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CHAPTER 1 THE STRANGE WORLD OF SPIRITS
You foul spirit of fear, come out of her in Jesus Name! I commanded. I knew that nothing else would help her. It was in the closing moments of a home prayer meeting in Florida. A few people had decided to stay for the prayer of deliverance. Among these was this fearful woman, who had also been troubled with a stiff neck for many years. I began to pray, as in all such cases, by commanding the spirit of fear to come out of her. Immediately there was a reaction, and for the next few minutes this spirit began to choke out of her, until peace returned.
Then God brought to her mind the following hearing and seeing, likes to be petted and allowed to produce a substitute for true spiritual worship of God in the Spirit. But Jesus said that God is looking for those who will worship Hun "in spirit and in truth" (John 4:23).
We cannot worship God with our minds or intellects, for this is soulish religion. Long ago Job wrote, "Canst thou by searching find out God?" The answer is No. We cannot find God or understand anything about God with our minds or our bodies. Therefore, God made man 2 spiritual being.
Like goes to like. "Deep calleth unto deep." If man wishes to find out God, then the Creator has so made him that he may do so through his spirit If we desire to listen to a radio program, it is necessary that we tune the frequency of our receiver to exactly the same frequency as that of the transmitter. In this way, we can get perfect reception if we are in range. In like manner, Almighty God is a Spirit; and the spiritual part of our triune nature can communicate with Him when we are tuned in through the working of the Holy Spirit.
When we commune with God, we do so with our spirits; then only do we begin to understand the mind of God. We begin to realize that God gives us some of His mind (I Corinthians 2:16). We begin to think as God thinks, but only in part, of course. Our minds become actuated by our regenerated spirit in communion with God. This actuating of the mind becomes greatly quickened within us when we are baptized in the Holy Spirit. We then begin to understand how God imparts such gifts as a word of wisdom and knowledge discerning of spirits, tongues, interpretation and prophecy. These come from the Spirit of God through the human spirit, not through the mind.
If they cone through our minds, then it could be said that "we just thought them up." But since they come down from God, we do not think them up at all; we simply receive them through our spirits. Any so-called gift which comes only from the human mind is a counterfeit gift.
On either side of the spirit of man are two spiritual powers calling for his attention. On the one hand is God and the angels who kept their first estate (Hebrews 1:7), Le., the angels who never sinned. On the other hand is Satan, who left his state of perfection to become the devil. Many believe that he took with him one-third of all the created angelic beings, and that these now constitute the demons that torment and afflict all mankind. Lucifer and God's angels became Satan and his demons.
Once a man is born-again and learns the secret of using his spirit instead of his mind, he has opened the door into the spiritual realm It is now possible for him to have communication with other spiritual beings. And this is spiritual dynamite. By the operation of his own free will, he can have free converse with Almighty God and with the angels from time to time. But unless he maintains his integrity and his righteous standing before God, he can easily be seduced by an angel of light (I Timothy 4: 1; 11 Corinthians 11: 13-15), who will come to woo him in much the same way as an immoral woman would endeavor to win the affections of a married man.
It is a sad state of affairs today that so many Christians who attend church regularly are being deceived by these angels of light, and are sources of grave troubles to their patient pastor, who is trying to teach by God's Spirit. No wonder Jesus said we need to be as wise as serpents, and harmless as doves (Matthew 10: 16). We need to be one step ahead of Satan all of the time, so that his beautiful seducing spirits do not come and pretend to be the Holy Spirit, and thus deceive us.
A good illustration of the work of an angel of light is recorded in Acts 16, where a young girl followed Paul and Silas crying, "These men are the servants of the most high God, which show unto us the way of salvation." What she said was true, and many in our Full Gospel churches today would have applauded such an utterance as being of the Holy Spirit. But Paul was grieved, and turned to the spirit and said, "I command thee in the Name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour."
This raises the question, "How do we know whether we are communicating with the Holy Spirit or with an evil spirit then?" The answer to this question is found in I John 4: 1: "Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world." Then John goes on to give some specific instructions about how to go about trying the spirits. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God.Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God. And this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world."
Again, we are reminded of the words of Jesus in Matthew 24: "For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." In the current revival of the supernatural, we need to be very careful to check every miracle with the Word of God.
If we do not do this, we are likely to be easily deceived. A sign or a wonder does not of necessity have to be of God. It can be of Satan. The blood of Jesus Christ is still our greatest safeguard. And we would urge that the blood be used in faith to test all that we receive from the world of spirits. Evil spirits are greatly agitated at the mention of the blood of Jesus. We should practice the pleading of the blood of Jesus much more than we do. Besides this, God has put into the church a gift of discerning spirits, and I do not believe that He intended this gift to be used by the pastor only. This gift is for all children of God, although the pastor is sent by the Holy Spirit to administer the things of the Spirit to the people.
A case in point happened in Erie, Pennsylvania, at a convention where I was speaking. A man stood up and shouted that a certain evangelist was a man of God, and that the people should give heed to him. This he did three times, disturbing the meeting. Several men endeavored to quiet him, but this was a demon, not the spirit of the man. I arose from my seat, discerning the evil spirit, and commanded it to be silent in the Name of Jesus. No further trouble was experienced from this man.
So, you see, it is highly important for the protection of the Church that we know how to discern evil spirits, and how to deal with them.
Table of ContentsCONTENTS
- Foreword by Don Basham 5
- Preface 11
- 1 The Strange World of Spirits 15
- 2 The Blood Line 23
- 3 The Snare of Deceptions 30
- 4 Some Practical Things 36
- 5 The Personality of Demons 51
- 6 The Casting Out of Demons 62
- 7 Understanding Your Authority 74
- 8 The Satanic Reality of the Occult 84
- Preface 11