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About demons – the biblical analysis

Libor Diviš

To tell the truth, I´d rather write, for instance, about God´s love and greatness.Unfortunately, I´ve got much more experience with demons….. About demons – the biblical analysis
To tell the truth, I´d rather write, for instance, about God´s love and greatness.Unfortunately, I´ve got much more experience with demons.I´d like to remind potential readers of the existence of these spiritual beings.Recently, the church´s behaved as if the existence and especially the demons´activity finished with Jesus´s Resurrection or crucifixion.Unfortunately, this is wrong.Let´s have a look at what Bible says about demons!
 
I´ll have a try at taking it one after another in agreement with Bible.The first reference is in Leviticus 20,27: A man also or woman that hath a familiar spirit or that is a wizzard
,shall surely be put to death, they shall stone them with stones, their blood shall be upon them. It´s quite obvious from this passage that you can have an unclean spirit – a demon within himself / herself.Furthermore,it seems logical to me that the spirits must show themselves evidently through that person so that they might be distinguished.That´s awful how popular, for example, the spiritism – raising ghosts -  is even now. Actually, the thing is to get ready for receiving a “spirit of deceased“.The one who´s the most open, “wins“ and is picked out as a medium for the connection with the deceased.Here I´d like to anticipate and point out to another lie of spiritism that says you are in touch with the real souls or spirits of the deceased.Now let´s have a look at the passage Ecclesiastes 9, 5-6: For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.  Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.
Have you grasped the meaning?:the deceased can´t interfere in our lives, not even like spirits.As a matter of fact, these answers are given by a demon who has enough information about the dead person.
 
There´s another passage in Bible where is mentioned a demon, Judges 9,23: Then God sent an evil spirit between Abimelech and men of Shechem, and the men of Shechem dealt treacherously with Abimelech.
 
It follows that demons are able to influence behaviour and people´s attitude.Furthermore, we can “ask for“ being troubled by an evil spirit.Abimelek behaved in a terrible way, he talked Shekems into appointing him a king and put his 70 brothers to death.Bible is also amazing at its way of interpretation.The very next verse says (verse n.24):Then the cruelty done to the threescore and ten sons of Jerubaal might come, and their blood laid upon the men of Shechem which aided him in the killing of his brethren.
 
As you can see both the one who´d done injustice and those who´d supported him met similar fate.Anyway, I recommend that all of you read and think about the whole chapter nine of the book of Judges.This chapter goes on describing how Abimelek had been behaving as a king until his violent death.During the siege of a tower some woman threw down a millstone and broke his head.He allowed his warriour to run him through because he didn´t want to be said to be killed by a woman.It says in the verses 56-57:
Thus God rendered the wickedness of Abimelech which he did unto his father in slaying his seventy brethren and all the evil of the men of Shechem did God render upon their heads.
 
  
There´s some other information in these verses.It´s about reprisals for an injustice or if you like for a sin.God says, for example,.in Deuteronomium32,35:“To me belongeth vengeance, and recompence.“God commmands people to forgive and leave vengeance to Himself.People are often guilty of “taking justice into their own hands“.
 
 
There´s another passage where an evil spirit is mentioned 1.Samuel 16, 14-16:But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul and an evil spirit from the LORD troubled him.And Saul´s servants said unto him:“Behold, now, an evil spirit from God troubleth thee.
Let our lord now thy servants, which are before thee to seek out a man, who´s a cunning player on an harp: and it shall come to pass, when the evil spirit is upon thee, that he shall play with his hand, and thou shall be well.“
 
Saul didn´t carry out direct God´s order and that´s why the evil spirit began to trouble him.Saul was given an order to kill Amalech and destroy everything that belongs to him because it´d been cursed.However, Saul didn´t obey and left Amalech´s king Agag alive.In addition to that, he kept the best heads of cattle so that he could sacrifice them to God.The prophet Samuel told Saul:“Because you rejected God´s word he also rejected you as a king“. It was the same case with Abimelech. Even here the sin was committed first and then these men started being troubled by demons.
 
Furthermore, it´s plain from these verses that the local people had already had some knowledge about demons.They even knew that demon´d stop troubling Saul if somebody´d play on an harp.Yeah, music is really very powerful.They brought David and whenever he played the evil spirit stepped back.Let´s move on to the following verses 1.Samuel 18,10-11:“ And it came to pass on the tomorrow, that the evil spirit from God came upon Saul, and he prophesied in the midst of the house: and David played with his hand, as at other times: and there was a javelin in Saul’s hand. And Saul cast the javelin; for he said, I will smite David even to the wall with it. And David avoided out of his presence twice. And Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with him, and was departed from Saul.
But David avoided out of his presence two times.You can see here that demons can have a great influence on the people´s demeanour.
 
Let´s go into the New Testament now and have a look at what Jesus said to the demons and how he coped with them
Matthew 8,16: When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick.
 
Mark 5,1-15: They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes.When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit came from the tombs to meet him.This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him any more not even with a chain.For he´d often been chained hand and foot, but he tore his chains apart and broke the irons on his feet.No one was strong enough to subdue him.Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones.When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him.He shouted at the top of his voice,What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Sweat to God that you won´t torture me!“For Jesus had said to him,“Come out of this man, you evil spirit!“Then Jesus asked him,“What´s your name?“My name is Legion, he replied,“ for we are many.“And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area.A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside.The demons begged Jesus,“Send us among the pigs:allow us to go into them.He gave them permission, and the evil spirits came out and went into the pigs.The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned.Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened.When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind: and they were afraid.
 
Here we can notice a few interesting things.The possessed man had a terrible strength ( the local people were unable to subdue him ).Jesus didn´t speak to the human being but directly to the demons and  on the other hand demons themselves talked to Jesus.You can see it´s about beings who don´t have physical bodies but they´ve got intelligence.Demons knew that Jesus is God´s Son ( Jesus didn´t boast about it, on the contrary ) and that he has power ( authority ) over them.Furtermore, we can see that demons can enter and control not only people but also animals ( although they prefer living parasitically with human beings ).It´s obvious from the story that the possessed man was running across the country naked.After the demons´d been driven out he started being in his right mind.
 
Let´s move on now! Another interesting story is the healing of mute.Matthew 9,32-33 says:While they were going out, a man who was demon-possessed and couldn´t talk was brought to Jesus.And when the demon was driven out, the man who´d been mute spoke.It´s clear from this story that some health complaints can be caused by demons.In this case demon kept him from speaking at all.
 
The very interesting topic concerning demons is the question of authority.First, Jesus put his authority into the hands of the twelve disciples and then to the following seventy ones.Luke 10,17-20: The seventy-two returned with joy and said,“Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.“He replied,“I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.I´ve given you the authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy:nothing´ll harm you.However, don´t rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven“
 
Jesus could hand over his power (authority) over the demons and illnesses to his disciples.It´s similar with civil servants – for instance, policemen.The state gave its competence to the policemen to mete out justice.They themselves don´t have authority ( or if you like power ) to stop cars, for example.Authorization of the state gives them this competence.The same rules work in the spiritual world.Jesus´s disciples wouldn´t have been able to drive out a demon by themselves.Jesus gave them this authority because they were his envoys and representatives.Then Jesus goes on explaining to his disciples what the essential things are and what they shall rejoice at.
 
Let´s have a look at the freeing of the possessed boy Mark 9,17-29:.A man in the crowd answered, Teacher, I brought you my son who is possessed by a spirit that´s robbed him of speech.Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground.He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid.I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit but they couldn´t.“
O unbelieving generation, Jesus replied, “how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.“
So they brought him.When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into convulsion.He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth.Jesus asked the boy´s father,“How long has he been like this?“ “From childhood“ he answered.“It´s often thrown him into fire or water to kill him.But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.“ If you can?“said Jesus.“Everything is possible for him who believes.“
Immediately the boy´s father exclaimed,“I do believe: help me overcome my unbelief!“
When Jesus saw that a crowd was running to the scene, he rebuke the evil spirit.“You deaf and mute spirit“ he said “I command you, come out of him and never enter him again.The spirit shrieked, convulsed him violently and came out.The boy looked so much like a corpse that many said,“He´s dead.“ But Jesus took him by the hand and lifted him to his feet, and he stood up.After Jesus´d gone indoors, his disciples asked him privately,“Why couldn´t we drive it out?“ He replied,“This kind can come out only by prayer“
I think that these symptoms would be regarded as epilepsy by the present-day medicine.Jesus drove out a demon instead of administering antiepileptical pills, neuroleptical pills or sedatives.This rooted out not only the cause of the problem but also the symptoms.Jesus put forward the reason why the disciples couldn´t drive out the demon.This reason is their unbelief.He goes on saying that prayer and fast must be added so that this kind of demon could be driven out.Whatever it may be ( the faith might increase by fasting and praying ), some sorts of demons ( mostly the most serious cases of demonization ) simply won´t leave without using these “weapons“.
 
There are much more stories about demons in Bible but this might be sufficient for you to familiarize yourself with this field. I´ll try my utmost to answer all the possible questions on my e-mail address, or I may broaden these pages with some other examples from the Bible.
 
Info@musculus.cz, www.musculus.cz/ buh
 
 

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