The Christian Broadcasting Network

Spiritual Life

Right Now: myCBN App - Christian Growth | Steps to Peace with God

APOLOGETICS

My New Age Friend

By Greg Stier
Dare 2 Share

Who are they?

The New Age is not new. Tenants of New Age doctrine have been a part of human history since the serpent deceived Eve in the garden with the promises of godhood. Although those in the New Age movement vary in their particular doctrines and practices (because it is not one centrally organized religion) they do have some common core beliefs. According to Douglas Groothius in his excellent book, Confronting the New Age, there are nine New Age core beliefs.

Here are their nine commonly held beliefs:

1. Evolutionary optimism
New Agers believe that the world is poised to explode into a New Age of enlightenment. They are convinced that this “new world order” will be united under a one world government and initiated by a quantum leap in humanity’s spiritual evolution.

Biblical view:
“But mark this and there will be terrible times in the last days.” (2 Timothy 3:1)

2. Monism
Monism means “oneness.” New agers believe that we are all one with each other and the universe. We are all connected by the common cord of the cosmos.

Biblical view:
“God saw all that He had made [diversity], and it was very good.” (Genesis 1:31)

3. Pantheism
New Agers do not believe in a personal God. They believe that the totality of all the “oneness” in the cosmos can collectively be called “god”. Some call it “the force”. Others call it “consciousness”. But by any label it is the deification of the universe and everything in it. That’s why Shirley MacLaine can proclaim, “I am God.” She believes that as part of this cosmic consciousness, she is god and so are you.

Biblical view:
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God... Through him all things were made... In him was life, and that life was the light of men... The Word became flesh and dwelt among us... No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side has made him known.” (John 1:1, 3, 4, 14, 18)

4. Transformation of Consciousness
New Agers believe that the New Age must be experienced to be transformational. Through meditation, drugs, yoga, martial arts, or cosmic experiences, the goal of the New Ager is to become one with the universe. The goal is a state of mind that is at peace with oneself and at one with one’s universe.

Biblical view:
“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind....” (Romans 12:2) “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” (Psalm 119:105)

5. Create your own reality
In the New Age movement morals are subjective. Since their is not an external objective standard of authority when it comes to behavior then you are free to create your own moral reality. The New Age encourages its participants to experiment and experience their own morals on their journey toward oneness.

Biblical view:
“Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness....” (Isaiah 5:20)

6. Unlimited human potential
New Agers are convinced that all the power of the the universe is available to every person. The more that we can know the god within us the more we can unleash the cosmic force to achieve the unachievable (ESP, telepathy, out of body experiences, and psychokinesis [moving or manipulating objects with our minds] are all evidence of their belief in unlimited human potential).

Biblical view:
“Now to him [God] who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work in us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” (Ephesians 3:20, 21)

7. Spirit Contact
New Agers believe that there is an army of spirit guides, extraterrestrials, and entities who are seeking to communicate to humans through mediums or channelers. These channelers are humans who are in touch with the cosmic consciousness and are used by these spirit guides to communicate universal truth to others. These cosmic truths routinely contradict Biblical teachings.

Biblical view:
“But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned.” (Galatians 1:8)

8. Masters from Above
New Agers believe that UFO’s and those who have had extraterrestrial encounters prove that there is not only life on other planets, but that these more evolved species have much to teach us.

Warning: Watch any of the Star Trek series and/or X-Files, you will see that this is true! Most Hollywood movies or television series about science fiction and space exploration are built on the premises of the New Age movement. Many who watch these shows end up buying the lies they promote!

Biblical view:
“...Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.” (2 Corinthians 11:14)

9. Religious Syncretism
As Douglas Groothius writes in his book, Confronting the New Age, “New Age spirituality is a rather eclectic grab bag of Eastern mysticism, Western occultism, neopaganism, and human psychology”. Many New Agers claim to be Christian. Most Americans today are New Age in at least some areas of their belief system. The whole contention, “it doesn’t matter what you believe, it only matters that you believe,” flows from the New Age belief system.

Biblical view:
Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’ ” (John 14:6)

What do they believe?

About sin?
They believe that morality is personal and that the Biblical view of sin is guilt inducing and an unhealthy concept for enlightened people to accept

Biblical view:
Men are held responsible for Adam’s sin as well as their own (Romans 5:15).

About the Trinity?
New Agers do not believe in the Trinity. They reject the concept of a personal, powerful God. They believe that all is god and god is all.

Biblical view:
There is one God and yet three Persons (Isaiah 45:5; Deuteronomy 6:4; James 2:19).

About Jesus?
They believe Jesus was an enlightened man. He was in touch with his cosmic consciousness and was able to tap into this universal power to heal others. They believe that he is only god in the same sense that we are gods.

Biblical view:
Jesus is fully God and fully man. He is not a god. He is the God of the universe (John 1:1,14,18; 8:58; 10:30. Compare Titus 2:13 and Isaiah 45:21).

About salvation?
New Agers believe that salvation is found in becoming one with the universe. It is not a personal, permanent relationship with the God of the universe through faith in Christ, but rather a melting of ourselves in the cosmic pot of mystic oneness.

Biblical view:
Salvation is by faith in Christ on the basis of His death on the cross. Good works have nothing to do with being saved (John 3:16,17,36; 6:29,47; Romans 4:1-5; Galatians 2:16; Ephesians 2:8,9; Titus 3:5).

About the Bible?
Most New Agers would say that the Bible is God’s Word in the same sense that the Book of Koran and the Book of Mormon is God’s Word. They warn strongly against taking the Bible literally. They are convinced that it should be gleaned for cosmic truth mystically, not literally.

Biblical view:
The Bible alone is the word of God. It is without error. It cannot be added to or subtracted from (2 Timothy 3:16-4:4; Revelation 22:18-20).

How to Witness to Them

  • Remember to focus on the literal claims of Christ. Not only did He claim to be God (John 8:57,58; 10:30), but He also claimed to be the only way to God (John 14:6).
  • Various questions to ask New Agers:

• “If there is no absolute truth when it comes to morality, then...

...what’s wrong with murder, theft, and rape?”

“Why are they wrong?”

Whatever they give as an answer, they are giving as “absolute truth” which is inconsistent with their belief system.

• “If Jesus was an enlightened man, than why...

...did He claim that He was the only way to heaven?” (John 14:6)

...did He condemn those who reject Him to an eternity in hell?” (John 3:16-18, Matthew 25:41-45)

• “If we have unlimited human potential, then why do even ‘masters’ in the New Age get sick and die?”

• “If there are extraterrestrials that commonly invade our hemisphere through UFO’s, then why is there no hard empirical evidence that they exist?”

Recommended reading

Confronting The New Age, Douglas Groothius. Downers Grove, IL: Intervarsity Press, 1988.

Fast Facts On False Teachings, Ron Carlson and Ed Decker. Eugene, OR: Harvest House, 1994.

A Ready Defense, Josh McDowell. San Bernardino, CA: Here’s Life Publishers, Inc., 1990.

Don’t Check Your Brains At The Door, Josh McDowell and Bob Hostetler. Dallas, TX: Word Publishing, 1992.

Used with permission. Learn more at Dare 2 Share.
  • Translate
  • Print Page


CBN IS HERE FOR YOU!
Are you seeking answers in life? Are you hurting?
Are you facing a difficult situation?

A caring friend will be there to pray with you in your time of need.

Email iconSign up for E-mail Updates Full List

 E-mail: 
Do You Know Jesus
Grow In Your Faith

Need Prayer?

Call 1-800-823-6053
Email your prayer request