This question was addressed by the Church before. We are quoting, as set forth below, from a letter published by the Worldwide Church of God, which explains the long-standing position of the Church on the matter:
“Water divining, also known as ‘water witching’ and ‘water dowsing,’ is practiced all over the world. It is the craft of seeking underground water by means of a divining rod, commonly a forked stick which is held by the twigs, one in each hand with the stock pointing outward or upward. As the diviner walks over the ground, the stick will suddenly twist in his hands and point downward, supposedly indicating the presence of underground water. At times there is water; at other times there is none.
“Hosea prophesied that divining rods would be used in our time. He wrote, ‘My people ask counsel at their stock and their staff declareth unto them (Hos. 4:12). According to the ‘Critical and Experimental Commentary,’ by Jamieson, Faussett, and Brown, ‘staff’ here refers to a divining rod.
“What is the origin of this practice? How did it come to be used so extensively in our western, so-called Christian nations? In his book titled ‘Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science,’ Martin Gardner admits:
“‘The employment of various shaped rods for divination purposes goes all the way back to the ancient Greeks and Egyptians …. In the Middle Ages, it was associated with the power of Satan, although many churchmen made use of divination rods. The forked twig, for finding minerals, apparently did not appear until the fifteenth century when it was used by German prospectors in the Harz Mining region. When German miners were imported to England in the century following, they brought the practice with them. It was in England that the use of the twig was transferred from minerals to the search for water.’
“God condemns such practices. He says, ‘Thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you anyone … that useth divination’ (Deut. 18:9-10)…”
This quote explains quite convincingly why Christians should not involve themselves with water divining, or with any practice which is associated with the powers of the fallen spirit world that has departed from God. In the Middle Ages, it was clearly understood by many that the “art” of water divining was to be attributed “to the hand of the Devil,” as one source put it. When researching the subject, this conclusion is inescapable. Notice this quote from an article, titled, “Dry Spell Awakens Water Witches from the Graves,” dated November 13, 2003, as published by IslamOnline.net (emphasis added):
“Nanay Selda, the water witch, has done it again. How? It is no secret. Water witching has existed for hundreds of years all over the world. Nanay Selda is no necromancer, as water witches, water diviners or dowsers are ordinary people GIFTED with the art of finding water… Nanay Selda says SHE IS GUIDED BY A ‘FORCE’ WHEN SHE EXTENDS HER ARMS USING THE GUAVA BRANCHES… After she’s used the branches, one can see red welts on her palm, evidence of struggle WITH A FORCE, which shows UNUSUAL STRENGTH in such small frail arms. When I asked how she did it, she snapped like a bitch warning her pups, ‘I don’t know so don’t ask me.’ One water expert… had this to say…’ There is no empirical basis for water divining, yet it works. Water witches have not studied hydrogeology academically, but they know it intuitively.'”
The fact that water divining sometimes “works,” does not justify us to reach the conclusion that Christians can use this method. We read, for example, in Deuteronomy 13:1-4:
“If there arises among you a prophet or a dreamer of dreams and he gives you a SIGN or a WONDER, and the sign or the wonder COMES TO PASS, of which he spoke to you, saying, ‘Let us go after other gods’ — which you have not known — ‘and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the LORD your God is TESTING you to know whether you love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall walk after the LORD your God and fear Him, and keep His commandments and obey His voice; you shall serve Him and hold fast to Him.”
The world of demons, and their “religion” and practice
of sorcery and witchcraft, including water divining, does sometimes
bring “results.” But these practices are in opposition
to God and His way of life — and must therefore be rejected and
avoided by true Christians. In order to learn more about the reality
of God’s spirit realm and the “dark side,” please read
our free booklet, “Angels,
Demons and the Spirit World.”
Rather than using practices such as “water divining,” we are told, in Proverbs 3:6: “In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” When we are in need of water and pray to God for revelation of the right location, God will show us, if we believe in His wisdom and might. There is no need to use “water divining” or any other occult practices to discover what God has preserved for His people.