Eugene Peterson and The Message
September 12, 2023
David Cloud, Way of Life Literature, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061
The following is a small excerpt from Eugene Peterson’s Mixed Message: A Subversive Bible for a New Age by Warren B. Smith, available in booklet form from Lighthouse Trails
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Golden Circle

Revelation 2:5
KJV - Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.
Do you have any idea how far you’ve fallen? A Lucifer fall! Turn back! Recover your dear early love. No time to waste, for I’m well on my way to removing your light from the golden circle.

The term “golden circle” is not found in the original manuscripts. In fact, the single word “circle” is found only once in the KJV and refers to the circumference of the earth (Isaiah 40:22). An Internet search for “golden circle” does not bring up anything that equates to being biblical. But it does connect the term to, among other things, a Masonic ritual, a secret society, and modern-day witchcraft. “The Order of the Golden Circle” is the women’s auxiliary of the 33 degree Scottish Rite of Freemasonry.25 The “Knights of the Golden Circle” was a radical secret society in mid-nineteenth century America,26 and Wiccans—with their “golden chalk” and “golden energy”—often invoke the term “as above, so below” to seal their “ritual circles”:

When Witches seal a circle casting, sacred space or a spell, they often say the words “As above, so below.”27

The Maxim “As above, so below” (as well as others you’ll study in the future) does tell us that Wicca carries with it into the twenty-first century a heavy coil of very old, very ancient, golden energy.28

Golden chalk is used to draw the heart glyph at the center of a ritual circle. Golden chalk is crafted in a witches’ cauldron.29

God of Green Hope

And just as Peterson added the term “golden circle” in translating Revelation 2:5, he added the word “green” to his translation of Romans 15:13.

Romans 15:13
KJV - Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.
Oh! May the God of green hope fill you up with joy, fill you up with peace, so that your believing lives, filled with the life-giving energy of the Holy Spirit, will brim over with hope!
The word “green” for most people has come to mean recycling, reducing our carbon footprint, and overall good stewardship of the earth. However, in recent times, the word “green” has also come to represent some of the more extreme environmental activism and earth worship identified with Paganism, Witchcraft, and the New Age movement. One online site straightforwardly states that the word “green” is synonymous with the term New Age:

Not everyone who came to be associated with the New Age phenomenon openly embraced the term “New Age” . . . Other terms that were employed synonymously with “New Age” in this milieu included “Green.”30

The “Green Movement” is commonly associated with Gaia and earth worship and has been described as being “at the very heart of the Global Green Agenda.”31 Consistent with New Age teachings, Gaia philosophy is the belief that humanity can save “Mother Earth” by recognizing its “Oneness” with “her.” Gaia is acknowledged to be part of the “Green Agenda” for a united “Green Religion.” The all-encompassing “Green Movement” is presently and actively promoting current environmental policies. Popular with progressive politicians and New Age spiritualists, a “Green New Deal” is already in the works. There is also a “Green Witchcraft,”32 and the “Green Horned God” of Wicca is frequently referred to as the “Green Man.”33

Peterson’s “God of green hope” translation lends itself to all of the above as it conveniently meshes with Paganism, Witchcraft, and the New Age movement. The Bible warns that we cannot just add words like “golden circle” and “green” that are not in the original manuscripts and call it a translation (Proverbs 30:6). It is as wrong as describing God’s creation as “God-craft.”

For more about The Message, see “Eugene Peterson and the Message,”

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