Issues and Answers

Forbidden Fruit

Three Angels Broadcasting Network

Program transcript

Participants: Shelley Quinn (Host), Steve Wohlberg


Series Code: IAA

Program Code: IAA000420

00:01 I was walking in the mall the other day and I saw a T-shirt
00:05 that said, The forbidden fruit tastes the sweetest. I thought
00:09 what an ungodly message. I didn't recognize that it was
00:15 connected to a craze that has invaded our whole society on
00:20 vampirism. I want to read something to you from Tyrone
00:25 Edwards who was an American theologian. Here's what he said:
00:29 Sinful and forbidden pleasures are like poisoned bread; they
00:34 may satisfy appetite for the moment, but there is death in
00:39 them at the end. Join is today on Issues and Answers as we
00:43 discuss this new craze that has taken over our country.
00:49 Music is being played.
01:14 Hello, I'm Shelley Quinn and we're very glad that you could
01:17 join us today. We're going to be talking about a serious issue
01:21 and one that is invading not only our nation but around the
01:26 world. I know we have many viewers around the world
01:29 watching and you will probably be familiar with this. If you're
01:32 not, you need to be. There are a series of books, actually there
01:37 are four books and they are called the Twilight Series and
01:40 they have been made into movies and they are about vampirism.
01:45 I want you to look at the front of this book. Do you see these
01:48 two hands holding an apple? Inside the book the author
01:55 in the epilogue actually quotes in this book on vampirism
02:02 Genesis 2:17: But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil
02:05 thou shalt not eat of it. From the day that thou eatest
02:09 thereof thou shalt surely die. This is inside a book that is on
02:16 vampirism. It is a dangerous thing and we need to be aware
02:19 of it. Here to talk to us today is our special guest Pastor
02:22 Steve Wohlberg who is the speaker-director of White Horse
02:27 Media. Steve, we are so glad that you have come back.
02:31 Thank you, Shelley, it's good to be back with you. We're good
02:34 friends and it's always a blessing to be on the program
02:37 with you. I just with you had Kristen and
02:39 Seth and Abby with you. Yes I know, I do too. They are
02:43 home in north Idaho safe and sound and I'll be heading that
02:46 way tomorrow, so I'll be back with them shortly.
02:49 Good. You know, Steve, you have written many books, 24, at least
02:54 two dozen books and you recently wrote this little book, a little
02:59 pocket booklet that's called The Darkness of Twilight.
03:03 For our viewers who are not familiar with the Twilight
03:06 series, please explain what this is and we're going to get
03:11 into why it is so dark.
03:13 Sure. That little book is very different from the bigger book
03:15 that you held up a little while ago. The first book, the big
03:18 book, that is the actual first novel in the Twilight Series.
03:22 Twilight is a series of fictitious novels. There are
03:25 four of them and they are making each novel into a movie. They
03:29 were by a Mormon woman names Stephenie Meyer who lives in the
03:32 Phoenix area who has been catapulted to unbelievable
03:36 fame and stardom. She is just extremely wealthy right now.
03:38 We'll talk more about how she got the whole idea for the
03:43 Twilight saga in a dream. She saw this vampire boy and a
03:50 normal girl discussing their love relationship in a meadow.
03:52 She came out of her dream and she began to write these books
03:57 and in a short time she landed a big deal with a big publisher,
04:00 $750,000 publishing contract. She was really an unpublished
04:04 writer and before she knew what was going on, one book became
04:07 two, three and four. They became incredible best sellers and now
04:11 they're making each book into a movie and all around the world
04:14 many different translations of these books, you've got kids,
04:16 teenagers, especially teenage girls, who are just obsessed and
04:21 absorbed with the whole Twilight romance between the vampire boy
04:27 and the teenage girl and there are also werewolves involved and
04:31 vampirism in the story and there is a lot of occultism that is
04:34 woven into Twilight as well. So that is why I wrote my book
04:37 The Darkness of Twilight to try to sound a sensible warning to
04:42 parents and to young people to really take a close look at some
04:46 of the things that are going on behind the scenes and the
04:49 dangers that are involved in the occult in Twilight itself and in
04:53 the whole message of forbidden fruit, which you mentioned,
04:56 which is very much a part of Twilight.
04:58 Why do you believe that someone who is writing on the occult and
05:06 and vampirism and things like this would quote from the Bible?
05:09 Why has she drawn this parallel?
05:12 Yes, that's a great question. As you mentioned as you showed
05:14 the cover of the book, the first Twilight book has a picture of
05:16 two tempting hands holding forbidden fruit and there is a
05:19 Bible verse that comes from Genesis 2:17 right at the
05:22 beginning of the series. I think there are a number of
05:25 reasons for this; why the cover was chosen, why that Bible verse
05:29 is there. I think if you were to ask Stephenie Meyer or her
05:33 publisher why they did this, I think they would probably say,
05:35 at least the first reason, is that it's a literary device to
05:40 illustrate a story and when you get into the story what happens
05:44 is you've got this girl, her name is Isabella Swan. She is
05:48 17, she leaves Phoenix. She goes to Forks, Washington, this small
05:51 little town which is there today which has also been transformed
05:56 into a tourist center because of Twilight. It's amazing. It's not
05:59 too far from where I live now in north Idaho. So you've got
06:03 this girl that goes to Forks. She gets away from her mother
06:06 for certain reasons and she enrolls in Forks high school.
06:09 She meets this boy who she doesn't know at first is really
06:14 a vampire. Other people in the school don't know he's a vampire
06:18 and he's part of a family called the Cullen family. They're "good
06:22 vampires" and the two of them meet, they fall in love and she
06:26 eventually discovers that he is a vampire. Then she has to make
06:30 a choice and the choice is should she be involved with a
06:34 boy that is a vampire. Her mother would certainly give
06:37 thumbs down if she knew, dad would too and her friends. But
06:41 she wrestles with the question. One of the opening scenes in the
06:45 Twilight Saga shows they two of them in a cafeteria and the boy
06:48 looks across the room and he just gives her a very tempting
06:52 smile and he invites her to come on over to meet with her. So she
06:56 comes over and she describes, in the novel, his shockingly
07:00 tempting smile, this wicked glint in his eyes and she
07:04 eventually falls in love with him, finds out he's a vampire,
07:07 and then she has to make a choice: Should she be involved
07:09 in this what you might call a forbidden relationship with this
07:14 boy. She eventually chooses, yes I'll be involved in the
07:19 forbidden relationship, I'll eat the forbidden fruit and her
07:25 desire is to find happiness on the other side. That's really
07:29 what Twilight does. In the last book they get married and they
07:32 have a baby and she becomes a vampire herself, the girl, and
07:37 she finds all these exciting, cool, supernatural powers being
07:40 a vampire. The bottom line is that Bella Swan finds happiness
07:44 through eating forbidden fruit. That's why the picture of the
07:50 apple is on the front, that's why the quote is there. But
07:53 there's another reason and that is that Stephenie Meyer is a
07:56 Mormon, the lady that wrote the series and when you take a close
08:00 look at Mormon theology, Mormons actually believe that Adam and
08:07 Eve's choice to eat the forbidden fruit in the garden
08:09 of Eden was really ultimately a good thing. It was part of God's
08:14 plan that they would learn and grow and develop spiritually
08:19 through conflict with evil and having to make choices between
08:24 good and evil throughout the history of fallen man. So not
08:29 only did Stephenie Meyer get the whole idea for Twilight in a
08:32 dream, not only do the publisher and Stephanie think that it's
08:37 a good literary device to enhance a story to show the
08:40 between a girl choosing to eat the forbidden relationship that
08:44 she enters into, but Stephenie Meyer's theology is woven in
08:48 there as well, that it's really a good thing. She is
08:52 communicating a message that happiness can be found through
08:58 a forbidden relationship through eating through forbidden fruit
09:01 which is exactly the devil's line in the Garden of Eden. When
09:07 he tempted Eve to eat that fruit he promised her godhood,
09:12 immortality, she would never die, she would be like God and
09:16 Eve took the fruit and she ate it.
09:19 You know, when I think of the tree of good and evil, I just
09:23 think about the whole picture of the Garden of Eden. Here was
09:27 absolute perfection and the only requirement God asked of
09:31 them as a test of their loyalty, if you will, but also to protect
09:35 them was not to eat from this tree of the knowledge of good
09:39 and evil. That fruit, probably wasn't an apple, but whatever
09:43 fruit it was, the same fruit, it wasn't like there were black
09:48 fruit, the evil fruit, and the white fruit that were the good
09:50 fruit. God was simply saying, I believe, that he didn't want us
09:55 to try to figure out what was good for us and/or what was
09:59 bad for us. Yet the devil always tries to blend. He takes his
10:06 evil and he puts just enough good in it, it's like a bitter
10:10 drink that somebody's put some sweetener in, if you will, to
10:14 try to make it tempting to us. The way he did that with Eve
10:19 was to say, Did God surely say this? But if you'll take of this
10:25 you're going to be just like him and isn't that what's happening
10:29 here. Kids are beginning to emulate. We see the rise of
10:36 vampirism and kids are beginning to emulate a lot of what they
10:40 see on this because they are looking for power. How dangerous
10:43 do you think this whole message of blending good and evil is?
10:46 I think it's very dangerous, Shelley. It's very subtle and
10:50 when it comes to Twilight, it's very complicated and multi-
10:54 faceted and I realize as you and I have talked about before that
10:58 there are so many people that love Twilight and I'm not on a
11:00 crusade to attack them or to drive a stake through their
11:03 hearts. You know, I'm not a vampire killer; but I recognize
11:07 with spiritual discernment I believe God has given me that
11:11 there are hidden dangers that are going on behind the scenes
11:14 in the whole Twilight phenomena, the saga, the series, the movies
11:18 and other vampire programs. It's not the only one. Now we've
11:21 talked before about Harry Potter. The insidious thing
11:24 about Harry Potter is that in Harry Potter the good guy is the
11:29 wizard and that's Harry and he fights the bad guy who is Lord
11:32 Voldemort, an evil wizard. So you've got a good wizard against
11:35 the bad wizard and it makes good wizardry look attractive.
11:39 That's why a lot of kids have, or one reason, it's a
11:42 contributing reason why young people have become interested
11:46 in Wicca is because Wicca claims to offer them white magic just
11:50 like Harry Potter is the good wizard. Now in Twilight the
11:56 characters have changed and it's vampirism. I want to talk
11:59 a little bit about the character of Edward. I've got a magazine
12:04 here. We don't have to quote it or go into a lot of detail about
12:08 it, but I've shown this to you. This is just one of many, many
12:11 teenage magazines. There is the actor who plays Edward Cullen
12:18 the vampire boy in Twilight. His name is Robert Pattinson and
12:22 the girl is Kristen Stewart and she plays Bella Swan. The
12:27 character of Edward is very interesting. Stephenie Meyer
12:35 has painted him in spite of, as I mentioned, his shockingly
12:39 tempting smile and the wicked glint in his eyes, as really a
12:42 good guy in the series. He's a good vampire. He didn't want to
12:46 be a vampire in the first place. A hundred years before the time
12:49 when Bella meets him in the Saga he was dying of the Spanish
12:54 influenza and he was about to die and he was bitten by
12:59 another vampire who made him into a vampire in an effort to
13:03 save his life. So he didn't want to be a vampire and now he
13:07 he wishes he wasn't a vampire. He falls in love with Bella and
13:10 he knows he's not good for her and resists, or tries to resist,
13:14 the temptation to be involved with her but finally he just
13:16 can't resist it so in the cafeteria he says come over
13:18 here, let's talk and let's start on this track. She discovers
13:23 he's a vampire but he portrays a good vampire; he's a good guy,
13:27 he uses his vampire abilities, his supernatural powers to
13:30 protect her from the evil vampires that also are in the
13:33 the Twilight series. His character is one that creates
13:37 sympathy for the vampire and as I mentioned he's very cool.
13:42 The actor, Robert Pattinson, you know, he's just playing a role.
13:46 But he's a handsome guy and especially teenage girls are
13:49 looking at him on the screen, they have fallen in love with
13:52 him, they've fallen in love with her. They just like them and
13:55 they're just absorbed in the series. Edward portrays the good
14:01 guy who is a vampire, doesn't want to be a vampire, has a
14:04 conscience, acts unselfishly, wants to do what's best for her.
14:08 Eventually the two get married. They don't have any sex until
14:11 after marriage. So there are some moral principles that are
14:14 in there. He does act in a noble way in many ways and it creates
14:19 sympathy for the good vampire. The reality is that just like
14:24 with Harry Potter portraying the good wizard and now you portray
14:26 the good vampire, it is creating interest in vampirism among
14:32 teens. As I mentioned, the whole message of forbidden fruit is
14:37 woven into the series that having this relationship, this
14:41 forbidden relationship, can result in happiness. Satan's
14:45 line to young and old is that if you do things that you
14:50 shouldn't be doing you can find happiness anyway. That is the
14:53 message that is in Twilight, it's the message that the Bible
14:56 tells us is wrong, is an evil message, we should stay away
15:00 from the forbidden entirely and yet Twilight makes it look good.
15:05 Like you said, it's a sugar- coated package. Also as I
15:09 mentioned the occultism; we talked about that side. Edward
15:12 and his whole family, the Cullen family, they are all "vegetarian
15:15 vampires," they're good vampires. They don't drink human
15:17 blood, only animal blood, but they are part of what's called
15:20 the Olympic coven. There are many covens that are referred to
15:23 in Twilight among good vampires and bad vampires. Edward has
15:27 psychic abilities; he reads minds. There is what is called
15:30 shape shifting involved throughout Twilight where
15:33 certain people have the ability to, especially Jacob Black and
15:36 his family members, have the ability to be come wolves. So
15:40 you've got shape shifting which is also called lycanthropy
15:43 which is an occult practice where people try to become
15:47 animals and there's just all kinds of subtle occultism woven
15:53 throughout Twilight and it makes the whole thing look attractive
15:58 and cool and appealing to young people and people can very
16:01 easily, as I have mentioned before, go from a novel to a
16:04 movie to a web site to a chat room and start checking out the
16:09 real thing and vampirism is on the rise, occultism is on the
16:13 rise and Twilight is a very pleasant gateway into the dark
16:17 world of the occult. That's one of the reason's why it's very
16:20 dangerous. You know, we talked about that
16:22 when you were here previously and we talked about many of the
16:26 dangers. The thing that impressed me because I looked
16:30 at a note, I mean I looked some things up, is that the actor,
16:36 the young actor who plays Edward finds plainness in
16:45 the whole message of the books; something, there's a power he
16:48 feels. Explain that. He is actually quoted in that
16:51 magazine as saying that when he first auditioned for the part
16:56 and he got the job that he didn't really know anything
16:59 about Twilight but know that he's absorbed in the series he's
17:02 said that "The books have a power." They definitely have a
17:06 power and he's recognized that and it has even affecting his
17:09 life; it's influencing him and he knows it. There is a
17:14 spiritual, I believe a supernatural power behind
17:17 Twilight. As I mentioned, the entire saga originated not from
17:21 creative thought but it originated in a dream that was
17:25 given to Stephenie Meyer where she saw this glittering boy who
17:29 was a vampire and this normal teenage girl in a meadow having
17:32 an intense conversation and he was a vampire, she wasn't, they
17:37 were in love and what are they going to do about their
17:39 relationship. When she woke up from her dream it was
17:42 June 2, 2003, she felt compelled to start writing this story out.
17:47 She says on her own website that the voices of these two
17:52 characters were voices in her head that would not shut up.
17:57 That's what she says. And they compelled her to move forward
18:02 and to write this series of books. Then after she landed the
18:06 big publishing contract and Saga began to come together, later on
18:10 Stephenie Meyer had a second dream. In the second dream she
18:13 saw the vampire boy again and he came to her, but this time
18:16 he was quite vicious and displeased with her. Evidently
18:21 she had sanitized somewhat the script that the voice from
18:26 the other side designed for her to have and in the Twilight
18:30 series some of her morality is in there where she makes the
18:34 Cullen family all "vegetarian vampires" who don't drink human
18:39 blood, only animal blood. In this second dream this vampire
18:43 boy appeared to Stephenie Meyer just like a ghost, like a
18:46 spirit and he rebuked her and he told her, I do drink human blood
18:50 You've got it wrong and he wasn't happy at all. Stephenie
18:54 Meyer herself publicly stated that she was terrified as a
18:59 result of that second dream.
19:00 Yet she didn't realize it was a spirit talking to her?
19:03 I don't think so, or at least not consciously. You know Eve
19:07 didn't realize what she was doing when she ate the fruit
19:09 and the voice was very pleasant. It was working through a
19:12 beautiful serpent and she was allured into this and she took
19:16 the fruit. Stephenie Meyer has now been catapulted to
19:18 unbelievable fame and she has just got all this money just
19:24 like Mrs. Rolling who wrote the Harry Potter series. There is a
19:27 parallel between these series. Mrs. Rolling received the whole
19:31 idea for Harry Potter while she was on a train in 1990 outside
19:34 of London. She didn't have a dream, but it was like a
19:37 revelation that just popped into her mind. She said the character
19:40 of Harry Potter was fully formed. He walked right into my
19:44 head and she got a story line from this revelation and then
19:48 she began to write and now you know the rest is history.
19:51 Stephenie Meyer was not an accomplished writer. She got a
19:54 story line in a dream, she began to write and now they're
19:58 both famous and both story lines are laden with occultism and
20:04 both story lines, I believe, are designed by their author to
20:09 make the occult look attractive and to lure young people into
20:13 things that are very dangerous.
20:14 Okay, so let's talk about this second dream and the idea of
20:18 that blood is at the heart of the battle between Jesus and
20:25 Satan. This is where the danger is, is it not?
20:29 Well this is part of the danger. I mean, Satan would be happy
20:31 just to create mesmerizing entertainment so that people
20:35 have no interest in their Bibles and he is bombarding this
20:39 generation with one entertaining movie and TV program after
20:43 another so kids and adults are getting so absorbed in what
20:48 Hollywood has to offer that they have no time and no interest
20:51 in this book. But beyond that, Satan knows that the heart of
20:58 the Bible is the blood of Jesus Christ and that through the
21:01 blood of Jesus Christ is where the real power is. We can have
21:05 forgiveness of sins, we can have a clean conscience and we can
21:11 actually overcome him. Let me show you a verse in Revelation
21:15 chapter 12 verse 11. Revelation 12:11 says, the Bible
21:24 says concerning God's people that they overcome him, which is
21:28 the devil, by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their
21:33 testimony and they loved not their lives to the death.
21:36 This verse shows that God's people overcome Satan through
21:41 blood, through the blood of Jesus. I am totally convinced
21:43 that Satan knows that, he hates the blood of Jesus and he wants
21:47 to direct people to fascinating forms of entertainment to get
21:51 them especially absorbed in a focus on the wrong blood.
21:56 That's part of the lure of vampirism is the mystique of
22:00 the whole thing of blood. As I mentioned when we talked about
22:03 this before, it's very easy to go from a fascination with blood
22:08 to trying blood to becoming addicted to blood and there are
22:13 actual cases where people have murdered for blood. You know,
22:17 evil doesn't just...See now explain what you are saying
22:20 not just people but people who claim to be vampires who have
22:23 actually become addicted to blood.
22:25 There are people like Daniel Ruda and Tracy Wiggington and
22:29 there's a whole host of people who are vampire killers:
22:31 Rod Farrel. These people have murdered other people to drink
22:36 their blood. I don't spend a lot of time on this because
22:39 I just want to draw people's attention to where this thing
22:41 eventually leads to point people to Jesus Christ. But we are in a
22:46 battle and the heart of this battle is blood and I'm fully
22:50 convinced that Satan gave Stephenie Meyer that dream to
22:52 create a mesmerizing form of entertainment to get kids
22:57 interested. He's couched it in a love story, but inside of it
23:02 is occultism and ultimately he wants to suck people into these
23:07 kinds of things and vampirism has been given a facelift.
23:10 Edward is the good vampire just like Harry Potter was the good
23:13 wizard and kids are checking out vampirism. As we talked about
23:17 before, not only are teenagers changing their makeup
23:20 preferences and going into lighter, more pale forms of
23:24 makeup, shades of makeup, because they want to be like
23:26 Edward and Bella, but many of them are checking out the occult
23:31 and it's very, very dangerous, Shelley. Like I said, Satan
23:33 knows what he doing. He's working behind the scenes, he's
23:37 smart and... Well, you know, this counterfeit
23:40 focus on this vampirism seems to be a counterfeit focus on the
23:45 blood and I was going to share this scripture. You are very
23:48 familiar with this that 1 John 1:7 said, But if we walk
23:51 in the light as he is in the light we will have fellowship
23:55 with one another and the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from
23:59 all sin. I don't know about you, but in my mind I look around
24:06 and see that so many of the prophecies are being fulfilled.
24:09 I believe the devil knows his time is short, I believe he's
24:12 trying to do anything he can to either keep us too busy to focus
24:16 on God or to Roger Morneau once said, he was a
24:21 Christian author who had actually been a Satanist and
24:25 very high up in the church of Satan, and he said that he
24:30 overheard a conversation with Satan and Satan was saying
24:34 forget the older ones, just focus on the youth. If you can
24:37 destroy the youth you can destroy the church. We look
24:42 right now at this Twilight series and until I knew I was
24:48 going to be talking to you, I wasn't that familiar with it.
24:51 But we look at it and we think, Oh well, this is fiction. We're
24:55 not paying attention. My kids aren't listening. But kids are
24:59 every where and they are being affected like you mentioned that
25:03 T- shirt that says, Forbidden fruit tastes the best. Now let
25:04 me mention something else about forbidden fruit.
25:06 In the Twilight Series, as Bella
25:09 wrestles with the idea of dating a vampire, falling in love with
25:13 him and being with him, Edward, because of his conscience thinks
25:19 I'm not good for you and you could lose your soul over being
25:23 in a relationship with me. In the first Twilight book, he even
25:26 says, I'm on my way to hell and he knows it and he's sorry
25:30 for it, he doesn't want to be but he's just stuck in this
25:33 vampire existence and he says to Bella, I'm not good for you, and
25:36 eventually Bella realizes that he's concerned about her soul.
25:40 So in the second book, especially in the second movie,
25:43 New Moon, Bella states to Edward she says, I don't care about my
25:49 soul. I want to be with you. I don't care about my soul. You
25:53 can have it, you can have it, you've already got it anyway.
25:55 So not only is Twilight permeated with a subtle form
26:00 of occultism but it also sends a strong message through kids
26:03 identifying with Bella that their souls are not that
26:08 important and that getting involved in the forbidden fruit
26:11 is the path to happiness and that is the message that comes
26:15 right out of Twilight. I got an e- mail from a girl in her 20's
26:18 who had read the Twilight series and she agreed totally with me.
26:22 She said, This is one of the most dangerous parts of Twilight
26:25 beyond the occult is the message that your soul doesn't really
26:29 matter and Bella is willing to sacrifice it in order to be with
26:33 Edward. That's dangerous. When people say, Hey, it's just
26:37 fiction, that it's not affecting them, that's not true. You know
26:40 Satan knows that he can affect kids through fiction, especially
26:44 through these two characters, Bella and Edward, that kids have
26:47 fallen in love with and they're getting a message, it's
26:50 dangerous and it's time for us to give them God's message and
26:54 to warn them about the subtle devices of the devil trying to
26:57 trick their souls and lead them to sacrifice everything and end
27:02 up in the lake of fire and that's my concern. That's why I
27:05 wrote this little book and we have a passion about it to point
27:08 people away from the darkness and point them to Jesus Christ.
27:11 Steve, why don't you tell our viewers how they can get
27:14 The Darkness of Twilight? What is your website?
27:18 Sure we have a simple website. It's We have
27:22 have a toll free number 800-78-Bible.
27:24 The book is under a dollar and it's just great to share with
27:27 teenagers and with people that you know that are involved with
27:30 Twilight. It's very eye-opening and it points them to
27:33 Jesus Christ. In this last day and age, what
27:37 we need to be focusing on is the blood of the Passover lamb,
27:42 the blood that atones for us. We need to keep our focus on
27:45 Jesus Christ. If you know any young person who is being sucked
27:53 up into this craze, I pray that you will share this information
27:58 with them so that they will not be taken down the wrong
28:01 path. Steve thank you so much for being with us and concluding
28:06 this two-part series on this. We appreciate you being here.
28:11 May God richly bless you. Bye, Bye.


Revised 2014-12-17