This article contains excerpts from Chapter 26 of Dave Hunt's 1998 bestseller,Occult Invasion: The Subtle Seduction of the World and Church . Written over 18 years ago, the book is a fascinating revelation of the road-builders paving the way to the New World Religion now converging.
WE HAVE SEEN that there is a massive but subtle occult invasion of today's world and church. Materialism is dead. No longer clinging to the view that nothing exists except matter, science now admits the reality of a nonmaterial dimension governed by mysterious forces and inhabited by nonmaterial intelligences that it can neither identify nor explain. Every facet of occultism is now being explored as the new hope in medicine, education, psychology, business, military intelligence, and space science. Contact is sought and advice is followed from spirit entities whose trustworthiness cannot be established by scientific means. Psychic powers mistakenly assumed to arise from an alleged inner human potential are being avidly cultivated in many fields, and their pursuit can only lead deeper into the occult.
The occult has always been the foundation of non-Christian religions, and it invaded Christianity when Constantine allegedly became a Christian and wedded the church with paganism. Catholicism, which had its birth under Constantine, has been involved in the occult ever since, not only in its adaptation of pagan practices wherever it has spread but now in the more overt ecumenism under Pope John Paul II. In their new partnership with Rome, evangelicals have opened themselves further to the occult invasion.
The Mind Science cults such as Christian Science, Science of Mind, Religious Science, and Unity School of Christianity openly embrace the occult. Their brand of occultism has invaded charismatic and Pentecostal churches through the Positive Confession movement of Hagin, Copeland, Cho, Wimber, Hinn, and other false prophets and healers. The same "positive" occultism has invaded the evangelical church through Peale and Schuller and their followers. "Christian" psychology and the related practices of inner healing or healing of memories and 12-Step programs have accelerated that invasion as well.
All of these streams are now coming together through the ecumenical movement. Its scope is unprecedented in human history. What we are seeing can only be the great apostasy which Paul said must come in order for the day of Christ to dawn and the Antichrist to be revealed. All that remains for the occult invasion to triumph is the establishment of a New World Religion in partnership with a world government. One would have to be blind not to see that this New World Order heralded by President Bush and the Pope is fast coming upon us.
Few are the voices sounding the alarm and few are those who heed warnings such as the following, voiced by former Vineyard pastor John Goodwin. Goodwin came to Christ out of the occult and eventually realized that the Vineyard was involved in the very occult practices he had abandoned:
I was a Vineyard pastor, and according to John Wimber, in his words, I "could do the stuff... anywhere and any time.... " I was tuned in... I was in lock-step with what John was teaching.... I have literally been to hundreds of Vineyard conferences... .
I'm here to [explain] that this is part of the last days heresy that's bringing the church into the New Age and into the New World Order.-.-.-.-It's all part of the Antichrist system of a one world church, a one world government and a one world economy.
Anti is a Greek prefix that is generally understood to mean "opposed to or against." It has, however, another meaning: "in the place of or a substitute for." Antichrist will embody both meanings, according to the Bible. He will indeed oppose Christ but in the most diabolically clever way it could be done (anything less would not be worthy of Satan's genius): by posing as Christ and thus corrupting Christianity from within.
That being the case, Antichrist's followers will be "Christians." No wonder, then, that the apostasy must precede his ascension to power. A false, ecumenical, and antichrist "Christianity" must sweep the world in preparation for his takeover. True Christians will have been taken to heaven in the rapture, and Antichrist will be worshiped by those who are left--except for those who come to faith in Christ during this horrible time and are martyred for their faith.
A popular Christmas card a few years ago was already in tune with the coming world religion: "May the spirit of the holidays give us faith in ourselves and help us to believe in each other's dreams so we can make this world a better place."
Already the label "Christian" has lost its true meaning and can now be attached to any anti-Christian belief. The latest poll identifies 26 percent of Mormons as "born-again Christians," yet their "God" is an exalted man and their "Christ" is the half-brother of Satan! Not only in Roman Catholicism but in all denominations, there are pastors, teachers, and other leaders who are spreading a false gospel. They misrepresent Christ and His teachings and lead entire congregations astray. They pretend to represent Christ but do not accept all that He taught. The Christ they present is more like Antichrist. Such is the "Christianity" which the White House now seems to espouse.
Even former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, an atheist turned pantheist, dares to say of socialists: "We promote the cause of Christ." Articles too numerous to quote follow Gorbachev across the country as he meets with religious leaders . . . and praises the importance of "religion" in the New World Order. What he advocates sounds like Antichrist's coming world religion.
Gorbachev is likely not the Antichrist, but he is a very good prototype of him. In Israel, a peace dove landed on Gorbachev's head on the occasion of his acceptance of "three honorary degrees for speeding up Jewish immigration... [and he] praised Jesus as 'the first socialist.'" Gorbachev "is framing an 'Earth Charter' intended to fuse socialism and mysticism into a UN-approved new world religion. The Earth Charter is scheduled to be presented to the UN General Assembly sometime before the year 2000, and Gorbachev insists that its adoption is necessary... to save the earth from its rapacious inhabitants."
Gorbachev and the late Pope John Paul II were great friends and mutual admirers. Gorbachev professes an interest in spirituality (but without truth), and the pope encouraged him in this delusion. Gorbachev wrote:
I have carried on an intensive correspondence with Pope John Paul II since we met at the Vatican in December, 1989... we share a desire to move forward and complete what we began together.... What I have always held in high esteem about the Pope's thinking and ideas is their spiritual content, their striving to foster the development of a new world civilization... .
The "spiritual content" of the pope's ideas and his powerful"political role" are agreeable to Gorbachev. They were partners in planning a new world. One cannot imagine Christ, who was and is hated by the world, playing a political role in partnership with this world's Caesars--but those who claim to be His Vicars have done it for centuries.
The willingness to accommodate any kind of spirituality (a necessary ingredient of the coming world religion) is a growing attitude even among those who call themselves evangelicals. Pat Robertson refers to members of his Christian Coalition (Catholics, Mormons, Moonies, and followers of other religions) as people of faith who, he says, "are under attack as never before...by forces which wish to destroy all religious values, all worship, and all freedoms...." Therefore, says Robertson, "We must lay aside certain Protestant differences to join hands to support those things upon which we all agree...."
In fact, Coalition members hold many faiths whose "religious values" and "worship" are totally incompatible. It is deceitful to speak of "people of faith" standing together, when to do so individual faith must be abandoned. Nor is it honest to call an organization that includes those of other religions "the Christian Coalition." And for a Christian to stand only for the least common denominator that everyone can agree upon is to abandon Christ himself, whom the world hates and its religions reject or redefine. Far more than "Protestant differences" must be overlooked for Christians to join hands with non-Christians! Pat's coalition sounds more like what occult leader and priest Matthew Fox proposes:
Deep ecumenism is the movement that will unleash the wisdom of all world religions--Hinduism and Buddhism, Islam and Judaism, Taoism and Shintoism, Christianity in all its forms, and native religions and goddess religions throughout the world. This unleashing of wisdom holds the last hope for the survival of the planet we call home.
It is this loose merging of Christianity with whatever spirituality one fancies that will characterize the coming world religion--and destroy Christianity.
An evangelical pastor spent ten days at an ecumenical gathering of the World Council of Churches (WCC) and National Council of Churches (NCC), held under the auspices of New York City's Auburn Theological Seminary. He was shocked at the overt rejection of Christianity and its replacement by paganism. The occult was honored as though it were of God. Here is part of the report he filed:
I knew we were in trouble when our first worship "celebration" found us outdoors at a garden pond offering prayers and water libations to the Seven Spirits of the seven directions of the Universe ("O Spirit of the North, blow upon us...O Spirit of the East...West...South...). What to any objective observer was sheer paganism, we were told was simply an exercise in discovering the ecumenical variety of spiritual expression and experience that we must learn to share if we are to be truly one....
[There] was the outright denial of the Doctrine of the Trinity...[as] an archaic symbol for God so loaded with classical Western sexism and images of oppression that it must be abandoned in favor of something more palatable to enlightened sensitivities...[like] Sophia....
While some of us may prefer to relate to Jesus as our personal "Christ-figure," we dare not make him exclusive. We must be inclusive of all potential "Christ-figures," so that we can learn to see through them all and behind them all to that one Savior Spirit of Liberation working through all the various "Christ-figure" masks of the world's religions.... The awful thing is that, judging from the participants at this conference, many of the ecumenical leaders of mainline Protestantism are happily following this primrose path to apostasy.
Concern for morality and ecology becomes the excuse for compromising theology. Kenneth S. Kantzer, a senior editor of Christianity Today (CT ), wrote: "With the spread of moral rot that destroys the roots of a free and just society, we evangelicals need to close ranks with our Catholic neighbors. And with Mormons, conservative Jews, and secularists who share our values...." Had Christ joined the rabbis in such a coalition for moral improvement, think of the great ethical reformer He could have become and the immense good He could have accomplished--all without going to the cross!
At the same time, Christianity is being confused with Americanism. Millions of "Christians" of all stripes, from evangelicals to Catholics to Mormons and Moonies, have joined together to Christianize America by calling it back to the "traditional moral values" upon which it was founded. Somehow this "mission" has captured the imagination and loyalty of multitudes of evangelicals and has replaced the biblical Great Commission in their hearts and minds.
There is a new optimism in the air, the determined hope that "America can be saved" by a compromised ecumenical gospel. Even J.I. Packer seems to have succumbed to this delusion. Writing in CT , he transmutes Christ's command to proclaim the gospel into a call "to re-Christianize the North American milieu...[and] rebuild the ruins...[of] North American culture..."! Where does the Bible suggest that? Llewellyn Rockwell writes:
Christianity is now thoroughly politicized. The [Catholic] bishops and [Ralph] Reed have no trouble speaking about the importance of pro-family legislation, or the glories of religious pluralism, but they are shy about such basics as the Christian teaching on salvation. The longer the process of politicization continues, the thinner the faith gets. Political ambition causes people to water down their beliefs for the sake of gaining favor....The first stage of sell-out comes with the exaltation of political pluralism above doctrinal truth, the second stage with the denial of doctrinal truth altogether for achieving political goals.
The document "Evangelicals and Catholics Together: The Christian Mission in the Third Millennium" was not a sudden development but the inevitable result of much earlier preparation. Charismatic magazines (from Voice to Charisma ) and leaders (from the late Kathryn Kuhlman to Rex Humbard) have heaped praise upon Pope John Paul II in spite of his false gospel. In praising the pope as a Christian leader, Jack Hayford said, "You don't have to be a Catholic to stand tall and say, 'I'm a Christian, too.'" Billy Graham called John Paul II "the greatest religious leader of the modern world, and one of the greatest moral and spiritual leaders of the century." James Dobson, one of the world's most highly respected Christian psychologists, called the pope "the most eminent religious leader who names the name of Jesus Christ."
For all his inventions and modern developments, man has not changed. He is still the descendant of Adam, fallen into sin and in need of reconciliation to his Creator. He still needs love and purpose and meaning not only in this life but beyond. Eternity is all that matters, and it hasn't changed. God hasn't been renovating heaven to keep up with the ideas current upon earth, nor has He revised the entrance requirements to broaden the spectrum of belief among its citizens.
God doesn't hire a Madison Avenue advertising and promotion team to persuade us that heaven will be a nice place to retire to. "Repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ" (Acts:20:21), no longer popular even among evangelicals, is still the only entrance ticket to heaven. Those who do not love God wholeheartedly and desire Him to have His way with them would be miserable there.
Heaven and hell are not states of mind, as Templeton and his cohorts imagine, but the real and eternal destinations of every human soul and spirit. Hell is where people go who turn to occult powers in rejection of God, who are determined to have things their own way, to enjoy their own passions, to create their own universe with their thoughts. Its inhabitants are self-centered, utterly lonely souls. Self has become so all-consuming that there is room for nothing else.
Christ was born the Savior of sinners. How marvelous that He who is God, one with the Father and the Holy Spirit, loves us so much that He was willing to be born of a virgin, to grow up in a world that hated Him, to be despised, rejected, mocked, scourged, crucified--and more than the physical suffering, to bear our sins and to pay the infinite price of our redemption demanded by His own infinite justice! He is still mocked and rejected by the world and His gospel perverted even within the professing church.
Heresy and compromise on the part of those who claim to be His followers is perhaps the most painful mockery He endures. It rejects Him as He really is and undermines His real purpose in coming to earth. Every true Christian should be deeply offended and concerned that serious error is being promoted not only in the world but even in seemingly sound churches and by those who are looked up to as evangelical leaders. It is our love for Christ in response to His love for us, and our love for the lost whom He loves and for whom He suffered and died, which causes us to hate heresy, to denounce the occult invasion and to earnestly contend for the faith once for all delivered to the saints. May we remain true to Him until He takes us home!
We face some trying days ahead if the Lord tarries. Recently this author watched a John Bradshaw seminar series that lasted five days on Public Broadcasting TV. While talking about faith in God (Bradshaw had his own unbiblical definitions for both faith and God), he denounced those who claim to be saved and who thereby "destroy the self-image of others who don't believe exactly as they do." It was all extremely clever and persuasive. The audience was obviously convinced of all he said. One could easily see the day coming when such arguments would be used to stifle or muzzle evangelicals as a menace to society.
The Christian martyrs throughout history (and those being martyred today, particularly in Muslim countries) could have chosen an ecumenical path of compromise and of affirming the "common beliefs of all religions," and thus have escaped the flames or the sword. But they chose instead to stand firm for the truth, to contend earnestly for the faith. Dare we do otherwise?
For us, at this crossroads in history, the issues have broadened. The deadly tentacles of the occult in its many guises have invaded the world, but also the church. What will be our response? One day we will give an account before God for that choice. What joy there is now and eternally in being true to Him!
Hunt, Dave. (2011, February 1). The Coming New World Religion. thebereancall.org. Retrieved February 4, 2016 from http://www.thebereancall.org/content/february-2011-classic