The Zodiac Signs are central features in the practice of astrology (not astronomy), which is the study of the movements and positions of celestial bodies that some believe directly influence people’s lives. Many Christians wonder if the Zodiac Signs are compatible with a biblical worldview.
Believing in the Zodiac Signs is sinful according to the Bible. Scripture warns readers not to look to the stars to make decisions or to try to gain knowledge about the future. God alone is sovereign over the universe, the world, and people’s lives, and committing to any other god or belief system is idolatry.
What are the Zodiac Signs? Why are the Zodiac Signs sinful in Christianity? Is it a sin to acknowledge constellations? Is it a sin to believe in horoscopes? What does the Bible say about Zodiac Signs? Keep reading to learn the answers to these questions and others.
Also see Is Jealousy A Sin? to learn more.
What are the Zodiac Signs?
The Zodiac Signs in Western astrology are constellations that appear in the sky over a calendar year; i.e. Earth’s orbit around the sun. Zodiac Signs are historically rooted in Babylonian astrology. Astrology is different than astronomy because, beyond merely studying the stars, the practice believes that celestial bodies determine a person’s personality and reveal their fate.
|Aries||The Ram||March 21 – April 19|
|Taurus||The Bull||April 20 – May 20|
|Gemini||The Twins||May 21 – June 21|
|Cancer||The Crab||June 22 – July 22|
|Leo||The Lion||July 23 – August 22|
|Virgo||The Maiden||August 23 – September 22|
|Libra||The Scales||September 23 – October 22|
|Scorpio||The Scorpion||October 23 – November 22|
|Sagittarius||The Archer||November 23 – December 21|
|Capricorn||The Goat||December 22 – January 19|
|Aquarius||The Water-bearer||January 20 – February 18|
|Pisces||The Fish||February 19 – March 20|
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Why are the Zodiac Signs sinful in Christianity?
The Zodiac Signs are idolatrous because people assign them attributes that only God possesses. Instead of viewing themselves as God’s unique creation that are made in his image (Gen. 1:26-27), they believe the signs that people were born under determine their identity. They also believe that the stars determine a person’s future as opposed to the God of the Bible who is sovereign over all the Earth (Psa 103:19).
Is it a sin to acknowledge constellations? A constellation is a group of stars that form a recognizable pattern that is traditionally named after its apparent form or identified with a mythological figure (Oxford Languages). Seeing patterns in the stars that resemble images isn’t inherently sinful.
The images are in the eye of the beholder. People can recognize the shapes without assigning metaphysical importance to them. Seeing patterns in the stars is similar to imagining that clouds resemble certain images.
Is it a sin to believe in horoscopes? A horoscope is a forecast of a person’s future, typically including a delineation of character and circumstances, based on the relative positions of the stars and planets at the time of that person’s birth (Oxford Languages). Using horoscopes is sinful because they promote false teachings that are contrary to the Bible’s teachings about God, people, and the future.
Why do people read horoscopes? Many people who read horoscopes lack hope. They are desperate for good news in their life, especially regarding relationships, finances, health, and work. The forecasts found in horoscopes are deliberately ambiguous. Astrology in general is misleading, godless, and idolatrous.
Did the magi practice astrology? The Gospels record that the magi became aware of Jesus’ birth because of a star. “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him” (Matt. 2:2). The book of Numbers in the Old Testament prophesied this event.
Numbers 24:17 reads, “I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near: a star shall come out of Jacob, and a scepter shall rise out of Israel; it shall crush the forehead of Moab and break down all the sons of Sheth.” (ESV) Some Bible scholars speculate that the magi may have come from a people group that was aware of this prophecy from the time Israel spent in exile.
God can use stars however he wants because he created them, and they are his. He can use a star to point magi to the birth of Jesus and he can use them to help mariners navigate the sea or to help scientists understand the universe.
Astrology is idolatrous because it replaces God with regard to dispensing truth, wisdom, and direction.
“Esau and Jacob were born of the same father and mother, at the same time, and under the same planets, but their nature was wholly different. You would persuade me that astrology is a true science?” German Reformer Martin Luther
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What does the Bible say about the Zodiac Signs?
The Bible doesn’t specifically mention the 12 Zodiac Signs, but it does strongly warn against people looking to the stars for wisdom, direction, and information.
- Deuteronomy 4:19, “And beware lest you raise your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, you be drawn away and bow down to them and serve them, things that the Lord your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven.”
- Isaiah 47:13-14, “You are wearied with your many counsels; let them stand forth and save you, those who divide the heavens, who gaze at the stars, who at the new moons make known what shall come upon you. Behold, they are like stubble; the fire consumes them; they cannot deliver themselves from the power of the flame. No coal for warming oneself is this, no fire to sit before!”
- Leviticus 19:31, “Do not turn to mediums or necromancers; do not seek them out, and so make yourselves unclean by them: I am the Lord your God.”
- Daniel 4:7, “Then the magicians, the enchanters, the Chaldeans, and the astrologers came in, and I told them the dream, but they could not make known to me its interpretation.”
- Daniel 2:27, “Daniel answered the king and said, “No wise men, enchanters, magicians, or astrologers can show to the king the mystery that the king has asked”
- Jeremiah 10:2, “Thus says the Lord: “Learn not the way of the nations, nor be dismayed at the signs of the heavens because the nations are dismayed at them”
- Leviticus 20:6, “If a person turns to mediums and necromancers, whoring after them, I will set my face against that person and will cut him off from among his people.”
Saint Augustine once said, “The good Christian should be aware of astrologers, and all those who make empty prophecies. The danger already exists that the astrologers have made a covenant with the devil to darken the spirit and to confine man in the bonds of hell.”
Also see What Does the Bible Say About Astrology? to learn more.
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