Casting Out Unclean Spirits (David Wilkerson)

The following message was given by the late Rev David Wilkerson (founding pastor of Times Square Church in New York City and author of the well-known book The Cross and the Switchblade) on July 11, 2016:

There are people today battling things in their lives that are so deep and ferocious they can’t be explained. Such things can only be comprehended as unclean spirits. The Bible addresses this supernatural phenomenon and God’s response to it in Mark 4-5.

Jesus was teaching a great multitude by the seashore. The crowds were so large and pressing that the Lord had to get into a boat and speak to them from the water. He taught the people patiently, illustrating his truths with many parables. Then toward evening a strange urgency came over him. It literally stopped Jesus in his tracks. He quickly ended his discourse and dismissed the crowd.

This urgent sense in the Lord was so pressing, he didn’t even stop to meet with his family, who had journeyed to see him. “Then came to him his mother and his brethren, and could not come at him for the press [of the crowds]” (Luke 8:19). Jesus sensed he had no time to spare. He pointed across the sea and told his disciples it was time to move out.

Somehow our Lord had heard a wailing from across the sea. It was the tormented cry of a person hurting and in need of great help. The cry Jesus heard was from a demoniac, a man possessed by an unclean spirit. This tormented soul lived in the city graveyard, among the many stone sepulchers that had been carved in the nearby hillside. The man actually made his home in one of those hewn tombs. As he cried out day and night, his awful wails filled the air at all hours.

No one had been able to help this man in his awful condition—no physician, expert or religious leader. He was literally out of control, running around naked, and “neither could any man tame him” (Mark 5:4). He lived in torment daily, “cutting himself with stones” (5:5) and scarring his body. As Jesus taught the religious multitudes on the other side of the sea, he picked up the cry of this desperate, devil-driven man—and he stopped everything to go see him.

You may have several such tormented people in your congregation. These could be men or women, teenagers or the elderly, choir members, anyone. Somehow an unclean spirit has taken control of their lives and won’t let go.

When I use the phrase “unclean spirit,” I mean a spirit that is immoral or lewd, chaining someone to a lust. People who are bound by such spirits are no longer in control of their lives. A powerful habit has taken over. They can’t pass by a bar or get on the Internet without being drawn into sin. They’re driven, addicted, possessed by an unclean lust, and its hold on them grows stronger every day. Inside they cry out in torment like the Gadarene demoniac, “I’m hooked. My life is totally out of control. Satan has me bound.”

If this describes you, then you know it’s something far more painful and agonizing than living in a physical tomb. Deep in your soul, you’ve become a slave to uncleanness. You’re driven daily to do things you hate. And now you’re haunted by an inner voice that cries out, “You’re destroying your body, the temple of God. And the Bible says, ‘Whoever destroys the temple, God will destroy him.’” No matter what you do to get free, nothing helps.

I’ve seen this happen with many of the addicts our ministry has taken in. One tormented young man so hated his habit, he tried to burn away the needle tracks from his arm, using a white-hot pan. Another desperate addict chained himself to a steam radiator to keep himself from going back to his habit. Another young man filled a syringe with his own blood and sprayed a literal cry of “Help” on his bedroom ceiling.

Everybody had given up on this tormented Gadarene man. Luke writes that he’d been in his condition a “long time” (Luke 8:27). He was inhabited by so many demons that he answered to the name Legion. And he was so wild he had to be chained down. Yet he was so utterly possessed he broke every iron fetter (see 8:29).

As I read of this man’s chains, I think of what happens to people in self-help programs today. Whenever an addict enters a clinic, agency or hospital, the aim is to try to isolate or chain down that person’s addiction. Such programs seek to clean people up from the outside to separate them from their habit. But every program that suggests an enslaved person can be freed through self-will is going to fail. It can’t possibly work. Ask any habit-bound person who’s been through those programs.

Jesus proves this. He states, “When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he saith, I will return unto my house whence I came out. And when he cometh, he findeth it swept and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh to him seven other spirits more wicked than himself; and they enter in, and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first” (Luke 11:24-26).

I think this passage has nothing to do with Christians. If the Holy Ghost has performed a work in someone’s heart, the devil can no longer call that person his home. Rather, I see in Jesus’ words how people become possessed by even “more wicked” spirits. Simply put, the sweeping and refurbishing of their house wasn’t done by God. That’s the only reason an unclean spirit could say, “I’m going back to my dwelling.” Such people have gotten a temporary fix through self-help. But until Jesus drives out the unclean spirit, the house is under its control.

Jesus doesn’t work on the old man. When we’re born again, we become a whole new creation. So when the Holy Spirit moves in he pays off the mortgage on the land and tears down the old structure. The house he builds is so new it’s unrecognizable to the unclean spirit that once ruled it. Now a sign is up outside: “Under new maintenance. This is the temple of the Holy Spirit.”

Scripture says when “they arrived at the country of the Gadarenes…he went forth to land” (Luke 8:26-27). I picture Jesus getting out of the boat, walking onto land, and looking, searching. There in the distance he sees the wild, demon-driven man. Now I picture tears in Jesus’ eyes and I see his face growing red-hot with anger at Satan’s tormenting work. We know Christ didn’t judge this man. He didn’t lecture him or ask, “What awful sin did you commit to fall into such a wicked condition?” Instead, he watched as the man fell before him, desperately reaching out for deliverance.

Jesus immediately commanded the unclean spirits to depart from him. At that point, the demons took control of the man’s tongue and cried, “What have we to do with you, Jesus?” Matthew’s account adds, “Art thou come hither to torment us before the time?” (Matthew 8:29). They were saying, “We know we’re going to be judged someday. But why are you here now, Jesus? This isn’t the appointed time.” The demons then tried to make a deal suggesting, “Let us depart into that herd of swine over there.” But Jesus would never bargain with the devil. He knew exactly what those demons had in mind. They wanted a temporary home in the pigs so when the swine were led to slaughter the spirits could leap into other people.

Jesus did send those demons into the herd of swine. But he remained in total control of the whole scene. He immediately caused the pigs to race over a cliff and into the sea. What an image we’re given: a herd of unclean, forbidden animals carrying a legion of unclean spirits into an abyss of torment. Later when the townspeople came to see what had happened, they “found the man, out of whom the devils were departed, sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed, and in his right mind” (Luke 8:35).

I want to speak directly to those who’ve been driven to bondage by an unclean spirit. How often have you turned to a few minutes of empty pleasure knowing it will leave you sick and despairing? These aren’t just habits. They’re the work of unclean spirits that have taken dominion over your life. It doesn’t matter if you’re a well-educated, successful professional who thinks you can quit at any time. You have to face the truth: You’ve lost control. And unless the unclean spirits are driven out, you’ll end up as possessed as the Gadarene man.

The Bible says God has given us all power and authority over the enemy to cast out demons and unclean spirits. Yet Jesus said “these kind” go only when we fast and pray. I want you to know I have fasted and prayed over this message. And if you’ll simply do as the Gadarene man did—fall on your knees before Jesus, trust in him, and ask him to deliver you—every unclean spirit will flee. You’ll be set free and restored to your right mind.

Now let me address certain Christians who’ve fallen back into an old habit. You were tempted, and now you’re totally caught up in a former bondage. You may be convinced God has given you over to a reprobate mind. You think your heart has grown too hard, too stubborn, too rebellious to ever be set free again.

On several occasions, the Bible says God’s chosen people were stubborn, hardened, rebellious, reprobate. Yet God always extended his mercy to them whenever he saw them reaching out to him. “How shall I give thee up, Ephraim? How shall I deliver thee, Israel?…mine heart is turned within me…I will not execute the fierceness of mine anger, I will not return to destroy Ephraim: for I am God, and not man” (Hosea 11:8-9). The Lord was saying, in essence, “Your friends may abandon you thinking you’re too far gone. But I don’t see you that way. I see the potential in you.”

I believe God wants to teach us two things through the Gadarene man’s story:

1. Our battle against unclean spirits will continue until Jesus returns. And it will grow ever fiercer as an angry devil increases his seductions on humanity in these last days. We see this ongoing battle throughout the New Testament. Everywhere Christ and the apostles went, they cast out unclean spirits.

Are you baffled as to why Christians seem to have so little authority to cast out spirits from possessed people? I believe there are two reasons for this. First, we’re not committed to fasting and praying, as Jesus said is required in certain cases. We have to realize that Satan’s forces can be driven out only by true spiritual authority, which comes through prayer and fasting. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).

Second, the church has become so compromised we’re afraid to stand up to devils. We fear we’ll end up like the sons of Sceva in the book of Acts. These seven men claimed to have power over demons, but when they tried to cast out an unclean spirit they were attacked and beaten by a devil-possessed man.

If we try to rely on carnal weapons—self-help programs or psychology—we’ll end up merely cleaning the outer shell. And we’ll open up hurting people’s souls to even greater possession. Demons heed only the voices of devout servants who can say with Jesus, “The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me” (John 14:30).

2. We’re to reach out to multitudes, but we can’t forget the hurting individual. We cannot allow our ministries to the masses to drown out the cry of a single lost, hurting soul.

It’s all too easy not to hear the cry of the homeless man on the corner. It’s easy to pass by someone who’s unshaven, dirty and sin-enslaved and never see the potential in him. We forget too easily that God can restore every wasted year of a person’s life. Instead, we allow ourselves to think, “He’s too hardened, too far gone.”

But Jesus heard the cry. He saw the potential in the Gadarene man. And that delivered, cleaned-up man became a witness of Christ’s power to the whole city of Decapolis, causing “all men (to) marvel” (Mark 5:20). Jesus is telling us, “Don’t give up on anyone. That person you think is too far gone could end up preaching the gospel on your street.”

If we’re fasting and praying for such people, as Jesus instructed, then our ears will be attuned to their cries. And like Christ, we’ll be able to hear the Spirit whispering, “Go to that one, and minister God’s Word.” Lord, give us ears that are attuned to you. We know that nothing can keep you from delivering those you’ve made up your mind to set free. Amen!


Children Can Have Demons

In their book “A Manual for Children’s Deliverance”, the late husband and wife deliverance team, Frank & Ida Mae Hammond, explain why children, as young and innocent as they may be, can be plagued by demons.

There are two accounts in the Gospels of Jesus healing children plagued by demons. A study of these passages brings to light several foundation principles which give direction for children’s deliverance.

The first account tells of a father who brought his son to Jesus. He had already taken his boy to the disciples, but they were unable to deliver him. Here is the scriptural account:

The next day, when they came down from the mountain, a large crowd met him. A man in the crowd called out, “Teacher, I beg you to look at my son, for he is my only child. A spirit seizes him and he suddenly screams; it throws him into convulsions so that he foams at the mouth. It scarcely ever leaves him and is destroying him. I begged your disciples to drive it out, but they could not.”

“O unbelieving and perverse generation,” Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you and put up with you? Bring your son here.”

Even while the boy was coming, the demon threw him to the ground in a convulsion. But Jesus rebuked the evil spirit, healed the boy and gave him back to his father. And they were all amazed at the greatness of God. (Luke 9:37-42)

The second account is that of a Canaanite mother who came to Jesus on behalf of her little daughter who was suffering from demon oppression.

Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession.”

Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”

He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel”

The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.

He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”

“Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.”

Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. (Matt. 15:22-28)

CHILDREN CAN HAVE DEMONS The first truth that we discover from these two passages is that children can have demons. Neither of these parents had any problem identifying the source of their children’s torment. How different that is from most parents’ perception today. Most mothers and fathers would recoil in horror if someone suggested that their little ones were oppressed by evil spirits.

We are reminded of those days when the Lord was leading us into deliverance ministry. For us, it was a gradual process of comprehending for whom deliverance applied. At first we thought it was only for those who were deeply enmeshed in sin: the prostitute, the alcoholic, the dope addict. Next, we added the mentally and emotionally ill to our list of deliverance candidates. What a shock it was to us and those of our fellowship, when a visiting minister discerned and cast demons out of Ida Mae.

Then, after each adult in our fellowship had gone through a measure of deliverance, a young mother requested that we cast oppressing demons out of her little son. We recoiled at the idea. “Surely,” we thought, “this is taking deliverance too far!” The mother insisted that she was sure that her little boy had demons. She pointed us to Matthew 15:21-28 where Jesus delivered the Syrophonecian’s little daughter of demons. This convinced us that it is possible for a child to have demons, which gave us the faith to proceed. We cast the evil spirits out of the child, and his behavior improved.

Children are very vulnerable to the infiltration of demons. Why? Children are totally dependent upon others for their care and protection. Parents are the God-appointed, spiritual guardians of their children, yet too few parents are knowledgeable and vigilant in providing a spiritual covering for their children. When we recognize the gates through which demons enter, we can then understand what parents must do to guard their children.

Corrective punishment is a companion to deliverance. As Scripture puts it, “Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him” (Prov. 22:15). Along with the casting out of demons, a stubborn, rebellious child must sometimes be disciplined repeatedly and consistently. The goal is to bring the child to the point of self-discipline. Unless the flesh3 is disciplined, the demon of rebellion and his companions will soon return.

DETECTION OF DEMONS A second truth derived from Jesus’ ministry to the two children, is that the presence of evil spirits in children may be determined by what is happening to the children. The boy whose father brought him to Jesus exhibited symptoms of epilepsy. The father described the demonic symptoms as follows: “A spirit seizes him and he suddenly screams; it throws him into convulsions so that he foams at the mouth. It scarcely ever leaves him and is destroying him” (Luke 9:39).

Such physical trauma in a child would motivate most parents today to seek treatment from a medical doctor. Jesus concurred with the father’s diagnosis and “rebuked the evil spirit.” The child was instantly healed and handed back to the father.

The Syrophonecian woman explained to Jesus how she concluded that her little girl was beset by a demon. She said, “My daughter is grievously vexed with a devil” (KING JAMES); “cruelly harassed by a demon” (WEYMOUTH); “seriously afflicted with insanity” (LAMSA); “in a terrible state – a devil has got into her” (PHILLIPS) (Matt. 15:22).

Jesus did not challenge the mother’s conclusion that her child was demonized. In fact, Jesus showed agreement with the mother when He declared, “You may go; the demon has left your daughter”” (Mark 7:29).

Some theologians have contended that Jesus simply accommodated Himself to the superstitious beliefs of the woman. No, Jesus did not play games with words. He who is Truth never agrees with error.

There are two ways to determine the presence and activities of demons: discernment and detection. Discernment is supernatural; a gifting of the Holy Spirit; the ability to distinguish between spirits (See: I Cor. 12:10). “Detection”’ is derived from the Latin word for discover. “Detective” comes from the same root word. A detective is one who examines the evidence and discovers the truth.

If a child is stubborn, rebellious and untrainable it does not take supernatural discernment to know what spirits are manifesting. They are readily detected.

A woman who lived about twenty miles from us brought her infant daughter for deliverance. She said, “My little baby is just two weeks old, and I want you to deliver her of evil spirits.” She explained to us that the RH factors between her and her husband were not compatible, and, at birth, the baby required a blood exchange. This procedure entailed the extraction of the infant’s blood which was replaced with blood transfusions. Ever since the blood exchange, the baby had been nervous and hyperactive. She was not sleeping normally. There was a constant nervous jerking of her body.

The doctor had sent them home from the hospital with a prescription for Phenobarbital, with instructions to give the barbiturate to the baby. The mother said, “Something in my spirit just says that I cannot start my baby out on drugs.” We agreed that her baby’s vexations were symptoms indicative of the presence of evil spirits. We had not had any experience with such things, but we thought it possible that the trauma of the blood exchange could be the root cause of the child’s affliction.

It was a precious deliverance. Ida Mae held the infant in her arms and quietly commanded a vexing spirit to go. The baby cried briefly and then became peaceful. A spirit of irritability was commanded to leave. Again the infant cried and then became quiet. This pattern of crying followed by peace, repeated itself over and over as demon after demon was commanded out. A week afterward, the mother telephoned us. She reported that her baby was sleeping, and the nervous jerking had stopped.

Through this experience, the Lord confirmed to us that even infants could need deliverance.

Is Your Child Haunted By an Imaginary Friend?

If your child complains of being “disturbed” by imaginary friends or playmates, do not automatically dismiss what he/she is saying, but investigate further, as it could be a sign of a demonic attack. In his book “Confronting Familiar Spirits”, the late Frank Hammond, author of numerous books on deliverance, shares two cases:

It is not unusual to find a child who has an imaginary playmate. The invisible companion is very real to the child. In fact, the playmate may be invisible to others but appear visibly to the child. The imaginary playmate becomes a companion and a teacher of the child.

What begins, in the child’s imagination, as a technique to offset loneliness, evolves into a relationship with a familiar spirit. A four-year old boy, to whom we ministered, had an imaginary playmate whom he called Charcoal. We asked why he called his playmate “Charcoal”, and he insisted that the playmate told him that his name was Charcoal. In order to be set free, the boy first had to fall out of agreement with the familiar spirit and command him to go. Although he was normally an obedient child, he was so threatened by the prospect of losing his companion that he stubbornly resisted his father’s coercion to renounce the demonic presence. After a successful deliverance, there was a marked improvement in the child’s personality and behavior.

In another case, my wife and I ministered to a young woman who was plagued by extreme supernatural phenomena. Poltergeists manifested themselves in her house; she experienced unsought astral travel, and possessed undesired psychic insights. The root cause for all the supernatural phenomena was, in her particular case, an early childhood relationship with an imaginary playmate. Her parents had divorced when she was four years old. Rejection and insecurity resulted because she was passed around to different family members who raised her. She began to play with an imaginary friend, a familiar spirit, named “Genie.” Interestingly, Genie (a derivation of jinn) is one of a class of spirits that assumes various forms, exercises supernatural power and serves his summoner. The familiar spirit, Genie, was responsible for the occult phenomena.

Church Leader Becomes a Homosexual and Leaves His Wife and Family to Live With A Man. Then Something Amazing Happens…

In his book “Power of the Blood”, the late deliverance minister H.A. Maxwell Whyte shares this amazing story of a church leader who unwittingly opened his life to the spirit of homosexuality, and even went so far as to leave his beautiful wife and family to live with a man. However, something amazing happened, as we read below:

IS THERE HOPE FOR ME? Perhaps the best Scripture on this subject details the story of the man whose house was garnished, swept, and cleansed after the evil spirit had gone out. This demon was not so easily defeated. He wandered around, waiting for a convenient moment to return. Finally, the man backslid, and the demon did return and brought with him seven other spirits worse than himself. (See Matthew 12:43-45.)

To say that this man was not saved is to misuse the plain meaning of words. Obviously, he was saved, delivered, and cleansed in the blood; but he chose to backslide and consequently returned to his previous habit, and seven other demons came to plague him. The frightful possibility of such a relapse was made very real to me a number of years ago.

The telephone rang. “Is that you, Pastor Whyte?” The same man who had been delivered from twenty demons in our church kitchen seven years before was on the line.

“Yes,” I replied. “What can I do for you?”

“Are you in the same place?”


“Do you still have the same ministry?”


He sighed with relief, saying that God had directed him to call me. He was trapped in the pit of sin again. “Do you think there’s any hope for me?” he sighed. “I’m in a terrible mess.”

I assured him that there was indeed hope, for the mercies of God are new every morning. So he came to my office.

His story was very sordid but a warning to us all. After his spectacular deliverance, he had moved out of the area and into the suburbs. The new church he attended did not believe the full gospel and did not teach or practice healing or deliverance.

One rainy day, as he drove downtown to his business in Toronto, he noticed a man at a bus stop. With compassion, he invited the man to get into his car. This worldly man offered our friend a cigarette. His offer opened a wonderful opportunity for our friend to witness about the salvation and deliverance available in Christ. But no. Instead, he took the cigarette, which proved to be his first step to hell on earth.

Each day he picked up this man, and each day they smoked. Soon they talked about drinking together. Their sin escalated from the tavern to the racetrack where they bet on the horses. Finally, the newfound friend said to our brother, “I love you.”

As I listened to this man’s story, I could hardly believe it. He had a beautiful wife, four wonderful children, and a good home. I had often visited them. What power drove a good Christian man to become a homosexual, leave his wife and family, and live in one room with another man? Psychology cannot explain this. It was the devil working through indwelling demons.

WORSE OFF THAN BEFORE. Theology explains that no Christian can have a demon. But I remembered how God had delivered this dear brother from a demon of suicide seven years before. How could this Spirit-filled man have gotten a suicide demon in the first place? And what about the demons that were in him now?

I knew there was only one answer. He had arrived at this miserable state by disobeying the words of Scripture: “Neither give place to the devil” (Ephesians 4:27). He had allowed the devil to occupy territory that had previously been occupied by the Holy Spirit.

The broken man slumped into a chair after his agonizing confession. He had scraped the bottom of the barrel of sin but was ready to be rescued again.

Without further delay, we gave the command. “Come out, in the name of Jesus!” The man was ready. The filthy demons began to pour out of him with almost continual coughing and choking. Without any asking on my part, they willingly named themselves as they came out. Lust, filth, uncleanness, perversion, cursing, etc. In twenty minutes he was completely free again.

When it was all over, I realized that I had seen a fulfillment of Jesus’ words:

 When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. (Matthew 12:43-45)

This explained what had happened to the man. After his first deliverance, his “house” had been cleansed, swept, and put in order, but he had not kept it filled with the new Visitor, the Holy Spirit. His house had been left empty, so the suicide spirit came back. However, that spirit also beckoned to seven of his filthy friends, and they came in also. What a mess a Christian can get himself into by backsliding! But thank God, deliverance is available to all who will bend the knee to Jesus and ask Him to forgive their sins and enter into their lives.

FULLY RESTORED.   Seven years later, I met this same brother again in a certain church. Immediately I asked how he was doing. He joyfully told me that after his second deliverance, he returned home and made a full confession to his wife and family. They forgave him and took him back. God then began to prosper his business, and he bought a better home. He was keeping his house clean with the blood of Jesus, and the demons had permanently left.

Are You Battling a Strong Urge to Commit Suicide? Read This

Are you battling a strong urge to commit suicide? If so, perhaps you could be tormented by demons of suicide, and the good news is that you can be set free by the Blood of Jesus! In his book “Power of the Blood”, the late deliverance minister H.A. Maxwell Whyte shares his experience of helping a church deacon to be set free from suicide demons.

Around that time, a Christian brother, who had been a deacon in a full gospel church, was battling a strong urge to commit suicide. Could it be that a Holy Spirit-baptized man – a deacon in a full gospel assembly – could be demon possessed?

What would our Bible schools say? What would the pastor of his church say? What would anyone say? Who cares what they say! I quickly told the afflicted man that demons were probably the source of his torment. Being desperate, he asked what he could do. Remembering a recent deliverance session where an asthmatic was gloriously set free, I felt I was ready for anything.

“There is one thing we can do,” I said. “We can cast out these suicide demons.”

“When?” he asked.

“Tonight,” I replied, full of faith and the joy of the Lord! I was learning that I was seated in heavenly places in Christ and had been given authority over demonic forces.

My wife came down into the basement kitchen with us. We sat on one side of the room, and this despondent man sat on the other side with his wife. The kitchen became an arena of spiritual battle.

We began by singing choruses about the blood of Jesus because we didn’t want these demons to attack us. There is nothing like a fresh reminder of the power of Jesus’ blood.

The demons knew they had no power over us. Then we gave the command.

To my astonishment, this man shot into the air about one foot off his chair. He landed with a thud, and his head shook to and fro like a toy in a dog’s mouth.

We doubled our forceful commands in the name of Jesus and ordered every foul suicide demon to come out. After one hour, many unclean spirits had come out moaning, coughing, vomiting, and writhing. Then they started to speak. We had read about demons who spoke to Jesus, but we didn’t know anyone who heard demons speak today. We know differently now.

We asked the spirits how many more remained in our brother, and they replied, “Twenty.” We counted them as they came out, paused at each fifth one, and asked again. Amazingly, they told the truth, although they argued and sometimes refused to answer. But our pressing commands in Jesus’ name caused them to tell the truth.

“Fifteen.” “Ten.” “Five.” The last demon put up a twenty-minute fight, but the name of Jesus, His precious blood, and an authoritative command expelled him. Finally set free from demonic bondage, this brother threw his head back and spoke in tongues, magnifying God.

He then made a pact with God; he said that if he was truly delivered, he would like God to give him the gift of prophecy. The next Sunday around the communion table, this cleansed vessel brought forth a beautiful prophetic word that edified the entire church.

To Be Set Free from Demons, You First Need to Forsake Your Sins and Determine to Serve God

Many victims of demonic attacks wish to be set free from these attacks.

However, as long as they have no intention of renouncing their sins, freedom remains an elusive hope, according to the late deliverance minister H.A. Maxwell Whyte, who wrote the following piece of advice in his book “Demons & Deliverance” to counsellors of victims.

Before beginning the prayer of deliverance, find out whether the one who is bound really wants to serve the Lord. Discover if any known sins are unconfessed. The sufferer should seek forgiveness for the sin or weakness that allowed the spirit to enter in the first place.

In one case, a woman informed my wife and me that she was a lesbian. We implored her to seek the Lord’s forgiveness and forsake this sin, which is so highly condemned in Scripture. To our astonishment, she admitted that she wasn’t sure she could do it since she felt the experience was rather beautiful. This woman wanted to be set free from the stigma of her sin, but she didn’t want to forsake it. No amount of prayer would have budged this unclean spirit. The demon had a right to stay there and manifest its unclean nature.

Can Christians Be Demon Possessed?

Can Christians be demon possessed? In his book “Demons & Deliverance In the Ministry of Jesus”, the late Frank Hammond, author of numerous books on deliverance, provides a helpful answer to that question:

No, a redeemed child of God cannot be owned by the devil! To redeem means “to release by paying a ransom price”. The price paid by Jesus for our redemption was His own blood:

Knowing that ye were redeemed, not with corruptible things. with silver or gold … but with precious blood, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot, even the blood of Christ. (I Peter 1:18,19)

Therefore, a Christian is His purchased possession, “for ye were bought with a price” (I Corinthians 6:20).

A Christian is Jesus possessed, not demon possessed.

Much misunderstanding has resulted from the King James version having translated the Greek word daimonizoma as “possessed with devils”. A more accurate translation of daimonizomai is: “to be under the power of a demon.” There is a vast difference between being possessed (owned) by demons and by having demons. Webster renders possessed in reference to demons as, “affected by demons or invisible agents”.

The proper question is not “Can a Christian be demon possessed?” but rather, “Can a Christian have a demon or be under the power of demons”?

An honest assessment of New Testament teaching must bring us to the conclusion that the New Testament makes no distinction between believers and non-believers as far as demonization is concerned.

Therefore, if the New Testament makes no such distinction, then none should be made. The obvious conclusion is that both unbelievers and believers can be demonized.

How can we understand the demonization of a Christian? The question faced is: Can property owned by one person be trespassed upon by another person? Suppose a landowner has a wooded piece of property that affords good squirrel hunting. A trespasser can come upon that property and begin to shoot squirrels, but he can also be put off the property as one who has no legal right. This is precisely what takes place when a demon indwells a Christian. The evil spirit has no rights of ownership. Therefore, when the evil spirit is commanded to go, by the Owner or His delegated authority, the evil spirit has no choice but to go. Trespassers can be evicted.

Deliverance for Christians represents the eviction of trespassing spirits.

Another pertinent question is: “For whom is deliverance provided?” Jesus called deliverance “the children’s bread” (Matthew 15:26), meaning that deliverance from demons is for those who have faith in Christ Jesus. Jesus declared that the children’s bread was not to be given to “dogs”, meaning those who are ceremonially impure, or those outside the covenant of God. The gentile woman of Canaan, who was seeking deliverance for her little daughter, exhibited faith by her contention that even dogs are allowed the crumbs that fall from the master’s table. Whereon, Jesus declared, “O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was healed from that hour” (Matthew 15:28).

When evil spirits are driven out of a person, a spiritual condition is created which Jesus compared to a newly vacated house. He taught that if the “house” (person’s life) is left unoccupied, it is susceptible to the return of the old tenant and his friends. Only a believer can fill his life with the things of Christ.

One who does not fill himself with Jesus and an opposite lifestyle from which he was delivered, is in imminent danger of ending up seven times worse than he was before.