“Your Article on Edgar Cayce Can Hurt Christian Believers!”

I had previously ignored the anti-Cayce article on your web site, assuming that you had a right to your opinion and that you probably would not want to hear mine. It has come to my attention, however, that this propaganda has the potential to create harm and confusion for believers who might otherwise be helped by the Edgar Cayce readings.

While some of the things in your article are relatively true, some of your facts are patently false. It is shameful for a ministry that claims to do research to post an article that relies almost exclusively on secondary sources while completely ignoring what was actually said in the Cayce readings-a body of information that is readily available to anyone.

Probably the most egregious statement is: Cayce came to believe that Jesus was not the unique Son of God. Here is a quote (similar to thousands of other quotes) from a typical reading:

As to how to meet each problem: Take it to Jesus! He is thy answer. He is Life, Light and Immortality. He is Truth, and is thy elder brother. Will ye open and let Him in? For in Him is strength, not in the law, not in the man, not in the multitudes of men, nor of conditions or circumstance. For He ruleth, He maketh them-every one. For hath it not been given or told thee, hath it not been known in thine experience that “He is the Word, He maketh all that was made, and without Him there was nothing made that was made”? And He liveth in the hearts and the souls of those who seek to do His biddings. This, then, is not idealistic-but an ideal! What would Jesus have me do regarding every question in thy relationships with thy fellow man, in thy home, in thy problems day by day. This rather should be the question, rather than What shall I do? Cayce reading #1326-1

I believe that thousands of people have come to a closer walk with Jesus through the encouragement given in these readings. I would agree that these things should be approached with a gift of discernment and tested for their fruits. But how can you shamelessly attempt to associate this work (as many others have done) with occultic, Spiritualistic, channeling, doctrines of demons, etc,? Surely you dont need to be warned not to speak against gifts of the Spirit. If Cayces gift was actually a gift of the Holy Spirit, then to call it demonic or Satanic would put a person in danger of being like those who accused Jesus of being demon possessed. You might at least invoke the wisdom of old Gamaliel (See Acts 5:22-42) and be careful that you are not fighting against God.

You have a wonderful opportunity to speak to many people. If you do keep Lou Whitworths article on your web site I would urge you to at least post this message along with those of others who have responded to it. I will be looking forward to hearing from you.

Wishing you many blessings in Christ,

Thank you for your letter. And thank you for the respect with which it is written. Lou Whitworth is no longer with Probe Ministries. However, I am sending your letter to someone who can decide whether or not to keep Lou’s article on our website. This is not a decision that I can make.

I have also written an article entitled, “The Worldview of Edgar Cayce”. Athough I also had to rely on some secondary source material, this material was almost entirely from a “pro-Cayce” perspective. And all of it (I think) would be endorsed by the A.R.E.

I’m sure you’ve done a great deal of research in this area. However, my own study convinced me that the only way I could affirm that the worldview revealed in the Edgar Cayce readings was Christian would be to redefine “Christianity” to mean something other than what all the orthodox creeds and confessions of the Christian church have understood it to mean. I’m afraid that I honestly do not believe that the worldview of the readings is consistent with biblical Christianity.

If you happen to embrace an “unorthodox” understanding of Christianity (defined relative to the historic orthodoxy represented in the creeds and confessions shared by virtually all conservative Christian denominations – e.g. Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic and the various Protestant groups), then of course our disagreement will really be about Christianity — not Edgar Cayce. If this is the case, I’m afraid there won’t be much point in dialogue. I’m already convinced that the “orthodox” understanding of Christianity is true (e.g. The Nicene Creed, etc.) — and am already quite familiar with the unorthodox forms and expressions of “Christianity.”

Thanks again for writing. I sincerely wish you well.

Shalom,

Michael Gleghorn

Probe Ministries




“You Can’t Say Edgar Cayce was a Failure as a Prophet!”

Your comment about Edgar Cayce being an “abysmal failure” as a prophet is a completely subjective view of his work. There are those who believe that the things of which Mr. Cayce spoke are true. Also, because you can not have a truth without it being believed and it having both epistemic certainty as well as facts to back it up, you can not say as a “truth” that he was a failure as a prophet. Even Nostrodamus was off in many of his predictions, yet he was accurate in what he said.

 
 
Thanks for your e-mail. Lou Whitworth, the author of the article you read about Edgar Cayce, is no longer with Probe. Please allow me to reply in his stead.

You begin by stating:

Your comment about Edgar Cayce being an “abysmal failure” as a prophet is a completely subjective view of his work. There are those who believe that the things of which Mr. Cayce spoke are true.”

Although I would probably not have chosen to use the adjective “abysmal”, the claim that Cayce was a failure as a prophet is actually not subjective. It is based on the objective authority of God’s Word in the Bible. The Bible actually sets up an objective standard for determining whether someone is, or is not, a true prophet. This standard is nothing less than 100% prophetic accuracy. In Deuteronomy 18:20-22 we read the following:

“But the prophet who shall speak a word presumptuously in My name which I have not commanded him to speak, or which he shall speak in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die. And you may say in your heart, ‘How shall we know the word which the Lord has not spoken?’ When a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.”

In light of this passage, the Christian reasons as follows:

  1. Edgar Cayce uttered certain prophecies, or healing remedies, that were not accurate.

  2. God’s word says that a true prophet is always accurate in what he predicts.

  3. Therefore, Edgar Cayce was not a true prophet of God. Biblically speaking, he was a false prophet.

 

This, of course, is not to deny that Edgar Cayce may have uttered some prophecies and healing remedies which were accurate. But since he also uttered some false prophecies, God’s word indicates that he was not a true prophet. The same reasoning would also apply to the prophecies of Nostradamus. As you yourself pointed out, “Nostradamus was off in many of his predictions”.

There is another passage of Scripture which seems particularly relevant to Edgar Cayce. Remember, even Cayce at times wondered about the true source of his special powers. In Deuteronomy 13:1-4 we read the following:

“If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder comes true, concerning which he spoke to you saying, ‘Let us go after other gods (whom you have not known) and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams; for the Lord your God is testing you to find out if you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall follow the Lord your God and fear Him; and you shall keep His commandments, listen to His voice, serve Him, and cling to Him.”

This passage is especially interesting in light of Cayce’s own comments concerning his powers:

“The power was given to me without explanation…it was just an odd trait that was useful in medicine…That’s what I always thought, and against this I put the idea that the Devil might be tempting me to do his work by operating through me when I was conceited enough to think God had given me special power” (Edgar Cayce: The Sleeping (False) Prophet).

Since Cayce was quite familiar with the Bible, he had every reason to be suspicious of the source of his power, especially since he made predictions which did not come true.

But please let me also briefly address your description of truth. You write:

“…because you can not have a truth without it being believed and it having both epistemic certainty as well as facts to back it up, you can not say, as a “truth” that he was a failure as a prophet.”

I would simply have to disagree with this statement for two reasons:

1. I can imagine many examples of something being objectively true and yet not being believed by anyone, not possessing epistemic certainty (a very difficult criterion to meet, by the way), and not even having any independently verifiable facts to back it up! For instance, suppose an angel appeared to an unbeliever and told him to repent of his sins and to put his faith in Christ for salvation. Suppose this was an objective experience, capable of sense verification (sight, hearing, touch, etc.) by anyone who happened to be present. But suppose no one was present but the unbeliever – and after having this experience, he concludes it was merely a subjective hallucination! Furthermore, suppose everyone who hears this story accepts his interpretation; namely, that the event was simply a hallucination – not an objective experience. Finally, suppose that the angel leaves absolutely no physical trace of his appearance – nothing to confirm that the appearance had been an objective event in the external world! In this case, it would be absolutely TRUE to say that an angel had appeared to this man, etc. However, no one actually BELIEVES this to be true (including the man who experienced it), it LACKS epistemic certainty, and there are NO independently verifiable facts to support that this event actually happened. The only evidence that this event actually occurred is the man’s memory, which he believes pertains to a hallucination – not an actual visit from an angel. In spite of this, however, it would still be TRUE to say that the event actually occurred in the real, mind-independent, external world of the observer; it was completely objective. Such examples could be multiplied, but you get the idea.

2. Since there are good reasons to believe that the Bible is the Word of God, I think that one can legitimately conclude that Cayce was a false prophet by biblical standards. And if this is true, then Cayce was ultimately a failure as a prophet according to the standard of the Ultimate Judge of all such matters, namely, God Himself. The Bible gives us God’s standards for determining whether someone is, or is not, a true prophet. Cayce failed to meet these biblical standards. Therefore, the Christian has good grounds for believing that Cayce was not a true prophet.

I know that there are indeed those who believe that the things which Edgar Cayce spoke in his trances are true. But I hope you can see why biblical Christianity must reject that belief.

I wish you all the best,

Michael Gleghorn
Probe Ministries




“You’re a Christian Fundamentalist Narrow Thinker”

First of all, I am not a member of the A.R.E.. Your dissertation on Edgar Cayce is what one might expect of Christian Fundamentalist narrow thinking. Anything that you don’t understand becomes “satan motivated” or “demonic.” Why God, if there is one, would ever want to look into or back on such a planet and people such as us, I fail to understand. People like you have been programed to be set in your ways and intrepretations by your families and up-bringing to point that you see nothing beyond your King James Bibles (flawed, contradictory and controversial).

Whether Edgar Cayce is valid or not, it is people like you that will influence free thinking and considerations. I could go on, but by now I am sure that you will attribute my words as inspired by those terrible demons that are so conveniently at your disposal whenever anything threatens your way of thinking.

Thanks for writing. No, I don’t think your words are inspired by demons at all, but I do wonder why you would take the time to write without offering something specific that you object to in the article on Cayce.

Yes, in some of our analyses we are definitely narrow-minded. There is a time and a place for that. I want engineers, for example, to be extremely narrow-minded when it comes to measuring and figuring all the numbers that go into making a bridge, because I want it to hold up when I go across it. I want airplane designers to be extremely narrow-minded about what it takes to get a jet to fly and to come back down in one piece. And when it comes to the spirit realm, I want to know what is true and what isn’t, because there’s a whole bunch of activity in that arena that affects human lives.

I’m sorry for whatever has happened to make you doubt that God exists; it would seem that SOMETHING went wrong somewhere for you to experience such hostility. By the way, when I went from not believing in God to realizing there was plenty of evidence not only for His existence, but for His love for me, that was the opposite of narrow-minded thinking. On the contrary, it broadened my world beyond anything I thought possible.

But thank you for writing.

Sue Bohlin
Probe Ministries




“How Dare You Judge Edgar Cayce?!”

How dare you judge! I just read your article on Edgar Cayce and he was a Christian. How can you say just because he had a gift that you can’t explain that he must have been in an occult! God gives us gifts and that is something you can’t control so why would you say he was dealing with the devil? Everyone perceives the Bible differently and who is to say that your way is right and his way was wrong? I am Catholic and I believe that God gives us gifts and what you choose to do with them is up to you!

Thank you for writing.

Have you ever been pulled over for speeding? When the police officer said, “You were going 70 in a 55 zone,” did you say, “How dare you judge!”? Probably not, because the officer doesn’t judge the people he pulls over–he compares our behavior with the standard of the law.

The article on Edgar Cayce compares his behavior with the standard of the law that God set down in the Bible. Having been brought up Catholic, I do understand that your perception of the Bible is probably not as accurate as it could be. The Bible is far more reliable than many people think, but they haven’t taken the time to research it. God has spoken very plainly about what constitutes the occult, and Edgar Cayce clearly fell in that camp. He certainly did have a gift, but it wasn’t from God, because God’s gifts behave differently than Cayce’s.

I hope that if this really bothers you, you will study the Bible for yourself and see that it is a supernatural book, and God has given us the Holy Spirit to help us understand it even further. It’s not open to every person’s individual interpretation, any more than the newspaper is. Different sections of the newspaper are to be read and interpreted differently, such as the comics, the front page, and the editorial page. The Bible is like that too, and the more familiar we become with it, the easier it is to tell the difference between the sections and the type of literature within it.

One more point: perhaps Edgar Cayce believed in God, but that didn’t make him a Christian. The Bible says that the demons believe in God, too. What makes a person a Christian is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, when we realize that He died on the cross for OUR sins and we say “thank you” for His gift of eternal life.

Thanks for writing.

Sue Bohlin
Probe Ministries




Edgar Cayce: The Sleeping (False) Prophet

This article is no longer available. Please see Michael Gleghorn’s article “The Worldview of Edgar Cayce” instead.

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The Worldview of Edgar Cayce – An Evaluation of His Teachings from a Biblical Perspective

The Edgar Cayce Readings

By all accounts Edgar Cayce was truly a remarkable man. Beginning in 1901 and continuing until his death in 1945 he gave thousands of psychic readings. Broadly speaking, these readings were of two types: health readings and life readings. The health readings consisted of a psychic diagnosis of a patient’s physical ailments and a prescription for how these ailments should be treated. The life readings consisted of answers to all sorts of personal, religious, and philosophical questions. One rather interesting aspect of these readings is the manner in which they were given: Cayce would lie down on the couch and put himself into a trance state resembling sleep. It was this manner of giving readings that led one of his biographers, Jess Stearn, to refer to Cayce as “The Sleeping Prophet.”{1}

Just how accurate were these readings? Although it is impossible to verify everything Cayce said, some contend that his accuracy rate was over ninety percent!{2} But “with all his vaunted powers,” writes Stearn, “Cayce was a humble man, religious, God-fearing, who read the Bible every day of his life.”{3} Indeed, Cayce read through the entire Bible every year and regularly taught Sunday school throughout his life. It is probably for reasons such as these that many people believe that the worldview of the readings is generally consistent with biblical Christianity. But is this really so? How well does the worldview of the Edgar Cayce readings compare with that of the Bible?

Herbert Puryear writes, “The content of . . . the Edgar Cayce readings is . . . always Christ-centered, supporting the ultimate importance of the unique work of Jesus of Nazareth.”{4} But as I hope to demonstrate in this article, such a claim can only be true by redefining the person and work of Jesus Christ to mean something quite different from what the Bible teaches.

For instance Thomas Sugrue, Cayce’s earliest biographer and long-time friend, begins his chapter on the philosophy of the readings by stating, “The system of metaphysical thought which emerges from the readings of Edgar Cayce is a Christianized version of the mystery religions of ancient Egypt, Chaldea, Persia, India, and Greece.”{5} The worldview of the readings actually has much more in common with New Age metaphysics and occult philosophy than it does with biblical Christianity.

Although I have little doubt that, as a person, Cayce was kind and humble and motivated by a sincere desire to help his fellow man, it obviously does not follow that the worldview revealed in the readings is therefore true. And while I certainly acknowledge that Cayce regularly read and taught the Bible, it by no means follows that the philosophy of the readings is therefore biblical.

The Nature of God

According to Dr. Herbert Puryear, “More consequences for thought and action follow from the affirmation or denial of God than from answering any other fundamental question.”{6} It’s difficult to overestimate the importance of this observation. Equally important, however, for those affirming the existence of God, is the kind of God they affirm to exist.

There can be no doubt that God is of primary importance in the Edgar Cayce readings. The readings certainly affirm the existence of God, an affirmation that they obviously share with biblical Christianity. This being said, however, there is a marked difference in what each source affirms about the nature of God.

Dr. Puryear writes, “The clearly articulated philosophy of the Edgar Cayce readings is a thoroughgoing monism.”{7} The doctrine of monism claims that all reality is of the same essence. In other words, “All is one.” Indeed, in the introduction to his book Dr. Puryear claims that “the oneness of all force” is the “first premise of the Edgar Cayce readings.”

What effect does this first premise have on the view of God presented in the readings? Dr. Puryear writes, “With the premise of the oneness of all force we affirm that God is, that He is all that is, and all that is, is God.”{8} This view is known as pantheism. It comes from two Greek words: pan, meaning “all” or “every,” and theos, meaning “God.” In other words pantheism, like the Edgar Cayce readings, teaches that everything is God — a view substantially at odds with the biblical doctrine of God. Let’s look, then, at what the Bible does say about God.

Let’s first acknowledge that the Bible, like the Edgar Cayce readings, does indeed affirm that God is one. Moses wrote, “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one!” (Deut. 6:4) But the biblical affirmation means something very different from the doctrine of pantheism espoused in the Cayce readings. The Bible is affirming that there is only one Lord God. It is not teaching that “All is One,” nor that the name we should give to this all-inclusive Oneness is “God.” The biblical view that the Lord is one is sometimes referred to as monotheism. It holds that there is only one God — not many, as Israel’s polytheistic neighbors believed. It also holds that God, as the Creator of all that exists (other than Himself), is not to be identified with any created thing.{9} This view contrasts with the doctrine of pantheism, which clearly blurs the distinction between Creator and creation.

Since the view of God presented in the Edgar Cayce readings is basically pantheistic,{10} it is also, by virtue of this fact, clearly unbiblical. Next we’ll see how this effects the readings’ presentations of both Christ and men.

Christ and Men

How did the view of a pantheistic God influence Cayce’s doctrines of Christ and men?

Thomas Sugrue, in summarizing the philosophy of the readings, says that in the beginning God “projected from Himself the cosmos and souls.”{11} Thus, according to this view, everything that exists (including man) is somehow part of God. Or as Cayce put it in one of his readings: “Each person is a corpuscle in the body of that force called God.”{12}

But if the readings affirm the divinity of man, what becomes of the Christian belief in the uniqueness of Jesus? Dr. Puryear declares, “In Jesus we are told that God became incarnate. If we could only see clearly that Jesus’ claim for divinity is a claim for the divinity of us all, we would understand that His relationship to God is a pattern which all of us may and one day must attain.”{13} Thus, contrary to the Bible, the readings do not understand Jesus’ uniqueness in terms of His being God’s one and only Son.{14} In fact, the readings actually deny that there is any essential difference between Jesus and the rest of humanity. All souls — yours, mine, and Christ’s — were projected from God, and all share the same divine essence. The Christ soul was simply the first to complete its earthly experiences and return to God.{15} But concerned with the plight of its brother souls, the Christ soul decided to return and help us. According to Sugrue, the Christ soul incarnated as Enoch, Melchizedek, Joseph, Joshua, Jeshua, and finally — Jesus!{16} As Jesus, He triumphed over death and the body and once again returned to God, becoming “the pattern we are to follow.”{17}

How do such teachings square with the Bible? Not very well, I’m afraid. The Bible maintains a careful distinction between God and man. God is the Creator; man is His creature. God created man in His image (Gen. 1:27); He did not project him from His essence. The Bible also maintains a clear distinction between Jesus and other men. Jesus is the completely unique God-man; no other man is like Him. He was both fully divine and fully human (John 1:1, 14). We are merely human. He was sinless (Heb. 4:15); we are sinful (Rom. 3:23). He claimed to have come not merely to be our example, but “to save that which was lost” (Matt. 18:11) and “to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45). We, of course, are the lost sinners He came to ransom and to save (Rom. 5:6-11). Thus it’s clear, even from this brief summary, that the readings’ doctrines of Christ and men differ substantially from those of the Bible.

Problems and Solutions

The Bible identifies man’s primary problem as sin, a state of moral corruption that has infected our very nature. It is our sinful nature (and the sinful acts arising from it) that is the source of so many of our problems. The Bible warns us that “the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 3:23). Death is understood primarily as separation. Physical death is the spirit’s separation from the body (Jas. 2:26); spiritual death is a person’s separation from God (Eph. 2:1-7). All men are conceived in a state of spiritual death, alienated from their Creator and in need of reconciliation with Him (Ps. 51:5; Rom. 5:12; 2 Cor. 5:20).

The Bible presents Jesus as the solution to our problem. It tells us that He died for our sins and, as Divine confirmation of this fact, that He was raised for our justification.{18} It assures us that whoever believes in Jesus will receive God’s forgiveness and the free gift of eternal life!{19}

The Edgar Cayce readings offer a very different perspective on man’s fundamental problem and how it should be solved. Before exploring this perspective, however, it’s helpful to remember that the doctrine of God presented in the readings is essentially pantheistic: God is everything and everything is God.{20} We’ve already shown that this view is substantially different from that of the Bible. And as Douglas Groothuis observes: “Differing descriptions of ultimate reality lead to differing descriptions of the human problem and to differing prescriptions for its solution.”{21} Let’s now see how the different descriptions of God in both the Bible and the readings contribute to their different perspectives on man’s problem and its solution.

Having declared that God “projected from Himself the cosmos and souls,”{22} Thomas Sugrue goes on to observe: “At first there was little difference between the consciousness of the new individual and its consciousness of identity with God.”{23} Over time, however, there was a “gradual weakening of the link between the two states of consciousness.”{24} Eventually, “The individual became more concerned with . . . his own creations than God’s. This was the fall in spirit . . .”{25}

According to Dr. Puryear, these unfortunate souls “were cutoff from an awareness of their oneness with the whole.”{26} And while the full explanation is more involved, the readings seem to ultimately identify this ignorance of our oneness with God as our fundamental problem.{27} Of course, if this is so, the solution is rather obvious: we must remember and reaffirm this inherent oneness. Dr. Puryear claims that it is “God’s quest” to bring us back into a remembrance of our divine heritage “and into full accord with Him.”{28}

Our summary reveals that while the readings’ perspective on man’s problem and its solution is unique, it more strongly resembles the viewpoint of non-dualistic Hinduism than biblical Christianity. It is important that Christians be aware of these differences.

Death and Beyond

One of the greatest human mysteries concerns the experience of death and what (if anything) happens afterward. The book of Hebrews declares, “it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Heb. 9:27). Most biblical scholars agree that this verse leaves no room for the doctrine of reincarnation — a doctrine explicitly affirmed in the Edgar Cayce readings. But if this is so, then how did Cayce conclude “that an acceptance of reincarnation in no way went against Holy Writ”?{29}

When Cayce gave his first “life reading” for Arthur Lammers, he spoke of reincarnation as a fact.{30} On waking from his trance and being told what he had said, Cayce was shocked. He even considered that the Devil might be trying to trick him.{31} But after thinking the matter over, Cayce eventually concluded that even Jesus had taught about reincarnation!{32}

In Matthew’s Gospel, immediately after the appearance of Moses and Elijah to Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration, His disciples ask, “Why . . . do the scribes say that Elijah must come first?” Jesus answers: “Elijah has come already, and they did not know him.” But notice how the passage concludes: “Then the disciples understood that He spoke to them of John the Baptist” (Matt. 17:10-13). Reflecting on this passage, Cayce wondered how the disciples could draw such a conclusion. Had they understood John to be the reincarnation of Elijah?{33} And why did they draw this inference so quickly? Had Jesus already taught them “the laws of reincarnation?”{34}

There are several difficulties with this position. First, the theological context of first century Judaism was decidedly theistic — not pantheistic.{35} We should thus be very careful before concluding that Jesus taught His disciples about reincarnation. His statement probably meant no more than that John had come “in the spirit and power of Elijah” – just as the angel Gabriel had said He would.{36} Second, Jesus made His remarks after Elijah’s appearance on the Mount of Transfiguration. But “since John had already . . . died by then, and since Elijah still had the same name and self-consciousness, Elijah had obviously not been reincarnated as John . . .”{37} If he had, then we should have read about Moses and John appearing to Jesus — not Moses and Elijah! “Third, Elijah does not fit the reincarnation model, for he did not die.”{38} The Bible tells us that he was taken up into heaven while still alive!{39} And finally, such an interpretation would clearly contradict the passage in Hebrews cited earlier. Thus, I think we can safely conclude that Jesus did not teach the doctrine of reincarnation.

We’ve seen that while Edgar Cayce was a kind and humble man, the worldview of his readings is “world’s apart” from that of the Bible. Christians must carefully avoid being taken captive by this philosophy.{40}

Notes

1. Jess Stearn, Edgar Cayce: The Sleeping Prophet (New York: Bantam Books, 1968).
2. Thomas Sugrue, There is a River: The Story of Edgar Cayce, rev. ed. (Virginia: A.R.E. Press, 1994), back cover.
3. Stearn, Edgar Cayce, 8.
4. Herbert B. Puryear, The Edgar Cayce Primer (New York: Bantam Books, 1982), 197.
5. Sugrue, There is a River, 305.
6. Puryear, The Edgar Cayce Primer, 229.
7. Ibid., 209.
8. Ibid., 209.
9. See, for example, Exodus 20:1-6 and Romans 1:18-25.
10. A rather unique feature of the particular version of pantheism presented in the Cayce readings is that “God” is viewed as, in some sense, personal. Dr. Puryear, in a discussion on meditation, writes, “The godhead we seek is a personal one . . .” (The Edgar Cayce Primer, 146). This certainly distinguishes the pantheism of the readings from that of most New Age literature (which tends to conceive of “God” as impersonal, rather than personal). Nevertheless, the view of God presented in the Edgar Cayce readings is still pantheistic and, therefore, unbiblical.
11. Sugrue, There is a River, 307.
12. Cited in Sugrue, There is a River, 320.
13. Puryear, The Edgar Cayce Primer, 221.
14. This, according to New Testament scholar D.A. Carson, is the real meaning of John 3:16. See Lee Strobel, The Case for Christ (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, 1998), 161.
15. Sugrue, There is a River, 314.
16. Ibid., 315-16.
17. Ibid., 316.
18. See 1 Corinthians 15:3 and Romans 1:4; 4:25.
19. See John 3:16; Romans 6:23; Colossians 1:14.
20. Puryear, The Edgar Cayce Primer, 209.
21. Douglas Groothuis, Are All Religions One? (Downers Grove, Illinois: InterVarsity Press, 1996), 24.
22. Sugrue, There is a River, 307.
23. Ibid., 309.
24. Ibid., 310.
25. Ibid.
26. Puryear, The Edgar Cayce Primer, 213.

27. This seems evident from the fact that, before we can take the next step (i.e. living the Great Commandment) we must first recognize and reaffirm our oneness with the whole. In other words, before we can tackle our other problems, we must first overcome our primary problem: ignorance of our oneness with God. The following remarks from Dr. Puryear help make this clear:

If we get the sense of such a Reality and affirm God, the oneness of all force, then we may take the next step and address that which the readings evaluate as the ultimate agenda for mankind: the living of the great commandment. We are to love God with all our heart, mind, and soul, and our neighbor as ourselves. This Edgar Cayce represented as the ideal for all mankind and the answer to all the problems of mankind . . . A major hindrance and barrier to loving God and others lies in the inadequate understanding we have of ourselves, of our basic spiritual nature, of the spiritual nature of others . . . We must come to understand fully that we are spiritual beings and that all of us are children of God (Ibid., 229-30).

Notice that it’s only after we affirm this pantheistic notion of God that we may take the next step of living the Great Commandment (the solution to all our other problems). Thus, if we can first remember and reaffirm our oneness with God, we can then begin to recognize that, “As children of God, love is . . . the very nature of our being” (Ibid., 231). Armed with this knowledge, we can begin fulfilling the Great Commandment — and watch our problems disappear!

Of course, any Christian would certainly agree that fulfilling the Great Commandment is a worthy ideal for the human race. But there remains a serious problem. In the readings, both God and my neighbor have been redefined. They are supposed to be understood from within a pantheistic worldview. And, as I’ve already noted previously, this is quite different from a biblical worldview. Thus, what a Christian theist (on the one hand) and a pantheist (on the other) understand by fulfilling the Great Commandment is something very different indeed!

28. Puryear, The Edgar Cayce Primer, 213
29. Noel Langley,Edgar Cayce on Reincarnation, ed. Hugh Lynn Cayce (New York: Paperback Library, 1971), 176.
30. Sugrue, There is a River, 202.
31. Ibid., 210.
32. Ibid., 220.
33. Ibid., 222.
34. Langley,Edgar Cayce on Reincarnation, 173.
35. Norman L. Geisler and Ron Rhodes, When Cultists Ask: A Popular Handbook on Cultic Misinterpretations (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Books, 1997), 106
36. Ibid. See also Luke 1:17.
37. Ibid.
38. Ibid.
39. See 2 Kings 2:11. See Colossians 2:8.

©2002 Probe Ministries.

 

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“How Do I Talk to Family Members About Freemasonry and Edgar Cayce?”

I have just finished reading and re-reading your articles, “Freemasonry and the Christian Church” and “Edgar Cayce: The Sleeping (False) Prophet.”

I have been attempting some research on Freemasonry, since I recently considered joining the Lodge. Have no fear; I no longer have any desire to be a Mason, since it clearly conflicts with my relationship to Christ. However, my grandfather is a 33rd degree Mason and my wife’s grandparents are heavily involved in Freemasonry. He is a past Master (whatever that means), and they both attend meetings and other events (mostly with Eastern Star) several times a week. I know that this year, they are the “Worthy Matron” and “Worthy Patron” for their Eastern Star chapter here in ______. My wife also has a cousin who is planning on joining the Lodge after he leaves the armed forces. They all profess to be Christians. I also have an aquaintaince at work who is a Mason — he wears two masonic rings with the compass, square, and “G” symbols. I don’t believe that he is a Christian.

My grandfather is also a fan of Edgar Cayce. He has numerous books with his healings and such. He once told me that the two books he reads are the Bible and one of Cayce’s.

So my question is, how can I bring up the subject with any of them? I don’t know if there are others in the family who are deceived, and don’t know who to ask about it. I am very concerned about this issue, since both my wife and I lost our other grandfathers less than two years ago. They were both dedicated to the Lord and we know that we will be with them in His presence for eternity. I want to be sure where our surviving grandparents will be when they pass from this life to the next. My wife’s grandfather just turned 71 and my grandfather will be 81 in October.

There is a definite need to educate the Church on this issue. I probably would not know about it if I hadn’t been interested in joining.

Thank you for your ministry, and for the biblical truth that you proclaim.

Thanks so much for your question and your desire to learn how to address such an obviously sensitive issue. Freemasonry has a lot of baggage that makes it oftentimes a heated topic of discussion.

Given the fact that there is a great deal of mystery as to the history and heritage of freemasonry, it would be a mistake to say a Mason cannot be a Christian. Much of it has religious undertones. The question must be, “What kind of religion?” Many in the church have had and still do have a close relationship with this “fraternity.” Paganistic religion has also historically been a large contributor to masonic ritual. Depending upon your chosen masonic historian, the history of freemasonry can deal more with one than the other (Christianity and paganism).

Without a doubt, freemasonry is clouded with both Christian and pagan influence today. I’m sure, since you have read our articles on freemasonry and Edgar Cayce, that you know their inconsistencies with biblical faith. That brings us to your question. “How can I bring this up and be assured that my family members are grounded in biblical faith in Jesus Christ?”

It is not necessarily a given that these family members do not know Christ just because of their association with groups and teachers that are misleading. But it is certainly reason for concern. Perhaps you could open a discussion with some questions for them about some of the basic teachings of freemasonry. Since you have shown interest in the past in joining the lodge, they may not see it as “too nosey” for you to be asking questions about freemasonry. You could, for instance, ask what the lodge teaches about Jesus? The answer you get is likely to be quite subjective to the particular person you ask. One Mason may say that they teach that Jesus is the only Son of the Father God who redeemed mankind through His atonement, while others may answer that He is one among many religious types to pay heed to. Regardless, you have a segue here that can lead you to share with them who He really is.

Another question worth asking your family members would be on their view of Scripture. “Is the Bible a unique sacred writing to the Masons?” Again, their view is subject to be quite broad. But you have an opportunity here to probe them to not only answer your questions, but possibly to ask those questions themselves. There is a very good chance that you will be the first person to bring this up in discussion for them. The uniqueness of Scripture makes it substantially superior to the Bhagavad Gita and the Koran, to name only a few. Therefore, you have another inlet for substantial dialogue on the exclusivity of the Christian faith versus the religious pluralism of the masonic perspective.

There are many other subjects of discussion that you may strike a chord with. But the pervading sentiment must be one of humble inquiry. Don’t be pushy or opinionated. They will most likely be attracted to your desire to learn from them. Any scent of your attempts to change their minds or to get them out of the lodge will almost definitely send them running. So be honestly interested in what they have to tell you, no matter how off the mark it is. Remember, you are bringing up this conversation in order to determine their destination for eternity. So love them, above all else. Their membership to the lodge is not what determines their fate. It is their relationship to the true Master of all, Jesus Christ, that will chart their eternal course.

I pray that your efforts to bring up these matters before your family will end in a fruitful harvest, also resulting in a deeper relationship between you and your grandparents, cousin, and even your co-worker.

Thanks so much for your e-mail. God rewards those who seek Him.
Proverbs 2:3-5

Kris Samons
Probe Ministries

 

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