I can bet someone already thought, “Is this even up for discussion?”. There is so much awareness of extra-terrestrial powers in Africa, so much that we have songs, stories and slangs around them. “NOR BE JUJU BE THAT?”
It is strongly held in some Christian circles that the believer cannot be oppressed by the devil since he is born of God and has overcome the world. They maintain that no curse or affliction can affect him. However, some have certain experiences that cannot be explained naturally among them.
In some other congregations, we see an endless battle against demons, generational curses, enemies of the father’s house etc., so much that it begins to appear like these demons and curses are the creation of their minds. Problems are reinvented weekly.
In this blog post, we try to give a balanced view of the subject matter.
Foremost, it is germane to note that LEGALLY, the believer is not subject to the powers of this world. By the glorious triumph of Jesus over the Devil and his cohorts, the believer has perpetual victory. He is more than a conqueror Rom 8:37, he is an overcomer 1John 4:4, and is seated in heavenly places above powers and principalities (speaking of spiritual beings) Eph 2:6. Angels are ordained to minister to him Heb 1:14. In fact, he has a right to expel devils. Mark 16:15-17LEGALLY speaking, the believer is not subject to the powers of this world. By the glorious triumph of Jesus over the Devil and his cohorts, the believer has perpetual victory. He has a right to expel devils Click To Tweet
The totality of these things formulates what is called new creation realities. Realities because they are indeed real. As real as the brain in our skull.
However, we see a pattern in the bible which shows that the reception of a right, does not inevitably translate to the manifestation of such rights. These rights are received as a gift but their manifestation must be actively expressed. The former is potential energy, the latter is kinetic. Although a Christian has a shield to protect him from all spiritual attacks, he might be letting his guard down.The reception of a right, does not translate to the manifestation of such rights. These rights are received as a gift but their manifestation must be actively expressed. The former is potential energy, the latter is kinetic Click To Tweet
Can a Christian, therefore, be spiritually attacked? YES, if he lacks the consciousness of who he is and refuses to exercise his authority.
Can a Christian be demon-possessed? In what ways does the devil attack believers?
There are three kinds of spiritual attacks we have seen from the word. Demonic Possession, Demonic Oppression and a third which has been described as Demonic Obsession.
As the word implies, possession means to take abode in a place, to have ownership of something or take control of a space. At salvation, something radical happens to every Christian. He is possessed by the Holy Spirit and he becomes the temple of God 1Cor 6:19. Can God then share the same abode with demons? It is thus clear that a Christian cannot be demon POSSESSED. A person cannot have two owners/masters. We see no example of this in scripture.
How about Oppression?
To oppress is to keep a person down by force.
The Devil can mess with a believer who doesn’t recognize his rights in Christ Jesus. He can put sickness on his body. He can cause death to happen. He can cause stagnancy in life and business. In Luke 11:14, we see the activity of a demon making a man dumb. The Devil understands that the Christian is a threat to his kingdom, so he goes all out to oppress him and get his focus away from purpose.
Finally, to obsess someone is to dominate the person’s thoughts. It is the devil messing with the mind of a believer. This is perhaps one of the most common and potent tools of the devil against sound believers. It comes in thoughts, imaginations and desires 2Cor 10:4. The aim is to get the Christian to walk in the flesh.Obsession is perhaps one of the most common and potent tools of the devil against sound believers. It comes in thoughts, imaginations and desires 2Cor 10:4. The aim is to get the Christian to walk in the flesh. Click To Tweet
Strife, envy, lust, bitterness, perverse ideologies are all expressions of this tool. Your sudden hatred for a sister for no reason could just be a spiritual attack. A sudden urge to be excessively critical of the motives of your Pastor could be. We see a classic example of this form of attack in the temptation of Jesus. The Devil tried to lure Jesus to walk in the flesh and forsake God’s will. Same old trick.
If there are any lessons to be taken from this piece, it won’t be to become afraid of the devil or his attacks. It is to STAND in the liberty that Christ has given us. It is to meditate on and make use of our authority over these powers and principalities. It is to live as one who is indeed seated in heavenly places. This requires a consciousness of your victory in Christ Jesus and attendant actions.
You can trample upon the enemy!
In the next part, we zone in on how to resist the devil.