Spiritual Warfare Forum: Mediums

Mediums QUESTION from Danielle on September 24, 2002 Dear John-Paul,
I just received an email tonight from a friend, which invited me to protest about the television show John Edwards crossover. Apparently John Edwards speaks to the deceased.
I know that the Bible is clear in its warnings regarding the occult. I can see it is very logical to stay clear. I am wondering though, does he really speak to the deceased? If he is speaking to the deceased, can he talk to deceased people both in heaven, purgatory and hell? Or is it a lie, work of the devil?
As Christians, can we talk to our deceased friends and relatives through prayer, similar to the way we pray to Mary and the Saints?
If we pray to Saints, and they are able to use their spiritual power, is there a hierarchy in Heaven? Should we not always go to Jesus for help?
I'm very confused, sorry.
Regards,
Danielle
ANSWER by Mr. Joe Meineke on October 2, 2002 Dear Danielle,
There is no need to be sorry. You ask some very good and very important questions.
First let me say that you are correct - scripture is very clear on communication with the dead being forbidden. It is good that you see that and understand the dangers involved in such practices.
As for your question about John Edwards: Most of these people are hucksters and I suspect Edwards is too. Such people use very well known carnival tricks can can be used by anyone who learns the tricks to perform the very same thing Edwards does. The Amazing Randy, the well-known skeptic and ESP debunker, has demonstrated this trick many times.
Anytime any of these people do actually contact spirits those spirits will most likely be demons and not dead loved ones. The contact of the spirit world is expressly forbidden by God and thus we can know that any actual contact is most likely facilitated by demons. So, what is the difference between what Mr. Edwards does and what we Christians do? Mr. Edwards tries to conjure the dead to speak with them directly for reasons that are not proper (i.e., revealing hidden knowledge). When we pray to the saints, we do not look for nor do we expect them to speak to us in a direct way. In addition, we need to remember that prayer cannot be for divination and casual curiosity – if this is how one prays, then this is not Christian prayer.
In addition, you asked if one can pray to their dead relatives as we do the saints. The answer is sort of as long as we realize that we do not truly know for sure their location. All prayer is efficacious. If any prayers of ours cannot be heard by the loved one, God will still here your prayer and answer it according to his will. One should not, however, develop a formal devotion to any deceased person other than a canonized saint.
God bless you,
Joe Meineke Assistant to Bro. Ignatius
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