Spiritual Warfare – Lesson 29

The Practice of Casting Out Demons

In the early Apostolic community casting out demons was a part of every day life, a practice they learned from Jesus himself. Unfortunately, this practice is often misunderstood and even discouraged in the church today, resulting in very little authority exercised over Satan and his kingdom. Jesus himself, just prior to His ascension, made sure His disciples understood the clear authority they had to cast out demonic spirits.

And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover. So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.”

Cast Out devils—This actually means to throw or force devils out or away.

There is no biblical basis to believe that the casting out of demons should be left to the five-fold ministry. With this said, it is very important to understand believers should not race into an episode of “devil casting-out” without authority acquired through the wisdom, power, and understanding of Jesus. Certainly this will result in an unfavorable outcome. Let us consider the scriptural record of such a situation.

Acts 9:13-17, “Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, We adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth. And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so. And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.”

Guidelines for Casting Out Demons

  • Operate within and under spiritual authority: Even though you have the Spirit of God, and authority over unclean spirits that does not mean you should engage a demon every time you “feel” one. If you are not submitted to spiritual authority, i.e your pastor and spiritual elders, you will be quickly defeated, deceived, or possibly harmed in the process.

If you are not “under” authority you have “no authority.” A solid scriptural study into spiritual authority would be a great starting point for possessing the power and skill to cast out demons properly. You should make your pastor aware of any potential situation where you may have to engage a demon directly.

  • Discerning of spirits: This is very important. You must be able to properly discern the spiritual world around you. This means that you have sound, proper, and reasonable judgment. This applies both to the existence of a demonic spirit, identifying the spirit, and knowing what to do. Be very, very slow to make a judgment about people. This can be very hurtful and cause much confusion with the church, your family, or circle of friends.

YOU CANNOT CAST OUT FLESH! Many mistakes are made in this arena. Much of the time the problem is simply a strong, rebellious will. Simply because a person does not behave properly does not mean they are possessed with a devil.

  • Be prepared: this spiritual ministry requires a strong anointing through the Holy Spirit. You should be a person of prayer and faithfulness. A basic scriptural knowledge is helpful.
  • Do not deal with a demonic situation alone. This allows for more than one voice to determine if there is a Spirit needing to be “cast out.” Also providing a person genuinely has a demon spirit, sometime they may become unruly, vulgar, or exhibit abnormal strength. A good number is 4-6 people involved in praying for a demonically possessed person. (Never privately pray with a person of the opposite sex)
  • Do not be afraid: Operate in faith and spiritual authority. God has not given you the spirit of fear, therefore if you are feeling fear it is coming only from the devil.
  • Confidentiality is required: Do not even entertain the opportunity to brag about the devils you have cast out, because you will very easily be lifted up and become a victim of spiritual pride. Such pride severely distorts your discernment. This not only sets you up for failure, but it can also cause an extreme amount of embarrassment to the person who was delivered.
  • Do not attempt to cast demons 0ut of spiritual authorities! One of the great deceptions of the devil is to deceive you into believing your pastor or his wife or one of the church leaders has a demon spirit. This of course, in your mind, relieves you of the responsibility of obeying your authority. In the extremely rare event that a church leader is demonically affected, let church leaders deal with it! You pray for the intervention of the Lord and stay out of it. If you pray and God does not intervene, why should you?
  • Determine the faith level of the individual: Is this person asking for deliverance? Do they have faith to be delivered? Are they willing to pray with you and confess their faith in Jesus Christ? If they are willing to pray and follow instructions this is really helpful. The more you get them to do the more effective you will be.

If they are not helpful, exercise authority through the name of Jesus and create a powerful atmosphere of prayer around the person. This is the manner through which you gain spiritual control as you continue to work with them to obtain a confession of faith and submission to the Holy Spirit.

Is un-forgiveness present? Should you find yourself dealing with a person who is holding un-forgiveness in their heart, you must address this first. If the situation becomes very sensitive or involves sexual, or physical abuse, this may be a good time to stop and hand them over to a pastor or church elder who can counsel them about past events. If the situation is less serious, take them through the process of forgiveness using the example of Jesus on the Cross.

Another fruitful approach is to carefully examine Mathew chapter 18 and follow the guidelines for forgiveness presented there.

Bind the demon spirit: At some point in the process it will come time to “bind” the demon spirit. This is your responsibility; exercise your faith and spiritual authority through the name of Jesus. You might say,

  • “I bind you demon spirit of fear (or heaviness), in the name of Jesus!”
  • “I plead the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ against you spirit of error!”
  • “I bind the spirit of infirmity”

Command the spirit to depart: After having bound the spirit, now command the spirit to leave.

  • I command you to leave now in the name of Jesus!
  • I command you to depart from this person and not return in the name of Jesus.
  • I command you to take your hands off this person, their family, and everyone involved here in Jesus Name.
  • I bind you causing further harm to this person or anyone in this room in Jesus name!
  • I command you to depart this place without causing any harm, making any noise, or causing any disturbance.
  • I further bind you from touching anything relating to anyone in this house or me!

Quote scriptures: There is tremendous power in the spoken word of God. Quote verses declaring the power you have in God.

Identify and claim the deliverance: Discern when the spirit has departed and claim that victory in Jesus Name. Speak it aloud when you know the demon is defeated.

Seek a refreshing in the Holy Spirit: Loosing is as important as binding. Loose the peace of Christ that passes understating. Loose the joy of the Lord and His sweet presence. Have the individual, as well as yourself pray through into a new flow of the Spirit.

Entreat the angelic host and the presence of God: We know from scriptures that angels are encamped around those who fear the Lord. Release the angelic host to take their place confessing your faith and obedience to Christ.