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The theme of this and the following session will be “Basics of Deliverance.” The subtitle is “All You Ever Wanted to Know About Demons But Were Afraid to Ask.” In these two sessions I’m going to seek to achieve a well nigh impossible task, to cover in two hours every main aspect of this ministry. Of course, not in detail, but in outline.
I believe it’s appropriate we begin by considering this aspect of the ministry of Jesus. And I’d like to turn to Mark 1. I have said many times, as far as I’m concerned, I have no ambition to improve on the ministry of Jesus. Some people, I think, feel that it could be done better today. That’s not my attitude. When he began his public ministry the thing that struck people the most was his way of dealing with evil spirits. And it’s worthy of note that this was one miracle of Jesus which had never previously been recorded in the Old Testament. Almost all his other miracles—healing, provision of food, control of nature—had already been recorded in the Old Testament. But there’s no Old Testament record of driving out evil spirits. And the people who witnessed it were immediately gripped by it and became excited about it.
Here’s the first account in a synagogue in Capernaum. It says in verse 23 of Mark 1:
“Now there was a man in their synagogue with an unclean spirit...” (NKJ)
The Greek says “in an unclean spirit,” which is not translatable into English. I think perhaps the best contemporary English would be “under the influence of” an unclean spirit.
There are three phrases that are used more or less interchangeably, we might as well mention them now: Demons, evil spirits and unclean spirits. It also talks about specific types of spirits such as the spirit of infirmity or a spirit of fear. All right.
“And there was a man in their synagogue under the influence of an unclean spirit. And he cried out [Notice, the ‘he’ is not the man, it’s the spirit] saying let us alone; what have we to do with you, Jesus of Nazareth? Did you come to destroy us. I know who you are, the Holy One of God.” (NKJ)
Notice that the evil spirits instantly identify who Jesus was. It took his disciples maybe more than a year to begin to realize who he really was, they knew instantly. They feared him. Also notice the combination of “we” and “I” which is very typical. When Jesus spoke to the man in Gadara he said, “What is your name [singular]?” And he said, “My name is Legion, for we are many.” This combination of “I” and “we” is very characteristic of demons. Verse 25:
“And Jesus rebuked him saying, Be quiet and come out of him.” (NKJ)
The Greek says literally be muzzled, come out of him.
“And when the unclean had convulsed him and cried out with a loud voice, he came out of him.” (NKJ)
Notice there were very dramatic physical manifestations. It was not the kind of behavior that was normal in the synagogue. Somebody once said to me, in most churches what they would have done was put the man out of the church. But Jesus put the demon out of the man, you understand. And he left the man in the synagogue. Then we read the next verse:
“Then they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, What is this? What new doctrine is this? [or what is this, a new doctrine?] With authority he commands even the unclean spirits, and they obey him. And immediately his fame [or his reputation] spread throughout all the region around Galilee.” (NKJ)
That is so true. The situation hasn’t changed. If you begin to get manifestations of evil spirits and deal with them, the reputation will go all around immediately. It’s a thing that still tremendously impresses people when they witness it. The thing that I want to emphasize there is Jesus did not deal with the man, he dealt with the spirit in the man. Another person in that man. And there’s no indication that the man had behaved but normally before, you understand? It was the presence of Jesus with the anointing of the Holy Spirit upon him that brought out the unseen presence of the demon in the man.
Now, the same day later on in this chapter, verse 32–34 we read a further development of this ministry.
“Now at evening, when the sun had set, they brought to him all who were sick and those who were demon-possessed...” (NKJ)
Let me say once and for all I do not like the translation demon-possessed. The Greek word is daimonizomai. If I were to write it in English letters it would be something like this. Where daimon is the root and comes from the noun demon, you understand? So izomai is the passive, to be demonized. That would be the best translation, to be demonized. This translation, demon-possessed has unfortunately obscured the issue for millions of people because they say how can a Christian be possessed by the devil? My answer is a true Christian cannot be possessed by the devil. A true Christian is possessed by Jesus. However, in many true Christians, there are some areas where they are demonized, where they are afflicted and affected by demons. Areas in their lives and character where they are not themselves fully in control. And they are demonized, but not possessed by Satan. If we could just clear away that one obstacle of translation we would be a lot further to seeing reality. All right.
“Now at evening, when the sun had set, they brought to him all who were sick and those who were demonized...”
And really the New Testament hardly makes any distinction. And Jesus did not either. Almost invariably he dealt with the sick and with the demonized in one overall operation.
“The whole city was gathered together at the door. Then he healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and he did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew him.” (NKJ)
The King James and this version, and various others, use the word cast out demons. The translation I prefer is that of Phillips where he uses the word expel. Because that doesn’t have a lot of religious connotations. It’s simple, practical, down to earth. If you inhale smoke into your lungs, what do you do to get rid of it? You expel it. It’s an action of the will but there’s also a physical aspect to it. And that’s what I like to use, I don’t always use it but that in my opinion, best represents. He expelled many demons. He did not allow the demons to speak, because they knew him. And then I’d like to read one more verse in that chapter, verse 39:
“He was preaching in their synagogues around all Galilee, and casting out demons.” (NKJ)
Phillips translation says he continued throughout the whole of Galilee preaching in their synagogues and expelling demons. I particularly like the fact that he uses the word continued which represents a certain tense in Greek. He brings out the fact that this was not an isolated dramatic instance that just took place in one synagogue, but it was his regular practice in every synagogue to do two things; preach and expel demons. And he did it through the whole of Galilee. There must have been hundreds of synagogues in Galilee. You see, a lot of people have got the attitude well, perhaps every now and then there is a case where it’s necessary to expel demons, but they’re very rare and they’re exceptional. And usually the attitude is if there are such people they’re either in jail or mental institutions. Well I simply have to point out to you that that was not the kind of person Jesus was dealing with. He was dealing with Orthodox Jews who met every Sunday in the synagogue and spent the rest of the week caring for their families, tending their fields, fishing the sea, keeping their stores and so on. They were basically normal respectable religious people but they had what we could say certain hang ups. Certain areas, as I say, where they were not in control of themselves. So do not get the impression that a person who needs deliverance must be either a criminal or a maniac. It’s just the same kind of people that we deal mainly with today. Not exclusively. Good respectable religious people who attend church and say the right things, but in their lives somewhere there’s an area that’s demonized where they’re not in control. It may be in their physical desires, maybe in their emotions, it may be in their mind. I’m going to deal with the various areas later. But if you can accept what I said it will clear away a whole lot of prejudices which will keep you from being able to see this subject objectively.
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 problem 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 incident 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.
“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.] 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? 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, 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:
“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 on 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:
“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 believes not is 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 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 envisioned 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 twenty-eight 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. So I’m suggesting to you that both the pattern and the commission of Jesus leave no room for the servants of God today to go out in evangelism without first being equipped to deal with evil spirits. I don’t believe you can find an example there.
Now I’m going to give you some general teaching on the nature of demons, and we’ll stick with the word demons, and ways in which you can know if they’re at work in you or in others. Of course, there’s always the two gifts of discerning of spirits and the word of knowledge. But apart from that, in the supernatural realm, there are many, many other combined indications which should alert us to the presence of demons, either in ourselves or in others. You need to know, first of all, as I’ve said, they are persons without bodies. You’re dealing with persons. Disembodied persons who have a passionate craving to get into a body. You need to understand that. They are totally discontented outside of a body. The kind of body they want is a human body, but rather than be disembodied, they’ll settle for a pig, or a dog or other animal. They do not want to be disembodied. That is torment for them.
They have two main objectives assigned to them by Satan. Number one, to keep you from knowing Christ as savior. But if they fail in that, their number two objective is to keep you from serving Christ effectively. See that? If they’ve failed in number one they don’t give up. They simply switch to number two.
Now we need to distinguish between the flesh and demons. The flesh being the old carnal nature, the old man. Demons being persons that move in and occupy areas of your personality. I compare them this way: The flesh is the carcass, the demons are the vultures that settle on the carcass. You understand? If there were no flesh, there would be no vultures. It’s a very vivid picture. If you’ve lived in a country where there are vultures, you know when something is about to die a little speck appears up in the sky and hovers there. And you look up a little while later and there are three or four more and the nearer the animal on the earth gets to death, the lower down the vultures come. Jesus said where the carcass is, the vultures will be gathered together. Where the unregenerate flesh of man is exposed in its carnality and its sinfulness, you can be sure the vultures will be gathering.
Now the remedies are totally different. What’s the remedy for the flesh? The cross. That’s right. Galatians 5:24:
“They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.” (NKJ)
What’s the remedy for demons? To expel them, that’s right. Now you cannot switch the remedies. You cannot expel the flesh and you cannot crucify demons. So in order to know which remedy to apply you have to know what you’re dealing with. Okay?
Now I would say in general if you are a committed sincere Christian who reads your Bible, prays, has regular fellowship and desires to serve the Lord and you have a special kind of problem, something tormenting, something aggravating, something humiliating, something binding and enslaving, and you’ve tried every remedy, you’ve prayed, you’ve fasted, you’ve reckoned yourself dead and you still haven’t resolved it, you can be almost sure you’re dealing with a demon. I can say this out of experience which is too long for me to relate this morning.
Now, what I want to do in the next part of this session is give you some characteristic activities of demons. I’m going to list about nine verbs which describe characteristic activities of demons. If these are present in your life, more than one, or if they’re very intense, you should begin to check, you probably need deliverance. And bear in mind, all these are activities of persons, because we’re dealing with persons without bodies.
The first verb, entice. Demons entice. They tempt people to do evil. And if you analyze your experience you’ll find that enticement often comes in a verbal form. A beautiful gold pencil has been dropped on the floor and you stand looking at it and something says to you, take it. Nobody will know. Other people would do the same. If it was your pencil, they’d take it. You know what that is? Anything that has a voice is a person. Behind that voice is a demon enticing you. None of you have ever experienced that, just me!
Demons harass or harass, depends on what part of the world you come from. They study you, they follow your movements, they know your weak moments, they know your weak places, they know just how and when they can get in. The example I usually give is the businessman who has had a terrible day in the office. Everything went wrong, his secretary was inefficient, the air conditioning failed... And then on the way home there was a traffic jam and he was an hour on the freeway, and then when he gets back home, believe it or not, his wife is late with the supper and the kids are running around screaming. And as he gets in through the door he does what we say, he blows his stack, okay? You know what happens? The demon of anger that’s been on his tail all day jumps in. And after that his wife notices a certain change in him. He’s still a loving father and husband but there are certain times when something else takes over. And she notices a kind of different look in his eyes and although he loves his wife and his children, he makes life miserable for them when that comes upon him. And then he’s so ashamed and remorseful afterwards, he says, I don’t know what made me do it. Well we do know. It’s the demon of anger.
Number three, they torment. Now the Bible speaks about the tormentors in Matthew 18. I believe the demons are the tormentors. In Matthew 18 in the parable of the unforgiving servant, the servant who wouldn’t forgive his fellow servant of petty debt, was delivered by God to the tormentors. I have met hundreds of Christians in the hands of the tormentors. You know why? Unforgiveness. If you have any unforgiveness in your heart against anybody, you are a legitimate target for the tormentors. And Satan is a legal expert, he knows when he’s entitled to move in. There are various forms of torment.
There’s physical torment. There’s the example I would choose, arthritis. When you look at arthritis, you’ve seen the devil in action. Twisting, torturing, crippling, binding.
Mental torment. One that’s unusually common is the fear of going insane. So that’s not your problem. Your problem is a lying, accusing spirit which is taking away your peace and the assurance of your salvation.
All right, number four, they compel. I think there is no more distinctive word than the word compulsive. Almost anything compulsive is liable to be demonic. Compulsive smoking, compulsive consumption of alcohol, but let’s not stop there. Compulsive eating is just as demonic. Gluttony is just as much of a problem as alcohol. But it’s a respectable one, you see. You can’t be an alcoholic in church, but you can be a glutton. There are other forms of compulsion. Compulsive talking, garrulity. People who can’t stop talking have got a problem. And they are a problem too!
Number five, demons enslave. Very close. You see, let’s say you’ve committed a sin in the area of sex. You repent, you go to Jesus, you receive forgiveness and cleansing, you’re justified. Just as if you’d never sinned. That’s all finished with. But if after all that you still have this intense drive to commit the same sin again, even though you hate it, you’re enslaved. One very common example is masturbation. Now some psychologists and people say masturbating is all right, it’s healthy. I just don’t even argue about that. But I know there are thousands of people who do it and hate themselves for doing it. And every time they say never again, but it never works. They are enslaved. And there is a demon of masturbation. It’s very common. Let me tell you now before we go too far in the meeting, it has certain specific manifestations. What will happen is the person’s fingers will begin to tingle. I’ve had so many people say, Brother Prince, what’s the matter with me, my fingers are tingling? And sometimes they go stiff and they bend right backwards. And I just whisper in their ear, your problem is masturbation. Renounce it, claim the cleansing blood of Jesus and get rid of it. But it is very stubborn. Many times people have to actually shake it out of their fingers, in the Name of Jesus, to get rid of it.
Now you put four and five together, four plus five equals addiction. Okay, compulsive and enslaving, you put them together, they’re addiction. We are all familiar with many forms of addiction. Some are very unusual. My first wife and I dealt with a young woman, a Pentecostal church member, who was addicted to nail varnish. She just wanted to smell nail varnish. She told us, When I walk into the cosmetics department of a store I’ve got two options. I can either buy nail varnish or run out of the store. But I’ve got to do one or the other. When she was delivered of that thing it came out screaming and it tore her. There are other addictions, you know. The commonest and latest is TV. TV is just as much an addiction as alcohol with many people. They cannot walk into the room with a television set without switching it on. They don’t even think, they don’t know what they’re going to see, but they just have to reach for the television set just like an alcoholic reaches for the drink. And I think probably it does more harm in the long run than alcohol.
Number six, they defile. They make you feel dirty and unclean. Especially when you’re worshipping God. You’re just about to get into the presence of God and this dirty image or this filthy word is projected into your mind. Anything that rises up when you’re about to worship God and opposes you is almost certainly demonic. Or when you want to read your Bible. One common example is the demon of sleep. You know, the Bible speaks about a spirit of slumber. Have you ever noticed people, if they want to read their Bible at 10 P.M., they’re asleep by 10:15. If they want to watch television, they can stay awake until after midnight. Now that’s not natural. There’s a supernatural force that that enjoys them watching television, hates them reading their Bibles. You understand?
All right. Number seven, they deceive. They are the deceivers. I believe basically all forms of spiritual deception are demonic. And you know what opens the door to deception? Pride. I doubt whether there’s ever any deception that doesn’t come in through the doorway of pride. Pride inevitably leads to deception.
Number eight, they weaken, make sick, or tired [there’s a demon of tiredness]. I remember dealing with a woman once, she said, I can’t stand this session any longer, I’m too tired. I was about to get sorry for her when I realized it was a demon. I challenged it and it said, That’s right. She’s always tired. She’s tired when she gets up, she’s tired when she goes to bed, she’s too tired to pray, she’s too tired to read her Bible. That’s one of the ones that the others hide behind. Or they kill. Remember Satan is a murderer. He kills people physically. And there’s a spirit of death that he sends out to kill people.
All right. Now if we’re going to take one word to sum up, it would be the word restless. Demonized people are usually restless in some area. The person who can truly relax and be at peace probably doesn’t need deliverance.
Now, the next thing we’re going to deal with, and I think this will be the last although I wish I could go further because we haven’t much time, is their areas of residence. Proverbs 25:28 says this:
“Whoever has no rule over his own spirit is like a city broken down without walls.” (NKJ)
So that compares the inner nature of human personality to a city. And when the person has no spiritual defenses, that city is open to almost any evil spirit that wants to come in. You take a drug addict, that’s his description. Anything can get into him because his walls are broken down. But in a city there are a lot of different areas. There’s the area where the wealthy live, there’s the slum areas, there’s the banking and commerce areas, there’s the sports areas, there’s the various ethnic areas. I used to live in Chicago and this was—you know—there was the areas where it was all Poles, all Swedes, all Jews and so on. And so inside you and me there is a city with various areas with characteristic residents in each area, you understand? I’m going to give you a little list of the areas. I am not a professional psychologist, this is simply based on years of experience.
The first area, number one, the main one is emotions and attitudes. And I put in parentheses “gangs.” Because there are gangs of demons. And each one opens the way for the next. And if you meet one, you should start searching for the others. Now my personal opinion is behind every negative emotion and attitude there is an evil spirit. Anger, fear, loneliness, misery, self-pity, pride, jealousy, there’s a tremendous list. Now the fact that you experience anger doesn’t necessarily mean you have a demon of anger, but if your anger falls into the category of those verbs that we discussed, then you probably have a demon of anger. There are certain root problems out of which the rest grow. I think the greatest single root problem is rejection. And rejection leads to a whole series. Loneliness, misery, self-pity, depression, despair, and when you’ve got that far, you’re headed one or other of two ways. Death, if it’s passive, suicide if it’s active. I don’t believe anybody ever committed suicide except under the impulse of an evil spirit. That’s my personal opinion. I can’t prove it.
Another very typical problem is rebellion which leads to resentment, to hatred, to anger, to violence and you know, produces the typical gang leader and so on.
Number two is the mind. In a way, the mind is the battlefield. Characteristic spirits that affect the mind are doubt, unbelief, confusion, indecision, insanity. And I’ve discovered that people who have been in the occult almost always have a problem with confusion. Depression, you can call it either emotional or mental, it doesn’t matter, it’s there.
The next area is the tongue. There are a lot of characteristic demons of the tongue. The main one is lying. The Bible speaks about a lying spirit. There are people who are compulsive liars. They don’t even know when they’re lying. I had a friend like that, he was the president of the Full Gospel Businessmen in a certain city, he was also characteristically a salesman. He was a fine Christian, a wonderful talker. And he’d sit in our living room and start to talk and his talk would get more and more interesting but improbable. And my head would begin to swim and I’d think, does he believe what he’s saying? Do I believe what he’s saying? But it just kind of flowed out of the natural into the supernatural. Now you know the reason I discovered how that spirit came in? He was an adopted son of wealthy parents, they had no other children, all their eggs were in that one basket. They wanted him to be everything. And he discovered that when he came home with his grades from school they were disappointed because they weren’t good enough. And when they registered disappointment he decided that wasn’t worth it so he just lied about his school grades. You understand? And that started him into the whole field of lying. I believe ultimately he was delivered. But it was such a revelation to me. You see, compulsive liars are very deceptive because they don’t even know they’re lying. They can pass a lie detector test. What else?
There’s the churchgoing demons, criticism and gossip. I was in a church meeting once and a lady came up with a demon, I said your problem is criticism. I said, you spirit of criticism, come out of her and about four people around started to get delivered at the same time! Exaggeration, the evangelistic demon, blasphemy. I was a slave of blasphemy when the Lord saved me. Absolutely incapable of speaking without blaspheming. Unclean speech and so on. Negative talking.
Number four, the thing that nobody talks about in church, sex. Because it is not discussed in church, people with problems in the area of sex go to a psychiatrist. And he says, madam, you have a guilt problem and your problem centers in your religion. Give up your religion and you won’t feel guilty. Now they don’t all say that. But I would say if you sat in church for ten years and still feel guilty, your problem is your religion. Really. I would change to another religion, if that’s all it can do is leave you feeling guilty. Now we have to say certain things about sex. First of all, sex is not evil. It’s good. We have to clear way that misunderstanding. God created man and woman sexual beings. And after he checked on everything he created, he said it was all very good, including sex. One of the big problems in church is we just are not honest about sex, we’re ashamed about it, we’re prudish and we encourage problems by that attitude. I would say every form of compulsive sex aberration is demonic. Without exception. Masturbation, adultery, fornication, homosexuality, lesbianism, effeminacy and all sorts of horrid perversions that we won’t talk about. I would say every one of those is demonic. Now you don’t have to feel ashamed, but you do need to resolve your problem.
Number five, lusts. Now we could have included sex under that heading but it’s such a distinctive area I kept it separate. Perverted desires and appetites. I believe all appetites initially were healthy. But by sin and demonic power they’ve been perverted to become unhealthy and destructive. 1 John 2:16 speaks about the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes. There is demonic power that controls eyes. Some men have to look at women in a special way, they’re absolutely incapable of not doing that. A demon that’s focused in their eyes. As I’ve said already, gluttony is a very clear example of a perverted appetite. I had a woman once who traveled seventy miles in a snowstorm to Chicago to be delivered. She was the daughter of a Pentecostal pastor. Like many people in that situation, she’d rebelled against her parents and their religion, married an unsaved man and ended up miserable. She had three children. She came and got delivered from the demon of gluttony and she said to me afterwards, “Mr. Prince, no one can tell me this isn’t real. It’s just as real as having a baby, and rather like it, and I’ve had three.” And then she told me she was so compulsive in her gluttony that she would take food off her children’s plate and eat it even though she knew they needed it more than she did.
You see, let’s talk about addictions. Addictions grow on frustrations. They’re branches on a trunk. And if you merely deal with the addiction, you haven’t solved the problem. Take alcohol and gluttony. One woman is Episcopalian, her husband runs around with other women, doesn’t care for her, doesn’t give her enough money and so on. All right. She gets frustrated, she’s got to get some relief, she walks across the living room to the cocktail cabinet, becomes an alcoholic. The other woman is Church of God, okay? Her husband does exactly the same. But for that woman to get to the cocktail cabinet would be a lengthy journey. So where does she go? To the kitchen and opens the refrigerator. But she becomes a food-aholic. But the difference is minimal, really. And in either case, to help them you’ve got to deal with the basic frustration which is their attitude toward their husband. All right. We have to go on with the list.
Number six, the whole realm of the occult. I’m just going to write occult. But that is a vast realm. And every part of it is demonic. Even the respectable parts. And I would not involve you to be involved in Yoga exercises, let me say that. I was in Yoga, I was a practicing Yogi. And I would tell you, there is nothing in that I would touch with a ten foot pole. You don’t have to depend on Yoga for physical health, the Lord will give you physical health. I’m just saying, the occult is a deep, dark pit. It’s one of those caves where all the steps, footmarks lead inwards and none ever lead outward.
All right, number seven. All false religions. Islam, Mormonism, Jehovah Witnesses, Buddhism, Hinduism, and in some respects, Judaism. Okay. There isn’t a false religion that doesn’t have a demon about it. Satan is an expert in the field of religion. It’s the main area in which he operates.
Number eight, all heresies. And by heresies I mean departures from the Christian faith. Let’s turn to 1 Timothy 4 for a moment.
“Now the Spirit expressly says, [the Spirit, capital S, the Holy Spirit.] Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times, [that’s the times in which we’re now living,] some will depart from the faith [What faith? The Christian faith. Why?] giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons.” (NKJ)
This is happening on a wide scale today. And then it goes on to say, he gives some examples of their errors.
“Speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, forbidding to marry, commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving... [etc.]” (NKJ)
Particularly on the West Coast of the United States you’ll find hundreds of thousands of people to whom that applies. They’re becoming super-spiritual, they decide not to marry, or if they marry, they don’t cohabit with their spouse, and they are going to be super-spiritual by what they eat. Now I believe in eating wisely, but I don’t make a religion out of it. Understand? The moment it becomes a religious issue, you’re on the verge of the demonic. And you’ll notice that people who get in food fads can’t talk about anything else. That’s another mark of the demonic. No matter where you start, you always end up with food. Don’t eat this and don’t eat that. There’s lots of things I don’t eat, but I do not make a religion out of it. Understand?
All right. Number nine, the area of our physical bodies. And we’ve dealt with many examples in the gospels. Certain things I think are normally demonic, I would never say always. The first one I put on the list is epilepsy. And I have seen many, many people delivered. Ruth and I were in Lexington, Kentucky, about two years ago now, and I had a blessing. A woman came to me, she was probably about forty, with her daughter about eighteen. And she said, “Mr. Prince, ten years ago you prayed for me and I was delivered from the spirit of epilepsy. Here’s my daughter, she has the problem, pray for her.” I was happy for that testimony. We prayed for the daughter, I have no doubt that she was delivered. I have seen scores of people delivered from epilepsy when it is treated as an evil spirit. If a person comes to me in a meeting I’ll say, now I believe that’s an evil spirit. I’m prepared to command it to go out, do you want me to? Are you prepared because there may be a fight. There may be a struggle. If you don’t want to, I won’t do it. Some people say yes, some say no.
All right. That’s as far as we can go. We’ve dealt with the primary activities of demons that list, I think, nine verbs. And here’s the primary areas in which I have observed them operating. You see, a person may be completely clear in the area of sex, but may be in a false religion. Or a person may have no spirits in the mind, but may be bogged down in the emotions. Or a person, let’s say, may be in a heresy, but be perfectly healthy. You understand? So there’s a whole choice of areas.
All right. That’s the end of the first session, God helping us we’ll complete this in the second session.
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