My Spiritually Dark Relatives

I am a Christian who follows the Torah and I am a married mother of 7 school-aged children. My question to you is about my primary focus in life – family.

My father’s side of the family has spiritually dark people. I have an aunt who is a psychic medium, who has passed along “prophecies” about some of my children dying. My husband’s ex, who he shares a son with, is someone who dabbles with the occult and reaches out to deceased family members.

These things are spiritually dark to me. However, what is the obligation I have to them as family? Do I have a Biblical right (or obligation) to keep them out of our lives completely? Thank you for all of your help.

May G-D continue to bless you and your ministry.


Dear Emme,

What a difficult position you are in. As a preface to our words, we view the need to treat someone posing a spiritual threat to you with the same seriousness as you would treat someone posing a physical threat. Having said that, we do not see the two situations of your family and your husband’s ex as similar.

If your husband shares custody with his ex, you have a situation that is out of your control. There is no way to keep this woman out of your life completely; she is the mother of your husband’s son. You need to straddle a fine line between being welcoming to your stepson and protecting your children. You can provide an example of a Biblical home, but you cannot speak against his mother to a child. You need to be vigilant to make sure that he doesn’t, either intentionally or inadvertently, expose your children to wrong things. However, your obligation as a wife and stepmother is to your husband’s child, rather than to welcome his mother into your life.

Your aunt is in a different category. If possible, you can be both very blunt and loving, letting her know that you are not open to hearing her “prophecies.” If she persists in bringing them into conversation, then minimizing contact would be wise. Once again, your priority is sheltering your children. That responsibility overrides any responsibility to keeping an open relationship with your aunt.

We note that you do not tell us much about your husband. In all the problems you raise, the solution will be far easier to implement if you and your husband present a united front. This is best for your marriage and for your family. For that reason, it would be a good first step to sit down with your husband and discuss a unified way of responding towards his ex and towards your aunt. Once this important family function has been achieved, it would be best if he talks to his ex, and you talk to your aunt.

The Bible does not warn us against doing things that are impossible to do. For example, it doesn’t tell us not to flap our arms and fly around the neighborhood. By forbidding us from contacting the dead or using witchcraft, it is letting us know that these things are real. You are wise to be concerned.

Wishing you spiritual light,

Rabbi Daniel and Susan Lapin

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