When I was twenty-one years old I attended a large banquet in a big city to hear a famous radio preacher. This man did not have a church; he was just a "radio pastor."
The "pastor" worked the crowd that night. I saw him approach a woman and slowly extend his hand. She extended her hand to shake his. (Etiquette says a woman should extend her hand first.) When her hand reached his, he took his other hand and clasped hers. He looked her in the eyes very closely and softly told her how much she and her support meant to him. He assured her that God would bless her. Needless to say, she was "wowed" by him. It was hypnotic to see it on her face. Before the night was over people were handing over to this man checks in huge amounts. The amounts surprised me.
Something smote me in my heart that night. I could not get over it. People seemed so vulnerable. So easy to control. So duped. I had simply observed on a small scale what many television ministries, radio ministries, cult leaders, religious leaders, and charlatans have done in this electronic age and for thousands of years before electronics. The Bible has a name for them: Enchanters and Charmers. (A note before we go on: There are a few good radio and television ministries.)
About six years later I would enter the ministry myself with a promise that I would not use enchantment, charming or hypnotic techniques to guile anyone. Even if it meant that I live and minister in poverty. Even if it looked like other ministries or churches were "succeeding" and we were failing. I would not use church growth or financial wealth as a measurement of God's blessings. People who think that way are destitute of the truth (I Timothy 6:4-5). We are to withdraw ourselves from them.
Enchanters and charmers prey on the emotionally and spiritually weak. In our day of Biblical illiteracy it is no wonder that people gather by the thousands to hear "Christian" rock concerts and smooth talkers. It seems to me like all of this was prophesied:
I Timothy 4:1-2, 6, "Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained."
This is the only time the Spirit speaks "expressly" in the New Testament. It is with great expression that the Holy Ghost warns us of this departure from sound doctrine into seduction in the last days. The devils are behind it. They are not afraid to speak the truth about Christ. Most of the time the devils spoke in the Scriptures they told the truth! (Matthew 8:29; Mark 1:24; Mark 3:11; Luke 4:41) However, they also speak lies. Truth mixed with a little lie presented in a seductive way is hard to resist. The most dangerous lie is the one closest to the truth.
Again it is prophesied:
II Timothy 3:13 , "But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived." And, II Peter 2:2-3, "And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not."
Paul the Apostle added, "Let no man deceive you by any means (that would include enchantment and charming): for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away (apostasy) first... " (II Thessalonians 2:3).
I guess it has to happen, but we do not need to follow that multitude on their stroll down Seduction Street .
These seducers were given a name in the Old Testament: Enchanters and Charmers. We read in the law: Deuteronomy 18:10-12, "There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee."
These "nasty nine" are called abominations to the Lord. These are people God hates with disgust. These people were not even supposed to be found among the children of Israel , let alone followed. Look at the company God lists them in: Wizards, witches, and necromancers.
Let us define the two we are concerned with in this publication:
Enchanters: one who places someone under a spell, one who captivates, allures, fascinates. One with an irresistible influence. Magician.
Charmers: an orator who fascinates. One who softly and gently incants. One who whispers a spell. Websters Dictionary defines enchantment as "irresistible influence; overpowering influence of delight; that which enchants; captivation, allurement, fascination, irresistible delight."
Websters Dictionary defines charming as "to subdue or control by incantation or secret influence as to charm as a serpent. To subdue by secret power, especially by that which pleases and delights the mind. One who delights and attracts the affections."
The Scriptures forbid the use of enchantment by God's people:
Leviticus 19:26 , "Ye shall not eat any thing with the blood: neither shall ye use enchantment, nor observe times."
It is deceptive and diabolical. Both in the religious and political world people en masse will support leaders who are downright evil. When you question why, you receive such answers as "He seems like such a nice man," or "He is so handsome," or "He is so kind," or "He is so sincere."
The apostle Paul warned,
Romans 16:18, "For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple."
Jesus instructed us to examine their fruit not their personality or smile (Matthew 7). We are to examine their doctrine (Romans 16:17 ). We are to judge their teaching (Acts 17:11 ).
Jesus also warned us of many false preachers and religions that would deceive multitudes in the name of Christ. This was the first thing He mentioned in His great prophetic discourse in Matthew 24:
Matthew 24:4-5, "And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many."
We are to never let any man deceive us. It is a command. We should even "check out" the good Bible-believing preachers we hear.
Acts 17:11 , "These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so."
Jesus also said in the same sermon:
Matthew 24:11, "And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many."
And, Matthew 24:23-24, ". . . if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not. 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."
In three different places in the same sermon Jesus warned us. Sounds important.
Please, please, please-question these pastors, teachers, television evangelists, and bestselling authors.
"Christian" television networks and radio stations are full of Enchanters and Charmers who can guile you out of your money, time and loyalty to your church. You need your church and your church needs you.
The Apostle Paul warned us, II Timothy 4:3-4, "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables."
Paul went on to say how bad the seduction will be in the last days:
II Timothy 3:13-17, "But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived. But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works."
The gospel writer Mark said,
Mark 13:22 , "For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect."
These seducers do not care about the church. They will gladly destroy it whether from the outside or inside. Paul warned the church at Ephesus , Acts 20:28-31, "Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears."
Paul also warned the Church at Philippi, "(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)" (Philippians 3:18-19). Paul loved the church so much that it brought him to tears in his warning against the seducers.
Paul warned another church at Corinth, II Corinthians 11:3-4, 13-15, "But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works."
The devil is often represented by the best dressed, nicest clergyman in town. Many clergymen on TV, on radio and in pulpits today are enchanters, charmers and seducers. They and their ministries should be rejected. Not one penny should be sent to support them. Their ministries and doctrine should be inspected under the microscope of God's Word. Isaiah 8:20 , "To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them."
Do not be charmed by personality, kindness, friendliness, smiles or spells. Do not become enchanted by the size of a particular ministry or its professional appearance. Do not become seduced spiritually by "feel good, self centered" sermons and seminars.
In closing, I would be remiss if I did not take time to mention the most seductive medium ruining our churches today-MUSIC! The good old psalms, hymns and spiritual songs that ministered to the soul have been replaced by the seductive chanting of "worship and praise" songs that minister to the human spirit and flesh.
A "worship service" is not even mentioned in the New Testament. In fact, the New Testament greatly diminishes the ministry of music compared to the Old Testament. The Great Commission of the church is not "praise and worship" but "evangelism and discipleship" (Matthew 28:18-20). The "praise and worship" movement that exploded in the mid-1980's has turned the attention of church leaders inwardly rather than outwardly. The world has grown by one billion souls since 1985 but the number of missionaries leaving America has decreased from 57,000 to 41,000. Our churches have become "Keepers of Aquariums" rather than "Fishers of Men." Jesus did not sit around singing "praise and worship" songs, He went everywhere preaching the gospel (Luke 4:43 ). The first century church did not sit around singing "praise and worship" songs, they went everywhere preaching the gospel (Acts 8:4). Jesus did not die such a violent, bloody death so we could sit around and sing to Him! He died to save our souls.
Music was never used for evangelism in the New Testament. Today's "Christian" rock and rap concerts are used to draw large crowds. This worldly, fleshly music has charmed our youth and adults into becoming conformed to this world and disillusioned with our churches. Some of the youth in our church who listen to "Christian" rock music (against my counsel) are so depressed. They cannot even sing with the congregation anymore. The seducing devils behind this diabolical music has stolen the song out of their heart. They can no longer obey the command, Hebrews 2:12 , ". . . in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee."
A large rock concert in Niagara Falls , Ontario , a few years ago (dubbed "Christian") attracted 4000 youth. After two hours of rock music the "Evangelist" rose up to speak. The first words out of his mouth were, "We're not doing church here!" The crowd roared, stood to its feet and gave the speaker a standing ovation. Wait a minute! Who was behind that statement? God or the Devil? Does not the Bible say, "Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it" (Ephesians 5:25 ). Does not the word "church" appear in the New Testament 76 times? Does not the word "churches" appear 36 times? Who is right, the Bible or the "Evangelist"?
So many have said to me over the years, "I don't have to go to church to be close to God." Where is this doctrine coming from? The Bible? One good preacher said recently "There are over thirty commandments in the New Testament you cannot obey unless you go to church."
We need to quit overemphasizing music and "praise and worship." We can praise and worship God for the next billion years, but we only have a little time left to reach eternal souls.
When was the last time you led a soul to Christ? That sets off Heaven, not our praise and worship. Luke 15:7, "I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance."
Everyone, everywhere should praise and worship Christ, but you are just giving Him lip service if you are not trying to win the lost to Christ. You have been charmed in to spiritual seduction and away from spiritual service.
Preachers, lead your church out of the "praise and worship - purpose driven church" movement and back to the "evangelism and discipleship - soulwinning" movement. We are here to feed sheep not amuse goats.
The apostle Paul warned:
"For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple."(Romans 16:18)
Copyright © 2001
Permission granted to freely copy.
Scripture verses in this booklet are from the King James Holy Bible.