WAAST Prayer Guide – August 22, 2021
SYNCRETISM & CULTS
When a person leaves one religion to embrace another, often his former beliefs and rituals are not easily left behind. Mixing beliefs and rituals from unrelated religions is called “syncretism,” and it happens around the world. In Africa, those who turn to Jesus from voodoo and animism may see no conflict in still carrying a family charm—or in paying an unscrupulous “pastor” for a special prayer, just as they had paid voodoo priests, or in buying “holy oil” to use to obtain desired results. Many people are attracted to “prosperity” teachings, to the neglect of truly following Jesus and building His kingdom. Some seek greater social status and wealth through cults such as Freemasonry, while others may seek “the god within” through eastern religions. People living in poverty may accept offers of food or education for their children if they will follow Islam. Those who leave their family’s/community’s religion to follow Jesus without compromise are often persecuted or rejected.
- for new believers and those struggling to be freed from the influences of false religions, that they may fall in love with Jesus and be filled with the Holy Spirit and properly discipled;
- that the Holy Spirit would graciously convict pastors and religious teachers who lead people astray with false teachings;
- for church leaders as they teach their people to discern false teachings and help them to confront pressures to compromise;
- for strength and encouragement for Christians to stand firm in their faith, and that the Lord would use their testimony to bring others to Himself.