Thanks to charismatic publications like the Elijah List and Charisma magazine, “the Spirit of Python” seems to be all the rage in spiritual warfare circles. False prophets and deliverance ministers all have varying ideas as to how this spirit operates and the accompanying spiritual and physical side effects. But do they really know what they are talking about? Is the Spirit of Python really responsible for all they say that it is? What do we know about this elusive spirit serpent? What does the Bible say? What does history say? By the end of this series, you’ll know the truth.
Unmasking the Python Spirit
The Oracle at Delphi was a major prophetic voice between 7th century BC and 4th century AD. It’s not mentioned at all in the bible, but it greatly affected the culture and worldview of those who lived during that era. What (or who) exactly was the Oracle at Delphi and how did it affect the Greco-Roman empire? How is it related to the Spirit of Python mentioned in Acts 16?
When one reads the Acts 16 account of the encounter between Paul and the girl possessed by a Python spirit (divination), many things get left unsaid and lost in translation. There is so much more to this scenario than meets the eye! Come with me and we’ll take a closer look at this situation.
The influence of Python in the Greco-Roman world was greatly enhanced by the expansion of Hellenism (Greek philosophy, culture, values). This worldview stands diametrically opposed to the concrete truth of YHWH’s commands and greatly affects not only the way we see the world, but also our view of worship.
Let’s take the time to discuss another key characteristic of Hellenism that – historically and presently – has deeply affected the faith for the worse. Not only does Hellenism fog concrete and absolute truth with abstraction, it also militantly promotes and enforces it by employing tactics such as infiltration, subversion and – if necessary – murder.
A careful look at the Word of God will reveal that the goals of Martin Luther’s gospel and that of the Kingdom of God are not at all the same. Perhaps it’s time to re-think our evangelism values and strategy.