The Signs of the Times


August 19, 1889

Intercourse With Evil Spirits Forbidden


The Lord has purchased his people for himself, and has manifested his love toward them by the greatest possible evidence, even by shedding his blood and yielding his life on Calvary. He came down to our world to redeem us, to betroth and marry us to himself by an eternal covenant. The marriage union is taken as a symbol of the sacred and enduring character of the relation that exists between Christ and his church. He says, “I will betroth thee unto me forever;” and again, “I am married unto you;” and Paul employs the same figure in the New Testament when he declares, “I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.” ST August 19, 1889, par. 1

With untold love our God has loved us, and our love awakens toward him as we comprehend more of the length and depth and height and breadth of this love that passeth knowledge. But when we turn aside to another master, we break our vows to him, and make void the covenant; and we become adulterers, choosing the friendship and favor of others, and proving untrue to him who has died for us. We declare by this act of separation, that we have found his service hard and his love unsatisfying; and thus we dishonor him, and bring his name into reproach before the world. ST August 19, 1889, par. 2

The Lord, infinite in power and wisdom, has declared, “Thy Maker is thine husband.” Everything that will serve for the best good and the highest interest of the people of God will be provided; and although the world seeks to entice them from their allegiance, although they are brought into difficult places, and experience affliction, they are not to seek the counsel of man, but to put their whole trust in God, casting all their care upon him. Christ proves the sincerity of the faith and love of his church by trial and sorrow; and he will bring those who are faithful out of the furnace, refined and purified. ST August 19, 1889, par. 3

There are many who do not bear the testing of their fidelity. When affliction comes upon them, and they are perplexed by circumstances, and cannot discover the purpose of God's providence, they become impatient and distrustful. They cast away their confidence, forgetful of the tender mercies of the past, and their hearts are filled with unrest and repining. They neglect prayer, and refuse the comfort and instruction of the Bible. They seek for counselors among the children of men, questioning the dealing of God, and striving to know what he has wisely concealed. ST August 19, 1889, par. 4

The Lord, who knows all, will make known the very things that are for the best interests of his children; and if he sees fit to veil the events of the future, it is only because he loves us, and would work out our highest good. Should he permit us to see the future mapped out before us, some of us would be distracted by anticipating coming sorrows, and others would be self-confident and daring, and the very good that our heavenly Father intended to bring about by his all-wise providences, would be thwarted and frustrated. ST August 19, 1889, par. 5

We have an enemy who is ever seeking whom he may devour; and it is his purpose to draw away men's confidence in God, to make them dissatisfied with their condition in life, and to lead them to seek to know what God has veiled from them, and to despise what he has revealed in his holy word. He controls the minds of evil men, and the spirits of devils become the counselors of those who reject the wisdom of God. But shall we who have a holy God, infinite in wisdom, go unto wizards, whose knowledge comes from a close intimacy with the enemy of our Lord? Shall we be among those who turn “after such as have familiar spirits, and after wizards, to go a whoring after them,” and thus prove false to our best friend until his face be set against us? ST August 19, 1889, par. 6

We are living in an age of peril, in an age of apostasy; evil men and seducers are waxing worse and worse, Satan is working with all “deceivableness of unrighteousness,” and the servants of God must make no concessions to the enemy, nor listen to his suggestions to doubt God. There are many who become restless when they cannot see the definite outcome of affairs. They cannot endure uncertainty, and in their impatience they refuse to wait to see the salvation of God. Apprehended evils drive them nearly distracted. They give way to their rebellious feelings, and run hither and thither in passionate grief, seeking intelligence concerning that which God has not revealed. ST August 19, 1889, par. 7

If they would but trust in God and watch unto prayer, they would find divine consolation. Their spirit would be calmed by communion with God. The weary and the heavy laden would find rest unto their souls, if they would only go to Jesus; but when they neglect the means that God has ordained for their comfort, and rush off to other sources for information, hoping to learn what God has withheld, they commit the error of Eve, and thereby gain only a knowledge of evil. God is not pleased with this course, and has expressed it in the most explicit terms. This impatient haste to tear away the veil from the future, reveals a lack of unfaltering trust in God, and leaves the soul open to the suggestions of the master-deceiver. Satan can lead the mind to seek unto those that have familiar spirits, and through the agency of his mediums he can reveal extraordinary views of the future. Through his knowledge of the past he inspires confidence, and he has the poor, misguided soul in his power to lead captive at his will; but the Lord says, “The soul that turneth after such as have familiar spirits, and after wizards, to go a whoring after them, I will even set my face against that soul, and will cut him off from among his people.” ST August 19, 1889, par. 8