There’s a phrase we hear from time to time. I can mean anything that we don’t fully understand, the unknown, making noises that create fear or intrigue. Some believe in ghosts, others in evil spirits and travel the earth, looking for a person to inhabit and such. I believe in the Bible and what it has to say about spiritual warfare.
First of all, there is no greater power in this universe then the power of God’s Holy Spirit. He was there with the Lord God Almighty in the beginning, creating this world, and Jesus was also there completing the triune God.
“In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. 3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. 4 And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.” – Genesis 1:1-3
The devil, a former archangel, rebelled against God and convinced a third of the angels of heaven to follow after him in a sort of revolt. They were banished from heaven and went to the only place in the universe that existed, a formless, ball of dirt and water hovering over the vastness of nothing. When the creation account took place, and I believe it was an actual six-day period, not eons of time, the devil infiltrated this beautiful planet, masquerading as a talking snake and deceived Eve into eating the forbidding fruit. He has been doing that ever since in various forms, getting people to sin and disobey God’s holy Word.
While human history covers about 6,000 years, in those years God has intervened through certain people to guide ‘His story’ of redemption through His Son Jesus, for the forgiveness of sin and the restoration of saved people to Himself. Those who refuse this wonderful gift of salvation will be lost forever, just like the fallen angels and eventually, the devil himself. There is a place called Hell, it was created by God for the purpose of punishing the devil and his demonic hordes who rebelled. However, if anyone follows after the devil, they will get the same judgment, and eternity of unspeakable torment in the lake of fire. While it almost sounds a bit coheresive and manipulative, it’s the truth, a harsh truth for the consequence of a harsher violation of sin.
Demons exist and they can manifest in various ways which include, taking the form of almost anyone or anything. They can illuminate themselves, move objects, remain invisible, project fear or other emotions, and even empower people to do things supernatural. While people may become enamored with the spiritual makeup of a demon, alas, they are just fallen angels who will suffer a horrific fate one day in judgment. In the meantime they harass humanity and seek to keep them from coming to the knowledge of the truth about Jesus, His love and sacrifice for humanity, and the promise of a coming eternal kingdom, of which they were once part of. These creatures are as evil as they come, and they have and will wreak havoc on this world until the Lord returns and implements His final judgement.
There are shows on YouTube and other social media platforms that depict supernatural things happening in our time and space like lights in the sky, stealth movement of unknown creatures in houses and other places, including the outdoors in general, like deserts, canyons, caves, and mountains. They are out there doing what they know to do, torment, and create fear in people who have exposed themselves to their manipulations and deception. While we can all sit around proverbial campfires and tell stories of said tales, in this blog I should like to remind believers in Jesus that the power of the Holy Spirit that is within you, is far greater than the power of the enemy and his demonic minions.
“You are of God, little children, and have overcome them (evil spirits), because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. 5 They are of the world. Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them. 6 We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.” – 1 John 4:4-6
When we place our faith and trust in the Lord, God shows up and makes His home within us, claiming us to Himself and giving us the many promises of His Word. This is exactly what the enemy doesn’t want us to know or to happen in our lives; As a result, he does everything within his power to distract us from the hope of our salvation, Jesus Christ. I am writing this because there are a lot of people out there who are unaware of the spiritual warfare that happens all around them. What they feel and how they react to certain situations in life will reveal this truth, but God has given us His Spirit which is greater than what we are dealing with.
Paul knew of this and wrote some good instruction,
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” – Ephesians 6:12
Jesus gave us some good perspective regarding spiritual warfare. Luke’s gospel records a short-term missions trip that Jesus sent 70 of His followers on. After they completed their journey…
“…the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.” 18 And He said to them, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19 Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you. 20 Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” – Luke 10:17-20
- Here we can see that Christ’ power is greater than the enemy. Jesus further stated that He was there when the devil was cast out of heaven. The authority that Jesus has, He gives to us when we place our faith and trust in Him. We need His power to live a faithful Christian life and to overcome the enemy when he tempts and attacks us.
Jesus further reminds us that the focus of our rejoicing should not be so much that we have power over the devil in Jesus’ name, but that we are saved by God’s grace and our names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
There are those people who don’t believe in the power or even the existence of the devil; or they are so enamored by the spookiness of it that their focus is on what they think that they can control. We are reminded of the story of the sons of Sceva in the book of Acts that reveals such an incident.
“Now God worked unusual miracles by the hands of Paul, 12 so that even handkerchiefs or aprons were brought from his body to the sick, and the diseases left them and the evil spirits went out of them. 13 Then some of the itinerant Jewish exorcists took it upon themselves to call the name of the Lord Jesus over those who had evil spirits, saying, “We exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches.” 14 Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so. 15 And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?” 16 Then the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, overpowered them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. 17 This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified. 18 And many who had believed came confessing and telling their deeds. 19 Also, many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted up the value of them, and it totaled fifty thousand pieces of silver. 20 So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed.” – Acts 19:11-20
One thing is for sure, the devil knows if you have the power of God living and working within you. Even people who claim the name of Jesus, but don’t have a relationship with Him, still get results. The reason for this has more to do with the name of Jesus getting results, not so much because of the people using Christ’ name. Just because a person can prophesy, exorcise a demon, heal a sick person, or do many wonderous things in Jesus’ name, doesn’t mean that the are saved.
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’ – Matthew 7:21-23
I have noticed an uptick of videos on YouTube that deal with ghosts and the supernatural. While this may amaze people and even increase their intrigue about the demonic realm, it’s not a joking matter or something to be dabbled with. Demons are real, the devil is real, Hell is real, and God Almighty, who is the Creator and Author of all life, will one day judge these creatures with eternal torment in the lake of fire. Anyone who follows them, or more specifically, rejects the salvation grace of Jesus Christ, will suffer the same fate. God is holy and can’t have anyone with sin on them or in them be in His presence. This is the way of things. In order for us to put these paranormal properties into proper perspective, we have to view them through the lens of scripture, the Holy Bible. While I don’t have the blog space to go into exhaustive detail about the devil and how he deceives people, distracting them from coming to faith in Jesus, and keeping them busy with the things in this life that really don’t matter; until it’s too late. Just know, these paranormal shows are not for the faint of heart and certainly not for the unsaved. People look at it as some form of twisted entertainment, when in reality, you’re looking into another realm, the spirit realm.
If you’re ever in a situation where you are in danger, in fear, or you have an unsettled fate; I challenge you, if you are a believer, to ‘plead the blood of Jesus.’ This means that you confess that you are saved by God’s grace and have been cleansed by the shed blood of Jesus. Demons fear the blood, it’s how they lost and it’s how we win, if we are in Christ. You can pray, you can take authority in Jesus’ name, and if you speak in tongues, you can pray out loud in your heavenly language and you will get results, immediately. This is the power that Jesus has for you if you are in Him. As believers, we are saved by God’s grace, and empowered by His Holy Spirit, to do things in the natural and supernatural that are beyond our human ability. Within us is God’s divine power, which is His Holy Spirit, living within us. When you deal with those things that go bump in the night, you know that greater is He that is within you, than the thing you’re staring down! Believe it, believe in Jesus, believe in His plan for your life.
Jesus, in His infinite mercy, came to earth as a man and lived a perfect life, He died a perfect death, and He resurrected from the grave three days later so that, if anyone places their faith and trust in Him, and asks for Him to forgive their sins, they will live with Him forever in His kingdom. This is the Gospel. God sends His only Son into the world, the God-man who was really a man and really God; really human and really divine. Jesus lived a perfect, sinless life, He fulfilled the whole law, He died in the place of sinners, intentionally. In so doing, He absorbed the whole wrath of God against those who believe in Him. He took away all their guilt, He forgave all their sin and rose from the dead triumphant over death, Hell, and the devil. He ascended into heaven and now rules with power from on high; one day soon, He will return. He gives eternal life to all who place their faith and trust in Him. There is no better news; this is the Gospel, the good news for mankind.
“For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him.” – Romans 5:7-9
This is the message the devil wants to keep you from. Find Jesus and find life, eternal life. Jesus is the only way to heaven, He is our only hope, the hope of the world. If you know this to be true and you have invited Christ to be the Lord of your life, than share it with those in your stead who need to hear it; time is running out!
Encouragemen is a blog written by Pastor Rob Lee, recently relocated to Northwest Missouri. He lives with his wife of 32-years, near their three adult children, their spouses, and children (their grandchildren). Pastor Rob is an Ordained Assemblies of God minister, a former Lead Pastor (25 years), police chaplain, and community advocate. He continues to serve, consult, and disciple men of God, including those who are in the ministry.