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What Does the Bible Say About Communicating with the Dead?
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What Does the Bible Say About Communicating with the Dead?

Introduction

Communicating with the dead has been a topic of fascination and intrigue throughout human history. Many people have sought to connect with loved ones who have passed away or to gain insight and guidance from spirits and entities beyond the physical world.

However, as Evangelical Christians, we believe that the Bible serves as the ultimate authority on all matters of faith and practice. Therefore, it is essential to examine what the Bible has to say about communicating with the dead.

In this blog post, we will explore the teachings of the Bible regarding communication with the dead. We will look at the perspectives presented in both the Old and New Testaments, examining passages that condemn or warn against such practices.

We will also discuss the potential dangers of communicating with the dead and the importance of turning to prayer and the Holy Spirit for guidance instead.

As Evangelical Christians, we believe that our faith and relationship with God should be rooted in the truth of his word. By examining what the Bible has to say about communicating with the dead, we can gain a better understanding of how to live in a way that honors and glorifies God.

Let us dive deeper into the teachings of the Bible and seek to live according to his will in all areas of our lives.

Communicating with the dead in the bible

Old Testament Teachings

In the Old Testament, we see various passages that speak about communication with the dead. However, it is important to note that in each instance, the communication is either forbidden or condemned.

For example, in Deuteronomy 18:10-12, God explicitly forbids the Israelites from practicing divination, sorcery, witchcraft, and consulting with the dead.

The passage reads, “There shall not be found among you anyone who… practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord.”

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Furthermore, in Isaiah 8:19-20, we read that seeking guidance from the dead is a sign of spiritual darkness.

The passage says, “And when they say to you, ‘Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter,’ should not a people seek their God? Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living? To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.”

These passages make it clear that communication with the dead is not only forbidden but also a sign of spiritual darkness. As Christians, we should heed these warnings and avoid any attempts to communicate with the dead.

New Testament Teachings

In the New Testament, we see a different perspective on communication with the dead. While the Bible does not explicitly forbid or condone such practices, there are several passages that suggest that they are unnecessary and potentially dangerous.

One such passage is Luke 16:19-31, where Jesus tells the parable of the rich man and Lazarus.

In the parable, the rich man is in torment in Hades and asks Abraham to send Lazarus to warn his family about their impending fate. Abraham responds, “They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.”

In other words, Abraham suggests that there is no need for communication with the dead since the living have access to God’s word through the scriptures.

Another passage that speaks to this topic is Hebrews 9:27, which says, “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.” This passage suggests that there is no opportunity for communication with the dead after death since everyone will face judgment before God.

Therefore, while the New Testament does not explicitly forbid communication with the dead, it does suggest that it is unnecessary and potentially dangerous. As Christians, we should instead turn to the scriptures and seek guidance from God through prayer and the Holy Spirit.

The Danger of Communicating with the Dead

It is important to understand the danger of communicating with the dead. Firstly, it can be a form of idolatry where we place our faith and trust in something other than God.

Secondly, it can open us up to deception from evil spirits who seek to lead us away from the truth of God’s word.

Thirdly, it can lead to a fascination with the supernatural that takes our focus away from the truth and power of the gospel.

In addition, communication with the dead can also lead to a distortion of the gospel message. When we seek communication with the dead, we are essentially denying the truth of Christ’s resurrection and the hope of eternal life that he offers.

Instead of placing our faith in the promises of God, we are seeking after something that is ultimately empty and meaningless.

Furthermore, communication with the dead can also lead to a preoccupation with death that can be unhealthy and destructive.

Rather than focusing on the hope and joy of the gospel, we are dwelling on the darkness and sorrow of death. This can lead to a sense of hopelessness and despair that is not in line with the hope and peace that God offers us.

In light of these dangers, it is clear that communication with the dead is not something that Christians should engage in. Instead, we should focus on the truth of God’s word and seek to grow in our relationship with him through prayer, worship, and obedience to his commands.

The Role of Prayer and the Holy Spirit

As Christians, we have access to the power of prayer and the Holy Spirit. Through prayer, we can communicate with God and seek his guidance and wisdom in all areas of our lives. We can also ask for his protection and help in resisting the temptation to communicate with the dead.

In addition, the Holy Spirit is available to guide us and empower us to live according to God’s will. He can help us discern truth from falsehood and lead us into a deeper understanding of God’s word.

Therefore, as we seek to live according to God’s will, we should make prayer and the Holy Spirit a central part of our lives. By doing so, we can be strengthened and empowered to resist the temptation to communicate with the dead and to live in a way that honors and glorifies God.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the Bible is clear that communication with the dead is either forbidden or condemned in both the Old and New Testaments. While the New Testament does not explicitly forbid such practices, it suggests that they are unnecessary and potentially dangerous.

As Evangelical Christians, we should heed these warnings and avoid any attempts to communicate with the dead.

Instead, we should turn to the scriptures and seek guidance from God through prayer and the Holy Spirit. We can also seek the counsel of wise and mature believers who can offer biblical insights and guidance.

By doing so, we can be strengthened and empowered to live according to God’s will and to resist the temptation to engage in practices that are contrary to his word.

Let us always remember the hope and peace that we have in Christ, who conquered death and offers us eternal life through his sacrifice on the cross. May we always seek to honor and glorify him in all that we do, and may we find our ultimate joy and fulfillment in him alone.

Pastor duke taber
Pastor Duke Taber

Pastor Duke Taber

All articles have been written or reviewed by Pastor Duke Taber.
Pastor Duke Taber is an alumnus of Life Pacific University and Multnomah Biblical Seminary.
He has been in pastoral ministry since 1988.
Today he is the owner and managing editor of 3 successful Christian websites that support missionaries around the world.
He is currently starting a brand new church in Mesquite NV called Mesquite Worship Center, a Non-Denominational Spirit Filled Christian church in Mesquite Nevada.