Track 4 of 7 in the Spiritual Realm series
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Speaker: Mike Nobis
Sunday School Teacher, Former Elder at Madison Park Christian Church. Mike is President of JK Creative Printers & Mailing in Quincy, IL. He is married to Pam and has three children, Tom, Tyler and Jennifer. Mike has three grandchildren: Ryne, Ivy and Alicia.
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November 27, 2005
By now you should be able to predict what I am going to teach about demons from the lessons we had on angels and Satan. There is so much information about demons in the scriptures that we can know if they exist or not. Just like angels and Satan, if demons are not real, then the scriptures and it's validity crumble because the Bible depends on the existence of demons. Not only does the Bible tell us that demons exist, but there are many cultures that also believed in demons.
It should not be a surprise to us that the heathen nations have plenty to say about demons. Since they are ungodly and don't live a life honorable to God, then their lives and surroundings will be dominated by Satan and his demons that do his bidding. The history of various religions from the earliest times shows belief in Satan and demons to be universal. Spells, incantations, magical texts, exorcisms and various forms of demonic phenomena abound in archaeological discoveries from Sumeria and Babylon. Egyptian, Assyrian, Chaldean, Greek and Roman antiquity are rich in demonic phenomena.
The deities worshipped by these cultures were invisible demons represented by material idols and images. To an amazing degree, the history of religion is an account of demon-controlled religion, especially in its clash with the Hebrew faith and later with Christianity.
What has gone on in resent years and is now happening today that tells us that demons are at work against the believers of God? How serious is the work of Satan against the Church and is the Church ready for what Satan has planned? How serious are you? Evidence for the reality of angels and the reality of demons overlaps; some of the same arguments pertain to both. Last week we went over the existence of Satan and discovered his nature and his intentions in the world. When Satan fell, according to scripture, he took 1/3 of the angelic hosts with him. If Satan exists today, so do his evil spirits who follow after him.
In the Old Testament, we see many times demons attacking mankind. Man is Satan's enemy and he hates man as much as he hates God. It is Satan's intention to inflict as much harm on man as possible and to cause man to fall just as he has fallen. He does this by convincing man that he too can become like God thus causing man to reject God. This rejection of God causes man to be separated from God and powerless against the evil actions of Satan. It is not hard today to look and see the demonic actions of Satan and his demons in the lives of those who are outside of Christ. He brings misery to those who are the fallen.
Consider the misery in the world today. Consider the evil actions of people, governments and nations. Consider the misery people suffer within our own town and sometimes within our own church. How much of it is demonic in nature? What can we, the church, do about it? Anyone who reads the Gospels will soon learn and realize that during the time of Jesus, there was a lot of demonic activity going on in Israel. Everywhere Jesus went, he was confronted by evil, misery, emptiness, demon-controlled people and Satan himself. The Hebrew people were a nation of God and yet they were plagued by so much demonic activity. Their history is full of Satan and his demons attacking them and influencing them to worship other gods and forsake God as the one true God. When Jesus comes on the scene, Satan and his demons were at their best.
Jesus accepted and taught that Satan was the ruler of a host of demons. He taught that Satan and his angels were morally responsible persons destined by God for the lake of fire. A large portion of Jesus ministry involved casting demons out of those who were possessed. He even gave his disciples the power to cast demons out. When demons were cast out Jesus viewed it as victory over Satan. Publicly and in private Jesus taught the existence of demons and never once did he correct someone for believing in their existence.
Description of Demons:
I am not going to spend a lot of time in this because their description is very similar to that of angels. The reason, they are angels; they are just evil and follow after Satan. Again, they have personalities just like angels, they are described using personal pronouns suggesting that they are persons, not its. They can speak, they have intelligence, they do have emotions and are beings of free will. But they are different in some ways to angels. And in most cases, they are opposite:
From what we see in scripture, demons have tremendous powers. That is why Jesus taught never to play with demons or take demons on alone. We are no match for them using our own power.
Fortune telling is a demonic activity. Man is commanded not to search for knowledge of the future. Why is fortune telling bad and how do demons use it to harm man? How do demons know the future what do they do with the information they have? The source of their knowledge is found in their superior created nature and in their vast experience. They have lived through thousands of years of observing and collecting information and they can predict how man will act and react. They know how to manipulate man and his weaknesses and they use their spiritual entity to play on mans mind and human will. It is easy for them to influence man's thoughts and will by lying to man about God.
Demonic power is often manifested in viciousness. Many times the actions of a demon will cause man to harm himself. Today we see the same things. We might not witness a demon controlled person but we do see demonic things people do when they do things to intentionally harm themselves and cause themselves to become sick or hurt. Some actions leads to death. These are not actions of God but actions of demons.
Do you remember when we discussed the "Case for Faith", how some scholars view miracles as going against science? We discussed miracles and what they were, what are miracles and do they exist? Miracles do not negate the natural laws. When God performs miracles, he has the power to intervene and interrupt natural laws. Demons also have the same kind of power though very limited in comparison to God. But they still have the strength to do them and to fool man into believing their lies. Christians must be alert to this fact and not gullible when witnessing miraculous events. We must discern and test the spirits before accepting the events as Godly.
Read Acts 8:9-13; 8:18-19
A legion of soldiers could include from 3,000 to 6,000 soldiers with auxiliary troops. In this man, there were enough demons in him to drive 2,000 pigs into the sea. They are limited in space but not like you and I since we are physical and they are spiritual.
What are the duties of demons?
We must realize that the works of demons is in itself an industry. It is always working and it never ceases to promote satanic deception and wickedness. Like any corporate industry, it has many businesses it works through and all the profits goes to one owner, Satan. He is the CEO and he is the drive and inspiration of all the demons do and try to accomplish. They have a vast array of products to sell and they work hard to get you to buy them.
But God does overrule demons. There are things that God doesn't allow them to do. There are actions God takes to disable the works of demons:
God gives to us the weapons we need to fight against Satan and his demons when they come after us, and they will. But we are especially Satan's targets when we are successful in Jesus.