We are being influenced by demons a lot more than we realize. The demons create a sense of fear in us so that we will not deal with them, but God did not give us a spirit of fear. II Timothy 1:7a Some people believe that if we ignore the demons, they will leave us alone. Some say that all our struggles are with the flesh or our old nature, and there are scriptures that show that we are to struggle against that.
1. The sinful mind (mind set on the flesh) is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God. Romans 8:7-8
2. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness. Romans 6:12-13
3. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin--because anyone who has died has been freed from sin. Romans 6:6
Christians are influenced by demonic spirits. We are warned to be on guard.
4. Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James 4:7
5. Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Ephesians 6:10-13
6. Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. I Peter 5:8-9
7. In your anger do not sin. Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. Ephesians 4:26-27
8. How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with Him. Acts 10:38
9. The great dragon was hurled down--that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him. Revelation 12:9
10. The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. I Timothy 4:1
Demons influenced Jesus’ disciples and they were not aware of it. The enemy is very subtle.
11. Peter took him (Jesus) aside and began to rebuke him “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!” Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.” Matthew 16:22-23
12. And he (Jesus) sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, “Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them, even as Elijah did?” And he said, “You do not know what kind of spirit you are of, for the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them.” Luke 9:52-56
Demons influenced the early Christians.
13. Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. With his wife’s full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles’ feet. Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land?” Acts 5:1-2
14. Simon himself believed and was baptized. And he followed Philip everywhere, astonished by the great signs and miracles. When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles’ hands, he offered them money and said, “Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” Peter answered: “May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin.” Acts 8:13,18-23
15. But I (Paul) am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes to you and preaches a Jesus other than the Jesus we preached or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it easily enough. II Corinthians 11:3-4
16. The reason I wrote you was to see if you would stand the test and be obedient in everything. If you forgive anyone, I (Paul) also forgive him. And what I have forgiven--if there was anything to forgive--I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake, in order that Satan might not outwit us. For we are not unaware of his schemes. II Corinthians 2:9-11
17. You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you: Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. Galatians 3:1
Satan tempted Jesus.
18. At once the Spirit sent him (Jesus) out into the desert, and he was in the desert forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him. Mark 1:12-13 (see Matthew 4:1-11 for more details)
Prayer: Heavenly Father, I do not want to have my life or my family influenced by demonic activity. I ask You to show me the ways that I have let that happen in the past. I choose to submit to You in all the ways that I have not been so that I can then resist the devil’s influences with success. Teach me what I need to do. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus' name. Amen.