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This article was originally published in the Letters Section of
Pasugo: God's Message, October 2001 issue

On psychics and fortune-tellers

I received an e-mail saying that the recent terrorist bombings in the United States were foretold by the French astrologer, Nostradamus. I was so intrigued that I rented the video tape, The Man Who Saw Tomorrow, which featured Nostradamus' different predictions. According to the videotape, Nostradamus had many other predictions that came true.

My questions are, what does the Bible say about people who predict the future, specifically seers, psychics, fortune-tellers, and astrologers like Nostradamus? Can they really tell the future? Should we believe them? And what if their predictions come true?

Editor's reply"

The Bible mentions of psychics, fortune-tellers, and astrologers; however, it prohibits the practice of such people. God Himself said:

"... Do not practice fortune-telling or witchcraft. ... Do not rely on mediums and psychics, for you will be defiled by them. I, the LORD, am you God." (Lev. 19:26, 31, New Living Translation)

Some people might have had experiences wherein the prediction of the psychic they consulted or sought for advice came true. So, some make a mistake of believing in such people, and even putting their trust in them. Yet, even if the predictions of seers, psychics, fortune-tellers, and astrologers would come true, we should not be swayed into believing in them. The Bible gives this warning:

"If a prophet, or one who foretells by dreams, appears among you and announces to you a miraculous sign or wonder, and if the sign or wonder of which he has spoken takes place, and he says, 'Let us follow other gods' (gods you have not known)' and let us worship them', you must not listen to the words of that prophet or dreamer. The LORD your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul." (Dt. 13:1-3, New International Version)

We should not allow ourselves to be deceived by the predictions of fortune-tellers and astrologers. Should they encourage us to serve other gods, the Bible explicitly says, "you must not listen to the words of that prophet" even "if the sign or wonder of which he has spoken takes place." We shold remember that the devil himself can perform miraculous acts that can deceive people (II Thess. 2:9-10).

The Bible tells the catastrophic end of astrologers and their kind:

"... Let your astrologers come forward and save you--those people who study the stars, who map out the zones of the heavens and tell you from month to month what is going to happen to you. They will be like bits of straw, and a fire will burn them up! They will not even be able to save themselves--." (Is. 47:13-14, Today's English Version).

So, instead of believing in these people, we should turn to God for guidance and answers to life's questions. God alone truly knows what the future holds:

"... I am God, and there is none else like me. Only I can tell you what is going to happen even before it happens." (Is. 46:9-10, NLT)

It is God who knows what is best for us; therefore we should seek His will, obey His instructions, and trust in Him with all our hearts (Prov. 3:1,5-6)