Recently I came across an article which examined the life of Edith Nesbit. Edith Nesbit was a nineteenth century English writer who was also one of the founding members, along with her husband, of the English Fabian Socialist Society. Apparently, she was also a member of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, if you go to their website you will see her name listed proudly in their members list. The most famous member of this order was Alistair Crowley, evil influence on so much popular culture, everyone from the Beatles to L. Ron Hubbard, the author of Scientology who thought of himself as Crowley’s successor to Anton Le Vey founder of the Church of Satan. Apparently, this group do not believe themselves to be strictly satan worshippers, as their beliefs are a mixture of a number of different philosophies and religions; Theosophy, Kabbalah and others. However, they do have a very strong focus on the practice of magic and the occult and have been quoted as being the influence for the wiccan religion in the modern era.
Edith Nesbit is a well-known and well-loved author; children of many generations have read her books, myself included. Two of my favourites, both made into movies and TV series, were ‘The Railway Children’ and ‘Five Children and It’. Nesbit wrote a great many other books which I had read at one time or another which introduced the reader to characters and stories about magic, myths and ancient civilizations. One story in particular ‘The Amulet’ involves time travel and goes to a future Britain in which H.G. Wells is venerated. Wells was also a member of the Fabian Socialist Society. At the time that I read these stories, they were only fairy tales to me and I thought nothing much more of them other than, as all children would, to think of how wonderful it would be to have a fairy at the bottom of the garden who would grant you a wish a day or travelling on a magic carpet. I think most of us have considered the excitement of having all your wishes come true. It is the desire upon which all of Satan’s servants and Satan himself have built their deception. Even today you hear of movie or rock stars making what appear to be ironic statements about having ‘sold their soul to the devil’ for fame and fortune. Except that to them it is very real as a lot of them are into the occult as well.
Everyone from Walt Disney to just about every advertising executive in existence have used this very human yearning to be free from pain and difficulty in order to sell their agendas. Edith Nesbit was a follower of occult practices which also promised to bring her fulfillment. The Fabian Socialists have had an agenda for a one world order, albeit a socialist one, since their inception. It is easy to see how fairy tales and the hunt for answers from outside human knowledge can be informed by a yearning for a better world. Unfortunately, Satan’s agenda is also to rule the world in order to bring everything tumbling down into chaos and have every creature worship himself. He doesn’t care how he deceives human beings, whether they believe they are worshiping nature as wiccans or pagans or businessmen who worship money or politicians who worship power or rock stars who worship fame or silly human beings who worship their pastors and end up falling into error that way. Satan is happy to use whomever to bring about his eternal plan for world domination and the destruction of Christians whom he hates with a vengeance.
It has been a theme in our lives lately that God has been showing us the truth behind all of our fondest memories of childhood. It seems that no stone has been left un-turned. When we turn to God with our whole hearts and ask Him to accept us as His own, he will take us at our words and come and crush every deception, tear down every imagination and destroy every idol we have worshiped, often unbeknownst to us, from our past and in our present. Discovering that one of my favourite childhood authors is a witch was really not that terrible, but it was a shock. What it really did was open my eyes further to the reality behind the veil of the fantasy that my childhood was a place of innocence and sunshine. In fact, it was a place of deception and darkness.
The Bible makes it clear that all things that are in darkness will be brought to the light (Mark 4:22). When God takes us on the journey down the narrow path, His word becomes a light to our feet, but not just as we read the Bible. His indwelling word, His Holy Spirit, make it abundantly clear when something is not acceptable to God. While God does not hold us accountable as small children for our actions, especially for those things which have been introduced to us by our parents, as we grow, he does show us that we have a choice. Even as a teenager I was reading Edith Nesbit without thinking, and I became a Christian at the age of 13. Nobody I spoke to ever warned me against fairy tales or books which contained Greek mythology mixed with so called ‘Christian’ parables such as CS Lewis’ Narnia books. I read JRR Tolkien’s books as well although I skipped great swathes of the writing because I found it boring. I was never into the mythology behind the books as people are nowadays with the advent of the films and the internet and the manifestation of a ‘Tolkien culture’. Apparently you can even learn the fictional Tolkien ‘Elvish language’ at universities now. ( http://www.lotrplaza.com/archivesindex.php?Archive=First%20Age&TID=51368). The ‘runes’ which are actually an occult alphabet used by witches and Satanists did not originate with Tolkien however. So what you are actually doing by entering these classes is entering a portal to the occult. Many students, and teachers I fear, would have no problem with that since they are often atheists as well. So much for higher learning.
So while I was not aware of the inherent dangers in reading books written by occultists or of the errors of mixing profane with holy, introducing children to the ideas of magic and fairy tales, I was still being led down a dark road which opened doors which I would otherwise not have encountered. It is useless to say that these authors knew the stories were only fantasy because I don’t believe this to be the case. Edith Nesbit practiced witchcraft. To her at least, the supernatural was not make believe. Why else would she be part of a group which involved itself in so much ceremony to worship demonic spirits and invite them into their lives if she thought it all to be imaginary. Likewise, Clive Stapes Lewis was a great lover of the Greek myths, the worship of Norse and Greek gods, and set much store by them. Towards the end of his life when visiting a Greek temple, he is quoted as saying….” I had some ado to prevent Joy and myself from relapsing into Paganism in Attica! At Daphni it was hard not to pray to Apollo the Healer. But somehow one didn’t feel it would have been very wrong — would have only been addressing Christ sub specie Apollonius. We witnessed a beautiful Christian village ceremony in Rhodes and hardly felt a discrepancy.” (Roger Lancelyn Green, C.S. Lewis: A Biography, Revised Edition (Orlando, FL: Harcourt Inc., 1974), page 30, 274) Emphasis mine.
Again, you can hardly say that the Narnia series was merely an allegory or fable when the author was a self-confessed former pagan who apparently even in 1960 when this quote was made was still ambivalent about his faith. Here is a man whose understanding of God himself was completely flawed, and he was not, as many profess, a great Christian theologian. Anyone with any genuine grasp of scripture could not possibly call Lewis’ writings theology. To be sure he wrote about those things which interested him, but he was interested in a great many things, the occult held a very great power over him even from his childhood. His matron at boarding school was a theosophist, theosophy being the major influence on the Golden Dawn group and had a huge influence on him as a source of comfort and encouragement and Lewis himself has confessed in ‘Surprised by Joy’ that feelings are everything. Here was a man who was focused completely on the fleshly carnal nature and had little understanding of the Holy or Consecrated life. I fear that many Christians, myself included have been seduced into practicing idol worship in the guise of ‘fairy tales’ instead of worshipping God.
“As I urged you upon my departure for Macedonia, remain on at Ephesus so that you may instruct certain men not to teach strange doctrines, 4nor to pay attention to myths and endless genealogies, which give rise to mere speculation rather than furthering the administration of God which is by faith. 5But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.…” (1 Timothy 1)
Like Lewis, many Christians are focused on what feels good. But the motto of the church of satan is ‘do what thou wilt is the whole of the law’. La Vey has obviously tried to create a biblical feel to his writings using the old English ‘thou’ and ‘wilt’ as thou this was ancient writ. The ideas behind it certainly are because satan is as old as creation and his agenda has not changed. He questions God’s word and tries to get Christians to worship himself instead of the one who alone is worthy of our worship. I think it was Carol Matriciana, a Christian speaker and former follower of New Age and Hindu teachings who said that Satan promised Eve that she would ‘become like God’ when she was already perfect and in a perfect relationship with God. You couldn’t get any better than that but satan managed to convince our great ancestor that she could achieve something God could never give her, and he was right of course. By obeying satan, Eve sinned and was wrested away from that perfect relationship with God and her husband, she became that which all pagans and seekers after occult knowledge wish to achieve, she discovered rebellion.
In fact, satan does not offer us anything but himself and he is an altogether dark and bottomless abyss of pain and suffering. No human being was created to be in relationship with evil, we were created to be in relationship with Holiness and Goodness and Perfection and Light. God himself of course, through his Son Jesus Christ and through Christ’s cleansing blood and His sacrifice on the cross, wants to be once again our one source of life and healing from this ugly sinful existence. Yet so many Christians fall prey to the lies which satan peddles in the form of ‘fairy tales’ or the imaginary which some might call fiction. I used to be a great fan of fiction, but now even Christian fiction tends to produce more irritation than edification. At its core is emotional responses to pretend characters and their stories. You are responding to a person from somebody else’s imagination, birthed from the womb of their own minds. How much more uplifting to read the Word of God, or to listen to genuine testimonies from real people who have experienced the life of God or the salvation of God or the healing of God or something real from God rather than something unreal from another human being. The ‘willing suspension of disbelief’ is what drives all fiction, but so called ‘Christian fiction’ should not exist at all.
I know this sounds harsh and some may question why I have such a beef about something which apparently only gives people a ‘good read’. I am opposed to anything which originates in the flesh or the imagination of human beings. I am not interested in fairy tales either in the pulpit or in books or on the internet. We pay for the privilege of being able to read stories and we forget that the whole time we are indulging in the mire of somebody else’s imaginary world. This is not the real world, this is like stepping into somebody else’s deception and seeing what they are seeing. You are opening yourself up to another influence, but is it godly? Most of the time, no, it is not.
Oral history is one thing, myths and stories are something else again. Passing down the Word of God through the Rabbis and the family members was important for those who could not read. Passing down stories which are entirely fictional with no basis in reality might as well be the same as passing a marijuana cigarette. Let’s all get high on this story which will cause us to be happy and sad in turns and in the end we will put the book down with a huge sigh because we have been on a roller coaster of emotion and lived somebody else’s life for a few hours. What is the difference between this and a drug induced ‘trip’ in which you step outside of your own reality to embrace the effects of chemicals in your brain.
Look at it this way. Many children’s authors of the past have been found to be borderline pedophiles (Lewis Carroll) or malignant narcissists (Enid Blyton) or as I have mentioned witches (Edith Nesbit) or pagan idol worshippers pretending to be Christians (CSLewis). You often don’t know who these people are when you read their stories. I certainly had no knowledge of Carroll, Lewis or Nesbit when I read their stories. Was I entertained? For sure. Was I ushered into an existence which both frightened and excited me? Yup! Was I being covertly introduced to the occult? Absolutely! We think that reading is harmless because it is all ‘in our imagination and it isn’t real’. Wrong! Truths are bound up in myths because the whole unvarnished truth would freak most people out. Lewis Carroll’s books were disturbing and not terribly enlightening to me as a child. He was a very strange character with an obsession with photographing naked children. Today he would probably be on a psychiatrists couch if not in jail with his computer confiscated. Why would I want to be inside his head? The same could be said for pagan worshippers or witches. These are not God’s people, they are confused and they worship somebody I would not wish to meet in a million years, yet I meet him daily through the foolishness and darkness of human understanding. Fiction is not harmless, it is the result of a human being’s thoughts many of which are placed there by demonic forces. NEVER forget that! I would go so far as to include Paul Young’s ‘The Shack’ in this denunciation of ‘fiction’. Young would like us to believe that God can be portrayed as two women and a man rather than a Holy Trinity of one man who is also God and Two disembodied Spirits. God is the only one who is able to define himself but I find now on the internet that there are discussions about God’s ‘gender’ as a result of these ridiculous Christian fiction books which want to introduce controversial subjects in order to engender debate!
“I never thought everyone was going to love this book. Art is incredibly subjective as to whether a story and style are appealing. I have no problem with a spirited discussion of some of the theological issues raised in The Shack. The books I love most are the ones that challenge my theological constructs and invite a robust discussion among friends, whether I agree with everything in them or not in the end,. That is especially true of a work of fiction where people will bring their own interpretations of the same events or conversations.” https://www.lifestream.org/is-the-shack-heresy
Jacobsen states that the books he loves the most are the ones which challenge his theological constructs. As the co-editor and publisher of ‘The Shack’ he says in the first paragraph of this article that he ‘knew that The Shack was edgy enough to prompt some significant backlash, which is why so many publishing companies didn’t want to take it on at the beginning’. Yet this books is fiction. Now we have fictional books with fictional ideas about God and who he is masquerading as ‘just a good read’ which also purport to be reconstructing our theology as believers. And so many believers have claimed that this book has changed their lives. We live in perilous times.
Current trends in young people’s literature now bring the occult out of the closet. We are looking at witchcraft, satan worship, the glorification of vampirism and shape shifting werewolves and zombies as though they are again all imaginary. These things are not pretend, they are very real, they are part of the real world of the demonic and profane spiritual planes. The Bible does not pull any punches about the demonic. We are told by both Jesus and Paul and the other disciples that we need to cast out the demonic, to reject that which titivates the flesh and excites the carnal mind and instead embrace the light, and that which God himself has given us through Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. The power and salvation offered by God through the Holy Spirit has no parallel. He has come to save us from this present darkness and not to encourage us to indulge our senses and our fleshly imaginations in pointless narratives about so called Christians dealing with fictional events. How is this uplifting our spirits when in actual fact none of this is real and comes from a human being NOT from God. Are Christian author’s telling us that their stories are in fact the same as or as good as revelation from the Holy Spirit? Are their stories on the same level as the canon of Scripture? No, they are not and they do not. There is no spiritual benefit in stories or myths or fairy tales or what in actual fact is falsehood. If it is not true then it is a lie right? If it is a lie then why are we filling our heads with it? We are in fact filling our empty souls because we feel the need to ‘chill out’. Why do we need to do that? Because we are beset with our own anxieties and sins. There is only one place to go to deal with that. The cross of Christ deals with sin and ‘in the multitude of my anxieties your comforts delight my soul’. (Psalm 94:19)
God wants to comfort us and His comforts are far more delightful to our souls than any amount of fiction, television, internet games or fantasy games. Let’s put these things aside and focus on the Saviour and Lover of our souls, Jesus, who will give us everything we will ever need for life.
as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,
(2 Peter 1:3)