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“Surge in Spiritism: Most Americans Believe in Paranormal”
October 25th, 2017

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It's official – if you don't believe in ghosts, you're in the minority.

The Chapman University of American Fears 2017 has revealed a surprising number of Americans believe in the supernatural. A solid majority – 55 percent – believe ancient advanced civilizations such as Atlantis once existed, and more than 50 percent also believe places can be haunted by spirits.

More than a third of Americans also believe aliens have visited and a quarter think some people are capable of telekinesis, or moving objects by the power of their minds.

The survey found certain types of people are more likely to hold such beliefs – especially unmarried women who claim to be religious and politically conservative but do not often attend formal religious services. Residents of the West Coast were also reportedly more likely to believe in the paranormal.

Pastor Carl Gallups, author of the end-times examination "When The Lion Roars,"suggests there is something real behind how many Americans now report belief in the paranormal.

"I believe the relatively new all-encompassing media environment and the rapidly changing culture have contributed to the growth in reported ‘haunting' experiences and other dark spiritual encounters," he said. "All of this is also supplying a greater stage for the demonic realm, which is very real and biblically prophesied. The Bible is clear that in the age just before the return of Christ that the world would experience a literal demonic outpouring. The Scriptures declare that this coming spiritual deluge will eventually bring about a desperate state of apostasy in the church, a diabolical delusion among the nations, and a spirit of abject lawlessness that will sweep the planet. We are at least in the beginning stages of all three of those prophesied conditions – and maybe further down the road than just the ‘beginning.'"

Kari Paul reports in Marketwatch "interest in spirituality has been booming in recent years while interest in religion plummets, especially among millennials."

More than half of young adults believe astrology is a science and the "psychic services industry" has been growing for several years.

At the same time, the number of Americans who express belief in Christianity has been in continuous decline over the prior decades.

Karl Payne, author of "Spiritual Warfare," suggests many Americans are rebelling against a culture which dismisses the reality of supernatural experience. At the same time, the relentless cultural attack against Christianity means the hunger for spiritual experience is expressed via interest in the occult rather than a return to traditional faith.

"I think the reason people are so open to ideas regarding hauntings and spirits is because far more people have had paranormal experiences than strict empiricists want to admit or believe," he told WND. "The bottom line is that in today's hedonistic culture, demons or spirits are in, and a worldview embracing spiritism and occultism is growing," Payne told WND. "The media has not created this reality, it has just accelerated its expanse from a fringe curiosity to be ignored or scorned to a reality to be chased and embraced. From the point of view of a Christian theist the results of this hell bent express are paradoxical.

"I am glad that more and more people are shedding the shackles of atheism. God is real and He can be known through the Lord Jesus Christ, the only mediator between God and man. But I am sickened that the cost of the rise of spiritism and supernaturalism is that many people are now dancing with demons, who are also real, and their job is to ultimately destroy their dancing partners in time, regardless of what lie they had to spin to get the date."

Payne argues the decline of Christianity has essentially opened the belief in tenets and ideas which are anti-Christian but nonetheless supernatural.

"People are hardwired for faith," the pastor said. "The variable is the object of their faith. God has been worshiped. Man has been worshiped. And now, there is a growing fascination with embracing spiritism by playing games with demonic spirits. What is coming next?"

Both Gallups and Payne argue the world is moving closer to the end times, and the rise in occultism is preparing the ground for dire events.

"I believe this decent into hell is going to culminate in the open worship of Satan incarnate, who is promised to rule the world for a short period of time before the Lord Jesus Christ returns to destroy him and all of his followers and their works," Payne said. "For the world to be willing to embrace the open, blatant worship of Satan through his antichrist, it makes sense to me that there will have to be a conditioning of people to be willing to make this foolish decision, and think it is normal in the process.

"Maybe inundating young people with walking and talking with the dead is a first or second or third step in conditioning or grooming people to reject the worship of the Lord Jesus Christ and the Christian faith. It seems almost anything and everything is open for exploration emulation in our public square except loving Jesus Christ or teaching the Bible as the inspired Word of God."

"There can be no doubt that Satan is a decidedly ‘religious' being," Gallups added. "He often operates within the realm of apostate beliefs, where he plies his diabolical trade of rejecting the Gospel of Jesus Christ, while at the same time replacing true faith with the false spirit of religiosity. I am convinced that much of the world's fascination with the occult realm flows from the ubiquitous presence of this last days spirit."

Payne concludes the best way for Christians to combat the rise in occultism and the decline in faith is to teach an uncompromising and sincere version of the faith, rather than something which seeks to be simply inoffensive.

"Promoting a Christian faith that makes blending into culture a virtue rather than a vice represents nothing more than a religious inoculation against genuine Christianity," he said. "When the real thing comes along, a body has already produced antibodies to attack it. If faith is hardwired into our soul, and I think it is, and if Christianity is so demonized that Jesus Christ is rejected, it leaves a vacuum to be filled by something religious that does not involve the Lord Jesus Christ as God and Savior. Demons are very happy to step into that void by representing or misrepresenting Jesus Christ and religious inclinations."

Payne suggested this is also why the survey found those who identify as religious but are not going to church regularly were more likely to believe in the paranormal.

"Demons do not care if a person is religious, they just do not want them to be disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ," he said. "Theists are far more open to experimenting with the paranormal than naturalists or atheists. It is easier to locate a counterfeit $20 bill than a counterfeit $3 bill.

"I believe there is going to be and increasing interest in the Spiritism, the paranormal and occultism the closer we draw to the return of Jesus Christ for his bride, the dhurch. Again, it represents a cheap imitation of the real thing, satisfying the need, but not the soul."

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