Most of us, when asked for Biblical signs warning of the nearness of the last days will mention Israel, or perhaps the Global Economy. Some will mention the famines, earthquakes and diseases; the "wars and rumors of wars" that sweep our planet.
Few, however, will think to mention DRUGS, SORCERY and religious DECEPTION as significant of the end times.
Even though these are foreshadowed in Scripture, they are only brought to notice through careful study with a Bible in one hand and newspaper in the other. So if you think your favorite recreational drug "isn't mentioned in the Bible", you have another think coming, because what you are doing falls under the heading of "pharmakeia", or in English, "sorcery", as we will prove in the following paragraphs.
The worldwide spread of psychedelic (Peyote, LSD); narcotic (heroin); and hypnotic (hashish) drugs fulfills the prophetic scriptures as one o of two forms of SORCERY that would lead the nations into rejection of Christ, and bring them into their final destruction as slaves of the Man of Sin, the Antichrist, under a New World Order at the end of the age.
Some may wonder why marijuana/hashish is included here. It's included because it, like the other drugs, produces an ALTERED STATE OF CONSCIOUSNESS that leaves the user open to hypnotic, and therefore demonic suggestion. In the Old Testament, God forbids his people to engage in "enchantment" (hypnosis) and witchcraft (sorcery).
The following Hebrew words as defined in Strong's Concordance illustrate this altered state and it's occultic roots:
Strong's # 2267: cheber (kheh'-ber); from 2266; a society; also a spell: KJV-- + charmer (-ing), company, enchantment, X wide. (DIC)
Strong's # 3908: lachash (lakh'-ash);from 3907; properly, a whisper, i.e. by implication, (in a good sense) a private prayer, ( in a bad one) an incantation; concretely, an amulet: KJV-- charmed, earring, enchantment, orator, prayer. (DIC)
Strong's # 3909: lat (lawt); a form of 3814 or else participle from 3874; properly, covered, i.e. secret; by implication, incantation; also secrecy or (adverb) covertly: -enchantment, privily, secretly, softly. (DIC)
"For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Matt 24:24 (KJV)This verse is one of five or six times the Bible mentions MIRACLES in connection with DECEPTION in the last days. The fate of those who are so deceived is shown in Matthew 7:21-23:
"Not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, `Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons AND PERFORM MANY MIRACLES?' Then I will tell them plainly, `I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'"The means of this deception looks religious and perhaps even doctrinally plausible, but the methods of performing miracles is NOT. There is, in addition to false doctrine, a visible, hands on method by which the nations are being deceived and led into Hell. That method is SORCERY, and/or "witchcraft".
The New Testament mentions TWO kinds of sorcery: MAGIC
(In Greek, "mageia") and DRUGS (In Greek, "pharmakeia"). The New
Testament was originally written in Greek, and the distinction between
these two types of witchcraft has been lost in the translation. But our
Strong's Concordance and Vine's Dictionary of New Testament Words spotlight
these deceptions, helping us to identify them so that we may take warning:
"Now for some time a man named Simon had practiced sorcery in the city and amazed all the people of Samaria. He boasted that he was someone great, and all the people, both high and low, gave him their attention and exclaimed, "This man is the divine power known as the Great Power." They followed him because he had amazed them for a long time with his MAGIC." --Acts 8:9-11 (NIV)The Greek word for "magic" is listed in Strong's Dictionary:
Strong's # 3095: mageia (mag-i'-ah); from 3096; "magic":
KJV-- sorcery. (DIC)
"The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and WITCHCRAFT; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. --Gal 5:19-21 (NIV)The Greek word here used for "witchcraft" is:
Strong's # 5331:pharmakeia (far-mak-i'-ah); from 5332; medication ("pharmacy"), i.e. (by extension) magic (literally or figuratively): KJV-- sorcery, witchcraft. (DIC)
Vine's Dictionary brings this into perspective with the following:
"Pharmakeia" (Eng., pharmacy etc.) primarily signified the use of medicine, DRUGS, SPELLS; then, POISONING; then, SORCERY, Galatians 5:20, R.V., "sorcery" (A.V., "witchcraft"), mentioned as one of "the works of the flesh." See also Rev. 9:21; 18:23
In the Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Old Testament ca. 200 B.C.), Ex. 7:11,22; 8:7, 18; Isa. 47:9,12
"In sorcery, the use of DRUGS, whether simple or potent, was generally accompanied by INCANTATIONS and appeals to OCCULT powers, with the provision of various charms, amulets, etc., professedly designed to keep the applicant or patient from the attention and power of demons, but actually to impress the applicant with the mysterious resources and powers of the sorcerer."
When a believer engages in these activities, he is in effect denying
his Lord the honor due him: who's shed blood purchased the believer's eternal
redemption. The Bible says:
"You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of men." -1 Corinthians 7:23The Bible further warns those who don't believe that if they persist in their rejection of Christ, a strong delusion will come upon them after the Rapture, (see 2 Thessalonians chapter 2) and they will go into the Tribulation UNABLE to repent:
"Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts."--Rev 9:21
"The light of a lamp will never shine in you again. The voice of bridegroom and bride will never be heard in you again. Your merchants were the world's great men. By your MAGIC spell all the nations were led astray."--Rev 18:23
"And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead that were in them, and each person was judged according to what he had done. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. If anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire."--Rev 20:12-15
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