Divine Revelation Versus Demonism
The Holy Spirit
Nebuchadnezzar's Palm Readers
Prohibitions Against Divination
Palmistry and Casting Lots


The scripture clearly prohibits divination.  Divination is the attempt to divine the mind of Deity through some means other than God's way.  It is an attempt to understand the past, present, or future by some means other than the revelation of God.  The revelation may come through the human mind or through observing omens.  But ultimately any revelation apart from God is divination.  God's revelation and divination are opposites.  Divination carried the death penalty under the Mosaic Law because divination opposes the whole design of God.

What made divination so bad is that it was actually the work of Satan and his demons.  Through divination Satan was opposing God.  God had prophets, who were called seers because they could see into the Spiritual realm (1 Samuel 9:9), and Satan had seers, who could see into the spiritual realm.  The difference between Spiritual and spiritual is that one is Light and the other is darkness.  The Spiritual Light of God cannot be seen by Satan and his demons unless God permits it.  Satan and his demons do not know the mind of God.  No one knows the mind of God unless He permits.  Unless God reveals himself in some way, neither a demon nor an angel of Light nor a person can know Him.

Satan and his super-creature demons are smart.  They are far more brilliant than human beings, but they are cut off from God in darkness.  The darkness is called the Cosmic System, which Satan has created to oppose God.  Satan thinks he can use his brilliant mind and power to set up his own kingdom and rule instead of God.  Satan is a mastermind in his attack on God's Sovereign Design.  His counterattack is based upon the lie.  God is truth.  Satan is a liar.  God is Love.  Satan is a murderer.  God is Light.  Satan is darkness.  God is absolute Righteousness and perfect Justice.  Satan is a criminal and perverts justice.  Satan is a user.  With him the end justifies the means.

In his counterattack of God, Satan has developed counterfeit religion and counterfeit doctrine.  The New Age religion, for example, is one of Satan's religions.  Satan has amazing powers of perception.  He knows the past, and he knows much about the future.  The only problem is that he lies.  His demons lie.  They have reason to lie.  They have been sentenced to the Lake of Fire, and they are lying to try to win their appeal trial.  If they can convince ignorant people to follow them, they will use the people as witnesses in the trial to try to convince the Judge, God, that they were unfairly condemned.

God is perfect Justice.  Those who practiced divination under the power of Satan were sentenced to death under the Mosaic Law.  If the diviners were unbelievers, which was usually the case, then they would go to the Lake of Fire.  Those who wanted to be like Satan could go to the Lake of Fire with him.  They were, therefore, to be executed.  That's Justice.

Divine Revelation Versus Demonism

One of the best kept secrets is that there are ultimately only two sources of enlightenment.  They are defined by the tree in the Garden:  Divine Good and evil.  Divine Good refers to the revelation of God, and evil refers to the Cosmic System.  People who think they are the masters of their fate and the captain of their soul are the pawns of Satan.  They are thinking in the Cosmic System, which is ruled by Satan and his demons.  Man is a created being, which means he cannot possibly be an original thinker.  His thinking will either be under the power of God or Satan (Romans 9:18-21).

A person who walks in the Light of God can receive revelation from God, but the person who walks in the darkness of the Cosmic System is at the mercy of Satan and his demons.  Human viewpoint may be conclusions drawn by humans, but the major premise was Satan's.  How did scientists come to name the planets after demons?  That was not the revelation of God.  It was a Satanic lie.  Similarly, the names of the parts of the palm used by most palm readers are the demon names of the planets.  Both the names of the planets and the names of the parts of the palm are Satan's attempt to take credit for God's creation.  God created the heavens and mankind.

The heavens are not evil, although the astrologer may be.

The hands are not evil, although the palmist may be.

Bible Doctrine defines Divine Good, and the Holy Spirit is the teacher.  In the Church Age, the complete revelation of God is found in the scripture in the original languages.  The Bible is the rule book, and the Holy Spirit is the teacher.  For example, a person looks at his hand and wonders what the line around this thumb means.  To find out, he sits under the ministry of a doctrinal pastor, who teaches the doctrine of the Line of the Father, or Line of Life, in the palm.  The person believes the teaching of the scripture in the Filling of the Holy Spirit.  Then the person goes home, sits down and looks at his hand.  The Holy Spirit then begins to reveal to the person the meaning of all the markings along the Life Line in his hand.  The pastor taught academically.  The Holy Spirit reveals personal details about the person's life as it relates to the will of the Father in the Divine Design.
The Bible is the rule book, and the Holy Spirit is the teacher.

The Holy Spirit

Like a helping hand, the Holy Spirit is the Helper of the Christian (John 14:16, 26, 15:26, 16:7; Romans 8:26).  The Holy Spirit is the teacher.
And as for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him. (1 John 2:27, NAS)
"You have no need for anyone to teach you."  This does not mean there is no place for teachers because God has Himself ordained pastor-teachers.  It means that the Christian cannot receive the revelation from God apart from the ministry of the Holy Spirit.  Even when the pastor teaches, the believer cannot learn anything from God unless it is revealed, or taught, by the Holy Spirit.  Further, since the canon of scripture is complete, the Holy Spirit will not reveal anything beyond the scope of the Bible.

Since the Holy Spirit is the counselor, there is no need for counseling in the Church.  Counseling a Christian about the Spiritual Life is the job of the Holy Spirit - not people.  Counseling about the Spiritual Life is a violation of personal privacy.  However, this does not mean that a person should never consult others.  A consultant or counselor in a legitimate role can give advice.  For example, lawyers, engineering consultants, and doctors are counselors.  However, the ultimate responsibility for accepting or rejecting their advice should be based upon what the Holy Spirit says.  Even when listening to a counselor under the Laws of Establishment, the Christian should rely upon the teaching of the Holy Spirit.

Palm readers are no different.  When a person reads his own hands, the Holy Spirit must be the teacher.  When someone else reads the hands, the Holy Spirit must be the teacher.  The Christian should be filled with the Holy Spirit and should always obey the Holy Spirit.  When a Christian reads someone else's hand, he must not counsel the person on the Spiritual Life, which includes most life choices.  The Christian who is knowledgeable of hands must not usurp the authority of the Holy Spirit.

Nebuchadnezzar's Palm Readers

Ezekiel explained how Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon, used divination by means of palm reading to decide to conquer Jerusalem.  He came from the north down the King's Highway, which was the normal route to Israel from Babylon.  People did not cross the desert to get to Israel.  They always came down from the north.  South of Damascus around Ashtoreth he came to a crossroads.  One fork led to Rabbah, which is the same as Amman, and the other fork led to Jerusalem.
Ezekiel 21:18-20
18 And the word of the Lord came to me saying, 19 “As for you, son of man, make two highways for the sword of the king of Babylon to come; both of them will go out of one land. And make a signpost; make it at the head of the highway to the city. 20 “You shall mark a highway for the sword to come to Rabbah of the sons of Ammon, and to Judah into fortified Jerusalem.
To teach this, Ezekiel drew a picture of the highways and marked the crossroads with a signpost that pointed to Jerusalem.  As Nebuchadnezzar stood at the crossroads, he consulted his diviners to decide whether to conquer Jerusalem or Rabbah.
“For the king of Babylon stands at the parting (fork) of the highway, at the head of the two highways, to use divination; he shakes the arrows, he consults the household idols, he looks at the liver. (Ezekiel 21:21)
His diviners used three methods, arrows, household idols, and the liver.  All were established methods of divination.  However, palm reading was also used.
“Into his right hand came the divination, ‘Jerusalem,’ to set battering rams, to open the mouth for slaughter, to lift up the voice with a battle cry, to set battering rams against the gates, to cast up mounds, to build a siege wall. (Ezekiel 21:22)
"Divination" is the Hebrew <s#q#(qesem), which is divination from a supposed revelation of Deity within the human mind.  The divination was in the "right hand," which is a clear reference to palm reading because the right hand is the most significant for right handed people and the one to which palm readers would pay the most attention.  The one word answer was also indicative of palm reading.  The answer of which road to take, which may have been inconclusive from the other methods, was clear from palm reading.  The answer was, "Jerusalem," that is, go to Jerusalem.

Jerusalem in the Lord's
          PalmNebuchadnezzar's palm readers saw the imprint of the walls of Jerusalem in his hand.  These palmists were very proficient.  They did not just look at individual lines.  They looked for patterns and pictures, and what they saw blew their mind.  They undoubtedly shouted when they saw it.  The picture of the walls of Jerusalem was in Nebuchadnezzar's hand.  Now, what they saw was the same as Jerusalem engraved in the Lord's palm as explained by Isaiah, but they did not believe the scripture.  They were not in fellowship with God, and they jumped to the conclusion that since Nebuchadnezzar had the city of Jerusalem inscribed in his hand that it was a sign that he was destined to conquer Jerusalem.

If Nebuchadnezzar's palm readers had been believers with doctrine, they would immediately have recalled the Abrahamic Covenant (Genesis 12:3) and realized they would be cursed for anti-Semitism.  Just because Jerusalem was in his hand, did not mean that he should violate the Abrahamic Covenant and conquer it.  This palm reading was divination, not because of what the palm readers saw, but because of Satanic viewpoint they attached to the knowledge.  The knowledge wasn't evil.  The methodology wasn't evil.  The conclusion was evil.  The question had been asked whether to go to Jerusalem or Rabbah.  Since Nebuchadnezzar had Jerusalem inscribed in his right hand, the palmists assumed that was the answer to the question.  They said the answer was "Jerusalem."  He went to Jerusalem and conquered it just as the palmists had predicted.  They were elated that they had made such an important prediction.

It was destiny.  It happened.  God had called for it in his Sovereign Design.  But it wasn't the directive will of God.  It was the permissive will of God.  It was divination, and it was evil.  God used the evil to punish Israel.  However, later, God destroyed Babylon for conquering Jerusalem.  Reading Nebuchadnezzar's palm was not divination.  Seeing Jerusalem in the palm was not divination.  But telling Nebuchadnezzar that the answer to his question was the one word answer, "Jerusalem," was divination.

This was the classic Satanic half-truth, which is worse than an out-and-out lie.  It was true.  Jerusalem was inscribed in Nebuchadnezzar's hand, but it was not true that he should go there or conquer it.  The palmists were the pawns of Satan.  They gave anti-Semitic advice.  They were part of Satan's rebellion against God.  Divination is supporting Satan.  Satan can do the same thing with scripture.  He can quote the Bible to influence people.  He tried to do this with Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 4:1-11).  He takes truth and uses it falsely to justify evil.  This is the half-truth.  That is why a right thing must be done in a right way.  Until a Christian understands this, he doesn't have a prayer of understanding what's in the palm of his hand.  His destiny is there, but the devil will say one thing about it and God another.  How will he know which to believe?  He has three choices.  He can shut his eyes; listen to Satan; or listen to the Holy Spirit.

Prohibitions Against Divination

Divination in any form was prohibited by the Mosaic Law.
“There shall not be found among you anyone who burns his son or his daughter in the fire; anyone who practices divination, or a soothsayer, an augur, or a sorcerer, (Deuteronomy 18:10)
The literal translation, "anyone who burns his son or his daughter in the fire," is commonly referred to as passing through the fire.  This was februation,1 or purification through fire, by which children were consecrated to Molech (Leviticus 18:21), who was the god of fire counterpart of Baal.  "Divination" is the Qal active participle plus the plural noun of the Hebrew <s#q#(qesem), which is divination from a supposed revelation of Deity within the human mind.  This could be literally translated, "anyone who divines with divinations."

"Soothsayer" is the Po'el participle of the Hebrew substantive, /n^u*(`anan), which literally means a cloud.  It is a denominative, a verb formed from a noun.  For example, something may be said to cloud the thinking.  Cloudy thinking is confusion, and the soothsayer alleviates the confusion, but that is not the whole story.  The demon who empowers the soothsayer may also appear as a vapor, like the smoke of burning incense that rises to Heaven to please God.  However, this is a Satanic counterfeit for worshiping Satan rather than God.  The soothsayer demon communicates the devil's lie.  He is a false teacher, like Balaam.

"Augur" is the Hebrew, vj^n^ (nachash), from  vj^n* (nachash), which means to whisper, and vj*n*  (nachash), a snake.  A snake hisses.  This literally meant to prophesy by observing snakes and generally came to mean to prophesy by observing auguries, or omens.

"Sorcerer" is the Hebrew, [v@K! (kisheph), which is a sorcerer or sorceress, a demon possessed medium.

or one who casts a spell, one who calls up a departed spirit (a medium), or a wizard, or one who consults the dead (necromancer). (Deuteronomy 18:11)
"One who casts a spell" is the Hebrew rb^j*(chabar) in the Qal active participle plus the noun, which means a conjurer or one who pronounced a ban (probably referring to binding or banning by magical knots).  This is like "bewitch" (Gal 3:1) from ogling with  the evil  eye.

"One who calls up a departed spirit" is the Qal active participle of the Hebrew la^v* (sha`al), which means to inquire; and the Hebrew, boa ('obh), which is a necromancer or a departed spirit.  It literally means a skin-bottle, which symbolizes a departed spirit, or ghost.  The person who calls up a departed spirit may be called a medium.  Such people are demon possessed by the engastrimuthos demon (Isaiah 8:19).  They don't really talk to dead people.  The ventriloquist demon simply mimics the dead person.

"Wizard" is the Hebrew, yn!u)D=y! (jide`oni), (ref. Leviticus 19:31; 1 Samuel 28:3, 9), which means the knowing, or "clever man."  This is the male counterpart of the sorceress, or witch.  The word may also be translated, wise man.  This wise man, however, sought wisdom from the dead.  Yet, what he discovered was not true wisdom, but the lies of Satan.

"One who consults the dead" refers to a necromancer.

Palmistry and Casting Lots

Conspicuous in their absence from any prohibitions in the Bible are palmistry and casting lots.  Nowhere in the Bible are these practices prohibited, although at times both gave the wrong answer and were used as divination.  It would be hypocritical for God to prohibit palmistry since in Isaiah 49:16, the Lord speaks of reading His own palm to remember Jerusalem, which is engraved upon His palm.  Those who have equated palmistry with divination or foolishness don't know their Bible and will never be able to explain Isaiah 49:16 or Ezekiel 21:22.

Casting lots includes various methods, such as drawing straws.  The practice was not mentioned in the types of divination.  On the contrary, it was used to consult God for divine revelation.  Joshua cast lots before the Lord to determine the allotments of the tribes of Israel in the Promised Land (Joshua 18:6-10).  Saul cast lots to determine the guilt of Jonathan (1 Samuel 14:38-43).  Jonah was found guilty by casting lots (Jonah 1:7).  Roman soldiers cast lots for the garments of Christ at the crucifixion (Matthew 27:35).  Matthias was elected to be the 12 apostle by casting lots (Acts 1:26), but in this case it didn't work.  The right person wasn't included in the sample of the lots; so it would have been impossible to get the right answer.  What's more God reserves the prerogative of choosing apostles.  They cannot be elected by man.

Casting lots works because random probability does not exist with God.  In God's Sovereign Design all things are deterministic.


Reincarnation is not taught in the Bible.  It is a lie of the doctrine of demons.  One of the favorite scriptures used to support reincarnation is Matthew 11:14:
Matthew 11:13-14
13 “For all the prophets and the Law prophesied until John. 14 “And if you will receive it (the Gospel), he himself (John) is Elijah who is to come.
Since John the Baptist was such a great evangelist and since he had the same Spiritual power as Elijah, people were wondering if John the Baptist might be Elijah.  Jesus answered the question with a metaphor, which could only be understood by believers.  Verse 14 begins with a Greek first class condition that presents a supposition for the purpose of argument.  It means "if, and it is true."  If they would receive the Gospel and believe in Jesus Christ, then they would be able to know the answer.

The meaning of the metaphor is:  John the Baptist was the herald of the First Advent like Elijah who was promised to be the herald of the Second Advent (Malachi 4:5).  For those who believe the Gospel, and therefore know Jesus Christ in the First Advent, then they can accept that John is the herald of the First Advent just as Elijah is the herald of the Second Advent.


1.  C. F. Keil and F. Delitzch (James Martin, Translator), Commentary on the Old Testament, Vol. I, ISBN 0-8028-8035-5 (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans Publishing Co.), 1978; 3rd Book, pp. 417, 425; 5th Book, p. 393.

Released September 4, 2002 - Revised May 15, 2022
Author: Larry Wood
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