Listen: Chris Witts presents Morning Devotions.
By Chris WittsSaturday 16 Oct 2021Morning Devotions with Chris WittsDevotionsReading Time: 4 minutes
As a boy growing up in the 1950s, superstition was quite a real thing for my mother. She was superstitious although I never thought much about it at the time.
She would never walk under a ladder – a sign of bad luck. No big deal but it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Centuries ago some people believed a black cat was a witch in disguise. So strong was the belief that some people wouldn’t discuss private business if a cat was in the room, fearing the cat would tell the witches. Or, if a black cat walks towards you it brings good fortune, but if it walks away, it takes the good luck with it.
Cats – black and other colours – were also the victim of another strange superstition involving sickness: If somebody in your house is ill, wash their body with a sponge, pour the water over the cat, and the cat will run away and take the illness with it.
And then there is superstition about the number 13 – it remains so powerful that in some areas of the UK no number 13 is allowed on a house in the street. In many buildings across the world there is no 13th floor, restaurants avoid having a table 13, and in Downing Street, where the British Prime Minister lives at Number 10, there is no number 13.
Do we really trust our future to Jesus?
Are you a superstitious person? If you are, you’re not alone – many thousands are. I’m not judging them – only having a look at this interesting topic today. Perhaps you’ve never thought about it, but we live in a very superstitious world. Eighty per cent of high-rise buildings have no 13th floor. Hospitals and hotels regularly have no room number 13. And, there is no 13th row of seats on major airlines. Why? People are afraid and won’t go there. The number 13 is very unlucky – especially Friday the 13th. Friday the 13th is considered the unluckiest of days, unless you were born on this day, in which case is your lucky day. Breaking a mirror brings seven years of bad luck. Cross your fingers to avoid bad luck and help a wish come true.
Superstition is believing in something that you know is impossible – yet you believe it anyways. According to a 2009 poll, 23 per cent of Christians read horoscopes and believe in astrology. Other polls claim 25 per cent of church-goers are superstitious. Back in the Old Testament times Gad, a pagan deity, was called the god of good fortune. He was worshipped by a number of Hebrews during the Babylonian captivity. All ancient cultures had at least one god or goddess of luck or good fortune. Ever heard of “Lady Luck?” She is thought to be the Roman goddess Fortuna, the goddess of luck and good fortune.
We talk a lot about having faith in God – easy to say. Even Satan can say that. But do we actually believe that we can trust Him for every second of each day? We must believe that He exists and He actually guides and protects us, If you need a horoscope to tell your future, then you don’t trust your future to Jesus Christ – and I’m sure Jesus is far more reliable than a horoscope. If you are a true follower of Jesus Christ you will reject all types of superstition. Why? Because you know that the whole world is under God’s control.
God wants you to be free from fear
Proverbs 16:4 (CEV) says, “The Lord has a reason for everything he does” and Jeremiah 29:11 (GW) says, “I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope”. That’s good news.
The word “superstitious” is not found in the Bible except in Acts 17:22 when the apostle Paul was in Athens. He said to the philosophers who had gathered there, “Men of Athens! I perceive that in all things you are too superstitious.” In Athens they had all kinds of idols or objects of worship. And they were either very religious, in a sense, or very superstitious.
We must not be controlled by our superstitions or superstitious practices! We must not live by fear but rather by faith!:
- “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil” (Psalm 23:4 – ESV)
- “The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1 – NIV)
- “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear….” (Psalm 46:1-2 – NIV)
The Bible tells us clearly that if we give our lives to Christ, He protects us and guides us. We do not have to fear the devil, demons, animals or inanimate objects around us. We can say:
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom will I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom will I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1 – MEV).
God wants you to have a life free from fear.
C..S. Lewis once said, “I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.” When Jesus is blessing your life, you don’t need good luck.