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Cults By Rev. Paul Seiler



Astrology is exceedingly popular in the Western world today. One can hardly pick up a newspaper without finding an astrological chart somewhere in it. Many television programs and radio stations have regular astrological programs, where you can hear the latest predictions for your life. William Petersen indicates that there are in excess of two million Americans, who are addicted to Astrology. There is a lot of money to be made in astrology and many people are capitalising on its popularity. Unfortunately its popularity is not only confined to America. William Petersen estimates that in Britain about two thirds of the adult population read their horoscope. About 53% of French people read their horoscope daily, while in Germany some 63% dabble in it.325 The author could find no statistics for Australia, but general observation would indicate that a large percentage of Australians take astrology very seriously.


Astrology may be defined as a pseudo-science concerned with the study of the influence which stars allegedly exert upon people and things. The whole structure of Astrology revolves around the "zodiac," an arbitrarily arranged belt in the heavens. The zodiac has been divided off into twelve divisions or signs. These were classified and used by ancient people thousands of years before the time of Christ. Each person is said to have a zodiacal sign which is determined by the division the sun was in at the time of a person's birth. Astrologers believe that the character and nature of a person is largely determined by the sign under which he or she is born.


Astrology has its origins in ancient times. The building of the tower of Babel may have been the first expression of this cult.326 Certainly astrology began in ancient Babylon, where towers were built, called "ziggurats". These towers were erected in order for the Babylonian priests to survey the heavens. These Babylonian priests would climb these ziggurats and survey the night skies in order to discern the will of the gods and determine the future.327 Later on the Greeks took up the practice of astrology and utilised it in their philosophy. It fitted in nicely with their Stoic and pantheistic philosophy.328 Claudius Ptolemy, a Greek astrologer-astronomer formulated the Ptolemaic system of astronomy which regarded the earth as the centre of the solar system and everything revolving around it. The Romans also took up astrology. The early Christian church battled against it. Augustine of Hippo, who had played with astrology before his conversion, warned against its dangers of Astrology in his Confessions. After the decline of the Roman Empire, astrology went into decline and remained in that state in the Western world up until the present century when it has re-surfaced in a very big way.329


One of the difficulties that Astrology faces is that it has not kept up with modern astronomy. Astrology is based on seven planets, however modern astronomy has shown that there are more than seven planets in our solar system. The astronomer Herschel discovered the planet Uranus in 1786; and then, in 1846, Neptune turned up. Apparently, for centuries Uranus and Neptune had been going about their business, taking no part in directing human affairs, even though each was bigger than Mercury, Mars and Venus combined. It turns out however that the astrologers soon found tasks for them to do. Pluto was not discovered until 1930, yet it also appears to have had no effect upon the lives of people prior to its discovery. Alice Molland, who writes for a Sydney Astrological Magazine writes,

"You have an ally in your chart. A powerful friend who will boost you forwards if you will accept his help when he's jolting you in the right direction. So don't just lay there complaining you're stuck. Latch onto the outpouring of energy from Uranus, planet of the unexpected."

This "powerful friend" was unheard of until 1786, and apparently had no influence before this date, isn't it funny that all of a sudden this planet begins to exert some influence on the lives of people. The thoughtful person may well ask: "Why don't the millions of other stars in the galaxy also have some influence upon the lives of people?" Astrologers do not know they are only interested in the significance of the zodiac, which has been handed down to them.


Since the positions of the divisions of the zodiac were established about 100 B.C. the earth's rotational axis has moved forward so that the signs of the zodiac are now separated about 30 degrees from the constellations which they were supposed to coincide with. This means that today's horoscopes actually represent the zodiac as it was 2,000 years ago. In one very real sense then, every horoscope is out of date!


Astrologers commonly believe that we are in the age of Aquarius, although they differ as to the date of commencement of this age. Various dates have been set for its commencement of this age, including - 1904, 1936, 1962.

What do they mean by the Age of Aquarius? William Petersen gives the following explanation,

"Astrologers as well as astronomers speak of a star-age as about twenty-two hundred years. It is the age during which the sun rises - on the first day of spring - in the heavenly space occupied by one of the signs of the zodiac. For the past twenty-two hundred years the sun has been rising in the sign of Pisces (the sign of the fish). But some time in this century - 1904, 1936, 1962 or later - the sun has risen or will rise out of the space occupied by the constellation Aquarius. Astrologers say that every time we change from one star age to another, new forms of worship develop, new governments are in style, new philosophers become popular. The Age of Aquarius, say astrologers, will be characterised by humanism, brotherhood and astrology. It will be a golden age of love and brotherhood."330

Astrology is very much bound up in the New Age religion that has captured the minds and hearts of many people in the West. It seems to hold the promise of a new and exciting future, but it is an ancient cult, that is forbidden in the Bible.


The Astrologers believe that the planets have a big effect on shaping our lives. This runs contrary to the teaching of the holy Scriptures, which teach that God is in control of this world, shaping its destiny and determining everything that happens. Jesus taught that not even a little sparrow can fall to the ground except according to the will of God. (Matthew 10:29 ) Astrology proposes a mechanistic universe, in which the motion of planets shapes our lives. This is to deny the sovereignty of God in ruling this world. Astrologers have rejected the Biblical doctrine of divine providence, for the devil's lie. The Psalmist said that God controls the stars:

He determins the number of stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit. (Psalm 147 : 4,5).

The stars do not control our destiny at all our lives are determined by God. The stars are simply part of God's creation and operate according to His purpose, they have no effect at all upon our lives at all.

325William Petersen op cit p.14

326ibid p.15

327ibid p.15

328ibid p.16

329ibid pp.16 & 17

330William Petersen op cit p.20

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 August 2010 12:42  

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