We’re all somewhat familiar with the signs of the Zodiac and horoscopes because they’re so prevalent in our culture. Historians tell us the signs of the Zodiac (Latin zōdiacus: “cycle or circle of little animals”) originated in the 5th century BC in Babylonian astronomy/astrology, which was embraced by the Greek empire, and subsequently embraced by the Roman Empire. Archaeological digs have even unearthed Zodiac mosaics in ancient Jewish synagogues. Yes, even the Bible mentions some of the signs of the Zodiac, although in an objective way (see article far below).
The premise of astrological superstition is that the Earth is influenced by the position of the heavenly bodies throughout the course of an astronomical yearly cycle and that people born within one of the 28-day intervals (specified by one of the thirteen Zodiac “signs”) will exhibit certain distinct personality traits. Astrologers claim to be able to predict the future for individuals based upon their sign or ascertain favorable or unfavorable conditions for supplicants in connection with various endeavors. Daily horoscopes are published in newspapers, which give advice for each sign group. Studies reveal that around 30% of Americans believe in astrology to some degree. One of the favorite ice-breaker “pick-up” lines in American society is “What’s your sign?” Argh!
Why do I bring this up? The other day, I was perusing through some blog posts written by Roman Catholics and one person wrote a post sharing 26 personal items about herself on her 26th birthday. Item # 13 was as follows:
“I am pretty sure my zodiac sign is a Taurus, however, my birthday falls on the cut-off date, so certain charts will show my birthday as Aries.”
Most Catholics have only a shallow understanding of the Bible. For them, mixing a little astrology in with their works religion is good, clean fun and nothing to be embarrassed about. I’m reminded of my deceased mother-in-law* who wasn’t a practicing Catholic (she was excommunicated in the 1950s for remarrying after a divorce), but still considered herself a member of the church and made sure her daughters were educated at Catholic schools. She read her horoscope daily and occasionally had her palms “read” by an astrologer. Catholicism itself is a syncretic mixture of paganism and (c)hristianity, so it magnanimously “looks the other way” in regards to these excursions into “harmless” amusements.
Could a blood-bought, born-again follower of Jesus Christ become enmeshed in the Zodiac and horoscopes? Why would they? Does not compute. If a person is walking with the Lord and filled with the indwelling Holy Spirit, the last thing they would need or want to do is consult with the pagan Zodiac and horoscopes. Who would choose to eat out of a maggot-infested garbage can when they’re seated at THE wedding feast?
“And beware not to lift up your eyes to heaven and see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, and be drawn away and worship them and serve them, those which the LORD your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven.” – Deuteronomy 4:19
*Praise God, my mother-in-law accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior by faith alone shortly before her death.
What does the Bible say about astrology or the zodiac? Is astrology something a Christian should study?