I remember growing up when newspapers were a thing (that seems so 20th Century), there was a section in the newspaper called the horoscopes. In this section based on your zodiac sign, you could read what your day was going to be like and what you could expect to happen.
To be honest most of this stuff was so general it could apply to anyone, which is why I guess it appealed to so many people. There are still people who hold onto and believe in zodiac signs. Some people will swear that people born under the same sign exhibit similar behaviors.
You have probably heard someone say something to the effect, “well you know how Capricorns are.” (You could insert any of the other zodiac signs there as well.) As Christians, where should we stand on zodiac signs? Should we place any value on them and, more importantly, are zodiac signs a sin or are they just harmless fun and a way to start a conversation?
What Are Zodiac Signs?
There are two ways you must consider zodiac signs. One is from an astronomy perspective and the other is from an astrology perspective. In case you are not familiar with these terms let me define them for you. Here is the difference between these two things as described by the American Astronomical Society (AAS):
“Astronomy is a science that studies everything outside of the earth's atmosphere, such as planets, stars, asteroids, galaxies, and the properties and relationships of those celestial bodies. Astronomers base their studies on research and observation. Astrology, on the other hand, is the belief that the positioning of the stars and planets affect the way events occur on earth.”
Astrology can seek to predict what is going to happen but also can seek to describe human activity based on the activity of the stars. Astronomy is the basis for scientific exploration of space and the universe while astrology is more focused on events and human nature.
It is important to understand that astrology is technically not a science. Zodiac signs and horoscopes as we are looking at them today will fall under the realm of astrology.
Are Zodiac Signs a Sin?
Zodiac signs have been around for centuries and have been a part of many ancient cultures.
The signs of the zodiac are connected to the earth’s movement around the sun and the different constellations that are passed through along this journey, of which there are twelve. When you think about whether following zodiac signs is sinful or not, the answer is it depends.
Here is the key question. What emphasis if any do you place on them? How you answer this question will help determine if zodiac signs are sin in your life. I guess it goes back to are you looking at these from an astronomy perspective or an astrology perspective?
3 Indicators That Zodiac Signs Have Become Sinful Activity
When answering the question are zodiac signs a sin, we can look at these three indicators to know whether or not it has become a sinful activity in our lives:
1. When you tie zodiac signs to human behavior.
When you attempt to tie people’s behavior to the time of year they were born, or the activity of the stars that can quickly become a slippery slope. The core to who we are as humans, both our nature and our character, has been defined by the word of God.
There are two fundamental truths that we must all recognize that mark who we are and none of them have to do with the month you were born or the activity of the stars.
1). You were created in God’s image.
So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. – Genesis 1:27
2). You were born with a sinful nature.
Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me. – Psalm 51:5
These two things shape the foundation of who you are more than anything else. We must be careful to view everyone through this lens which gives value to every human life, which defines our nature, and which outlines our need for a savior.
2. When you make decisions by them.
As I mentioned earlier there are people who swear by zodiac signs and make decisions based on what their horoscope said for the day. If you are a Christian and you are doing this, then you are using zodiac signs in a way that is sinful.
As Christians, we have been given a manual that we can live and make decisions by. That manual is the word of God. This should be the basis for everything we do. Just to give you a simple comparison, here are some differences between a horoscope and the word of God.
- Horoscopes originated in the heart of a man, while the Bible originated from the mind of God.
- Horoscopes may or may not come true and if they do it is sheer coincidence. God’s word is true and everything God said has already come to pass or it will come to pass in the future.
- Horoscopes are sinking sand that can’t be trusted however, God’s word can forever be trusted.
Make sure you are not depending on the whimsical changing nature of horoscopes, and you are putting your trust and decision-making in the unchanging word of an eternal God. If you are putting any measure of trust in a horoscope, then zodiac signs are sin in your life.
3. When you use zodiac signs and horoscopes to predict the future.
One use of zodiac signs is to attempt to predict what is going to happen. While there are instances in scripture where there has been references to stars and constellations in relationship to current or future events, we must be careful about making a doctrine or pattern out of these things. Most of these events were not everyday occurrences.
The real complete truth is the only one who can predict the future is God. There is no one else on the face of the earth that can do this with one hundred percent accuracy. If you use the zodiac signs and horoscopes to attempt to predict the future, then it is another instance where zodiac signs are sin in your life.
What about the Magi?
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” – Matthew 2:1-2
Some would attempt to use this as a good case for the proof or use of astrology as an everyday practice. We must be careful because these types of events, while they did happen, were not the norm in scripture. Notice this appearance of the star was in relationship to the birth of Jesus, which also coincided with the scriptures that said the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem.
In other words, God used the star to lead the magi to Bethlehem and to confirm what was foretold in his Word. It was not just the star alone. While God may have used these methods from time to time, they were never meant to be a source of continued guidance. As Christians, our guidance does not come from the stars of the zodiac. God leads us and guides us by the truth of the Word of God and the Spirit of God that dwells within us.
So, are zodiac signs a sin? If you look at zodiac signs and horoscopes as simple fun and put no true weight on them, then you could make a case that they are fine. However, to go beyond that is when zodiac signs are sin in your life.
You must determine what value you will place on them. I would recommend that you don’t place any value on these things and place all your value on what God has said in his word, because it is his word that will endure forever and nothing else. The truth is everything you need for life and living God has provided for you so there is no need to look anyplace else.
Lastly, I would say put down the horoscopes and pick up the Word of God because this is where real truth is found.
Photo Credit: ©GettyImages/LeArchitecto
Clarence L. Haynes Jr. is a speaker, Bible teacher, and co-founder of The Bible Study Club. He is the author of The Pursuit of Purpose which will help you understand how God leads you into his will. He has also just released his new book The Pursuit of Victory: How To Conquer Your Greatest Challenges and Win In Your Christian Life. Do you want to go deeper in your walk with the Lord but can’t seem to overcome the stuff that keeps getting in the way? This book will teach you how to put the pieces together so you can live a victorious Christian life and finally become the man or woman of God that you truly desire to be. To learn more about his ministry please visit clarencehaynes.com.