Nathan Jones: It seems like the New Age Movement is vastly catching on in our society. More and more people seem to be involved in Wiccanism and Christian Yoga and other practices that have their source in the occult.
To get a better understanding of this phenomenon, I asked my predecessor from Lamb & Lion Ministries and the founder of Spirit of Grace Ministries, Dennis Pollock, who used to be a teen age new ager, to explain what the New Age Movement is and why Christians should most certainly avoid it.
Dennis wrote a wonderful article posted to our website titled, “I Was a Teen Age New Ager.” When I read it, it really surprised me because Dennis is such a great theologian, but I didn’t know that he was not always a Christian. Dennis, you were something before that, right, a New Ager? Can you tell us what exactly a New Ager is?
Caught Up in Deception
Dennis Pollock: The New Age has to do with the idea of wanting to be spiritual yet not wanting to accept the authority of Scripture nor the salvation that Jesus offers. They tend to believe in things such as reincarnation and various metaphysical concepts. They pride themselves on being very spiritual people by believing there is something more “out there.” They are not like the secularists who say, “You die, you go into the grave, and you rot.” Rather, they believe we will all reincarnate into another earthly body. Sadly, yes, I was kind of into all of that nonsense for a short season of my early life.
Nathan Jones: You were a follower of Edgar Cayce, right?
Dennis Pollock: Edgar Cayce, yes. Actually, it is interesting because God used some very strange theological meanderings to get me to the place where I became a believer in Jesus Christ. I started out in my later teen years not really believing in much of anything. I considered myself merely an Agnostic. I wasn’t so foolish as to say, “There is no God!” I just was like, “If there is one, I really don’t know.” So, I was an Agnostic and not an Atheist.
I read a book about Edgar Cayce’s life. He used to go into trances and tell people what was wrong with them medically. Then he began to tell people that they used to be this other person in a previous life. He promoted reincarnation. As I read this book, I ended up buying into the whole thing. I can remember lying on my bed reading the book and thinking, “Wow, this is it! I have finally figured out what life is all about.”
The neat thing about the New Age view of things is you really don’t have to change your behavior much. You just try to be kind of a nice person so that you rack up some good karma. You don’t have to be born again. You don’t have to go to church. You don’t have to avoid sexual immorality. Just be kind of nice.
So, I really bought Cayce’s teachings hook, line, and sinker. I think I ended up with about a dozen or so of Edgar Cayce’s other books and had read them all. I was so really into that whole thing.
Finding Out the Truth
Dennis Pollock: But, Edgar Cayce did one thing good, and that basically was pointing me to Jesus Christ. He would try to use Jesus to justify his own teachings. He’d try to use the Bible to say, “This is really true because the Bible says it is.” He talked about Ezekiel seeing the wheel within a wheel and talked about that being some visitor for another planet. He tried to explain that Jesus had yet to be born again, which obviously meant you have to be reincarnated, and so forth. He would use the Bible and he would use Jesus to try to prove his views.
I had no one to guide me to the truth, but I remember thinking to myself, “I just wonder if there is anything to this Bible business.” I had grown up in the church but then moved away as a teen, and so I didn’t go to church at all. But, since Cayce kept trying to prove his points by using the Bible and Jesus, I thought, “Hey, I think I’ll just read the New Testament and see what it has to say.” Even though I had grown up in the church, I didn’t really know much about the Bible at all; I’d never really read it. I think my dad had bought me a Bible one time when I was about 12 and I read through maybe ten chapters in Matthew, but that was the last of it. I hadn’t read it again.
So, at this point in my spiritual journey, because of Cayce, I started to try and figure things out. I deeply wondered what life was all about. I’m 19 years old at this point and was trying to get some grounding for my beliefs and my own personal philosophy. I didn’t like the idea of the secularists who say you are just going to die and rot and that is the end of you. That bleak worldview seemed to be to me a very depressing deal.
So, I started reading the Bible, reading the New Testament, and going through the book of Matthew. Well, I was immediately impressed! Jesus just jumped out of those pages, so I couldn’t help but be impressed. I wondered what Mark would be like. I was so ignorant that I didn’t even know that Mark was another Gospel containing more stories about Jesus. I read in Mark a lot of the same stories, but again, Jesus Christ hit me right through those Scriptures. Then I read through Luke, same thing, more about Jesus. I read through John, which was all about Jesus, but it contained a lot of new stories about Him.
The Bible says in Matthew 18:16 that, “By the mouth of two or three witnesses let every word be established.” There is something about repetition — pow, pow, pow! — that really drills something into your heart. I read through Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John and I was left overwhelmed by Jesus Christ. I ended up reading through the whole New Testament. I started thinking of myself as a Christian. I started going to church.
I’ll admit, I didn’t give up Cayce for a while. I didn’t give up holding on to the idea of reincarnation for a while. I tried to hold them together along with my new biblical understanding. Yes, I loved Jesus. I considered myself a new disciple of Jesus. I began going to church. But, sadly, I continued to think I’d reincarnate and still be another person at the end as the means for how God would eventually bring us to perfection.
What eventually happened was that I began to realize there was a huge difference between the evangelical people that I was starting to mingle with and their beliefs versus reincarnation. I finally came to the conclusion that holding on to these conflicting worldviews was too dangerous. If the evangelicals were right, if the born-again people had it right, then this reincarnation stuff was dangerous to my newfound faith. I was simply messing with fire. But, on the other hand, if Cayce was right, then the Christians are still doing fine with whatever they believed.
In the end, I finally burned all of my Cayce books. And, almost within days, the conflict all cleared up. I saw the error of it all. It was simply amazing to me! Burning all of Cayce’s books in a 55-gallon barrel out in the backyard suddenly within days helped me realize just how wrong Cayce was. And so, I’ve never looked back since.
How You Can Find the Truth
Nathan Jones: Dennis, if someone is caught up in the New Age Movement right now and they want to break out of it and find the truth, just as you did, how can they find the truth?
Dennis Pollock: You call upon the Lord Jesus Christ to show you the truth and then go and get yourself a Bible. Get into the New Testament, get into the Gospels of Jesus Christ, read the epistles of Paul and the other books in the New Testament. Then pray, “Lord Jesus, whatever the truth is, I’m open to it. I’m willing to learn.”
The one thing I had going for me in those early years was that it really didn’t matter to me so much one or the other philosophy, for I just wanted to know the truth. If you really want to know the truth, then you call on the Lord Jesus Christ and He will show it to you.
Nathan Jones: Amen! The New Age Movement is a lie, it’s dangerous, and it is leading people away from the truth. Dennis found the truth in the Gospels of Jesus Christ and the rest of the Bible. Accept Jesus Christ as your Savior today and you will know the truth.