Some years ago, a local television reporter asked me by telephone to state my position on astrology, “as a Christian and as pastor of one of Los Angeles’ well-known churches.”
That conversation reminded me of the necessity for everyone to have a basic understanding of the subject, hence:
1) The Bible not only rejects but condemns astrology. Isaiah 47:12-15 should be read carefully. The concluding words of warning regarding the person committed to astrology and related occult practices make clear that confusion is the inevitable lot of such a person and tragic, eternal loss the final price.
2) The idea that the wisemen (magi), who found the young Christ by way of astrological pursuits, somehow supports astrology because of their inclusion in the Bible is a groundless one. They only reveal how God meets earnest hearts where they are, and, if they honestly are searching for Him, He’ll see that they get there. But please notice, the whole story in Matthew 2 notes that (a) it took the revelation of the Word of God to finalize their quest and (b) their quest wasn’t final until they found the Son of God.
3) The danger of astrology is beyond a simple, superstitious misuse of time. Following the trade of occult practices is to traffic with the demonic. The “uncanny” sequence of events, people and trivia in a person’s life, seeming to confirm the forecast of their horoscope, is the direct result of demonic manipulation of people and circumstances. It isn’t the result of some cosmic influence radiating from the stars. It is a hellish work coming from Satan himself, having found but one more way to steal, to kill and to destroy sheep-like humans (John 10).
4) Presumably, everyone reading these words knows the difference between astrology and astronomy: the former is a metaphysical or occult practice, and the latter an objective pursuit of physical science. There is nothing wrong with the study of astronomy. Indeed, there is great inspiration in studying any aspect of God’s creation. In this realm, the acid test is the willingness of the student to acknowledge God’s handiwork and to overcome the idolatrous systems of human pride, which chalk galaxies off to a deity named Chance (Psalm 19:1-6; Romans 1:18-32).
5) Finally, knowledgeable Bible students are aware of the fact and the reason that the name of some star groups occur in the Bible (ex: Job 9:9; 38:31, 32; Amos 5:8). These references to constellations are not astrological, but are a means of teaching. It is a fact that before the ancient Babylonian systems of astrology became popular, the godly patriarchs linked the spiritual lessons of God’s promised redemption in the minds of their children by using the canvas of the skies (and in a day when pen and paper were unknown).
The way to relate to a person involved in astrology is not to preach against their practice, but to show them the love of Jesus Christ. It may be that their quest is an honest one, not an avoidance of confronting the reality of the Savior. If so, when they encounter His love in you, they’ll do what wise men do every time. They will cease “following stars” and bow before Jesus.