Derek Prince had tremendous biblical understanding about the ministry of deliverance. Today we will continue this fascinating study about our enemy, the devil, by investigating how Jesus dealt with demon spirits. As you listen, you’ll also hear the truth that Jesus has commissioned and empowered us as believers to do the same.
It’s a funny thing, but people in one nation can easily accept that people in another nation could need deliverance. I’ve dealt with this subject in Denmark. The Danes have no problems in believing that Americans need deliverance. See. And the Americans have no problem believing Africans need deliverance. Well, I spent eight years of my life in Africa but I have to tell you I never met so many demons in Africa as I’ve met in America. They’re just cultural differences. They adapt themselves to their environment.
All right. Let’s look at one other picture of the ministry of Jesus which is parallel, in fact it describes the same incidence in Luke 4:40–41. That’s the same part of Jesus’ ministry that’s described in Mark 1. Luke 4:40–41:
“Now when the sun was setting, all those who had anyone sick with various diseases brought them to Him; and He laid His hands on every one of them and healed them. And demons also came out of many, crying out...” (NKJ)
We don’t need to read more. See, the ministries of healing and deliverance were interwoven. They came because they were sick, but in many cases their cure demanded the expelling of evil spirits. And notice Jesus laid His hands on every one of them. There used to be, I don’t know whether there still is today, a Pentecostal tradition that it’s unscriptural to lay your hands on somebody who has an evil spirit. If that is so, then Jesus was unscriptural. And I’d rather follow His pattern than a tradition.
Now, let’s look on in Luke to just one other chapter, Luke 13. We find the woman who was bent double in Luke 13:11–16. Another incident in another synagogue later on.
“And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. [Now notice this was caused by a spirit of infirmity, an evil spirit, that had doubled her body over so that she couldn’t straighten herself up.] But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, ‘Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.’ [Notice the word “loosed” indicates binding. He said that in faith, nothing had changed, notice that.] And he laid His hands on her [Notice, she had a spirit of infirmity but He laid his hands on her], and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, ‘There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.’ The Lord then answered him and said, ‘Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or his donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?’” (NKJ)
She was a believing woman. She was a Jewess, she was a member of the synagogue, she had this terrible physical problem; her back was bent over. It was not primarily a physical problem. It was caused by a spirit of infirmity. And the moment the spirit of infirmity left her, she straightened up. Now that demands discernment, but I am simply pointing out that some problems we would classify as physical are actually caused by evil spirits. Jesus also dealt with dumbness, deafness and blindness as being caused by evil spirits. And in many cases His ministry to heal the people was to deliver them from the spirits that caused their dumbness, their deafness and their blindness. Now without going into details I have to say I have seen parallel instances in my own ministry in each of those areas.
Then we read on just a little further in Luke 13:31–32. This is the last of our glimpses of the ministry of Jesus.
“On that very same day some Pharisees came, saying to Him, ‘Get out and depart from here, for Herod wants to kill you.’ And He said to them, ‘Go, tell that fox [that’s Herod], ‘Behold, I cast out demons and perform cures today and tomorrow, and the third day I shall be perfected.’’” (NKJ)
That’s a Hebraism. Today, tomorrow and the third day means from now on until the job is finished. So he said I’m going to be doing two things; casting out demons and performing cures. That’s how He started, that’s how He continued, and that’s how He ended. His whole ministry from beginning to end included in it as a major part, probably one-third of His time, in healing the sick and casting out demons. And the two were so intertwined that it was really impossible to distinguish between them.
Now the next thing I want to say, which I will illustrate very briefly is, in the New Testament no one was ever sent out to evangelize without first being commissioned to deal with evil spirits. There isn’t an example in the New Testament. It is unscriptural to do that. Let’s look at the first twelve disciples who were sent out. Matthew 10:1:
“And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease.” (NKJ)
Notice the first thing He did was to give them authority to deal with evil spirits. And then it says, missing out the list of the names in verse 5:
“These twelve Jesus sent out... [and then it says, we’re missing out the irrelevant parts, verse 6 and 7] ‘But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ [But don’t merely preach, do something. What?] Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons.’’” (NKJ)
It was included in their equipment and it was included in their commission. In Luke 10 we read about a further seventy who were sent out. Luke 10:1:
“After these things the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go.” (NKJ)
Now we’ll only turn to verse 17, the report that the seventy brought back, and it says in verse 17:
“Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, ‘Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.’” (NKJ)
What was what impressed them most? They had authority over demons. They were not the twelve, they were the seventy.
And then we look at the final commission at the end of the gospels. First of all, in Mark 16:15 and following. Mark 16:15:
“And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; He who does not believe will be condemned. [Verse 17:] And these signs will follow those who believe: [What’s the first sign?] In My name they will cast out demons...’” (NKJ)
He did not send them out without first making sure that they knew how to deal with demons. And in Matthew 28, the other version of the Great Commission, verses 19–20 He says:
“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (NKJ)
He told them to teach their disciples everything He taught them. And one of the main things He taught them was how to deal with evil spirits. And He said when you make disciples, you teach them what I’ve taught you, and when they make disciples, they’re to teach those disciples what they have been taught. And He said, “I am with you to the end of the age.” He made no provision for that process to change. He envisaged the same going on from the time He left to the time He came back. That’s His program. The tragedy is, the church has departed from it. They have not improved upon it, they can’t. They’ve simply made a disaster out of it.
Now, there’s only one person in the New Testament, other than Jesus, who is called an evangelist. Only one. I’ve counted twentyeight persons called apostles, but only one person called an evangelist. Isn’t that remarkable? We don’t hesitate to dub the title of evangelist. Anybody who isn’t a pastor in the contemporary church has to be an evangelist. There are only two options, basically. Who was the evangelist, who can tell me? Philip. Now his ministry is described in Acts 8, Acts 8:5:
“Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them.” (NKJ)
Philip’s message was very simple. It was a one word message. In Samaria he preached Christ, on the road to Gaza he preached Jesus. All right.
“And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, [because he had a well organized committee and a choir. No.] hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For [what was the first thing?] unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were [demonized]; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed.” (NKJ)
Notice the first thing in his ministry as an evangelist was driving out evil spirits.