Greetings precious people. In todayís article I would like for us to consider what the Bible says concerning demons. There is much talk today from both ends of the spectrum concerning this subject. There are those that would have us believe that demons do not exist and others that contribute everything negative and bad that happens to demons. Some tell us there is the demon of smoking, the demon of lust, demon of worry, even the demon of nail biting. A popular phrase of our day to describe a person that is having a problem or two is to say, Ďthey are struggling with the demons inside.í
Demons are very real as we will see from Scripture, but too often we either ignore the influence and effect the demonic realm has in our world or we attribute every wrong and bad thing that happens in our life to demons. It should be realized that we give Satan and his demons far too much credit than they deserve. Listen to what the Word of God, the Bible says concerning the heart of man. In Jeremiah 17:9, "The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?" The heart of man, which is where our thoughts, intents, and motives originate, is capable of all kinds of evil things. Yes Satan does capitalize on this in people to accomplish his will, but man does plenty of evil without any of Satanís help.
Letís look at the Bible to get a clear understanding of what demons are and their purpose. A demon, (of which Satan is one) is a supernatural, spiritual being who followed Satan in his rebellion against God and were cast out of heaven. Exactly when is uncertain, but it happened some time before Adam and Eve sinned against God in the Garden of Eden. They are also known as evil spirits, unclean spirits or fallen angels. We donít know exactly how many there are but Scripture would indicate their number is in the millions. Their purpose and intent is to follow their leader (Satan) to come against everything God stands for.
Their character is like that of their leader. Jesus said, of Satan, John 8:44, "You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it." John 10:10, "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly."
One method of operation of demons is to take possession of human beings in order to accomplish their purposes. This is known in the Bible as "demon possession". Demon possession takes place when a person delves into the spiritual real by way any number of avenues. The obvious is blatant satanic worship, Voodoo, Black Magic, and Witchcraft. Others less obvious and quite subtle with even appearing as "innocent" fun is through such games as dungeons and dragons, Ouija boards, seances, tarot cards, crystals, drugs and others. One of the most effective avenues that Satan is using to influence and take possession of people is through some forms of music. Some of the rock groups today actually invite those attending their concerts to come forward and accept Satan into their life. The New Age movement in another avenue through which Satan is gaining a stronghold in the lives of many individuals without them even recognizes it.
Demon possession was very common in the days of Jesus Christ. The people had turned away from the true and living God and given themselves over to the worship of many idols and desires of their flesh. The Bible gives a number of accounts of those that were demon possessed. Matthew 17:14-18, "And when they had come to the multitude, a man came to Him, kneeling down to Him and saying, "Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and suffers severely; for he often falls into the fire and often into the water. So I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not cure him." Then Jesus answered and said, "O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? How long shall I bear with you? Bring him here to Me." And Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of him; and the child was cured from that very hour." Mark 16:9, "Now when He rose early on the first day of the week, He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom He had cast seven demons." Mark 5:1-13, "Then they came to the other side of the sea, to the country of the Gadarenes. And when He had come out of the boat, immediately there met Him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit, who had his dwelling among the tombs; and no one could bind him, not even with chains, because he had often been bound with shackles and chains. And the chains had been pulled apart by him, and the shackles broken in pieces; neither could anyone tame him. And always, night and day, he was in the mountains and in the tombs, crying out and cutting himself with stones. When he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and worshiped Him. And he cried out with a loud voice and said, "What have I to do with You, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I implore You by God that You do not torment me." For He said to him, "Come out of the man, unclean spirit!" Then He asked him, "What is your name?" And he answered, saying, "My name is Legion; for we are many." Also he begged Him earnestly that He would not send them out of the country. Now a large herd of swine was feeding there near the mountains. So all the demons begged Him, saying, "Send us to the swine, that we may enter them." And at once Jesus gave them permission. Then the unclean spirits went out and entered the swine (there were about two thousand); and the herd ran violently down the steep place into the sea, and drowned in the sea."
Another way in which demons are at work today is through deception. In 1 Timothy 4:1-3, "Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth."
It is obvious from these verses and others that demons never had anyoneís good in mind. They are like their leader, Satan, who is only interested in destroying life. Yet sadly, few people recognize this and are playing around with seemingly "innocent" fun, not knowing they are headed down the path to destruction.
Dear people take heed to what Godís Word says, 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22, "Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil." If you are "playing around" with any of the things that have been mentioned, stop now. Turn to Jesus Christ and ask Him to lead your life in His truth. If you are not sure about something that youíre involved in, search Godís Word, He will show you the truth. If I can be of any assistance please contact me at any of the addresses listed below.
If you have any questions, comments, or prayer requests you can contact me at: Calvary Chapel of Alpine, P.O. Box 1528, Alpine, Ca. 91903 or call 619-445-2589, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Drew Macintyre is pastor of Calvary Chapel of Alpine