OK, picture this... you and the Lord are walking together in the mall. You stop in front of a nail salon and see a statue of Buddha that has food offerings. You bend down and pick up a piece of fruit, polish it on your shirt and hand it to the Lord. Would you ever do this? I venture to say no.
Act 21:25 says (emphasis added): But as to the Gentiles who have the faith, we sent a letter, giving our decision that they were to keep themselves from offerings made to false gods, and from blood, and from the flesh of animals put to death in ways against the law, and from the evil desires of the body.
That's pretty plain. Yoga was invented by men to worship false gods. No amount of polishing will make it pleasing to the Lord. Just because you call it "Christian" Yoga (which makes me throw up a little in my mouth) makes it acceptable.
A little background on yoga here. The actual postures themselves are an offering of worship to Hindu gods. Understand this, aside from a chant or words spoken, the movements are offerings. Psalm 81:9b says, …nor shall you worship any foreign god
You say "I'm just doing the moves because they are healthful. I'm not worshipping a Hindu god. In fact, I'm praying to God while I do the moves." OK, just say you just ignore my "polishing the fruit" argument for a moment. Is it really possible for a Christian to isolate the physical aspects of yoga as simply a method of exercise, without incorporating the spiritual side? Nope.
- Yoga teaches one to focus on oneself instead of on the one true God. 2 Timothy 3:2 People will be lovers of themselves...rather than lovers of God--having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.
- Yoga focuses on emptying one's mind. This is contrary to the Word of God. We are told to take on the mind of Christ. (I Corinthians 2:16) We are also instructed by God's word to renew our minds (Romans 12:2)
- It encourages its participants to seek the answers to life's difficult questions within their own conscience instead of in the Word of God.
- Yoga originated as a worship of other gods. Yoga at its core is the worship of other gods.
- It leaves one open to deception from the enemy. Be on guard friends. Satan comes in like a thief. (John 10:10) Before you know it, you have been robbed. 1 Timothy 4:1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons,
In an article entitled “An Open Letter to Evangelicals” from the January 1991 issue of Hinduism Today, Swami Sivasiva Palani writes, “A small army of yoga missionaries – hatha, raja, siddha and kundalini – beautifully trained in the last 10 years, is about to set upon the western world. They may not call themselves Hindu, but Hindus know where yoga came from and where it goes.” Where it goes? Where does it go? It opens the door to false gods.
You can't separate its religious practice from its physical. The physical moves are forms of prayers. The very moves are the practice of worship to other gods.
Romans 12:2, And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
How do we renew our minds? By reading the Word of God. John 8:31-32 “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
Still not convinced? Pray, read the Word and ask God to reveal to you the truth about Yoga.
My thanks to Lee Brockinton of Life Church, Katy for his inspiration message on this topic. Many points in this article are taken from that sermon.