When they say, is a reference to human opinion.
In this universe, there are only two opinions. First there is Gods opinion, which is truth, and then there is mans opinion, which is not truth.
And in this world, people will come up with more opinions than you can shake a stick at. The ideas, the plans, the motives, the intentions, and so on, are more attempts to duplicate or to better, that which God has already prepared and gives to us freely, but most folks reject.
Necromancers, wizards, familiar spirits, idolatry, and such are all false concepts and false attempts to see into the future, or to communicate with the life beyond this one. They are a dead action, attempting to communicate with a dead or non-existent target.
God is a living God, and we are living people. Why then should a living person seek counsel with that which does not exist or that which is dead?
The seeking of knowledge or information from the dead through false mechanisms, is like speaking or listening to those who peep or mutter. Peeping and muttering, ‘tsaphaph,’ ‘hagah,’ means to chirp like a bird, to murmur, to imagine, to talk unsteadily, to babble senselessly. Therefore all attempts and actions in this type of activity are a senseless and useless activity, that will never produce or accomplish anything.
Looking back at the previous verse, regarding the mention of Zion, and now compared with this verse which mentions the seeking of knowledge through false means. Now we have the contrast of absolute truth versus absolute absurdity.
And yet people reject truth with their eyes wide open, and pursue the ridiculous with those same wide open eyes.
The question was asked, why is Jerusalem called the city of peace, when it has virtually never known peace, but is a historical city of violence and conflict?
And that answer is that Jerusalem was formerly known as Salem and was the domain of Melchizedek, the king-priest that brought bread and wine to Abraham. He is the representation of the king of righteousness and a symbol of the Lord Jesus Christ who as the most high God, was worshipped in Salem.
The source of truth is symbolized by the mountain called Zion, where God lives. That is, He lives in truth. And truth is vast. Jerusalem is the symbolism for living a life within that body of truth to the maximum, or to the point of spiritual maturity, thus resulting in inner peace. Zion is the mountain that is inside of the city boundaries of Jerusalem. Thus truth inside that produces spiritual completeness.
Living outside of the city represents life in truth but limited as with believers who lack extensive knowledge in truth. And living outside of the country, makes one a foreigner, or stranger, which represent the unbelievers of the world who reject God, salvation, and truth.
The nation of Israel represents Gods people, which are all people symbolically who have believed in the Savior, who we know as Jesus Christ.
So, you can live within the nation when you are saved, you are thus a member of the nation of God. The nation and family of God are two references of the same people. To live within the city represents those who pursue doctrine and grow up to spiritual maturity, thus attaining inner peace and strength through doctrine.
These symbols are teaching aids or mechanisms of instruction to teach spiritual principles.
But this is the devils world and his fight is against all that represents truth, thus the nation of Israel, the city of Jerusalem and the mountain of Zion are all under attack as though destroying these geographical regions will somehow destroy God or truth. But truth is not a thing that is contained or confined by geography.
Truth is not a thing that may be substituted with false ideas or mechanisms, and still have the same result.
Truth is doctrine. Truth is made available to anyone who pursues it by means of Gods mandated method of learning. Which is the daily study while in fellowship as a believer in Christ. Which is pretty simple when you think about it.
This then opens up your eyes to truth giving you orientation to self, to God, to life and so forth.
But when Gods mandates and methods are rejected, when truth is ignored, then the lies and false ideas of this world filter into the soul and bring with them the confusion and disorientation of life and everything in it.
And so the absurd seems reasonable and mans ideas all seem practical.
Only when false ideas are matched and compared with truth, can they be discovered as false ideas and lies, but only when there is truth in the soul that allows one to clearly see their false fabrication. Without truth, there is nothing to reveal the nature of the lie.
And so, pursuing or consulting the dead seems reasonable. Even more reasonable than pursuing and consulting the living.
Find a dead thing, any dead thing, and ask it a question. Find a bug and step on it to squash it. Now seek its counsel. Does that seem reasonable?
And yet that is exactly what people do all of the time when they reject God and doctrine.
End of study