Evangelicals major on talking about “being born again,” but does anyone know how many times our Lord spoke on this issue? Just one time. Period.
Yet, there are more than thirty instances in the four Gospels where Jesus cast out demons, gave power to His disciples to cast out demons, or taught about casting out demons.
Now, how is it that Evangelicals can talk for hours about the importance of being “born again,” but yet, we draw blanks when it comes to casting out demons?
So that no advantage would be taken of us by Satan, for we are not ignorant of his schemes. (2 Corinthians 2:11)
Paul wrote the above verse in reference to a man who had committed sexual immorality with his father’s wife. The apostle recommended the man be delivered to Satan for the destruction of the man’s flesh. When the man repented, Paul recommended the man should be accepted back into the fellowship.
But the important point is this: Satan has schemes and plans to destroy the effectiveness of believers.
Okay, who benefits the most by believers not being able to cast out demons? The Kingdom of God? Or the kingdom of darkness?
But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. (Matthew 12:28)
It’s obvious that if believers do not understand how to cast out demons, the kingdom of darkness rejoices at our ignorance. Why? Because our power and authority in Jesus’ name bows impotent before the god of this world: Satan.
(Excerpt from teaching, “Do We Still Cast Out Demons?” The full teaching can be read here.
My prayer today:
Lord, send Your light and truth to help remove the blinders from our eyes that the god of this world has placed on them. (Based on Psalms 43:3 and 2 Corinthians 4:4)
What do you think and has the Lord spoken to you today?
Join with me on Tuesdays to fast and pray for American believers’ eyes to be opened.
7 responses to “Prayers for American Christians’ Eyes to be Opened (10/24/2017)”
I don’t have time to tell my story just now, but I was drawn to prison ministry (when I was in school) by a chaplain who cast out demons at the request of an inmate and the guard down in seg at the Robertson Unit in Abilene, Texas. I could have done my internship, like 95% of my classmates in youth ministry – which features pizza and movies and ball games. But I went to prison instead so I could cast out demons!
That sounds like an interesting story, especially compared to pizzas and movies. God bless you.
God bless you, Mr. Larry, for continuing this series , continuing to teach us. Great revelation about how many times Jesus spoke on casting out demons. Thank you!
Thanks. God bless you.
BTW, the kids are to bed now so lets try this again.
Yeah… part of my ministry coursework required internship for a summer. The vast majority of my classmates were headed toward youth-n-family ministry. I have respect for a few guys in that area, but in my experience, that kind of ministry is a farce. My respect is not given easily… especially in that field. I see it as a status quo maintenance ministry at best (with few exceptions).
Anyway, without criticizing that all day, I was sure I would not go that direction. About 5% of us went into hospitals, but NO ONE EVER went to prison. I am the first in my school history.
But at first I still needed to narrow down either jail or prison. We had both, and I didn’t have any reason to prefer one over the other. Not until I went for the interview.
My faith heritage is BIG on being biblical. Not that the phrase means the same thing to all people in all places – nor that my heritage was flawless about it. But we are BIG on it – historically speaking.
That said, matters having to do with miracles, speaking in tongues, and casting out demons were seen largely as matters of history – matters that died with the Apostles. Not saying I agree with that, but it is my heritage to believe that. (I am not the only exception there, but we are the minority in that bunch.)
Anyway, when it comes to spiritual matters, my heritage takes a rather bland view of contemporary application. And when I sat to interview with the chaplain, we both knew this as we were both from the same heritage.
He was one of the assistant chaplains at Robertson. In his early career, he had been a preacher in a few country churches around West Texas, but in middle age, he became a corrections officer. Eventually, a position in the chaplains office opened up, and he took it. And of course chaplaincy dictates dealing in matters of church and faith outside one’s own heritage as well as within. This is a stretch for a country preacher from my heritage. Not unheard of, but rare.
So, the guy was just a simple preacher. Nothing fancy. Not a hifalutin seminary guy. No PhD or MDiv. Just a humble preacher school grad (like a trade school for preachers) and mostly well ensconced in his heritage, but willing to stretch.
It so happens that my coursework put us through a semester of preparation for internship and a semester of reflection on it. This set of classes would take an entire year to complete. And as I stressed above, I don’t respect youth ministry. I knew full well, I would come back in the Fall and hear all these accounts of pizza and movie ministries that I was gonna yawn and fight to stay awake through. I did not want to add to that!
So when this chaplain told me that he cast out a demon, I was jazzed!
He told about how the guard down in Seg called and asked for the chaplain to come to an emergency situation. This is so rare, it practically never happens. And when the guard described the issue, the chaplain even suggested a psych consult, but the guard thought chaplaincy should have the first shot at it.
So the chaplain went down to investigate. The inmate in the cell complained that the cell was full of demons tormenting him by pinching him from behind constantly. The chaplain could not see anything, but he took the guy seriously. However, in our heritage, neither he (nor I) ever heard of anyone casting out a demon other than what we find in Scripture. But of course this simple country preacher, like me, did not see the reasoning about this stuff ending with the Apostles as being biblical. So, he was being stretched.
He had to confess to the inmate that he had never dealt with this kind of thing before. He said he would need to go consult some friends, some books, and his Bible, but he would return the next day and offer his services the best he could.
That night he did just that. He called a couple of preacher friends, he researched a couple of books, and he searched the Scriptures that he already knew so well. AND he prayed.
He had absolutely no confidence in himself. He confessed to me that he felt entirely inadequate for the job. The friends, though encouraging, were largely clueless. The books did not reveal anything that helped. But the story in the Gospels where Jesus’ disciples are unable to cast out the demon from the boy seemed to resonate with him. He felt powerless to the task, and that story hit home.
But of course Jesus casts out the demon that the disciples could not. And once it is done, he explains that “this kind only comes out with prayer”.
Chaplain went back the next day and found the guy. He said, I only have one idea about how to deal with this demon, and I never did this before. But you (the inmate) and me (the chaplain) are going to have to have faith. We gotta trust God with this. Do you trust God?
The inmate affirmed it.
The chp then prayed over the cell and asked Jesus to cast the demon out.
When he finished, he looked up at the inmate and the inmate looked at him. He asked the inmate: Is the demon gone? Has it stopped tormenting you?
The inmate said, YES, Chap. It’s gone. You prayed it out of here and now it is gone!
The chaplain was surprised. He could hardly believe it. He told the inmate, I will come back tomorrow and check on you.
The next day, the demon was still gone. The inmate said, Chap. You prayed and it was thrown out of here. I am okay now.
The chaplain checked with him the next day too. Still gone. Then he shot I-60’s to the inmate and the corresponded this way for another week. Every day the inmate insisted, You prayed; it’s gone!
I knew right then I wanted to go to prison! I wanted to witness this. I wanted to be a part of it. I wanted to reflect it in the fall.
I got the job.
Chap took me down to meet the inmate. He told me essentially the same story. I checked on him half a dozen times all summer, and he remained free of the demon.
I was sad that I did not get to witness this happen first hand, nor any other occurrences of it. but your post touches exactly this nerve with me. This is why I went to prison.
I will start praying 1 Corinthians 14:1 for you. Then you can have your own experiences.