A quick Primer On Spiritual Warfare Copyright John Edmiston 2003 but may be copied & distributed for non-profit use

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The Temptation of Christ in the Wilderness - Mark 1:12,13, Matthew 4:1ff, Luke 4:1 ff

Jesus and the Gadarene Demoniac - Mark 5:1-20

The 144,000 - Revelation 7:1-8, 14:1-5

The Two Witnesses (Prophets) of Revelation - Revelation 11:1-14

The Psychic Servant Girl - Acts 16:16-21

The Unpardonable Sin - Matthew 12:30-32, Mark 3:29,30 , Luke 12:8-10

The Ill and the Demonised - Matthew 4:24

Exorcism : Matthew 8:16, 12:22 ff. , Acts 19:13ff, Mark 9:17-27

Authority : Luke 9:16ff, Matthew 10:17

Not just mental illnesses: Luke 13:11

Results of demonic influence (Obsessiveness etc.) : I Timothy 4:1ff

Tests for demonic influence: Matthew 7:16-23, 1 Corinthians 12:3, 1 John 4:1-6

Differentiating the possibilities

(A) If the person has been involved: in the occult or an extreme sect

or in gross sexual promiscuity

or in drugs or alcoholism

(B) And can speak in a voice other than their own or know a language they have not been

exposed to.

(C) And find great difficulty in prayer or Bible-reading and react strongly against Christianity.
Then classical demonisation is a possibility. Seldom are healthy, normal people obsessed or

possessed by the demonic. As a rule of thumb there must be some pre-existing instability.

Bizarre conduct is insufficient evidence.

Voices and visions are insufficient evidence.

Violent fits are insufficient evidence.

Intractable guilt is insufficient evidence but frequently accompanies it.

Absence or presence of reaction to treatment/medication is inconclusive.
Real guilt disguised as demonisation

The person comes from a religious background

They have not been involved in the occult, speak in voices other than their own, can still pray

and read the Bible. However they hear voices and claim demonisation.

Generally it is sexual sin, either pre-marital sex, adultery or masturbation that haunts them and

which they cannot resolve. Often they are upper middle-class and cannot admit to themselves

their character flaw.

Depression and religious ideation

Those from a Christian background can, during bouts of depression, turn to Scriptural passages

on judgement, Old Testament prophecies and the book of Revelation being favourites along with

"the unpardonable sin". It is generally not serious and will pass with the depression. A modified

form of cognitive psycho-therapy can be used. With people from a Christian background it can

be very acceptable to guide them to new beliefs consistent with their faith e.g. if a person with

depression has the belief " I am utterly worthless..' the it is quite acceptable to guide them to

" for you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God..."(1

Peter 2:9). Countless other examples are possible.


Wilkie sees schizophrenia as a form of minimal brain dysfunction and in the majority of cases

I find this argument convincing. Most people with schizophrenia do not speak in other voices

, neither are they hostile towards the things of God though they may be confused, sometimes

terribly confused in this area. The differentiation is not easy as some seem to be especially

sensitive to negative psychic entities and preyed upon by them though not actually possessed.

What the cure has to say about the disease

If a patient hearing voices is cured by normal treatments then we can say that no occult

subjection was involved. If however a pastoral interview, with thorough confession, renunciation

and a trusting appropriation of salvation, leads to a wonderful liberation then we can say occult

subjection was involved. (procedure from Dr. Lechler)

When is it God?

Jesus was often accused of being demon possessed (e.g. Matthew12:30, Mark 3;29) and many

great men of God -the prophets and mystics have seen visions and had special revelations,

hearing voices. The following are indicators of whether a person's experiences are from God or

from an inferior source. As a preliminary note it is best to make these observations over time.

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