For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Can a Christian be Possessed?
This is a question that comes up in almost every conversation and every seminar I have had the privilege to participate in. Can a Christian be possessed? The canned answer is always, "No, but they can be oppressed." This is a safe way of getting people to be okay about this and not have any fear. But I found that if people are asking the question, then they are in fear that one day they would be possessed. Many of us remember the old movies on TV where a person is possessed and does all kinds of weird things. We have to get that mind-set changed to the truth of what possession really is.
I am going to answer that question from my own experiences and insights and revelations that the Lord has given me, through several stories.
I was on vacation with my sisters. We took a road trip together to Las Vegas for a family member's wedding. It was a 13 hour drive, and we were all very excited to spend the time together. Except for one thing. One of my sisters was very sick. She sounded really bad and had a horrible cough. The other sisters weren't at all happy about it, neither was I, and wondered what she was thinking by coming on a trip sick like that. So right there, I became agitated. I almost decided not to go but I was driving! One of the other sisters was scheduled for surgery when we got back and couldn't get sick. So there we were, all of us banding against my one sister, thinking how inconsiderate she was, etc.
Well, we all piled in the car anyway. Off we went. She coughed all the way. We even had provided her some of those masks you wear when doing wood working. She said, "Oh, are you guys going to wear it?" And she was serious. Which added more to my already agitated condition. She was clueless! Of course, this also added more anger on top of things.
The interesting thing, I was the only one really being the most angry! I even got another hotel room, as we were all supposed to be in one condo together, just to get away from her. The other two sisters stayed with me. Since I had agreed to pay for the room she got, I still paid my share so she wouldn't be left financially burdened. Of course, guilt set in because she was now alone in the room - her daughter was with her - and I had the car. She and her daughter had to get around town by bus or tram. I did say that if they called me, I would be glad to take them where they wanted to go. But she never did call.
When we went to the wedding, she was still coughing away and I stayed clear of her. I think it was mostly out of embarrassment of what "people are thinking of her coughing." It was that bad! Like a croup. But she just stood there like nothing was happening.
So then later that evening, we were all getting together for dinner. And that's when it happened! Something took me over and began yelling at my sister. I was unable to control it, it controlled me. I was acting ways I hadn't acted since before I was saved and that was over 25 years ago. I was saying horrible things to her and about to become violent when I suddenly stopped. It was like an eruption in my spirit just spurted and I had no control over it.
So, now, let me ask you. Was I possessed? Well, for a moment that anger "had" me! I didn't have it.
Tom and I were talking. I was feeling really low, yes, I get low from time to time. And I was saying things like, "I feel sad. I just don't think things are going as well as they should. I want to help people, but it seems like no one is contacting me. Perhaps I'm done? Perhaps God is finished with me. My books aren't being sold as quickly as I had hoped." I was talking along these lines, and feeling lower and lower and sadder and sadder as I was saying these things. I was feeling tired, almost depressed, when my husband said, "Sounds like self-pity talking."
I perked up immediately and said, "Oh wow... you are right!" So then I said, "Self-Pity, you have been exposed, you have to go NOW in Jesus name." And instantly I was restored. Those thoughts that I thought were my own, were gone! I was restored with new vision and hope and saw that the ministry I am doing is helping a lot of people. Books were being sold, and many were contacting me through email and viewing the web site. Self-pity was talking!!! It wasn't me!
Romans 7 and Mark 7 talks about sin being in us and talking and working through us - that it's not us at all. So what does that mean? You decide.
I was saved in 1977 while attending a Baptist church in Roseville, CA. I prayed with the pastor's wife that day and accepted Jesus Christ as my savior. She was a good friend from then on out, and remains so until even today. But, several years ago I found out that she suffered from MPD (Multiple Personality Disorder). How could this be? She was a Christian? She had over 120 personalities that took root WHILE being a Christian. She lived as a pastor's wife with all the demands thereof. He was hard and pressing and demanded obedience from her and her kids. She was to be "perfect" in every area. Well, after years of this, these spirits began taking root in her because of the pain and drivenness to please and the feelings of not be loved and nurtured, but being ruled and pressed down. I remember watching her during a church service. She had two boys at that time who were quite young. They sat on either side of her, and both were completely still. They didn't move an inch. I thought that was odd. But the oddest thing was what she was doing. Her eyes were focused straight on her husband. She never took her eyes off him once during the whole service. Something was wrong in that, but at the time I didn't think much about it. Then when I learned she had MPD, I knew what I saw was part of that.
These personalities took her over. My friend was lost in there somewhere. It took time, she did get help, and was again restored to her husband - who by the way - repented knowing it was he who prompted many of her problems. I remember seeing her after she had spent several years becoming free from these personalities (before I knew they were spirits that had to be cast out), she said to me, "My insiders don't like you." I was glad to hear they saw me and who I was, and realized at that time they were actual beings living inside of her sanctified body!
So, I ask you... was she possessed? Was she oppressed? Was she in full control of her life?
So, can a Christian be possessed? Isn't to be feared. What happens is that we have unknowingly allowed these spirits of anger, fear, jealousy, depression, self-pity, etc., to reside in us! We have to get rid of them, and not allow them to take control of us again! What I find is that fear comes with this question. Many Christians are fearing that they would be possessed. Get a grip people! You can only be possessed if you allow yourself to be possessed. True possession cannot overtake a Christian. As long as there is Christ and the Holy Spirit living within you, you are sealed. You are God's and He is going to fight for your life. So remove all fear of you being possessed and lose all faculties of your being. Even as my Christian friend who had MPD, she still surfaced from time to time, and enough so that she got free!!! So fear not.
When we fear being possessed, we give the devil too much clout! When we fear being possessed, we fear the devil. We are not to fear the devil. If you fear being possessed, then you need to confess this to God saying, "Father, forgive me for fearing the devil and making him seem more powerful than you."
If you are dealing with a specific sin like anger, fear, jealousy, etc., deal with it. Confess it, allow God to purge you! Remember, fear is a spirit! Why do you want to co-habit with it any longer. Anger is a form of fear - so that too is a spirit. Jealousy is a form of fear - that too is a spirit! It's up to us, and it's in our power to allow these kinds of "spirits" to take residence in our lives.
Let's take a look at those who were possessed in the Bible? The two men who were filled with a legion of devils. Thousands of them within these two men. They were cutting themselves, running around without any clothes, and yelling at Jesus, "What have you to do with us Jesus? Have you come before the time to cast us out?" They were talking through the men! The men weren't talking, but the spirits were talking through the men. Because when Jesus cast the spirits out, the men were in their right mind. They were in there all the time, but these took over their bodies. This was true possession. But, if you also know, these men weren't believers either. They became believers afer, which then sealed them from being possessed in that manner again.
Choose today whom you will serve. You cannot have two masters. Cleave to God and God alone, and the other will die. The Bible says that nothing should control us. The Holy Spirit doesn't even "control" us, but He leads, guides and directs us. And it's us who makes the decision whether or not to follow His lead. So what controls you today? Take it to the Lord. The Bible says that If we sin, we are servants of sin.
So the question isn't do we have a devil, but does a devil have us?
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