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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The Good News! » » Bible Book Test (6 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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CThomas
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Hi. I was just curious if there are any mentalism-style book test effects designed specifically for use with a Bible. (Obviously a number of book test effects can be used with any book and hence could be applied to Bibles in that sense.)

Best,

CT
themagiciansapprentice
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Not seen any - and I'm not sure any of my Congregations would look fondly on it

But several tricks from Oz and Wilde forced Bible verses, without using an actual Bible
Have wand will travel! Performing children's magic in the UK for Winter 2014 and Spring 2015.
CThomas
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Interesting, thanks. If you feel like it, any chance you could elaborate on the point about it being frowned on? I'm imagining some ways a book-test move could be incorporated into something that I would view as quite pro-biblical, but I actually don't have anything well formed enough to be specific. (I'm not spoiling for a fight or looking to argue, just curious.) thanks again and best regards.
themagiciansapprentice
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My concerns include -

Most book tests work along the lines of gimmicked pages or easily memorised words. Eg every page ending in two = shoe, three = tree etc. that would be hard to do in a Bible, and would cost you a fortune. Or they use hard to follow set-ups/methods.

You reveal a thought of word. How would that work with a Bible? For What purpose do you need a verse or word identified? You're treating it as just another book NOT the Word of God. That's why congregations would be comfortable, you're belittling the Book by using it as a magic prop. I'd rather use a non-religious book for a book test. They still work in a Church setting.
Have wand will travel! Performing children's magic in the UK for Winter 2014 and Spring 2015.
CThomas
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Thanks very much -- those thoughts are very helpful in better understanding where you're coming from. Your first point strikes me as a pragmatic rather than a theological issue. Of course, there are all kinds of book tests, many of which do not use doctored books. E.g., Osterlind's excellent book test in the Sapphire Collection. So I'm not sure why there would be any sort of categorical issue with the practicability.

Your second point is theological, but it strikes me as curiously presumptive to assume that there could be no orthodox rationale for identifying a Bible verse as part of a presentation. I can imagine all sorts of grounds for doing so. Finally, it hardly seems self-evident that a presentation adapting an effect like this would involve treating the Bible as anything less than the unique word of God. I may well be missing a valid point here because I'm genuinely uncertain what the motivation is for that statement. It seems obvious to me that the status of the biblical text would in no way depend on its occurrence as part of a magic effect of this sort; it would just depend on the context and purpose associated with the routine.

But I do appreciate the opportunity to discuss this stuff. Happy to continue the discussion if you feel like it but by the same token I'm also happy to let it stand as is. The theologically permissible uses of magic effects can obviously be a thorny question given the number of discussion threads here that relate to it.

Best,

CT
Mike Ince
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I was taught the earliest book tests were performed by spiritualists using the Bible for shady purposes.

If you used the Bible to demonstrate a memory stunt, maybe it wouldn't be frowned upon. You'd still know that you were lying about being a memory expert, though. Maybe you could make something work. I wouldn't touch it, myself, but only because I can't think of a presentation I'm comfortable with.
The secret of deception is in making the truth seem ridiculous.
CThomas
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Those are fair points, although I guess any magic effect presumably involves some level of either explicit or implicit deception, so I'm not sure that aspect distinguishes this from other cases. The point about this history of book tests is also interesting and I didn't know that, but I'm not one of those guys who, e.g., has a problem with otherwise innocuous features of life simply because they had pagan or occult origins (e.g., children's celebration of the Halloween holiday.). The funny thing is that I'm probably the last person who should be arguing this point because I've never done a magic act in my life and would have no aptitude for it. My only interest in the subject comes from a family member, one of my kids, who is obsessively interested in the subject these days and whom I'm trying to assist in developing, while adhering to sound Christian doctrine.
Payne
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Quote:
On Oct 24, 2014, Mike Ince wrote:

I was taught the earliest book tests were performed by spiritualists using the Bible for shady purposes.



Most likely it was an offshoot of bibliomancy. A form of divination using books, primarily the Bible or other texts thought to contain "truth"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bibliomancy
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
wwhokie1
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Some people would simply frown upon the idea of using the bible as a prop in a magic trick. They would view it as demeaning. Some people are just sensitive about such things. I'm not saying don't do it, but be careful that the routine justifies its use, and that it would not be found objectionable. Talk to a couple of pastors to get their opinion.
CThomas
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Fair enough, and I'm also sensitive about scandalizing weak brothers with regard to conduct even if I view it as permissible in itself. Thanks again for the help and advice with this stuff. I appreciate the opportunity to ask real magicians about it.

CT
Magic Oli
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You wouldn't want to stop on a famous verse and end up having a ludacris word in there: "for god so loved the tree that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." probably won't make your fellow church goers too happy haha, I know mine wouldn't be.
Ed_Millis
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In the Old Testament Law, the Lord was constantly stating "this is holy and sacred - it is in your hand but it belongs to Me and you must treat it right." I can't see a priest borrowing the shovel used to muck the ashes from the altar so he can turn over his garden at home - it was a sacred item.

In the New Testament, if I recall rightly, we have only one such thing: the holy scriptures. Yes, through the Gospels and Acts, that meant the Law and the Prophets. But I believe there is ample support to show the apostles considered the apostolic epistles as equal to these, both in annointing and sacredness.

All that to say this: to treat a Holy Bible as a common and ordinary prop for a magic trick would likely be seen as profaning the sacred.

Ed
CThomas
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I respect your opinion, Ed. Thank you for expressing it.

CT
Terry Holley
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Quote:
On Oct 21, 2014, CThomas wrote:
Hi. I was just curious if there are any mentalism-style book test effects designed specifically for use with a Bible. (Obviously a number of book test effects can be used with any book and hence could be applied to Bibles in that sense.)

Best,

CT



Al Mann produced the The Houdini Force Bible in 1978. The Al Mann Exclusives (AME) Houdini Bible. Rare, but you might find someone who is willing to part with theirs.
Co-author with illusionist Andre' Kole of "Astrology and Psychic Phenomena."
adrianrbf
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Being a theologian, I would like to liven up this thread with some theological and magical remarks:

theologically, there is the question of the relationship between the bible text and the physical object. The primary thing to treat respectfully is not the physical object, but the biblical message. This message lies in the text, not in the physical object. However, one can venerate the book understood as representing the message.

This, however, depends on the context. The altar bible in the church, where I read the gospel, is a physical object I treat with a lot of respect, I will even incense it at times. I also have a study bible (to be more precise: several study bibles). I would never incense these, and I do not hesitate to write into my study bible. It is a working tool. The altar bible, on the other hand, is a visible symbol of God's revelation.

Thus, I would certainly do magic tricks with my study bible, but not with my altar bible. Or even better, I would by a special bible for magical contexts. Doing magic is a different context and deserves its own bible.

Having said that, a bible book test seems very interesting to me. Apart from its religious significance, the bible is a special book in so far as there are many bible editions, but they share a common reference system. You do not refer to the bible by page number, but by book, chapter and verse. Thus, in a bible book test, spectators could choose a book, a chapter, a verse, and several spectators could look it up in different bible editions. Some would even check it in online bibles. Thus, the spectators will be convinced that the bibles used by the magician are real, ungimmicked books. This may distract them from the fact that their choices of book, chapter and verse were not as free as they seemded, but were forced by the magician.

Or the magician could present several objects, the spectator chooses one, and the magician presents an envelope with a corresponding bible verse. This can be done as a multiple out, very simple, but with a good presentation this may be really astonishing.
jamiedoyle
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I know of 2 Bible-based book tests. One by my friend Nathan Ward: https://www.missionmagic.co.uk/word-for-......elations

There's also a tossed-out Bible style book test: https://www.missionmagic.co.uk/best-sell......the-word
Jamie Doyle

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Reuben Dunn
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I might suggest a Bible Book test using either "1098" type force, or a clear force bag.

No aduleration to scripture, the verse/message can be pre-determined. This might open up an avenue of approach to scripture study for example that could be used.

Just an idea.
Good Thoughts.


Reuben Dunn


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NEKKODDD
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Do you ever run into someone who takes offense to using the Bible to do your book test?
Reuben Dunn
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Quote:
On Feb 18, 2019, jamiedoyle wrote:
I know of 2 Bible-based book tests. One by my friend Nathan Ward: https://www.missionmagic.co.uk/word-for-......elations

There's also a tossed-out Bible style book test: https://www.missionmagic.co.uk/best-sell......the-word



Interesting promos, l’d rather see a real demonstrstion than a promo reel.

Have there been any reviews on these yet?
Good Thoughts.


Reuben Dunn


www.reubendunn.com
EVENTUCATOR
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I have just looked at the "Promo Reel", It looks quite good, AND a Bible is not used with their product. BUT, a 'Bonus' add on is another book, which is claimed to be able to use ANY book, even the Bible. "Easy To Master- Mental Magic"....
The book Mission Magic sells, is just a book about the Bible. In my opinion it looks very good, as with nearly all Mission Magic stuff can be used for 'Evangelism'. In fact I am seriously looking at obtaining a copy myself???
I have included their 'explanation':

https://www.missionmagic.co.uk/word-for-......elations

The Effect
Revelation 1 A Word
The performer shows a copy of a book, “Exploring the Bible” by Revd. Nathan Ward. Explaining that he is so keen to learn to explore the Bible, he has in fact memorised all 230 pages and every single one of the thousands of words in this book!
To demonstrate this amazing feat, a volunteer is invited to flick through and stop anywhere. It really is a free choice! They now have a choice of the left or the right page and, when they’ve chosen, they are asked to focus on the first word. You correctly tell them what it is!
Revelation 2 A Picture
There are numerous photos in the book so next you ask them to flick through again but to stop at any picture. Asking them to focus on the picture in their mind, you are able to describe what they are seeing. As it comes into view, you describe the picture in more and more detail - before correctly guessing which Bible story the picture refers to.
Revelation 3 A Key text
But the fun doesn’t end there! The cleverly-gimmicked book also allows you to have you volunteer stop at any key text – any of the highlighted Bible verses dotted throughout the book! Again, you can instantly reveal which free choice of key text they stopped at!
Bonus revelation A Long word
You can also have them to turn to any page but this time – making it harder – you instruct them to pick a long word; any word longer than seven letters in length. With a few short questions, you are able to quickly and easily deduce what the word is…from the thousands of words in the book!
You can either do all four predictions or pick and choose the one(s) you want.
All of these reveals have been designed to allow you to go into any related Gospel message – the seemingly random words and pictures are actually carefully chosen!
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