Questions and Answers: Standing Firm Against Satan
Christians and Demons
Biblical Sermon Outline
By Pastor Ron Jones, www.titusinstitute.com
The Basis of My Answers: What does the Bible say?
We should not preach the Bible and then as soon as we hear phenomena and experiences we cannot explain, we then create a theology outside the Bible.
We have to believe that everything we need to know about Satan is in the
1. What about binding Satan? Are we to bind the powers of Satan before we enter a room or begin a spiritual Bible study, meeting, or other spiritual activity?
Nowhere in the Scripture does it talk about “binding Satan.” One of the major verses that is used for this doctrine is Matt.16:18-19.
The doctrine of binding Satan is built on the idea that the gates of Hades refers to Satan and the keys refer to authority over him to bind him.
The problem is “gates of Hades” refers more likely to death – Hades is the abode of the dead souls or spirits who have not yet been judged and entered hell. It does not refer to hell or the dwelling place of Satan.
What Jesus is saying is that death will not destroy his church so that every believer is killed off and the church no longer exists.
The keys are authority, authority for the apostles to lay the foundation of the church as they taught in the name of Jesus. The promise is that whatever they bind on earth such as telling others that there sins are not forgiven because they have not believed in Jesus will have already been bound in heaven because they are acting according to the Scripture.
God has already put limits or bounds on Satan’s activities in the
life of the believer in Jesus Christ who lives according to the Holy Spirit
who is in him or her. If the Bible said to bind Satan, then it should be
done. But the Bible doesn’t say it, it says to pray and wear the armor
2. What does “and do not give the devil a foothold” mean in Eph.4:27?
The New International Version has the translation of this verse as of the “do not give the devil a foothold…”
Other versions translate the Greek word, “foothold” as “place” or “opportunity.”
The literal Greek is “place” which is a very general word in the Greek language. The verse means do not give the devil any place or opportunity to work in your life.
Satan tempts us to anger through the unbelieving world, our flesh desires to be angry. Satan wants to destroy our Christian relationships and testimony through getting us to be angry and embittered toward others. If we don’t deal with our anger Biblically, then Satan gets the opportunity he wants.
This does not mean that Satan has a “foothold” in your life
that now needs to be eliminated by some kind of intercessory prayer. Paul
says to get rid of this, don’t “let the sun go down on your
anger” which means turn from that anger before the night comes so
it doesn’t sit in your heart and mind where it can grow.
3. Was Paul demonized in 2 Cor.12? What demon was attacking him?
The “thorn in the flesh,” the “messenger of Satan” was most likely a physical illness (see Gal. 4:13-16) in which Satan was inflicting Paul in a physical way as he did Job.
Paul realizes this and knows Satan has an evil purpose behind it, but his focus is not on Satan at all. He does not bind Satan or work some spiritual warfare formula. He simply prays to the Lord to remove it if it would be the Lord’s will.
The Lord said no because he wanted it to show Paul just how powerful the Lord is in his life through his working in Paul’s weakness. Paul trusts the Lord and moves on.
4. Can a Christian be spiritually, mentally, psychologically, or emotionally demonized or oppressed or hear demonic voices in his head?
The Bible clearly states that Satan cannot spiritually harm us.
1 John 5: 18
Jesus “keeps us safe” and the evil one “cannot harm us.”
The Greek word which the New International Version translates “harm”
means “lay hold of, get hold of, grasp onto, fasten himself onto”
In order to harm.
Satan has no power or control over us. He cannot spiritually lay hold of us and force us to do anything against our wills. He cannot possess us. Christians cannot be demon-possessed. He cannot influence us in a way that we cannot simply choose resist.
He can only tempt us by inciting our fleshly desires and trying to deceive us. Satan and the world cannot force us to do anything or mentally or emotionally or psychologically confuse us. The Biblical evidence is that Satan can only work externally regarding believers. All he and the demons can do is stir up our fleshly desires and try to deceive us.
What about when you feel spiritually oppressed, spiritually pressured, evil thoughts in your head? Should you address Satan and rebuke him or just pray about them?
Jesus clearly says that evil thoughts come from man’s fleshly nature. We need to turn from those evil thoughts as we would any other fleshly thought or desire that we felt.
There is no Biblical evidence that Satan can implant a thought in the mind
of a Christian.
5. Can Satan afflict a believer physically in a direct manner (not an illness, but through momentary physical phenomena such as feeling paralyzed)? Can Satan or a demon manifest himself in a room so a believer can feel his evil presence or even physically see a dark, clear or lighted presence? Could he speak to believers us audibly? If these are so, what do we do about it? In these instances, should we address Satan directly?
There is no Biblical example of this at all. The only thing we see in the Scriptures is good angels taking on human physical form or some other physical appearance. We only see demons possessing unbelieving humans or taking on some other physical form.
We don’t see demons appearing in some other form where they appear
as weird creatures or the like. There is no evidence at all of Satan actually
addressing someone audibly other than Jesus Christ. However, demons can
do all these things. There is just no Biblical evidence that God has allowed
I think that we can carefully apply a few principles from the Scriptures in this situation.
1. Make sure that there is no unconfessed sin in your life or you have not been involved in any occultic (astrology, ouji boards, psychics, watching movies about the occult etc. activity). Or you have been spending time with anyone involved in the occult?
If you have confess it and turn from it.
2. Make sure that you are trusting that God is your Father and you are
1 Jn.3: 1 You have nothing to fear from Satan.
3. Refuse in your heart and mind to allow the demon any presence before
you. Do not entertain it for even a moment.
4. Pray to your Father and ask him to protect you (physically) and to rebuke the demon if there is one and send him away.
There is a difference of opinion on this last step. Whether we should address Satan directly or not.
5. That praying for the demon to leave is enough.
5. Rebuke the demon out loud in the name of Jesus Christ by his authority using Michael’s rebuke in Jude 9. “The Lord rebuke you Satan. Leave in the name of Jesus Christ.”
5. Rebuke the demon out loud in the name of Jesus Christ by his authority using a command, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to leave.”
This direct address of Satan obviously comes from the principle that is given in casting out of demons in the gospels.
This is the only time that I would directly address a demonic presence in my own personal life.
By the way, there is a phenomenon diagnosed in the medical field called “sleep paralysis.” It is a condition that strikes just during the transition between dreaming sleep – called REM – and being fully awake. People hallucinate and see shadowy or demonic figures appearing in their room and even speaking to them.
This has been researched and has existed throughout history and in all
parts of the world. Can the human mind hallucinate about God or Satan? I
We need to deal with these issues so we have answers, but then focus on our Lord Jesus Christ.
Heb.12: 2 Fixing your eyes on Jesus