You may have heard about the law of attraction or manifestation lately. It’s become a popular concept, with people using manifestation techniques to “attract” money, relationships, opportunities, and more into their lives. But as a Christian, you likely have some concerns. Is manifestation compatible with biblical Christianity? Or is it something you should avoid?
In this post, we’ll explore what the Bible really says about manifestation. You’ll learn whether it aligns with Scripture and how to engage with it in a wise, gospel-centered way. By the end, you’ll understand:
- What manifestation and the law of attraction actually involve
- Key Bible verses about visualization and positive thinking
- Examples of biblical figures “manifesting”
- Differences between godly manifestation and New Age errors
- Practical tips for manifesting in a Christian way
Let’s dive in!
What Is Manifestation?
Manifestation is the idea that you can make things happen just by visualizing and focusing your thoughts on them. By concentrating on your goals and desires, you supposedly attract them into reality.
The basic process looks like this:
- Decide exactly what you want to achieve or acquire. Be as specific as possible.
- Visualize yourself already having achieved the goal or possessing the object of desire. Imagine the details vividly.
- Repeat positive affirmations like “I have a new high-paying job” or “I weigh 150 pounds.”
- Let go of attachment to the outcome. Have faith it will come to you.
- Take inspired action when opportunities arise. But don’t force things.
Practitioners believe manifesting accesses the “law of attraction.” This is the New Age idea that our thoughts emit energy into the universe, attracting back whatever we focus on – positive or negative. So with enough mental discipline, we can materialize things through our imagination and willpower alone.
Of course, this raises some important spiritual questions for Christians…
What Does the Bible Say About Visualization and Positive Thinking?
To start with, the Bible does encourage visualization and positive thinking in some form. Consider these verses:
“For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.” (Proverbs 23:7 NKJV)
“…whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” (Philippians 4:8)
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)
However, manifestation practitioners go further. They claim if we visualize strongly enough, we can materialize anything we want, like wealth or relationships. Want a new BMW? Just picture driving it repeatedly, and it’ll manifest through the law of attraction!
Here’s where Christians must be cautious. Wanting a luxury car isn’t wrong in itself. But demanding the universe deliver it through mental gymnastics is not trusting God’s wisdom. And Scripture warns against demanding God bend to our will:
“You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.” (James 4:3)
While visualization and positive thinking have a place, we must balance them with surrender to God’s sovereign plans. More on that later.
Examples of Biblical Figures “Manifesting”
With the proper precautions, manifesting goals through prayerful visualization does appear in the Bible. Consider these examples:
Abraham: God promised Abraham countless descendants. Though childless into old age, “he did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.” (Romans 4:20-21). Abraham visualized the fulfillment of God’s word, and it came to pass.
Hannah: Hannah longed for a child but was barren. After pleading with God, “she went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad.” (1 Samuel 1:18). She visualization the joy of having a son before seeing it happen. And she did conceive and bear Samuel.
David: As a boy, David envisioned defeating Goliath before it happened, saying, “This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you.” (1 Samuel 17:46). His mental image later became reality.
Solomon: When granted one request from God, Solomon didn’t ask for riches. He visualized himself as a wise judge, requesting “an understanding heart to judge Your people.” (1 Kings 3:9). God blessed Him with wisdom.
Jesus: Even our Lord Jesus visualized outcomes with God the Father before accomplishing them, saying “I knew that You always hear Me.” (John 11:41-42). Through prayerful visualization, He raised Lazarus from the dead.
Godly Manifestation vs. New Age Manifestation
As we’ve seen, picturing and believing for blessings is appropriate for Christians when done properly. However, New Age teachers take manifestation to unbiblical extremes. Here are key differences:
Means: New Age teachers claim manifestation works by impersonal occult laws like “the secret” or “law of attraction.” But the Bible shows it happens by God’s personal, sovereign will in response to faith.
Motive: New Agers manifest to gratify selfish desires. But biblical figures like Hannah wanted children for godly motives. We should manifest to glorify God, not ourselves.
Materialism: New Age manifestation focuses on earthly riches and pleasures. But Jesus told us to store up eternal treasure in heaven instead (Matthew 6:19-21).
Harmony with God: New Agers believe we can force the universe to give us whatever we visualize. But Christians manifest by praying according to God’s will in alignment with His wisdom.
Power Source: For New Agers, visualization itself contains power to materialize objects. But Christians know only God can grant blessings, so He deserves all the credit.
With these cautions in mind, you can wisely seek biblical manifestation.
How to Practice Manifestation Without New Age Errors
If you want to manifest goals in a Christian way, here are some tips:
- Pray first. Dedicate goals and desires to the Lord. Don’t demand things from Him. Instead, request blessings you’ll use for Kingdom purposes.
- Visualize biblically. Imagine righteous scenarios, like sharing the gospel or providing for your family. Avoid selfish or immoral fantasies.
- Give thanks. Express gratitude for what you have now, and see it as God’s provision. Don’t take His current blessings for granted.
- Quote Scripture. Meditate on God’s promises for wisdom, provision, healing, restoration, etc. Let His word shape your imagination.
- Renew your mind. Reject negative mental patterns. Focus on wholesome things (Philippians 4:8). Our thoughts impact us deeply.
- Act in faith. Step out when God opens doors, not forcing outcomes. Manifesting creates readiness for God-given opportunities.
- Give God the glory. However He chooses to bless you, thank and honor Him. Don’t attribute results to your visualization powers.
As you can see, manifesting goals with the right approach honors God. Just remember He is the ultimate giver of every good thing (James 1:17).
Key Takeaways on Manifestation
To wrap up, here are key points to remember about manifestation:
- Visualizing desired outcomes can aid faith when kept in balance. Examples are in the Bible.
- But be cautious about New Age “law of attraction” approaches that wrongly treat our minds as all-powerful.
- Manifest money or things only for godly purposes, not selfish gain. Seek God’s Kingdom first.
- True manifestation requires surrendering your will to the Lord’s. His wisdom is higher than yours.
- Stay rooted in Scripture’s wisdom when visualizing. God’s promises and truths should shape your imagination.
- Thankfully acknowledge God as the only true Source of blessings manifested in your life. He deserves all glory.
The path of wisdom is recognizing manifestation happens according to God’s personal leading, not impersonal cosmic laws. With prayerful discernment, you can use visualization powerfully. God rewards faith when directed toward righteous ends for His glory. May He guide you into deeper abundance according to His perfect will.