Bethel Church in Redding, California, last week, responded to the “Christian Tarot card” controversy that has created a buzz in the Christian media.
Apparently, church leaders could no longer ignore reports that people closely associated with the church — including students from their school — have used the controversial decks of cards known as Destiny Cards. And members of their pastoral staff have defended the use of the cards. One, Theresa Dedmon, even developed her own set of Destiny Cards. These reports seem to have damaged Bethel’s reputation given the fact that they felt the need to respond with a formal statement — something they don’t do often though the church is no stranger to controversial news.
Here’s the statement they posted on their website on January 5. It’s fairly lengthy. In short, it states that Bethel has no formal affiliation with Christalignment, the organization at the center of the controversy. Yet it goes on to defend Christalignment’s use of the cards as a legitimate form of evangelistic outreach to New Agers. In contrast, critics of the cards, including myself, have argued that the cards are being used, essentially like Tarot cards — i.e., as a tool for divination. Divination is condemned in Scripture.
Bethel’s statement about Christalignment is clearly intended to put to bed concerns about the cards. Ironically, it raises more questions than it answers…