Thursday, September 17, 2015

Are Ghosts Real?

“But they were startled and terrified and thought they were seeing a ghost.” Luke 24:37

As the holidays approach, I am often asked this question.  First let’s define what a ghost is, usually people think a ghost is a disembodied spirit/soul of a person who has died that wanders the earth.  The idea of the supernatural and ghosts have fascinated so many today. The popularity of television shows like “Ghost Hunters,” “Fact or Faked,” and “Ghost Adventures.”  So what should Bible believing Christians think about ghosts?
     First of all, there are two types of ghost sightings.  One in which the person feels glad they were “visited”  by what appears to be a deceased loved one, and the other type sight or thought of a ghost gives a feeling of fear in the person or persons who encounter it.  If you or someone you know tells you an old ghost tell it gives you a feeling of the need to leave.  That is a flight response driven by fear.  When an angel of the Lord comes to people they always remind them to not be afraid (Luke 2:10, Matt. 2:20). 
     In addition to causing fear, the sight of a ghost causes confusion.  When God’s agents appear to his people it is always 100% clear they are sent from God and their message is unmistakable.  In our culture today many people are seeking out a ghost experience thought EVP’s, heat cameras, and other technologies.  The hope is to document and prove the supernatural.  As Christians we do believe in the supernatural, and we have some clarity about what is out there.  In the event that you are dealing with something that is not clearly from God, and/or causing great fear instead of comfort, it is most likely of demonic origin.  Demons being fallen angels governed by Satan (Matthew 12:22-28).  
     The Bible does record an encounter with what appears to be a dead man’s soul in 1 Samuel 28:7-21, but the spirit that speaks as the deceased “Samuel” says that King Saul and his sons would die the next day, which didn’t happen some of Saul’s sons survived.  This fact leads me to conclude that King Saul was not speaking to the dead prophet, but a demon who was posing as Samuel. 

     So to answer the question, no, I don’t believe in ghosts, but I do believe in demons.  I also would point you to Hebrews 9:27, reminding you that when we die we face judgment, not wandering around the land of the living.  Let me leave you with a warning and an encouragement.  The warning is this, avoid seeking encounters with spirits (Deut. 18:10, Isaiah 8:19) it will not end well.  And remember God is greater than any demon (1 John 4:4)!

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