Monday, November 10, 2014

Monster Energy Drink Is Anti-Christ: A Case Study In Occult Epistemology

First, if you haven't already, watch the video embedded above. It's blowing up on the internet today.

Second, ask yourself whether you think it might be possible that, aside from any health effects, you're putting yourself under the power of Satan if you drink Monster.

If your answer to the above question is yes, you might have an occult epistemology.

What is occult epistemology, you ask?
  1. Occult: Pertaining to hidden knowledge of supernatural power
  2. Epistemology: The philosophy of how to attain knowledge.
Occult epistemology teaches that there are two levels of knowledge. The lower level is the knowledge that can be gained by observation and reason through the normal and boring disciplines of history, science, philosophy, etc. The higher level of knowledge that leads to supernatural power is not laid open to ordinary observation and disciplined reason but is layered on top in a system of secret symbols that only the initiated can interpret.

The modern occult movement of the 19th century looked back to the ancient mystery religions for this knowledge. One of those religions was Gnosticism, a blending of mystery religion and Christianity. Gnosticism means something like "knowledgeism", because the Gnostics taught that a system of hidden spiritual knowledge through symbolism was necessary for salvation from the material world.

The word heretic as we use it today, was created to describe Gnostics. They were heretics because they preached salvation through secret knowledge instead of salvation through Jesus.

Today we not only have a modern expression of ancient mystery religions known as the occult, we also have a modern expression of Gnosticism—Christian conspiracy preachers who teach attainment of spiritual power through secret knowledge of hidden symbols. They purport to warn you against the occult, while at the same time adopting occult epistemology in order to explain its power.

When conspiracy teachers blend Christianity and occult epistemology they end up with two levels of spiritual knowledge. The first level is the knowledge you get from ordinary theology—comparing scripture with scripture, studying the original languages, thinking through the teachings of the Bible—that's open for anyone to study. That's probably enough to get you to Heaven, but you still might get fooled by the Devil if you don't know what he's secretly up to. So you need to advance to that second level of hidden knowledge that is only available through an extra-biblical system of hidden symbols, which only the initiated can understand.

Once you accept the premise that spiritual knowledge can be gained through this system of hidden symbols, you're swept up into a hidden world of mysterious powers, remarkable secrets, and high-stakes conflict. It's like being on a spiritual drug, and once the buzz wears off you want some more. None of it does anything to bring your heart closer to Jesus, and you end up trusting in your knowledge about the inner-workings supernatural power to save you from Satan.

So what can you do if realize you've fallen for occult epistemology?

  1. Recognize that true spiritual knowledge starts with Jesus, and Jesus doesn't hide this knowledge but lays it open (apokalupto) in His Word: "There is nothing covered up that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known" (Luke 12:2).
  2. Get close to Jesus. Instead of studying conspiracy theories, spend time in prayer. Not only will you get true spiritual knowledge, but you'll be protected from the Devil. No one accidentally ends up under demonic power by drinking a beverage with "666" hidden on it or watching a music video with Illuminati symbolism. The real danger is in choosing to focus my heart's desires on something other than God (1 Peter 5:8-10). In that light, conspiracy preaching holds a more subtle danger than popular entertainment, because you think your heart is close to God when the reality is far from it.
  3. Study the symbolic system of Scripture. The Bible is replete with ritual, typological, and apocalyptic symbolism. God uses it to communicate spiritual truths that are too profound for simple explanation. Nowhere in Scripture are we encouraged to look to a hidden knowledge outside the Bible to interpret the symbols in the Bible. Rather, the Bible provides its own interpretive keys, which are not hidden and available only to initiates, but open to all.
I believe occult epistemology is the Devil's counterfeit to distract us from the symbolic system of the Bible while fooling us into thinking we can have a measure of control over supernatural power. The symbolic system of scripture is deep enough to sustain a lifetime of study, but it has a simple message: God is in control, put your trust in Him.

This post was revised, expanded and posted to SSNet as a commentary for the Adventist Adult Bible Study Guide for the week of January 17-23, 2015. That version was crossposted on ADvindicate.


  1. Of course it's not good to get overly caught up in conspiracy preaching, which does give a shortlasting buzz as the author suggests if not grounded in the word; but to suggest this women is a gnostic is a bit much. The gnostics and occultists are those doing the marketing of the product - God has given this women a measure of discernment, and we should praise God for that. Energy drinks aren't the antichrist, but they are bad for you, and even here in Thailand ppl like the logo (I see them on hats and on motorcycles and we can't even buy the drinks here) for the subconscious reason that this occult symbology is strangely attractive to the lust of the flesh.

    So while I understand your sentiment, are we to declare anyone who tries to uncover truth in the world outside the Bible a gnostic? When we study the collapse of WTC 7, are we now a gnostic? If we're trying to understand the Freemason religion, which is steeped in occult symbology, have we become a gnostic? Are we not supposed to study the Big Bang Theory and its errors, so as to make our faith stronger? Or are we to bunker down with our Bible and ignore all the deceptions of the world because they will only confuse us? The armor, shield, and helmet come first, but we also have "the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God". Also we are told to "Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." I worry that people may be submitting to God, but are being encouraged not to resist the Devil!

    I can tell you that if you explain to young people the evil occultism in music they are much more likely to stop listening to it that just saying "it's evil and God doesn't want you to listen to it" - which sounds shallow and not thought through.

    That is not to say that studying the devil's territory is not dangerous (I know from personal experience that studying the political power of the Catholic Church is spiritually very dangerous/overwhelming); that we should take it slow and be grounded in truth as not to be confused by deception, but we need balance. Balance in all areas of our walk with Jesus seems to me crucial if we are going to overcome. Peace and God bless

    1. I cant seem to find in the article where David suggested that the woman was a gnostic. Can you help me find it please? Thank you!

  2. I used to be in conspiracy theories, so this article struck a strong chord with me. :)

    I've made a short youtube video describing my experience, and what these theories did for/to me:

  3. Very informative and well written post! Quite interesting and nice topic chosen for the post.