coming upon you. Surely they are like stubble; the fire will burn them up. They cannot even save themselves from the power of the flame. Here are no coals to warm anyone; here is no fire to sit by. That is all they can do for you—these you have labored with and trafficked with since childhood. Each of them goes on in his error; there is not one that can save you.”
1st John 4:1 – “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
Jeremiah 10:2 – “This is what the Lord says: “Do not act like the other nations, who try to read their future in the stars. Do not be afraid of their predictions, even though other nations are terrified by them.”
Zechariah 10:2 – “The idols speak deceit, diviners [fortune-tellers] see visions that lie; they tell dreams that are false, they give comfort in vain. Therefore the people wander like sheep oppressed for lack of a shepherd.”
There are many more scriptures which forbid this evil (of fortune-telling, horoscopes, etc.), but suffice it to say that NOWHERE in scripture is it approved. Back in the Old Testament, astrologers were to be put to death for their evil deeds in order to purge the evil out from among the people. This shows the severity of it. Deuteronomy 17:2-5 “If a man or woman living among you in one of the towns the Lord gives you is found doing evil in the eyes of the Lord your God in violation of his covenant, and contrary to my command has worshiped other gods, bowing down to them or to the sun or the moon or the stars of the sky, and this has been brought to your attention, then you must investigate it thoroughly. If it is true and it has been proved that this detestable thing has been done in Israel, take the man or woman who has done this evil deed to your city gate and stone that person to death.” The wages of sin are still death; but since Christ came and gave us grace and mercy – those involved in such sin are allowed time to make things right with God. However, if they do not abstain from their wicked ways, they will be severely punished on Judgment Day.
In an article studying astrology from a Christian perspective, the author David E. Pratte, states the following: “Many recent book fads, such as the Harry Potter books, deeply involve many aspects of the Occult. A search of occult books on Amazon.com yields a list of nearly 800 titles in the children’s section alone!” Pratte goes on to discuss astrology as being part of the occult. “[The word] ‘Occult’ is defined as: magic, astrology, and other alleged sciences claiming use or knowledge of secret, mysterious, or supernatural agencies. Other occult practices include witchcraft and sorcery, Satanism, spiritualism, fortune-telling, and psychics.”
In his study, Pratte discusses the Pagan origins of astrology. “By definition, astrology is part of the occult. It is associated with hosts of other practices that are specifically condemned in Scripture. Ancient people realized that the sun was essential to man’s needs, so they concluded that other heavenly bodies must be too. They thought that the largest heavenly bodies must be the most important, so they named the sun, moon, and largest planets after their main gods and the stars after lesser deities. The movements of heavenly bodies were thought to represent activities of the gods. By studying these movements, men hoped to determine the will of the gods and so predict the future. If the heavenly bodies moved a certain way and certain events followed, then the next time they moved that way, similar things should happen. The principles of astrology were formalized by the Greeks. Some 2000 years ago the Greeks studied the heavenly bodies mathematically and ‘scientifically’ and defined the signs of the Zodiac. The names of Greek and Roman gods were then assigned to the planets. So historically astrology is rooted in pagan idolatry. The basic concept of astrology – that the movements of heavenly bodies control our lives – is heathen idolatry from the foundation up. Despite the fact astrology began in pagan superstition, efforts have been made to find a scientific basis for it. However, there is no evidence that heavenly bodies can influence character.”
Romans 1:25 teaches against putting creation above the Creator. It says, “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator–who is forever praised. Amen.” This type of adoration for the created above Creator is a form of idolatry; and idolatry leads to eternal separation from God as stated in Ephesians 5:5: “For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person–such a man is an idolater–has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.” Horoscopes, astrology, contacting psychics or mediums – all of it is idolatry because it puts something else before God and His infinite wisdom. It also defiantly disobeys what His holy Word teaches.
In closing, I’d like to leave you with the words to a song entitled, “America Again”. An excerpt from the lyrics says this: “Astrology won’t save you. Your horoscope won’t save you; the Bible says these things are all farce. If you’re born again, you don’t need to look for the stars for your answers – because you can look to the very One Who made those stars.”
If you have been caught up in horoscopes, zodiac signs, and astrology – you can be forgiven and can change. Simply ask the Lord for forgiveness and the strength to abstain from anything that is not pleasing to Him. There is hope and not all has been lost. Simply turn 180 degrees around and purpose to live a clean, moral, pleasing life in the eyes of God Almighty – Who knows and sees all.
Random House College Dictionary
“America Again” Writers: Michael Omartian, Dominic Licciardello