I grew up in a Christian religious environment that somehow confused me in relation to its “tolerance” on the subject of witchcraft. While there is the general worship of God the Father and of the Son, Jesus Christ, there co-exists an equally disturbing association with the occult world, of the assumed mysterious supernatural powers derived from some dark spirits.
BY PROSPER TINGINI
Witchdoctors are dotted everywhere in our society, numerous in numbers and exceeding those of priests, pastors etc combined numerically. Many people who worship the Lord our God are very often seen crossing the floor to consult persons professing to practice “black” magic and sorcery, or the worship of the dead.
Of greater worry is the proliferation of “Christian-coated” individuals within various Pentecostal religious groupings who masquerade as prophets of healing, but with a deep-rooted belief in witchcraft as being the main source of human misfortunes, illness, death and etc. The teachings of the “prophet healers” further promote the witchcraft mentality in people within society and the church entities. This subjects some worshippers to occultism and the reverence of the supernatural mysteries of the dead and of some living individuals. These prophetic healers often double-up as witch-hunters. We are then left with a double-pointed form of worship which is against the will of God. While by day we worship the Lord, by night some of us Christians consult n’angas or sangomas.
It is still common practice within our society and culture to want to consult some preferred witchdoctor or prophet to explain the source of a relative’s death even in the fact of some glaring medical evidence. There is a general misguided belief that a person’s death is caused by someone else or some angry and aggrieved spirits needing attention. To some people, there is no such thing as a natural death, and death is not by God’s calling or choice. Even common illnesses are sometimes attributed to have been caused by someone with a grudge or hatred towards the afflicted, or by the spirit of a dead relative or ancestor who wants some form of retribution for some wrong.
Ritual ceremonies of all kinds are often the order of the day among people during most weekends or the holiday periods, to appease the dead, often at the instigation of a witchdoctor or as an entrenched practice within our culture. Again at the end of most of those ritual ceremonies, people gang together to consult the n’angas or sangomas to affirm that the rituals were done properly and confirm that the spirit of the deceased person has accepted and been consoled by the ceremony. Within our Christian fraternity, such two-faced arrangements are common practice.
Regrettably such beliefs have caused a lot of untold rivalries and grave consequences within families, neighbours, associates at work and among friends. Witchdoctors and the new breed of religious healers of all sects tend to always point a finger towards a relative or someone as the source of the death of a deceased or of the illness of an afflicted. It would mean that for every death or for every affliction they are consulted for, someone is pointed a finger at as the perpetrator. The end result is that a son or daughter will accuse the father or mother, a brother will accuse brother, sister against sister, nephew against uncle, niece against aunt and all charging each other of being the source. Medical evidence which points to the cause of death or illness is sometimes brushed aside in favour of promoting ideals of witchcraft. This also applies for many misfortunes, lack of progress in life, perceived prosperity etc. It is all banded together to be descended of some dark supernatural origin, bewitchment and the use of black magic (juju).
Witchcraft is thus a deep-rooted religion in its own right and sphere. It has a huge religious following and it exists for the believers. In the same manner as we talk of the importance of our Christian faith, there is this parallel faith that also exists through the intermediaries of the occult world. These two religions will always fight each other and that of the Lord our God will always reign supreme. No power is greater than that of the Creator. The Lord will always prevail against all the dark forces of the universe.
Let us consult our Holy Scriptures and listen to what the Almighty directed us on witchcraft. In the third book of Moses, Leviticus 19:26, God pronounced, “You shall not practice augury or witchcraft.” In the same gospel, Leviticus 19:31, He proceeded to declare, “Do not turn to mediums or wizards; do not seek them out, to be defiled by them; I am the Lord your God.” Augury is foretelling of the future through spirit mediums who derive the powers of prophecy or divination from the dead. Wizardry is also a form of witchcraft in the use of black magic, sorcery and all acts of what we can term as the voodoo cult. The Lord forbids us from using any of these channels for whatever purpose. Our God is a living Being, having lived from the dawn of time.
Those souls expelled from the Kingdom of God roam the earth as children of Satan, seeking refuge in living beings. “Don’t allow them to occupy your space or souls”, says the Lord.
The first and most important commandment of God reads, “I am the Lord your God, there shall be not other gods besides me.” (Exodus 20:3) Ours is an eternal God. How then do you decide to go and consult a sangoma or n’anga who base their practices upon the dead? They sit on skins/hides of dead animals, using black cloth signifying death, throwing around horns and bones of dead creatures, wearing outfits made from leathers of dead goofy animals, speaking in voices of the dead ancestors and use other dead things. NO, these practices don’t bring life to you, but death and anguish. The witchcraft, wizardry, augury and sorcery religions are of death backgrounds and not of life. Arise from the dead. Amen.
l Prosper Tingini is the scribe of the Children of God Missionary Assembly — God’s messengers. Contact details: 0771 260 195. Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org