In Occult practices intangible images are brought into (physical reality) the material world, our 3rd dimension, by a number of ways. The attainment of this experiential knowledge (gnosis) leads to a self-realization . It has been said by occultists it lead's one to the mastery of spiritual technology and the attainment of psycho-spiritual powers.
The belief is that energy follows our thought. Our mind and thoughts produce energy, which begins to be birth in the spiritual realm first and then is reproduced in the natural. As the image we hold is incubated in thought it becomes birthed in the physical material world. Everything is first spiritual then physical. They claim this is how God created, he first had the image and then spoke it .This is clearly Christian Science and mind science also found in eastern ways of philosophy and metaphysical thought.
Visualization that is Christianized
This is the incubating process. One holds the image in their minds eye and uses faith as a force to make it come about. The concept is to have it birthed in the spiritual realm first and then it will come about in the natural. Then one is to speak what they see into existence. with this law of manifestation," thoughts held steadfastly in the mind are spoken aloud, or visualized will "manifest' in the physical world. Napoleon Hill was taught this law by spirits who called themselves Ascended Masters from a School of Wisdom located on the astral plane. Hill visualized 16 nine famous men from the past sitting around a table as his advisers and guess what, it worked. Leaders in the Faith movement are using this same law as well for speaking things into existence. The occult technique of visualization is also the key to inner healing. One visualizes a situation in the past they need to be reconciled, they visualize Jesus coming to them and solving the problem.
The New age teaches that if everyone on earth practiced this to change their reality the world would be a very different place. We would have a potentially several billion godlike creatures in the world all exercising their will competing for their own piece of reality. The force is in the hands of its wielder. Whoever exercises the most power wins. God loves us enough not to put this kind of power or ability in the hands of sinful man.
THESE OCCULT CONCEPTS ARE NOW PRACTICED IN THE CHURCH, Sanctified as Christian. We can now visualize, decree, and get direct communication of new knowledge from the Lord just as the Gnostics and new agers! Some go further and will speak the image that they want to become reality. It doesn't seem to bother some people that this is an ancient practice in the occult and other religions and commonly used by the New Age movement today.
Words and pictures are the containers of the force of faith. Even God used this ...
"God did not create the world out of nothing, He used the Force of His Faith. (K. Copeland Spirit, Soul and Body #01-0601, Tape #1)
"What you are saying is exactly what you are getting now. If you are living in poverty and lack and want, change what you are saying.... The powerful force of the spiritual world that creates the circumstances around us is controlled by the words of the mouth. (The Laws of Prosperity Kenneth Copeland, Kenneth Copeland Publications).
Mental imaging is a common practice in the occult. One holds an image in their mind and puts in the details like coloring in an outline. As they envision it each day, meditate on it becomes clearer and will come to pass. This technique is now used for healing traumas that are emotional, cancer and other diseases. One sees the cancer or disease being fought and conquered and essentially leaving.
While mentally rehearsing Scripture and using pictures in our mind for Biblical accounts can be useful, it is not the same as attempting to create spiritual reality, or to cause through any mind technique such as positive thinking. To change, alter, or create reality you are then entering the realm of sorcery.
There are ways to use our imagination in practical and normal ways like Artists and architects need to have a visual image first. Johanna Michaelsen, now a Christian, who was deeply involved in the occult and a personal assistant to a psychic surgeon, states in her' look, Like Lambs to the Slaughter "There are perfectly valid and legitimate uses of the imagination.... An artist 'sees' the finished painting or sculpture in his mind or an architect 'visualizes' the building he is working on.... When we recall past events in our lives, we do so with mental images. Storytellers and books use mental images to get a point across. I'm talking about is a technique of creating an image in your mind and using that (image as) an effort to create or control reality through mind-powers.
What the new age is teaching is that one holds an image in their mind and goes in to experience it or uses it to change their reality. This is spiritual manipulation for power and healing. The Bible calls this sorcery, divination and vain imaginations.
Many who promote inner healing teach or imply that the past is reconciled through visualizing Jesus in the "memories" MacNutt explains that "Jesus, as Lord of time, is able to do what we cannot . . . [we] ask Jesus to walk back with us into the past . . . it is the inner child of the past who is being healed .. . . " Macnutt healing Ava Maria press 1974 p.186)
Ruth Carter Stapleton, who, like most of the other leaders in the movement, learned her inner healing from Agnes Sanford, tells of a young woman who became involved in drugs and crime because of the "self-loathing" she felt at being "an illegitimate child." Ruth's solution was to take the young woman back in "a guided meditation" in which Christ was visualized as "present" during the act of fornication that caused her conception and making it "holy and pure, an act of God . . . ordained by her heavenly Father. "(Stapleton Experience pp.22-23 cited in Seduction of Christianity by Dave Hunt)
We are told by some to visualize Jesus as we pray. When those into imagery and visualization believe that the "Jesus" being imaged in their mind is not just a image, but the real Jesus, even going so far as to dialogue and touch Him, then they have opened the door to counterfeit "spirit guides.' You might think you're focusing, on Jesus. You might have a real spiritual experience. But, when you create Jesus in your mind, He is not the historic Jesus of the Bible. He is The Jesus of your imagination, and the Bible warns about "another Jesus.' And many through these techniques have testified that the Jesus they encountered was not the resurrected Christ, but another Jesus, a counterfeit, "an angel of light" impersonating the Jesus of the Bible. How can Jesus who is at the right hand of the father in heaven come down and make a personal appearance to each of us materially. If each of us visualize Jesus we would all probably have a different picture of what he looks like our minds. Which one has the right Jesus, the real one? None of us! We probably would make him into some image of the pictures we saw.
We are recommended by some, even Christians, that the human mind thinks in pictures, so when you pray think of the picture in your mind. While we do use pictures it is not the norm. What pictures come to your mind when you hear the words like truth, holiness, righteousness, faith or love? None; they describe qualities.
LSD and meditation are ways visualization can be experienced. This technique has come into the Christian church through prayer. We are told that we need to show God a picture of our prayer. Since God can communicate in visions we too can communicate by a picture instead of words. "Through visualization and dreaming you can incubate your future and hatch the results." (The Fourth Dimension p. 44)
"We've got to learn how... to visualize and dream the answer as being completed as we go to the Lord in prayer. We should always try to visualize the end result as we pray." "In that way, with the power of the Holy Spirit, we can incubate that which we want God to do for us...." "God used this process of visualizing the situation to help Abraham.... By that visualization through the associated thought Abraham... could incubate his [future] children.... The main thing is that we should know the importance of visualization." (The Fourth Dimension Vol.2 pp.26-27)
"We have taught our people how to... visualize success.... Through visualizing and dreaming, you can incubate your future and hatch the results." (The Fourth Dimension, Volume Two, pp. 25-28, 68- The Fourth Dimension, p. 44)
"So men [Christians or occultists], by exploring their spiritual sphere of the fourth dimension through the development of concentrated visions and dreams in their imagination, can brood over and incubate the third dimension, influencing and changing it." "This is what the Holy Spirit taught me." (The Fourth Dimension p. 39-44)
The Holy Spirit taught him something that the Christian church never had in scripture or taught in the early church. But occultists have for thousands of years. It is one thing to receive a vision from God it is another to conjure it up oneself.
Show me the word visualization, imaging, or the practice of other such techniques. You cannot find them. But, you will find these words and techniques used in occultism.
Show me in Scripture where Jesus or Paul or anyone else used such techniques as imaging or visualization for prayer or healing. Show me in God's Word where they achieved God's presence or had spiritual experiences through mind pictures.
Learning a technique to contact or see Jesus is not biblical. We pray and God hears. He may speak in the time of prayer, He may not, He may speak at a completely different time. As Christians we operate by faith not by sight.
Before this became a popular practice in Christian circles, Napoleon Hill wrote about imagery and visualization in his book, Think and Grow Rich. He writes, "The THIRTEENTH principle is known as the sixth sense, through which Infinite Intelligence may and will communicate voluntarily, without any effort from, or demands by, the individual.... Step by step, through the preceding chapters, you have been led to this, the last principle. If you have mastered each of the preceding principles, you are now prepared to accept, without being skeptical, the stupendous claims made here...."Just before going to sleep at night. I would shut my eyes, and see, in my imagination, this group of men seated with me around my council table.... After some months of this nightly procedure, I was astounded by the discovery that these imaginary figures became apparently real." "Each of these nine men developed individual characteristics, which surprised me.... "These meetings became so realistic that I became fearful of their consequences, and discontinued them for several months. The experiences were so uncanny, I was afraid if I continued them I would lose sight of the fact that the meetings were purely experiences of my imagination. .... Whatever you believe that the adviser is a spirit, a guardian angel, a messenger from God, a hallucination, a communication from your right brain to your left, or a symbolic representation of inner wisdom is all right. The fact is, no one knows what it is with any certainty. We can each decide for ourselves....
"Sometimes people will encounter religious figures like Jesus, Moses, or Buddha, while others will find an angel, fairy, or leprechaun. People sometimes encounter the adviser as a light or a translucent spirit.... The best way to work with this and any other imagery experience is just to let the figures be whatever they are. Welcome the adviser that comes and get to know it as it is."
The bible was written in words Jeremiah said the people refuse to hear my words and follow the imagination of their own heart.
I Jn. 5:15 "And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him." The Lord says to ask, never to envision or see it! The Lord can give us a vision but it is not something we work up on our own it comes when we don't expect it.
Visions or "encounters with God" recorded in Scripture were not achieved through any self-induced methods, but through the divine intervention of a sovereign God (Genesis 15;1; Genesis 20:3; Genesis 31:24; I Kings 3:5; Daniel 10:1)
In Jeremiahs time there were lots of people roaming around as prophets and having visions saying God has spoken to me. There is a difference of someone receiving a vision of revelation from the Lord and conjuring up one from his own imagination
Jer. 14:14 "And the LORD said to me, "The prophets prophesy lies in My name.
I have not sent them, commanded them, nor spoken to them; they prophesy to you a false
vision, divination, a worthless thing, and the deceit of their heart."
Ezek. 13:7 "Have you not seen a futile vision, and have you not spoken false divination? You say, `The LORD says,' but I have not spoken."
Heb. 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. If we are seeing, then this is the opposite of faith. Nowhere does the Bible encourage anyone to visualize to see the future or to receive an answer in prayer. It has always been found in the occult.
We walk by faith not by sight