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Known for his famous, "Healing" book (1974), Francis MacNutt, Charismatic healer/educator, and all around super holy guy, wrote Deliverance From Evil Spririts: A Practical Manual in 1995.
It's kind of a sequel to "Healing." He's learned a lot about praying for broken Christians within the 2 decades. This book is the fruit of his toil, his love for the Body of Christ.

Of special interest to some of us ( Wink ), MacNutt dedicates a whole chapter to "Falling Under a Curse" beginning with:

"If coming under demonic attack or being infested by a demon is not a currently acceptable concept in most mainline Christian churches today, the idea of being cursed is seen as even more superstitious and primitive, even in many fundamentalist or conservative churches that claim to be based solely on Scripture...So I have spent years learning more about the traditional practice of being freed from curses--traditional not only in early Christianity but in all religions. Hardly a week has gone by in recent years that I have not had to pray for someone affected by a curse, exchanging that curse for a blessing."

And from personal training with the MacNutts at their Christian Healing Ministries (CHM), the story is that Christians are by no means exempt from evil spirits or curses. They see Christians receive deliverance every day! MacNutt distinguishes curses from superstition, obviously.

Because Francis has seen the reality of evil and curses upon Christians, they deal with it directly, not out of fear or anxiety, but as a matter of fact and prudence. Hence, the training at CHM includes strict adherence to a 'prayer of protection,' that Francis personally wrote, before any ministry time with prayer recipients. I've shared it on SP somewhere, with permission.

One of the lines in this prayer is: "In the Name of Jesus...We break any curses, hexes or spells sent against us and declare them null and void."

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Shasha,
 
Posts: 1091 | Registered: 05 April 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for this review, Shasha. I don't have any personal experience with curses, hexes and the like and am not sure I understand how that would work. It seems to be a shadow side of the kind of "binding and loosing" the Lord referred to -- maybe how one's focused intent interacts with another person's energies?. What I can't fathom is how this hangs on; maybe that's where the reinforcement of evil spirits comes in: that they attach themselves to this ill-intent? Whatever the case, it surely seems as though prayer and the Spirit ought to be enough to nullify it; can't imaging an evil spirit co-existing with that, unless it's some unsurrendered aspect of the soul.
 
Posts: 3522 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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All,

I see it like this:

1. God does not want to see any Christian fear that He will not protect them from the occult. PERIOD! Psalm 91 provides us with that assurance. It does not have the word ‘sometimes’ peppered throughout. In fact, the word ‘sometimes’ does not appear at all. If a Christian is being assailed by a spirit he/she is to put faith in the truth of God’s protection and the ministry of angelic protectors.

My belief is that God wants us to put real faith in His providential care and the ministry of our guardian angels. Of course, we are not to be presumptuous and put God to the test in this regard. (Per second temptation of Christ.) But, if under attack, Psalm 91 is to be our belt and shield as we stand firm against the tactics of the devil. (Eph 6: 14, 16, 11)

Given that we have made God our stronghold, no evil shall befall us.

2. So how does one explain that, as MacNutt relates, some Christians require deliverance?

I would say (my belief):

(a) Because at some time in their lives they had opened themselves to the occult and sinned against the first commandment – thereby enabling entrance of evil spirits;

(b) or when assailed by evil they had not placed faith in Psalm 91 and had yielded to the deceit of a lie (they put faith in the lie – as in my example of the painter on the white magic thread who, based on being given the evil eye gesture, believed in the curse and never climbed a ladder thereafter);

(c) or their parents had opened themselves to the occult, and that had enabled their children under their authority to be consequently made vulnerable and possibly subsequently infected – occult paraphernalia (ouija boards, tarot cards, books) left around the house, children present during seances or psychic readings or horoscopes etc;

(d) or the parents may have sinned against them when they were yet just children. (There is a scripture that speaks to the sins of the parents being passed down.) This sinning against the children who naturally put faith in their parents may have occurred through lies (ex. tales of the boogeyman), or through physical, sexual or emotional abuse -- which children are incapable of protecting themselves against;

(e) or the parents allowed the children to be abused and victimized by siblings or parental boyfriends / girlfriends. Evil spirits do not necessarily take hold but might sometimes in some regards, probably based on degree and / or repetitiveness and whether trauma was present. Sometimes it’s hard to discern whether inner healing of memories is sufficient or whether deliverance is also additionally required.

Entrance of evil spirits and the need for deliverance comes via sin-related exception to the norm—which is God’s providential protection and the ministry of angels. Folks living good lives need never fear.

I don’t believe that evil spirits can enter a Christian where personal sin (or parental sin) is not present or has not been present. Not by some voodoo agent, spell, curse, evil eyemaker, nasty gypsy or guru’s attack!

In the case of kids that have been infected due to parental victimization, Psalm 91 states: “Because he clings to me I will deliver him (/ her)”.

Pop-pop
 
Posts: 465 | Registered: 20 October 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by pop-pop:
All,

I see it like this:

1. God does not want to see any Christian fear that He will not protect them from the occult. PERIOD! Psalm 91 provides us with that assurance. It does not have the word ‘sometimes’ peppered throughout. In fact, the word ‘sometimes’ does not appear at all. If a Christian is being assailed by a spirit he/she is to put faith in the truth of God’s protection and the ministry of angelic protectors.

My belief is that God wants us to put real faith in His providential care and the ministry of our guardian angels. Of course, we are not to be presumptuous and put God to the test in this regard. (Per second temptation of Christ.) But, if under attack, Psalm 91 is to be our belt and shield as we stand firm against the tactics of the devil. (Eph 6: 14, 16, 11)

Given that we have made God our stronghold, no evil shall befall us.

2. So how does one explain that, as MacNutt relates, some Christians require deliverance?

I would say (my belief):

(a) Because at some time in their lives they had opened themselves to the occult and sinned against the first commandment – thereby enabling entrance of evil spirits;

(b) or when assailed by evil they had not placed faith in Psalm 91 and had yielded to the deceit of a lie (they put faith in the lie – as in my example of the painter on the white magic thread who, based on being given the evil eye gesture, believed in the curse and never climbed a ladder thereafter);

(c) or their parents had opened themselves to the occult, and that had enabled their children under their authority to be consequently made vulnerable and possibly subsequently infected – occult paraphernalia (ouija boards, tarot cards, books) left around the house, children present during seances or psychic readings or horoscopes etc;

(d) or the parents may have sinned against them when they were yet just children. (There is a scripture that speaks to the sins of the parents being passed down.) This sinning against the children who naturally put faith in their parents may have occurred through lies (ex. tales of the boogeyman), or through physical, sexual or emotional abuse -- which children are incapable of protecting themselves against;

(e) or the parents allowed the children to be abused and victimized by siblings or parental boyfriends / girlfriends. Evil spirits do not necessarily take hold but might sometimes in some regards, probably based on degree and / or repetitiveness and whether trauma was present. Sometimes it’s hard to discern whether inner healing of memories is sufficient or whether deliverance is also additionally required.

Entrance of evil spirits and the need for deliverance comes via sin-related exception to the norm—which is God’s providential protection and the ministry of angels. Folks living good lives need never fear.

I don’t believe that evil spirits can enter a Christian where personal sin (or parental sin) is not present or has not been present. Not by some voodoo agent, spell, curse, evil eyemaker, nasty gypsy or guru’s attack!

In the case of kids that have been infected due to parental victimization, Psalm 91 states: “Because he clings to me I will deliver him (/ her)”.

Pop-pop


Pop-pop, I'm not sure where you get the idea that people immersed in sin are the exception to the norm, with the norm being "God's providential protection." While the groups of people you've listed above as being open to the account are probably accurate (though the idea of a ouija board or a book about Wicca being a magnet for evil spirits is funny), they're not the only ones. Everyone who is not perfectly virtuous has some kind of weakness where an evil spirit may attach itself, with those who are more virtuous being more protected, by degrees.

How much influence an evil spirit has on a person is determined by the place from which that person derives his emotional, mental, and spiritual strength. Someone who is spiritually "healthy" and centers his life around faith in Christ will have a spirit that is safe from evil spirits - the degree to which he derives his emotional and mental well-being from this faith is the degree to which his thoughts and emotions are safe from the same spirits. But I hardly would call this "the norm."

For instance, someone whose emotional state is tied to the social mirror and to possession of material things, even though they may be baptized and their spirits ultimately belong to God, can be tormented in the here and now by spirits who encourage obsessive thoughts/feelings relating to what others think of them, their status in the social hierarchy, their body-image, 0etc. For a spiritually "unhealthy" person, these kinds of mental and emotional problems are extremely common, even if they've never "opened themselves to the occult" as you call it, and spiritually unhealthy people are all over the place. The reality of this type of spiritual affliction is self-evident, and the gravity of it is displayed in the many people in whom this type of obsession leads to the taking of their own lives.

The general point of your posts on the subject, as far as I can tell, is that faith in Christ and prayer should guard one against such things, and this is true. The more faithful we are and the more virtues we can acquire, the better off we are and the less influence these types of evil spirits, curses, bad wishes, etc, have on us. That said, it's not enough to tell someone suffering from some kind of spiritual affliction, "Hey, you're doing it wrong, you're supposed to have more faith." People had to restrain some of the men out of which Jesus was casting demons.

Paul
 
Posts: 119 | Registered: 08 April 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Pops,

Your list predicts well much of what MacNutt shares about in his book as doorways to evil spirits. However, I was thinking the exact same thing as Paul's opening sentence above when I read your list. I thought, that's a mighty long list of fairly widespread, interwoven, and deeply rooted "exceptions."

Iron sharpening iron...?
 
Posts: 1091 | Registered: 05 April 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Paul--

You made a comment above to the effect that it would be funny to consider a ouija board as a magnet for evil spirits.

While I probably, in most cases, wouldn't be too concerned with a ouija board lying forgotten in an attic (for example), I wouldn't let anyone bring something like that into my house--since wanting to bring it in would imply an eventual intention to use it.

I have a great lifelong distaste for anything to do with the occult, so maybe my position seems extreme...but it's not really so much a fear based or superstitious refusal to be around even such a thing as a ouija board, as it is a sense of being repelled by the occult--even a small piece of it.
 
Posts: 578 | Location: east coast, US | Registered: 20 July 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Shasha,

Yes! LOL. Iron sharpens iron. Ha. And I see Paul will be taking a turn in the stropping.

Well, let us strop each other and grow in understanding as best we can. Isn’t that what SP is all about anyway – or at least in part?

You are certainly correct that the exceptions list is a long one. I was a bit surprised myself as more and more came to mind, I have to admit. And there was a reason why -- beyond my ordinary dullness. And I will endeavor to explain how it came to pass.

But before beginning that, let me address the comments of Paul regarding Ouija boards and a book about Wicca seeming ‘funny’ for me to have included. Their inclusion came not from their being magnets for evil spirits but rather their being potential magnets for curious children. I had mentioned curiosity and sampling as gates for involvement in the occult. Since girls try on their mother’s high heels and boys want to play with their father’s guns etc, I thought it reasonable that kids might experiment with Ouija boards and the casting of spells or potions etc that a book might relate to any curious kid who might come upon these things if parents used them. Sometimes adults ‘just for fun’ tinker with Ouija boards at parties and it’s not inconceivable that kids /teens might also.

That was my reasoning behind mentioning them. We had been talking about curses and spells.

Actually, in the parish in the next town over, in the late eighties an eighth (?) grader in Catholic school murdered his family due to involvement in Satanism; and the kids in his class recalled his ever increasing interest in it and books he had been reading and talking about. There were pentagrams and other occult symbols that police found written on the walls and floors of the house. That wasn’t funny. Subsequently there were lectures given by the diocesan exorcist to parents of the school kids and to any other adults within neighboring parishes concerning the occult. I attended one of the lectures.

Since it’s late and the subsequent discussion may be ‘involved’. I will continue in a later post in the near future.

Pop-pop
 
Posts: 465 | Registered: 20 October 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Paul,

Re your question:

“Pop-pop, I'm not sure where you get the idea that people immersed in sin are the exception to the norm, with the norm being "God's providential protection."
************************************************************
My thought for the exception stems from the fact that some people (including Christians) do in fact need deliverance, and yet scripture (Psalm 91) informs us that we have God’s providential protection. How does one reconcile this seeming discrepancy? That was what I was trying to address.

Shasha believes I reject MacNutt’s teaching on Christians needing prayers for deliverance associated with curses because I don’t believe that Christians can be ensnared and thereby suffer the affects of curses. I am not saying that.

My list of exceptions albeit a long one, was my dibs as to why a Christian might need deliverance prayer relative to curses as well as because of personal or parental sin. Psalm 91 -- "God's providential protection"-- needs to be reconciled and understood. I was making an attempt at doing that. I don’t say I was perfect at it.

I believe that to accept unquestionably the belief that Christians can be cursed AT WILL is to negate the Psalm. I believe that to accept unquestionably the belief that Christians can be cursed by another’s energy transmission is to negate the Psalm. And I believe to do so renders a Christian (should one believe they are unprotected from the attacks of cursers contrary to the Psalm) indeed vulnerable to deception and attack -- to thereby being cursed, actually.

[I believe the vulnerability would exist because we are to stand in faith on the revealed words of revelation, and if one dismisses those revealed truths they in fact service the demise of Christian well-being by evil. And I believe we should prevent the susceptibility of our fellow Christians to being injured via the attack of evil].

The Psalm is in fact part of Christian revelation.

It’s not that it doesn’t exist in the bible; nor that the bible would be the same without it. Correct?

And the words of the Psalm do not include “sometimes”.

The Psalm does not read: “Because you have the Lord for your refuge: you have made the Most High your stronghold. No evil shall befall you [sometimes], nor affliction come near your tent. For to His angels He has given command about you, that they guard you in all your ways [sometimes].”

In fact this very Psalm was a focal temptation that Christ (like us here and now) had to deal with in his 40 days in the desert.

To insert “sometimes” into the Psalm essentially renders it of no value. One might as well not have it in the bible.

What value would a bridge be if it supported rush hour traffic only ‘sometimes’? What value are your brakes if they worked only ‘sometimes’. Would you want to put faith in such a bridge or such brakes? Do you want to put your faith in a ‘sometimes’ good shepherd?

Putting “sometimes” into the Psalm would be like putting a whole in the bottom of my beer mug; it would be worth nothing – a knick knack of no essential value.

Anyway, now you all know where I have been coming from and why. How effective I have been…? Is my thought illogical….?

Free country. All are free to have other opinions. To me the norm IS: God's providential protection.

Pop-pop
 
Posts: 465 | Registered: 20 October 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by pop-pop:

My thought for the exception stems from the fact that some people (including Christians) do in fact need deliverance, and yet scripture (Psalm 91) informs us that we have God’s providential protection. How does one reconcile this seeming discrepancy? That was what I was trying to address.

Shasha believes I reject MacNutt’s teaching on Christians needing prayers for deliverance associated with curses because I don’t believe that Christians can be ensnared and thereby suffer the affects of curses. I am not saying that.

My list of exceptions albeit a long one, was my dibs as to why a Christian might need deliverance prayer relative to curses as well as because of personal or parental sin. Psalm 91 -- "God's providential protection"-- needs to be reconciled and understood. I was making an attempt at doing that. I don’t say I was perfect at it.

I believe that to accept unquestionably the belief that Christians can be cursed AT WILL is to negate the Psalm. I believe that to accept unquestionably the belief that Christians can be cursed by another’s energy transmission is to negate the Psalm. And I believe to do so renders a Christian (should one believe they are unprotected from the attacks of cursers contrary to the Psalm) indeed vulnerable to deception and attack -- to thereby being cursed, actually.

[I believe the vulnerability would exist because we are to stand in faith on the revealed words of revelation, and if one dismisses those revealed truths they in fact service the demise of Christian well-being by evil. And I believe we should prevent the susceptibility of our fellow Christians to being injured via the attack of evil].

The Psalm is in fact part of Christian revelation.

It’s not that it doesn’t exist in the bible; nor that the bible would be the same without it. Correct?

And the words of the Psalm do not include “sometimes”.

The Psalm does not read: “Because you have the Lord for your refuge: you have made the Most High your stronghold. No evil shall befall you [sometimes], nor affliction come near your tent. For to His angels He has given command about you, that they guard you in all your ways [sometimes].”

In fact this very Psalm was a focal temptation that Christ (like us here and now) had to deal with in his 40 days in the desert.

To insert “sometimes” into the Psalm essentially renders it of no value. One might as well not have it in the bible.

What value would a bridge be if it supported rush hour traffic only ‘sometimes’? What value are your brakes if they worked only ‘sometimes’. Would you want to put faith in such a bridge or such brakes? Do you want to put your faith in a ‘sometimes’ good shepherd?

Putting “sometimes” into the Psalm would be like putting a whole in the bottom of my beer mug; it would be worth nothing – a knick knack of no essential value.

Anyway, now you all know where I have been coming from and why. How effective I have been…? Is my thought illogical….?

Free country. All are free to have other opinions. To me the norm IS: God's providential protection.

Pop-pop


Pop-pop,

As sad as the story about the boy involved with Satanism is, the deciding factor in his murdering his family was likely not his involvement with Satanism, but rather his being emotionally disturbed. Most kids who call themselves Satanists are simply rebelling against their parents and society, and are relatively harmless. I think it's likely that more harm comes to and from teenagers based on materialism and warped ideas of entitlement than any overt devil-worshipping or involvement with the occult.

You make a good point about Psalm 91 and I believe what you're saying is true. The catch is that in that psalm, God is speaking to someone who has made Him his refuge, and unfortunately this doesn't apply to everyone. including nominal Christians. To make the Lord one's refuge isn't a state of being, it's an action or rather a group of actions. I in fact agree with you that Christians are safe from spiritual harm by way of God's protection, but observation dictates that we are still affected by other people.

An example of someone affecting us emotionally and mentally might be having to work with a coworker who is always putting off negative "vibes" through his subtle communication, always negative, a seeming black hole that sucks the energy and joy out of the workplace. Are we in mortal danger? No. Can we, through faith and the exercising of certain virtues, overcome this bad energy we're subjected to? Yes, we can. Does this capability mean this person's energy will never bring us down or cause us stress? No, it doesn't. In fact the odds are that we will, front time to time, be brought down by another person's bad energy. The frequency of such occurrences will likely be determined by the strength of our faith and the degree to which we draw our joy from God, i.e. make Him our refuge.

The principle is the same whether we're dealing with a jerk at the office or a so-called "witch" casting voodoo hexes us.

Paul
 
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Originally posted by myfutureself:
Most kids who call themselves Satanists are simply rebelling against their parents and society, and are relatively harmless.
That's so true, but most kids who are emotionally disturbed, even enraged, do not commit murder. Most likely this kind of homicide is the interaction between emotional disturbance and evil spirits, and plenty of family history of both.
 
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Paul, and all,

Yes. I certainly agree that we are affected by other people, and that the negativity, the vibes of others and the sins of others can affect us. If that were not the case we would never have to forgive others, we would never have to bear with others, we would never have to suffer injustice and victimization etc etc. We are sinners living amongst sinners.

These days it seems many might conceptualize the above to read: We are energizers living among energizers.

Should we envision Christ these days saying rather than thou shalt not sin – thou shalt not energize against thy neighbor?
My focus was really on Christians not having to fear supernatural evil that might come via demonic attack, curses or spells etc.
There’s a vast difference between hassle, downer and irritant coming from others versus the intimidation and fear that the demonic might attempt to introduce into our lives. The civic officials who publicly and formally slaughtered animals in three different countries this year in order to protect themselves from threatened curses and spells reflect a totally different issue than one’s being bothered by a guy at work whose negative vibes are a hassle. No one is offering animal sacrifice or ginning up potions and spells to deal with a pesky coworker. IMO. I understand what you have written, and you have written nicely.

My focus was really freedom from fear I guess you might say; was to aid others in remaining transformed by the renewal of our minds – a transformation that accompanies the hearing of scriptural truth and the remaining true to the spiritual truths given us. Remaining true, not just in obedience, but perhaps in our conceptualizing.

Some readers at SP state that they are HSPs. Keeping fear minimized seems a right thing to do.

Anyway. …… Enough; I hope. I have explained where I was coming from and why.

Retain anything that might have been good in all this, and discard what was not. ________________________________________________________
I agree with you that the boy who killed his family may very likely have been emotionally disturbed in the first place, and that his reading of occult books may not have been the direct cause attributable to what evolved in the killing of his family.

The influence, if any, that evil (supernature) had in the killing of that family will never be known to us. What helps an emotionally disturbed person to finally go over the edge?

Pop-pop
 
Posts: 465 | Registered: 20 October 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by pop-pop:
...My focus was really freedom from fear I guess you might say; was to aid others in remaining transformed by the renewal of our minds – a transformation that accompanies the hearing of scriptural truth and the remaining true to the spiritual truths given us. Remaining true, not just in obedience, but perhaps in our conceptualizing.
... Keeping fear minimized seems a right thing to do.

Your point is well-taken, Pop-pop, certainly by me. Fear obviously weakens our faith and trust in our God. You predict again MacNutt's teaching in this book--that Christians really don't have to fear the demonic, curses, etc. because ultimately satan cannot snatch us from God's Hand. One of the ways God provides for us is through people like MacNutt and others who serve in teaching, healing, deliverance.
 
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quote:
Originally posted by pop-pop:
Paul, and all,

Yes. I certainly agree that we are affected by other people, and that the negativity, the vibes of others and the sins of others can affect us. If that were not the case we would never have to forgive others, we would never have to bear with others, we would never have to suffer injustice and victimization etc etc. We are sinners living amongst sinners.

These days it seems many might conceptualize the above to read: We are energizers living among energizers.

Should we envision Christ these days saying rather than thou shalt not sin – thou shalt not energize against thy neighbor?
My focus was really on Christians not having to fear supernatural evil that might come via demonic attack, curses or spells etc.
There’s a vast difference between hassle, downer and irritant coming from others versus the intimidation and fear that the demonic might attempt to introduce into our lives. The civic officials who publicly and formally slaughtered animals in three different countries this year in order to protect themselves from threatened curses and spells reflect a totally different issue than one’s being bothered by a guy at work whose negative vibes are a hassle. No one is offering animal sacrifice or ginning up potions and spells to deal with a pesky coworker. IMO. I understand what you have written, and you have written nicely.

My focus was really freedom from fear I guess you might say; was to aid others in remaining transformed by the renewal of our minds – a transformation that accompanies the hearing of scriptural truth and the remaining true to the spiritual truths given us. Remaining true, not just in obedience, but perhaps in our conceptualizing.

Some readers at SP state that they are HSPs. Keeping fear minimized seems a right thing to do.

Anyway. …… Enough; I hope. I have explained where I was coming from and why.

Retain anything that might have been good in all this, and discard what was not. ________________________________________________________
I agree with you that the boy who killed his family may very likely have been emotionally disturbed in the first place, and that his reading of occult books may not have been the direct cause attributable to what evolved in the killing of his family.

The influence, if any, that evil (supernature) had in the killing of that family will never be known to us. What helps an emotionally disturbed person to finally go over the edge?

Pop-pop


I'm with you, Pop-pop Smiler I used the example I did because it seems like the way you conceive of evil spirits assaulting us is fairly dramatic and overt, i.e. through seances, Satanism, tricking us into sacrificing animals to them, etc. I think of the influence of evil spirits in a more "Screwtape Letters" way, more subtle, attacking us through addiction and codependency, utilizing traumatic and repressed memories and damaged self-images to gain a foothold into our consciousness and drive us to self-destructive thoughts and behaviors. This can manifest as drinking one’s self to death, breaking up a marriage, driving one to suicide, driving one to become a workaholic or devote their lives to money, or just being a general downer and source of stress and negativity. This type of thing is fended off by most Christians simply by finding their center in Christ and responding by the exercising of one or more virtues, but IMO this is the real battleground for spiritual warfare. If we so choose, we can conceptualize this in the form of energy exchanges, because those exchanges do happen in all of these situations.

While I don’t doubt that people in full-time healing and “deliverance” ministries encounter more overt demonic activities, it’s possible that God permits these for the opportunity to build up the Church by their casting out, and are by no means the norm. But all in all, I agree with you that we should be free of fear of Satan and demonic attack. But IMO evil is evil, whether we classify it as “supernatural” or not.
Thank you for taking the time to express your thoughts so clearly; I’m by no means arguing against anything you’ve said, just talking about related ideas 

Paul
 
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Paul,

I’m with you, too. I agree that evil is evil and can, and typically does work in hidden and less dramatic ways. Certainly. Your points are well made.

My focus was more narrow. You had asked originally for clarification on what I and others were meaning when we spoke of the occult. That caused my focus to narrow onto sins against the first commandment. It also brought to my mind the occult practices that many New Agers are slipping into and what I’d seen on TV regarding the civil authorities in several countries embracing animal sacrifices to ward off curses or anticipated curses.

And my focus was there too, because of our discussions on power and energy transfer and soulish intercession and curses. Also, too, my focus was narrowed because I’ve experienced some assault in the course of reading contemporary New Age books, in an occasional dream, and because several posts at SP speak to guru / goddess / spiritual guide assaults and seductiveness on folks.

Your bigger picture is certainly valid.

Pop-pop
 
Posts: 465 | Registered: 20 October 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have been questioning this a lot over the last year this whole demon possession thing.

A demon is a created entity created by God much like I am.

Through salvation the holy spirit became part of me, the holy spirit is a part of the creator- The god head- part of the creator is in me since when does the creator fear the created.
The devil is defeated make no mistake.

How can the created posses where the creator/holy spirit lives? A demon cannot possess a christian unles he rejects his faith.

How could something a relative did change the relationship between me and Jesus..no chance that's just superstition. Believing that weakens your faith.

Christians hold all the cards, why else do you think Christianity is such a huge force in the world?

Romans 8

26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.

28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[i] have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.

God is in control of all things do not fear demons, put them in their place. The defeated ones. Its not an even battle we have Christ and the holy spirit.
Whatever happens to us if we walk in the spirit God is blessing it good or bad so never fear!

If the Satin comes to visit and knocks on your door get Jesus to answer it.
 
Posts: 13 | Registered: 26 June 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Chris,

Welcome to Shalom Place!

I hear your concerns about demons possessing Christians. Francis MacNutt clarifies that issue in his book. He shares that it's not a matter of an out-right *possession.* Demons cannot possess a Christian. I think most would agree with that, and there's clear Scripture to back that up, and I thank you for providing some of that here.

The issue is one *oppression* or harassment of evil spirits that are possible in Christ-followers. They don't OWN you, but can still be 'inside' one of those many supernatural 'bodies' we have. This sort of thing is seen pretty regularly among gifted deliverance ministers. In fact, we know so much about evil spirits thanks to many Christians who have been delivered! Healing/deliverance ministers see that spirits literally depart, sometimes dramatically, through the Power of the Holy Spirit.

The other issue I'll mention is that I see 'evil spirits' in a much broader sense than perhaps the stereotype might suggest. Evil spirits are more than the demon as in a person-like creature with a name, who speaks with it's own voice, makes the host do things agains their will, etc.

Evil spirits can also be a kind of blob of twisted 'energy' that is lodged in somebody. This blob or cluster seems to be made up of a tangle of emotions like hatred, rage, etc. That's why most of the deliverance ministries, including MacNutt's, refer to things like "the spirit of hatred" or "the spirit of revenge," "the spirit of self-loathing," etc. At times, praying against those things does in fact bring people relief. Now, it's complicated by the fact that it seems some of our emotional problems are no more than psychological, but other times, there's a supernatural component too--and apparently the spiritual evil gets a 'hook into' the psychological.

Some support of this phenomena is the Scripture in one of St. Paul's letters, I believe, that suggests we must control our anger lest satan gets a foothold. The picture is that there's a correspondence between our natural human reactions and satan's power to infest us. This seems to follow the principal of the law of attraction in that certain strong emotions/thoughts, which are made up of energy, attracts more of the same.

I've witnessed dark spirits leave a person several times. Consistent with others' reports, I see people have physical manifestations, especially yawning, coughing, retching, even vomiting out evil spirits. Sometimes, there's a jerking of their body and a bad smell that comes out, which is why, I'm guessing, the Bible refers to dirty or "unclean" spirits. These are the more benign ones, easier to get rid of, but also they may be easier to return. More serious demonic influence comes from outright occult involvement. According to MacNutt and others, I deduce there seems to be a huge array of kinds and forms evil spirits.

Anyway, changing the subject abruptly to end on a happier note, let me say I'm glad to have you join our discussion board, Chris.

Christ's deep peace and blessings be with you!
 
Posts: 1091 | Registered: 05 April 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for the welcome. I have been on other christian mesage boards dealing with this subject and been amazed at the level of superstition and irrational thought some people have with regard to an unseen enemy. I have seen an earache declared as demonic and Christians say virtually everything us demonic if its not in Mathew mark Luke and John.
One told me the crystals at a new age shop was ful of demons lol. I dont think so. I find people filed with paranoia over this rather than standing firm in our faith. If you succumb to the fear and defeatist attitude they have won.

I dont know whether to post this but here goes it helped me over come my fear of witchcraft/magic and it made me realize how much fear is a requisite for success by evil things.
I have just been through this with my brother in law tonight trying to calm him down then I saw your thread. If I sound a bit eager that's why. If anything I sure dont doubt there influence or existence I was just trying to encourage any of you guys not to be fearful if it is something that bothers you. I have been through this myself..but no more!

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...re=player_detailpage 




Philippians4

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. 4
 
Posts: 13 | Registered: 26 June 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Chris,

I agree that there is a lot of paranoia and superstition about evil spirits in some Christian circles. We have to be careful not to fall into intimidation and irrational fear. As MacNutt has put it, though, we need to be cautious about evil spirits the way one is about crossing a busy street. There's also Christians who swing the other way and totally deny supernatural evil as influencing us at a personal level, even great theologians like N.T. Wright (as MacNutt shares with his students).
 
Posts: 1091 | Registered: 05 April 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hello,
I have not had the time to read all that has been said here about the subject.
For a while now, when I pray from the heart I cannot not yawn. I believe in God and in Christ's sacrifice for our sins, but as a christian I believe I have sinned much with my thoughts.
I have repented and continue to do that. I have passed through a very strange period where I literally did not recognize myself in my behavior, emotionally speaking and I still have a hard time returning to the peace with God that I once knew.
I have placed prayers to be prayed for me and my family and even people that have hurt me very much in churches and on christian boards and I see small good changes as days pass by, but years have passed and I still don't feel as myself. I know I don't have the love that I used to have in my heart but instead an intense feeling of anxiety.
I know that through the Holy Spirit a christian can be in an instant overwhelmed and guarded by the peace of God.

I do not know what to do.
Also my sister who confesses to be a christian has quite unstable emotional states. I do not think to have ever seen in her the authentic peace of God. Could you also pray for her? Thank you.


May you have a blessed day.
 
Posts: 5 | Registered: 15 May 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi A. So sorry to hear of your struggles, and your sister's as well.

I'm not sure what to make about you not being able to yawn, but that shouldn't indicate a problem. Most significant is your sense of identity confusion and the anxiety you experience. I'm wondering if you might have psychological wounds that are in need of healing? Just as the body will hurt if wounded, so, too, the psychological part of our nature, if these wounds have not been addressed. Have you spoken about this with a counselor? If not, it could be helpful.
 
Posts: 3522 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thank you for your reply Phil.
I cannot not yawn.... I mean I yawn when praying.
I have not seen a counselor albeit I have this intention for a long time, mostly because I have not found a christian counselor and another reason is because I compensate with listening to counseling shows on the radio and for the moment I do not seem to have time for something else (or it might be denial... Smiler ). Anyway I do think that a counselor is a good idea for anyone living on this earth, in this century, in this hectic society.

Have a wonderful evening and God bless you.
 
Posts: 5 | Registered: 15 May 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I agree with Phil that emotional problems when they are out of our hands need therapy. But I'd like to tell you that peace in the Christian sense should not be confused with emotional calm. We can be at peace.while going through emotional turmoils! So dont judge your spiritual state solely by your.emotional experience.
 
Posts: 423 | Registered: 03 April 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Agreeing with Mt. Christ's peace is not the same as the absence of emotional disturbance. Glad to hear you're open to seeing a counselor. You can always turn things up a notch or two in prayer as well -- taking more time each day to pray, cutting out TV, radio, Internet, etc. Eat well, exercise, etc. All these practices help.

Still not sure why you attach significance to not being able to yawn. I've never come across that one before.
 
Posts: 3522 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Mt.
Thank you for your approach to the subject. Yes, you are right. I have been linking those two planes (emotional and spiritual).
I have also listened to testimonies of people in dangerous situations who, after praying received the inner strength and assurance to overcome. I know very well the state.
It's being able to "keep it all together" and not letting the storm outside creep in.



Phil.
It's about yawning during intense prayer.

I wish a wonderful day to both of you. Be blessed.
 
Posts: 5 | Registered: 15 May 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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