Finding the Way Back to Mayberry

Episode # 142, “Three Wishes For Opie”

 Introduction:  At a police auction, Barney buys a magic lamp and fortune-telling cards.  While Barney experiments with his purchases, Opie is granted three wishes.  His (and Barney’s) wishes all seem to come true.  Andy isn’t convinced by these predictions and continues to guide his impressionable young son with honest, straightforward talk.

Lesson Points:
God wants us to seek His guidance – 2 Ki.1:2-3, Dt. 18:9-14, Eph. 2:10, Jn. 14:6, 1 Jn. 1:5-10, Mt. 5:17-20
Not psychic phenomena and supernatural powers - 1 John 4:1-6, Colossians 2:4-10, Psalm 119:37
        Some examples of psychic dangers - 1 Samuel 28:3-20, Isaiah 44:24-25, Malachi 3:5

 Fortune Telling – Micah 3:7, Isaiah 8:19-21
        Predicting the future – Acts 16:16-18
        Granting wishes vs. spiritual wisdom – Proverbs 8:10-11, 1 Co. 2:7-8, James 1:5, Psalm 111:10

Spiritualism – Exodus 22:18, Leviticus 20:27, Numbers 33:50-52, Deuteronomy 12:30-32 and 17:2-7
        Sorcerers, mediums, and spiritists – Leviticus 19:26b and 31, Isaiah 8:19 and 22
        Séances and channeling spirits, instead of seeking the Holy Spirit –Leviticus 20:6-7, Luke 4:31-37

Astrology  – Deuteronomy 4:19, Isaiah 47:13-15
        Signs in the sky – Jeremiah 10:1-5, Deuteronomy 17:3
        Worshiping the planets rather than the one who made them – Galatians 4:8-11

Occult Magic – Galatians 5:19-21, 1 Peter 1:13-16, 1 Samuel 15:23, Isaiah 47:11-12
        Witchcraft and magic spells - Acts 8:9-24, Acts 13:6-12, Acts 19:11-20
        Dangerous fellowship with the great deceiver, the devil – Deuteronomy 13:1-18 and 18:9-14

1) Why did Barney buy the magic lamp and fortune-telling cards?  Did he fully believe in it then?  Was he afraid of it?  Why did he dabble with it?  What was Goober’s initial reaction to Barney’s purchase?  How did he get involved later?  How about Floyd and Opie?  Why weren’t Andy and Helen victims as well?  Why do you believe all four wishes came true?  How do you feel about events that cannot be fully explained?  Wouldn’t prayers to God serve us better than mere wishes or relying on psychic phenomena?

2) With the jackknife wish, what events led to the desired outcome?  How did Opie get a “B” in arithmetic?  As far as Barney’s wish for a fingerprint set, didn’t the fact he put in the request six months ago have something to do with it?  Barney thought he knew what Opie’s third wish was so he believed Andy and Helen would marry.  How did Andy and Helen react when they heard the news?  How did Barney defend his rumor about the marriage announcement?  How did Andy explain to Opie about wishes and weddings?

3) Andy made Barney throw away the fortune-telling box when it was clear he and Helen weren’t getting married anytime soon.  How did Barney feel about all this?  What if they were to marry years later?  When Opie’s true third wish was revealed, why was Helen surprised?  What did Barney do then?  What can you say about dabbling with similar supernatural phenomena?  As Christians, do we possess the power of God, or does it possess us?   How do occultists and Christians disagree on the source and possession of power? 

Final Thought (A Discussion with Andy and Barney):
Now, stay out of this area of our lives!    Barney: I’m out! It’s out of my hands! It’s out of your hands! None of us has any control over it!    A: Well, who has?!    B: Count Istvan Telecky!    A: Who’s that?!    B: He’s the one that decided that you and Helen are going to be married!    A: Well, where is he?!  I’d like to talk to him!    B: HeeHee, Andy, you can’t talk to Count Istvan Telecky!    A: Why not?!    B: Because he lived in the Eighteenth Century!    A: Barney, I know that we’ve not always understood one another, but so far as I can recall, this is the FIRST time we’ve ever been on two different planets!