What Does 1 Corinthians 2:14 Teach about What Unbelievers Cannot Know?

1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

What does this verse teach about what things unbelievers cannot know?

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RajeshG's picture

Scripture provides undeniable evidence that unbelievers can authentically, reliably, and validly testify of their contact with and interactions with demons. Consequently, no believer can legitimately deny a priori the authenticity, reliability, or validity of all testimonies from unbelievers about their interactions with demons in their music making activities.

Numerous unbelievers have testified about demons and music; believers must not reject such testimonies by wrongly using passages such as 1 Cor. 2:14 to deny the authenticity, reliability, or validity of such testimonies. We must give proper heed to the grave importance of the information provided by these testimonies!

RajeshG's picture

Some object to the use of testimonies by unbelieving musicians about demons and music by asserting that those testimonies are just gimmicks or publicity stunts by desperate musicians to attract attention to themselves, increase their popularity, increase sales of their music, etc.

Scripture answers this objection through revelation about unbelievers who were authentically involved with the occult for mercenary purposes:

Acts 16:16 And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: 17 The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation. 18 And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour. 19 And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers,

These unbelieving masters were using this truly demonically possessed woman to make much money through her soothsaying. Had they borne testimony about her soothsaying, attempting to invalidate their testimonies by asserting that they were just charlatans who were just trying to make money by fooling people with what they said would have been a faulty assertion. They were in fact seeking to make money and they were authentically involved in the occult.

Testifying authentically to being involved in the occult and having mercenary motivations are not mutually exclusive.

To say validly that such-and-such testimony or testimonies by so-and-so are not reliable because they are just publicity stunts or gimmicks requires that one have full knowledge of the activities of those persons and the ability to show that they were in fact not authentically involved with the occult. Although it may be true in some cases that some statement(s) was/were not authentic, the burden of proof is on those who would make that claim.

Barring the ability to factually establish with certainty that a testimony is just an inauthentic public relations stunt, testimonies from unbelievers about demons and music cannot legitimately be dismissed as invalid because of mere assertions that they are inauthentic statements by people attempting to make more money.

RajeshG's picture

Scripture reveals a fearful reality that we would otherwise never have been able to know:

Revelation 18:23 And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.

Babylon's merchants were/will be the great men of the earth because by Babylon's sorceries all the nations were/will be deceived--deception through mercenaries involved with the occult is a grave issue of worldwide importance!

Applying this revelation to the issues of music and demons, we have theological basis to support that having testimonies from musicians who are involved with the occult for mercenary purposes (whether openly or secretly) is something that we should expect to find in many nations, perhaps even all nations.


RajeshG's picture

Christians who are willing to engage in objective, unbiased investigation of music and demons can readily find secular documentation of the occult's connection to much popular music of our day. This secular information is not in any way from IFB people who have "axes to grind" in opposing CCM.

Here are two sources to consider:

1. Rock musician Debra Devi's essay, "Language of the Blues: Voodoo" (warning: this page has a picture at the top of the page that is inappropriate content for a believer to view). Her essay is from 2017. In her article, she refers to another document that provides far more extensive information, which I am listing as the second source.

2. Michael Ventura's lengthy essay, "Hear That Long Snake Moan." Here is what Devi writes about that essay:

In the United States, Vodou has exerted a powerful influence on what writer Michael Ventura calls “the metaphysics of American music.” Ventura wrote in his brilliant essay “Hear that Long Snake Moan,” that the 20th Century would “dance as no other had, and, through that dance, secrets would be passed. First North America, and then the whole world, would–like the old blues says–‘hear that long snake moan.’”

It is striking that Ventura wrote in 1987 that this occult music would have worldwide effects!

I found this essay reproduced here. Again, be warned that this essay has some objectionable content in it.

I hope to post selected information from that essay in future comments.

Based on what I have provided in the preceding comments in this thread, believers do not have any basis to dismiss this extensive, secular information about demons and music as being inherently unreliable because it is from unbelievers. Rather, we must take this information seriously and respond properly to its implications.

RajeshG's picture

As they do with 1 Cor. 2:14, some believers try to use Acts 8:21 as biblical support for saying that testimonies from unbelievers that Christians should not do certain things in ministry are not reliable:

Acts 8:18 And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, 19 Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost. 20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money. 21 Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God. 22 Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee. 23 For I perceive that thou art in the gall of bitterness, and in the bond of iniquity.

To use this passage in that way misapplies it. Simon was not making a recommendation to Peter about what Christians should not do in ministry. Rather, Simon, for his own sake, made a wicked request to buy the gift of God with money.

This passage does not apply at all for showing that unbelievers cannot validly speak out against Christians' use in ministry of things of the occult that unbelievers know are evil.

Furthermore, there is great disagreement among believers whether Simon was still an unbeliever at the time that he made that statement. Many believe that he became a true believer, but as a brand new believer, he engaged in quite sinful behavior when he made that request.

Whether Simon became a true believer or not, Peter's rebuke of him in Acts 8:21 does not invalidate statements from unbelievers when they criticize Christians who use things of the occult in their ministries.


RajeshG's picture

Believers who reject the use of secular testimonies about demons and music argue for rejecting them on several bases. So far in this thread, using the teachings of 1 Cor. 2:14, Acts 8:21, etc. as a basis for rejecting such testimonies has been shown to be invalid as has the claim that those who have provided such testimonies have likely had mercenary motives.

Another frequently used basis for rejecting these testimonies is the claim that believers who use these testimonies to argue for the rejection of music of the occult commit multiple logical fallacies in how they use those testimonies. Such claims include the purported use of guilt-by-association (GBA), the genetic fallacy, hasty generalization, and ad hominem.

To address the claim that GBA is routinely used to support the fallacious rejection of music of the occult, it is necessary to examine various passages of Scripture. Consider the following comparison of passages about Balaam:

Numbers 31:14 And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, with the captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, which came from the battle. 15 And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive? 16 Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD. 17 Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. 

Revelation 2:13 I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan's seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth. 14 But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.

In spite of 1400-1500 years (we do not know this time span exactly but can approximate it closely enough for our purposes) having elapsed after Balaam's death, the glorified Christ indicted believers in a Christian church for having people in their midst who were holding the doctrine of Balaam. We know with certainty that Christ was not guilty of using the GBA fallacy when he rebuked the believers in this church for doing so.

Scripture does not provide any basis for our understanding that the doctrine of Balaam had been faithfully transmitted by his followers for all those hundreds of years since his death and had spread from where the Midianites had been all the way to Pergamos. How, then, was the glorified Christ able to validly declare that in essence the same perverse doctrine that greatly corrupted ancient Israel was corrupting a first-century church?

RajeshG's picture

Given the lack of ongoing interaction, I have decided not to continue posting on this thread. If anyone is interested in more information about anything that I have talked about in the thread, please contact me privately.