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Topic: Exposure in Christian Magic
Message: Posted by: Donnie (Apr 8, 2008 06:45PM)
Folks,

I was exploring youtube and came across this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tvx3Fcth5kY as well as this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xzIRbEmm3E. In both of those presentations exposure is used as a gimmick to establish interest in a christian message.As magicians and christians who respect their faith and art how do you feel about this? Positive or negative please speak up on youtube as well as on this forum. Have a great evening.
Message: Posted by: Dan Bernier (Apr 8, 2008 07:11PM)
Ooh boy! Here we go...
Message: Posted by: Rickfcm (Apr 8, 2008 08:07PM)
I know some may say this is a minor exposure but any exposure opens that person up to criticism from the magic society. Gospel illusionist in general are criticized for performing less than quality magic. We don't need to give fellow magicians reason to pick on us. We have to pick up our game. We have to excel to be respected and things like this have to stop. People like Andre Kole and Duane Laflin prove it can be done. We must do better.
Message: Posted by: Dan Bernier (Apr 8, 2008 08:51PM)
Then perhaps contact this fellow and find out if he is aware of the damage he's doing to the magic community and christians in general. I haven't looked at the link, but I agree that exposure is exposure. But, if this fellow is a christian wouldn't it be right to give this person an opportunity to represent himself and his side of the story before we sharpen our claws and prepare to destroy him here in the FCM forum. Remember, he is our brother in Christ.

I recently discovered a couple of christian who were selling Gospel tricks they got free from other websites. One ebook was word for word exact as another Gospel magic book that someone wrote and is selling. I started a thread about this but then contacted the people first before revealing who they were or providing links to the source. I'm glad I took that course because it was a humbling experience for all three of us, and I felt so much more better for it.
Message: Posted by: Joe Marotta (Apr 12, 2008 03:50PM)
I think it's very improper for a Chritian magician to expose himself while performing...
Message: Posted by: Dan Bernier (Apr 12, 2008 04:35PM)
And the funniest post goes to...Joe! You crack me up brother!(lol)
Message: Posted by: Darkwing (Apr 12, 2008 04:49PM)
[quote]
On 2008-04-12 16:50, Joe Marotta wrote:
I think it's very improper for a Chritian magician to expose himself while performing...
[/quote]

Joe,

So much for a repeat gig. You probally won't get called back.

David
Message: Posted by: Joe Marotta (Apr 13, 2008 04:16PM)
Sorry ladies and gents, but I just couldn't resist...
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 10, 2008 03:47PM)
I know this is an old Post, but I just feel I need to share something. Which may or may not be accepted but may throw some light on the situation.

Some Christian magicians realize that there are people that frequent the tutorials on youtube out of curiosity to learn how an effect is done. They then feel how better to gain an audience to the message of salvation? They feel that the delivery of the Gospel is of paramount importance. Exposing a magic effect is not as important as delivering the Lord's message.

Personally I disagree with this view. But felt like I should share it since it will help understand a few things. Some people that you approach and explain." You are exposing secrets." will not care. As far as they are concerned it's all in the Lord's Work. In their minds delivering the Gospel is worth whatever price is paid, including giving away secrets to something which to them is not important. magic.

I think this is bad practice. We are Christians but we are also magicians. While it is our duty to spread the Gospel, we need to do so honorably. Now while I never took an oath of secrecy per se'... When I bought my first ETMCM DVD from Michael Ammar, I knew I was taking an Oath to secrecy, before I learn3ed one thing from that DVD. Saying.." but you didn't REALLY take an oath." is just an unethical way of sidestepping that. When you decide to become a Magician, you know you are sworn to secrecy.

The Lord told us never to swear on anything, but to let our yes, be yes, and our no, be no. I understand this to mean we must behave with honor and integrity. If keeping the methods of magic is a secret which one can " rationalize" not keeping, because it leads to spreading the Gospel, then we are not behaving with honor or integrity. I do not believe in spreading the Gospel " by any means necessary." or that " the ends justifies the means." I think the Lord will only bless methods that are honorable and ethical. The means are as important as the ends.

A magician that would consider telling these secrets when he has agreed to keep them should not have tried learning to be a magician to begin with. if keeping secrets is hard then don't follow the road of magic. Find another way to spread the Gospel. Once you are in possession of this knowledge honor and integrity demand you keep secrecy. The Lord would not welcome unethical or dishonorable methods to spread the Gospel....in my opinion.
Message: Posted by: Heres Tony (May 10, 2008 10:33PM)
I respectfully disagree. Being a Christian and being a magician should not be put on the same level.

Being a magician is no different than being an electrician. I don't have any idea how to wire a socket. I could learn by looking it up on the internet but that doesn't mean I'm any less impressed by someone who does it for a living.

90% of the stuff I do in my show can be learned on the internet because I make almost all of my own props and I'm old school.

I teach 5th grade Sunday School and often teach the kids how to do the tricks I perform for them. Nothing like a double-lift mind you, just the things they might learn from a Happy Meal or cereal box.

Last weekend a student of mine came up to me during the lesson and said that she wished her mom would not "party" so much on Saturday night so she could bring her to church every Sunday because she enjoyed seeing and learning magic to show her friends.

If some little something I do impacts these children and brings them closer to the Lord do you think for a minute that I care about a "secret"?

Tony Brent

BTW: Joe Marotta you made my night brother!!

Tony Brent
http://www.herestony.com
Outta Control Magic Comedy Dinner Show
Voted #1 Dinner Show by CW-18 and WESH-TV Channel 2
"Funniest dinner show in Orlando." - Orlando Weekly
"One of the best one-man shows I've ever seen!" - Bill Lewis, WYTZ Radio
"Let's have a grilled-cheese sandwich" means there's no meat in the house - Tony Brent
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 10, 2008 10:50PM)
Well, I think it depends on whether you think it's honorable or ethical, to take an oath, and go back on it when it is convenient for a " higher " cause.

I never put my Christianity at the same level with my Magicianship. But I do take my word seriously. As does God. His Word is higher than anything else, as we are expected to do the same.

maybe to you Keeping a Magic " secret" is trivial. But when you introduce yourself as a Christian magician it is understood by other magicians that you as a person of your word, will keep it. It is understood, that any secrets you learn you will keep.

To not do so, is to behave unethically, and dishonorably. I just do not see how The Lord will bless something based on dishonesty. To God, the ends do not justify the means. The means are just as important. And if dishonorable, then I fail to see how the Lord could bless it.

Do you think the Lord would bless something based on deception? What else would you call it when you profess to be a magician that then ...learns things from others that believe by your profession that you will keep secrets to yourself, then you go and spread these secrets for a " higher" cause?

What do you think this shows unbelievers? That we cannot be trusted to keep our word? In the Bible we learn there is but one thing Highewr than God's name, and that is God's Word. He expects us to behave the same way. If you cannot keep your word to keep these secrets to yourself it may have been better if you had become an electrician.
Message: Posted by: Heres Tony (May 10, 2008 11:02PM)
Better to be an electrician who spreads the Good News than a magician who is worried about secrets.


Tony Brent
http://www.herestony.com
Outta Control Magic Comedy Dinner Show
Voted #1 Dinner Show by CW-18 and WESH-TV Channel 2
"Funniest dinner show in Orlando." - Orlando Weekly
"One of the best one-man shows I've ever seen!" - Bill Lewis, WYTZ Radio
"Let's have a grilled-cheese sandwich" means there's no meat in the house - Tony Brent
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 10, 2008 11:09PM)
I agree 100 %. No one says a magician cannot spread the Gospel. I just fail to see how spreading the Gospel = divulging magic secrets. The problem as I see it, is..people that post on this forum, especially in the Secret Sessions expect you... yes, you personally to keep the things you read here to yourself. I know I do..

But from the above thread it seems that once you attain 50 posts and gain access, whether you keep those secret or not depends on whether or not you feel a Higher calling in divulging these secrets. Do you think this is fair to other people on this forum? That their livelihood can be jeapordized by someone that takes their secrets over which they have labored some since childhood, some most of their lives... because you personally feel that there is a nobler cause? a higher goal?

Would you not agree, that going into " Secret Sessions" when you do not value the trust that implies is a form of deception?
Message: Posted by: Terry Owens (May 11, 2008 05:03AM)
I don't think that Happy Meal tricks like the ones that Tony shares with his children are going to ruin someone's career, except for maybe Mac King...lol

Mac is a perfect example of how he works with children and teaches them simple and basic effects (even on National Television) that you can get from many sources...I know of even a pro who is going to be teaching magic at a University. Nothing wrong with either...

I commend Tony for doing what he's doing...making an atmosphere where children from all sorts of backgrounds DESIRE to come to church, because someone is making their class a good enviroment to learn in.

You don't have to worry about Tony, his career is something that many of us would aspire to, if I wasn't a pastor, I would be soooooo jealous of what Tony does...lol

No one's soul is worth going to hell over a magic trick...that's all he's saying.

BTW Tony: touching story about the little girl...
Message: Posted by: ChrisG (May 11, 2008 04:18PM)
If it is yours you are free to give it away. It is that simple. Just because it can be learned on the internet does not mean it is public domain. If it is not yours and you give it away it is stealing and that does not honor God.
Message: Posted by: Elliott Hodges (May 11, 2008 04:51PM)
I think that people's salvation should come way before the secret of a trick.
If one person is saved from an undrstandment that a gospel illusion caused then that's great.
and far better than keeping secrets.
Message: Posted by: Thomas Kwon (May 11, 2008 05:01PM)
I agree with Hodges.

If revealing a secret of an effect can help others bring closer to God the salvation, I'd gladly do it.


just my two cents
Message: Posted by: Ethan the emazing (May 11, 2008 06:01PM)
[quote]
On 2008-05-11 18:01, Thomas Kwon wrote:
I agree with Hodges.

If revealing a secret of an effect can help others bring closer to God the salvation, I'd gladly do it.


just my two cents
[/quote]

Then why not hand out the curved illusion. You can find them at livingwaters.com
Message: Posted by: Thomas Kwon (May 11, 2008 06:59PM)
[quote]
On 2008-05-11 19:01, Ethan the emazing wrote:
[quote]
On 2008-05-11 18:01, Thomas Kwon wrote:
I agree with Hodges.

If revealing a secret of an effect can help others bring closer to God the salvation, I'd gladly do it.


just my two cents
[/quote]

Then why not hand out the curved illusion. You can find them at livingwaters.com
[/quote]

sorry, I fail to comprehend.. could you please clarify?
Message: Posted by: Terry Owens (May 11, 2008 09:04PM)
Let me add...I've never had to expose an effect in order to lead someone to the Lord...I've seen 1,000's saved over the years...March we had over 180 saved alone.

But I don't consider what Tony does as exposure, it's more of a segment in his class of show and learn, a great tool to get children interested in attending class...I assure you, he's not giving away major secrets...

I don't think anyone is advocating this, and if you have to give the secret of a major effect away in order to lead someone to the Lord, you're not doing your job witnessing...once the Spirit of the Lord gets ahold of someone's heart, our effects are a mute point...they're more interested in coming to Jesus...
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 12, 2008 03:30PM)
I am sorry I Misunderstood Tony's point. But there are magicians out there, Christians that see nothing wrong in giving away any magic secret. if it brings someone to Christ. Unless I am also misunderstanding Hodges and Kwon.

Now if I am wrong I wish to be corrected. But a common sense reading of both those posts basically says. " No secret is worth keeping if it brings someone to Christ."

I can see that for many Magic and Christianity may be incompatible. Since the " Higher Calling" of saving souls means that any thing that can be done to attain it is perfectly fine. Including giving away secrets.

I have a few objections to this. One is.. as has been mentioned, if the secret was not devised by you, it is not yours to give away. If it is something other magicians are using in their acts, or that other magicians are selling, then you are stealing. You are taking money out of their pockets, food off their tables.

In my mind this is unethical, and dishonorable.

Secondly, when you say you are a magician at this website, other magicians share their secrets with a common sense understanding that you respect the secrecy involved. if they believed for 1 second you would be willing to give these secrets away, to win souls to Christ they would not share those secrets. To say you are a magician, but willing to just give away these secrets is a form of deception.

So we have methods which are unethical, dishonorable, and deceptive. Is this what Christ wants from us? To gather souls " By any means necessary"? No matter how deceptive? How are we witnessing about Christ then? Remember we are not only witnessing to lay people about Christ and the standard he places for us, we are also witnessing to our fellow magicians. What would they think if they saw us saying.." oh well if one soul is saved then it's perfectly fine to give away all of magic's secrets... I know they expect me to keep these secrets, but it's for a Higher calling... it's JUST a magic secret. Doesn't compare to saving souls."

Sorry, "the ends justifies the means" is a Satanic philosophy, The means are ever as important as the ends, if not then Christ cannot bless it. He would never bless unethical, deceptive, or dishonorable behavior.
Message: Posted by: Thomas Kwon (May 12, 2008 03:51PM)
[quote]
On 2008-05-12 16:30, clarissa35f wrote:
I am sorry I Misunderstood Tony's point. But there are magicians out there, Christians that see nothing wrong in giving away any magic secret. if it brings someone to Christ. Unless I am also misunderstanding Hodges and Kwon.

Now if I am wrong I wish to be corrected. But a common sense reading of both those posts basically says. " No secret is worth keeping if it brings someone to Christ."

I can see that for many Magic and Christianity may be incompatible. Since the " Higher Calling" of saving souls means that any thing that can be done to attain it is perfectly fine. Including giving away secrets.

I have a few objections to this. One is.. as has been mentioned, if the secret was not devised by you, it is not yours to give away. If it is something other magicians are using in their acts, or that other magicians are selling, then you are stealing. You are taking money out of their pockets, food off their tables.

In my mind this is unethical, and dishonorable.

Secondly, when you say you are a magician at this website, other magicians share their secrets with a common sense understanding that you respect the secrecy involved. if they believed for 1 second you would be willing to give these secrets away, to win souls to Christ they would not share those secrets. To say you are a magician, but willing to just give away these secrets is a form of deception.

So we have methods which are unethical, dishonorable, and deceptive. Is this what Christ wants from us? To gather souls " By any means necessary"? No matter how deceptive? How are we witnessing about Christ then? Remember we are not only witnessing to lay people about Christ and the standard he places for us, we are also witnessing to our fellow magicians. What would they think if they saw us saying.." oh well if one soul is saved then it's perfectly fine to give away all of magic's secrets... I know they expect me to keep these secrets, but it's for a Higher calling... it's JUST a magic secret. Doesn't compare to saving souls."

Sorry, "the ends justifies the means" is a Satanic philosophy, The means are ever as important as the ends, if not then Christ cannot bless it. He would never bless unethical, deceptive, or dishonorable behavior.
[/quote]

After reading your post, I certainly see the point where you come from..

I will have to think more about this to draw a conclusion..
Message: Posted by: Kevin Ridgeway (May 12, 2008 03:57PM)
This is an extreme example...but please think about it for a moment.

There are plenty of people in prison that need to be reached. There are also great ministries out there reaching prisoners. We ourselves have gone into minimum & maximum security prisons to spread the Word.

However... there is a right way to do it and a wrong way. The wrong way would be to go ahead and commit a crime yourself, just so you could go to prison and then try to reach people that way. I can't imagine anyone would suggest that this is a good way of reaching others for Christ. Even if you truly believe that the ends justify the means...I find it hard to believe one would think this is a great idea.

Revealing secrets that don't belong to you...revealing secrets that go against the rules of an organization you belong to are not the right ways to go about spreading the Good Word.


Kevin
Message: Posted by: revlovejoy (May 12, 2008 04:14PM)
I am not sure whether this is even a realistic choice to make. Exactly under what circumstances does revealing a magic trick lead to Christ? I have different theology than some here, I don't believe I, or my preaching, has saved ANYONE. Only the Holy Spirit produces faith. The idea that our PERFORMING a trick is responsible for someone's new found faith in Christ is ludicrous, so I can't even fathom how a SECRET REVEALING would do what the Holy Spirit does. Creative witness is one thing, but let's get over our egos on this one.
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 12, 2008 04:37PM)
Revlovejoy, I do have to agree with you. All we do is share the word. It is the Holy Spirit that draws the individual.

The way that many may feel that exposing may lead to Christ is that there is an audience seeking exposure of magic secrets. And that in appealing to this audience by exposing magic secrets we also create an audience for the Gospel.

They come for the secret, and while learning the secret, time is made to spread the good news to them. A way which now that I think about it, is also deceptive. Whether the secret the individual went there to learn is divulged or not, it is deceptive because they were exposed to Christianity under false pretenses.

I am glad that what I am saying is making some people think about this practice. Since it also carries over into other forms of ministry. It is very easy to think about the ends, and then say " well, the means are questionable, but if only one person comes to Christ, it is worth it." The question then for me is... What is it about Christ that we are witnessing with this behavior?

Many times we get caught up with " spreading the Gospel" that we forget that not only are people listening to the words we say, but also watching the things we do. The unbeliever that does not want to follow The Lord only needs a flimsy excuse to completely ignore our message. If our means do not pass muster, as Christ-like, any words coming out of our mouths will be like wasted breath. Anyway thanks for listening.
Message: Posted by: revlovejoy (May 12, 2008 07:25PM)
There is a local guy who stirred up all sorts of trouble in his congregation and left to found his own church, independent of any oversight from any council, district, anything. He put up a stand at a local carnival with a "free drawing for prizes!" He told me quite proudly that there were no prizes, that this was a way to get people's addresses and phone numbers easily.

Work of the Lord, I tell you.
Message: Posted by: Terry Owens (May 13, 2008 08:04AM)
What a great example Kevin shared...
Message: Posted by: Dan Bernier (May 19, 2008 05:02PM)
[quote]
On 2008-05-12 17:14, revlovejoy wrote:
I am not sure whether this is even a realistic choice to make. Exactly under what circumstances does revealing a magic trick lead to Christ? I have different theology than some here, I don't believe I, or my preaching, has saved ANYONE. Only the Holy Spirit produces faith. The idea that our PERFORMING a trick is responsible for someone's new found faith in Christ is ludicrous, so I can't even fathom how a SECRET REVEALING would do what the Holy Spirit does. Creative witness is one thing, but let's get over our egos on this one.
[/quote]

Very well said. Amen to that!
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (May 20, 2008 04:03AM)
I felt this video was simply a way of promoting the $10 dvd they are selling. Now I've seen the tricks on-line do I need to buy it?

Also what happens in a show at the home of a computer literate kid who turns round and says "that's not magic, I saw it on youtube last night." This happened to me in March at Burger King in Kuwait. I was not impressed at the barracking, but just got on with the show.
Message: Posted by: GlenD (May 22, 2008 11:05AM)
I think imposing rules about what is ok and what is not ok to do, with regard to accomplishing something for God, is generally not a good thing. There is room for self deception and bad judgement but on the other hand if God is truly leading and it goes against any man-made institution then so be it. But the key is "God doing the leading" and that is something that others are not always in a position to now or clearly understand if they are not the ones being led or moved by God in a given direction. I am thinking more philosophically here so don't get me wrong, I do not agree with exposing secrets of magic and I do not think it is necessary to do so. I just think we need to be careful not to lock our Christian box up so tight that there is not room to work outside it or quickly criticize what others are accomplishing just because it is new or we do not agree. Hope I make some amount of sense here.

Peace out,

GlenD
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 22, 2008 11:23PM)
I Just do not believe that God would lead us into Unethical behavior. If we feel led by God to perform Magic, God knows that other magicians expect us to keep their secrets. If we tell these magicians we are magicians they will feel free to confide what they would not share if they knew we might be willing to expose what they know...if " led".

If you tell a magician on this forum that you are also a magician he will share secrets with you, expecting you to keep them secret. To not be willing to do so, is to be deceptive.

I do not think God would lead anyone to be deceptive, or to behave unethically.

I do understand that maybe being a magician may not be compatible with many Christians since they may feel that there is a " Sacred" duty to win souls, and a " man made" duty to keep secrets. And if they feel that sacrificing the latter, to gain the former is ok, then to heck with keeping secrets.

The problem in my mind is... this behavior is unethical, deceptive, and dishonorable. If you cannot keep the secrets of other magicians maybe magic isn't for you.
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (May 22, 2008 11:25PM)
I agree.

But it would have been so much easier to take it in if only the show videos were on youTube and not the reveal videos as well.

Yet it did satisfy a curiosity I've had for a while (as mail from US doesn't get here) and now I can perform the Cross Trick. If this is sucessful in bringing some-one to Christ I'm sure you'll hear about it.
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 22, 2008 11:33PM)
That is one reason I am very careful when on Youtube. The ONLY videos I will watch are performance videos. If I am so tempted to learn how something is performed. I pay for the effect. In My mind there is a difference between watching a tutorial performed by someone that knows how to do an effect, and a straight rip of a DVD. To me posting something directly on Youtube from a DVD is theft pure and simple.

A tutorial I may or may not watch. More often than not I will not watch a tutorial on Youtube simply because I know that I will get a better education from the creator. There are things that the creator, can tell me that some kid on youtube will never know.
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (May 22, 2008 11:46PM)
Yes, I cringe every time some-one mentions the Square Circle Illusion on youTube. It is so bad!!!

I wanted to buy one, yet most searches on google or yahoo direct you to this video. I ended up building my own from Mark Wilson's book.
Message: Posted by: GlenD (May 23, 2008 10:25AM)
Could God ever use anyone in a seemingly deceptive way in order to accomplish His will or further His kingdom? And should a follower question or hesitate if there seems to be a conflict or any hint at dishonesty?
I can give some interesting examples, but I just wanted to throw out the idea first for thought.

GlenD
Message: Posted by: Dan Bernier (May 23, 2008 12:21PM)
Wow, very thought provoking. I want to write a long post to share my opinion on the questions you raise, but I have to go to work right now. However, I would like to throw this out there. Judas, who betrayed Jesus was known by our Lord all along. Jesus Knew about Judas, and that he would betray Him. Judas was deceptive, and can easily be said that there was at least a hint of dishonesty about him. Yet, Judas' actions furthered His kingdom by helping to accomplish God's plan for our redemption.

I would like to share my opinion. Keep in mind, this is my opinion and does not neccesarily hold as an opinion held up by christians as a whole.

Does this make it right for people like us to perform magic while presenting the Gospel? As christians first, we should be thinking, "Does what I do hinder any of my brothers and sisters in their walk/relationship with Jesus Christ? Does it cause the little ones to stumble? Is our message we're teaching biblical? Are we doing it to glorify the name of our Lord, Jesus Christ?"

I try to make my first priority presenting the message, and use the tricks as a tool. Once entertainment is brought into it, it should not be confused with what a Pastor does every Sunday morning, nor should it be used to replace it.

There are still some christians who are still against it, and may end up being against it for all their lifes. They are good and faithful servants of the Lord. I have always respected them. The myth has always been that if a christian doesn't except Gospel magic then it's because they don't understand the difference between the magic condemed in the Bible to the magic we perform. But, that's not always the case. I met one lady who used to be a wiccan. She had become a christian, denouncing her beliefs in wicca and surrending her life to Christ. She had a problem with Gospel magic not because of what the Bible says about it, but because how it reminded her of her days playing around with potions, spells, tarat cards, tea reading, etc. Gospel magic is in a way deceptive, but the motive for it is to entertain and not lead anyone astray with another gospel they had never heard before.

If I could dance, and dance quite well, I would like to think that I would be able to use my dancing to glorify God. But, I use magic tricks. People should know that what you do are tricks, and that you are just fooling with their eyes to make them think that they've seen something that didn't really happen. We don't have to expose how the tricks are done either. Once people know what we are about, and what we are not about, the ones who come to watch will be the ones who are okay with it. (At least most of the time) :)
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (May 23, 2008 03:17PM)
In the last year and a half, at Church and Children's Ministry, we've had about a dozen Gospel presentations using Gospel Magic, at our monthly family services. These have worked as well as other introductions to the message including personal testimonies, dance, powerpoint, videos, music, song and kids bits. We are always careful to use GM as a way in to presenting a Gospel Message and ensure that this gets the focus.

Occassionally, we have Gospel magic shows for the kids or visit other Congregations.

The only deception is that no secrets are not revealed.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Today, though was close. My mail comes in via official channels (so I actually get it.) The kids saw me getting a parcel from http://www.practical-magic.com before Church started... and wouldn't leave me alone. They were desperate to learn the secrets. So I didn't open it properly until I got home.
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 23, 2008 03:42PM)
The Only deception is that No secrets are not revealed. Not sure I understand what you mean here. " No secrets are revealed" I get... " Secrets are not revealed" I get ... the double negative makes it confusing.
Message: Posted by: GlenD (May 23, 2008 04:51PM)
I noticed that double negative thing too but figured he basically meant no to revealing magic secrets. :)
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 23, 2008 05:07PM)
Interesting thread though. Magic is by it's very nature Deceptive. I never thought about it that way. So is being deceptive by performing magic something God can use?

I know I said God cannot use deception. But I think that the deception in magic is for entertainment purposes. Similar to reading a novel. Can God use a Fiction author to better express an idea? Jesus used parables as examples. Was he being deceptive if the story he told did not happen?

I think we need to separate " Deception as Entertainment" or " Deception as Education by metaphor or Simile." from " Deception for other purposes." Are there reasons to be deceptive other than as entertainment or education that God would not frown on?

Someone mentioned Judas. The Bible said about him, and his betraying The Lord that what he did had to come to pass..... but woe unto him through whom it came to pass.

I interpret that to mean that just because God can turn it around and use it to fulfill his will, does not excuse the person doing it. Sin is still Sin, even if God can find a way to use it for his purpose.

Example from History. Adolph Hitler killed 6 or 7 Million Jews, and it is estimated that counting other ethnic groups, homosexuals, insane, elderly, and congenitally ill, retarded people...etc...it may have reached 25 Million.

Because of this, there was a Nation of Israel established. We also now have laws on the books about how to handle " Crimes against Humanity." We are also MORE likely to believe these reports of such abuses than a much more innocent generation as the one from the 40's that refused to believe a Modern leader ...democratically elected, could do what he did.

God could, and did use what happened for his purpose. But...does this mean that Hitler did God's will?

Interested in the replies.
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (May 23, 2008 11:15PM)
Yes,
I made a typo after typing whilst tired, it was my only day off of the week and of course I spent it in Church, practising the new routines and of course getting ICT lessons ready for today (Scratch, Tuxpaint, MS Powerpoint and Audacity) as well as checking on websites I'd written. It's Saturday now and I'm about to start my working week again here.... but on leave in four weeks.

I'll be honest and say I don't try to understand God's will when big crimes are committed .. few are bigger than the Nazis in terms of numbers. This was a big topic at a House Group seven years ago in the UK. When my friend said it the entire group stopped talking for a few minutes to take it in ..... then prayed about it.

But back to the thread, the "Do you want to know a secret?" promises to give away the secret of the Lewis Cone but totally suckers the audience. Surely that deception is part of magic. Now I'm going to have to write a Gospel Message for it or search my Duane Laflin / David Ginn / Andrew Thompson books for one.

Further, a close friend got me to teach her some tricks to show her Year 7 Special Needs Literacy class (Grade 6??) after they had done a reading/writing unit for Magic. I showed her basic moves using a change bag and colouring book -- she really wasn't impressed at how I had deceived her for the past two years. If I ever show her anything else again it will have to be something much more technically difficult eg Silvester Pitch.
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 24, 2008 03:29AM)
[quote]
On 2008-05-24 00:15, themagiciansapprentice wrote:


Further, a close friend got me to teach her some tricks to show her Year 7 Special Needs Literacy class (Grade 6??) after they had done a reading/writing unit for Magic. I showed her basic moves using a change bag and colouring book -- she really wasn't impressed at how I had deceived her for the past two years. If I ever show her anything else again it will have to be something much more technically difficult eg Silvester Pitch.
[/quote]

I think someone once said." We keep secrets. Not so much to protect the secrets from the audience, but to protect the audience from the secrets."

There is truth in that. The average spectator emotionally wants to believe in magic. magic reaches them where their dreams are. Intellectually they KNOW it has to be some trick...but emotionally they want to believe. If they didn't why pay money to see magic?

I think that this average spectator would sincerely not want to know how magic is done. It shatters their dreams. I think we need to be most careful that when we educate about magic that the people with whom we share our secrets really want to know.

When I started learning Card magic, I was in "no man's land" knew enough to have my illusions about magic shattered, and not yet enough to help create illusions for others. This is a tricky time. I wish you well with teaching the magic :)
Message: Posted by: Terry Owens (May 24, 2008 05:46AM)
You pay money to see a show because you like being entertained, not because you believe in magic. I wouldn't give you two cents to go see a bad performer, anyone can do a trick, but not everyone can entertain.

Those coming to a "Gospel Magic Show" are not coming to hear the Gospel, they are coming to be entertained...that's why it can be an effective evangelism tool, they let down their guard and while their guard is down, we confront them with the truth of the Gospel and before they realize it they have heard the Good News of what Christ has done for them...
Message: Posted by: Dan Bernier (May 24, 2008 09:02AM)
Clarissa35f said, "Someone mentioned Judas. The Bible said about him, and his betraying The Lord that what he did had to come to pass..... but woe unto him through whom it came to pass.

I interpret that to mean that just because God can turn it around and use it to fulfill his will, does not excuse the person doing it. Sin is still Sin, even if God can find a way to use it for his purpose."

That was my first point I was making by using Judas.
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (May 24, 2008 07:36PM)
People that go to the Opera go to be entertained. But they still get caught up in the drama, emotionally even though intellectually they know they are seeing fiction.

And yet they cry.

A magician can be very entertaining, witty, his timing can be impeccable. But... if he is not convincing the layperson that what he is seeing is impossible. Then he is not performing magic.

There is a difference between Opera, The Symphony, The Movies, A play, A rock Concert,....and magic.

They are all entertaining, but of all of them magic has the distinction that we perform what to the lay person has to be impossible based on their knowledge and experience. We confront them with the inexplicable, and the impossible. Darwin Ortiz makes this point very clear. Yes performance is a good thing, but magicians have to do more than just perform, and entertain. A comedian can perform and entertain, A singer can perform and entertain, a musician can perform and entertain.

A magician has to perform, entertain....AND Amaze. That last part is the most important part. If everyone knows your secrets, it is a lot harder to amaze them.

Ortiz and Tamariz both say that to perform what is magic. You need to not only make sure that the spectator does not know how it was done, that is just the first and easy part. You need to make sure that the spectator cannot come up with any NON-Magical explanation for what you have done, even if those explanations are not the ones used.

If I take a coin, transfer it to my left hand, and it vanishes, to the lay person it is not magical if my sleeves are rolled down. To them it simply went up my sleeve. Even if the coin did not in fact go anywhere near my sleeve. As far as the spec is concerned that wwas not magic because it could be explained by non-magical means. The fact that the non-magical means were not the ones used is irrelevant.

So we roll up our sleeves. it does not make the actual vanish any harder, and yet suddenly..the spec sees magic. Do you think that the spec would experience magic if he knew how it was really done? By telling the spec how it is done, you rob him of the experience of the impossible, and do not replace that experience with anything. The magician chooses to be robbed of it, so that they may attain the ability to inspire amazement in others. The spec that now knows secrets has nothing like this to compensate him for his loss.

" We keep secrets, not to protect the secrets from our audience, but to protect the audience from our secrets." They don't really want to know.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (May 25, 2008 08:47PM)
Well, I just got around to reading this. Great thoughts and posts.

I think we should never reveal secrets. It really isn't necessary. The patter and Scriptures we share don't need to include giving away secrets. We are entertainers too, and tricks are always better when you don't know the secret. That said, I have revealed secrets myself. I showed someone how to do a bill roll so they could use it to share the Gospel with others. Unethical? I don't think so. It's a simple trick and was more educational than just revealing a secret. I've also shared some things with my immediate family who often help me with practice and brainstorming ideas. I think this falls more into the !@#istant category.

But-

I don't think we should try to put God into a box of what He can and cannot bless. He's not a tame lion. The God we serve will bless whom He will bless and curse whom He will curse. I'm not saying throw all to the wind and lie your face off and reveal every secret to win people to the kingdom. As perviously stated; the Holy Spirit does the real work, we just share the message. But, for some interesting examples look at Rahab, who lied about the location of the spies and was blessed with life. Jacob, the con man whom God continually chose to bless in spite of major character flaws. Righteous Lot!? Anyway, I hope you get my point. While I don't think revealing secrets is necessary, and I think we should avoid it, I don't think we should say that there is no way God would ever bless someone who does that.

I mess up all the time and I'm amazed that God still chooses to bless me!

Be blessed!
Message: Posted by: GlenD (May 26, 2008 12:10PM)
Well said Preston. You got what I was trying to say, I just had not gotten around to any of the examples, as you did in your post. By the way, Preston, sharing how to do an effect with a fellow magician or to someone who will use it as a tool to witness is not exposing in the sense that we are talking about here. At least I do not think so. But arbitrarily showing an entire audience how to do a trick, that is exposure.
I agree with what Clarissa said as well. Although I think the entertainment value is not necessarily trumped by the amazement level of a given performer. In magic, as in other arts, there are many styles and all can be effective. I have seen performers who were so funny or entertaining that the magic almost did not even matter. I am not saying they were poor magicians either just that they engaged the audience differently.

GlenD
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (May 26, 2008 01:14PM)
That's a good point too Glen, about being entertaining. I guess you could be extremely skilled and not be very entertaining. That wouldn't be optimal. Funny thing is, God could still bless that too! I've suffered through some seriously bad music by beginning musicians, but also knew that others, including God, were blessed by it. I'm ashamed to admit how hard it is to sit through some of these performances. My heart needs work in this area; probably why these things keep happening to me! :D


BTW-Thanks for clarifying about what exposure is.
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (May 28, 2008 02:33AM)
Terry,
I notice you've got Gospel Magic as a separate entertainment (the same way as we did the Gospel according to Queen in the UK a decade ago.)What about when people are not paying to be entertained?
Message: Posted by: Terry Owens (May 28, 2008 06:00AM)
To me, I look at Gospel magic as a ministry not as a style of entertainment...
If I accept an invitation to perform for a group for free I should look at that performance just as if they had paid me. It would be sloppy evangelism to do Gospel Magic if the host was not aware that you were going to do that...if you get permission before hand, then that would be alright....or if they knew that's all you do when they booked you...then that is what they get...but you should make sure they are aware that's all you do, if that's the case. Sharing your faith after the show, as God opens the doors to do so, as you walk around and talk to individuals would be appropriate.

I did a program at a theater the other week, paid to entertain...but afterwards I made myself available to the audience after the program was over and I was able to mention that I'm a pastor and the conversation got directed down that path.
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (Jun 3, 2008 10:35PM)
Whilst not totally this Christian topic I was wondering about opinions on this phone call I took last night for a booking

A dad rang me (in Kuwait - he's a Muslim and deeply suspicious of our art) and asked me to do a show on Thursday 5th June for $100; and then sit the children down and explain it's not really magic but tricks by a skilled actor. As I already give two tricks on the commercial paper wands/magician's assistants certificates that each child gets, I agreed to it. But ever since have been wondering...

(The two beginners tricks are the broken matchstick in hanky and appearing wand from hanky. Neither of which are used commercially here.)

What do you think?
Message: Posted by: Terry Owens (Jun 4, 2008 06:05AM)
Nothing wrong with that...that is a common practice. I give out magic kits to all the B'day party kids at my shows...
Message: Posted by: themagiciansapprentice (Jun 4, 2008 08:24AM)
Well the dad still had misgivings. He rang me at 10am to confirm the booking, then at noon toc ancel it. Gutted.
Message: Posted by: clarissa35f (Jun 4, 2008 12:33PM)
Doing Magic for anyone that has very strong religious views, can be a challenge. There ARE people that because of their views will look askance at any kind of magic. It takes time for them to embrace an art form that seems to violate the laws of nature.

I am sorry that they canceled It would have been a good experience for everyone involved. A way for everyone to grow and learn different things.