By The Venerable Dr. I. U. Ibeme
By the way, it is appropriate that the Baptism Service should be a service of
a. proclamation of the Gospel of salvation in Christ, b. invitation to commitment to Christ and renunciation of sin and the devil, c. declaration of and prayer for absolution and deliverance from depravity and demons, then
d. actual baptism and reception into Christ’s Church.
This was the way the ancient Church did it. Deliverance should not be deferred to when the victim deems it necessary. This error has given rise to mixed Christianity of today where demonised ‘Christians’ are church members. The old Church had no demonised member because they took care of demons right at the beginning.
Some steps have been found to be helpful in ministering deliverance. These shall be highlighted here under the headings: Recognition, Reconciliation, Release, and Renewal.
(i). Realise that dealing with demons is spiritual warfare, therefore do not be a lone ranger nor operate with carnal weapons.
a. Commune with God,
b. Communicate with the Church,
c. Cover yourself with the spiritual costume and equipment of the whole armour of God.
(ii). Recognise the demonic in the victim not by mere assumptions but through:
◘ confirmed history of familial or personal involvement and/or
◘ clear symptoms and signs and/or
◘ certain spiritual insight.
(i). Re-examine and reconcile yourself first with Christ and be filled afresh with the Holy Spirit.
(ii). Reconcile the victim with Christ by leading him/her to:
■ Renunciation of (voicing out the decision to reject and oppose) occult involvements, whether contacts or covenants;
■ Repentance of besetting iniquities and animosities, indulgences and offences, wickedness and weakness;
■ Relent of any past or present grudges and animosities against relatives, acquaintances and contacts;
■ Remission by confessing (and asking for pardon from) every known and unknown sin: whether they are sins of omission, intention or commission; whether due to ignorance, negligence, weakness or deliberateness.
(i). Demolish superstitious strongholds in the mind of the counselee (as above) with the exposition of incontrovertible counsel of the Word of God.
(ii). Deliver (pray for deliverance of) the victim of demonic influence, delusion, disturbance or outright demonic inhabitation or possession, through binding and loosing, casting and decreeing, rebuking and commanding against the demons. This ministry is to be done with the power and authority given by Christ to us, over all the powers of the devil.
Luk 10:17-20 (KJV2000)
(17) And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the demons are subject unto us through your name.
(18) And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.
(19) Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
(20) Nevertheless in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.
Deliverance prayer takes the form of intercessory prayer for the victim, with authoritative words of exorcism and execration against the demons, both banishing and banning them in the Name of Jesus Christ (i.e. on behalf of Jesus or in agreement with Jesus – with declarations, convictions and commitments that derive from and accord with all that Jesus stands for, as revealed in Scripture, not merely verbalising the Name of Jesus). Whatever Jesus is, stands for, and has accomplished, is His Name and operating in representation of these is operating in Jesus’ Name, and all authorities in the whole creation are bound by (and are subject to) Jesus whenever He is proclaimed in faith, whether they choose to or not.
Sometimes for emphasis and in order to fully carry the victim and the brethren along, the prayer may need to be repeated. Possessive demons could try to delay or distract or divert the exorcism by initiating a discussion with half truths or a drama; this must be disregarded and the demons authoritatively commanded to be quiet and vacate. Once only, Jesus granted the privilege of discussion to the violent but suppliant Legion demons because they approached and worshipped Him and passionately pleaded in God’s Name for milder exit. For us to escape being deceived and derailed, we must resist the temptation of accepting such worship from or permitting such conversations with demons:
Mar 5:1-13 (KJV2000)
(1) And they came over unto the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes.
(2) And when he came out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit,
(3) Who had his dwelling among the tombs; and no man could bind him, no, not with chains:
(4) Because he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been wrenched apart by him, and the fetters broken in pieces: neither could any man subdue him.
(5) And always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones.
(6) But when he saw Jesus afar off, he ran and worshiped him,
(7) And cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with you, Jesus, you Son of the most high God? I adjure you by God, that you torment me not.
(8) For he had said unto him, Come out of the man, you unclean spirit.
(9) And he asked him, What is your name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many.
(10) And he begged him much that he would not send them away out of the country.
(11) Now there was there near unto the mountains a great herd of swine feeding.
(12) And all the demons begged him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them.
(13) And Jesus gave them leave. And the unclean spirits went out, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the sea, (there were about two thousand;) and were drowned in the sea.
Some feel it is necessary to find out a demon’s name in order to cast it out. This is a fallacy for man has the power to name all created beings and things. Asking a demon its name is giving a privilege to such a demon. Demons are known and called by their fruits. Most often Jesus and the Apostles simply cast the demons out without any appellation. On few occasions they used descriptive name for the demons they cast out:
For he had said unto him, Come out of the man, you unclean spirit. (Mar 5:8 KJV2000)
When Jesus saw that the people came running together, he rebuked the foul spirit, saying unto him, You dumb and deaf spirit, I charge you, come out of him, and enter no more into him. (Mar 9:25 KJV2000)
And demons also came out of many, crying out, and saying, You are Christ the Son of God. And he rebuking them permitted them not to speak: for they knew that he was Christ. (Luk 4:41 KJV2000)
And as he was yet coming, the demon threw him down, and tore him. And Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, and healed the child, and delivered him again to his father. (Luk 9:42 KJV2000)
Luk 13:11-13 (KJV2000)
(11) And, behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bowed together, and could in no way lift herself up.
(12) And when Jesus saw her, he called her to him, and said unto her, Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.
(13) And he laid his hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.
(iii). Destroy occult objects by burning, breaking, desecrating, etc.
Act 19:18-19 (KJV2000)
(18) And many that believed came, and confessed, and told of their deeds.
(19) Many of them also who used magic arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.
2Ki 23:13-16 (KJV2000)
(13) And the high places that were east of Jerusalem, which were on the south of the mount of corruption, which Solomon the king of Israel had built for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Sidonians, and for Chemosh the abomination of the Moabites, and for Milcom the abomination of the children of Ammon, did the king defile.
(14) And he broke in pieces the images, and cut down the idol poles, and filled their places with the bones of men.
(15) Moreover the altar that was at Beth-el, and the high place which Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, had made, both that altar and the high place he broke down, and burned the high place, and crushed it to powder, and burned the idol pole.
(16) And as Josiah turned, he saw the sepulchers that were there in the mount, and sent, and took the bones out of the sepulchers, and burned them upon the altar, and polluted it, according to the word of the LORD which the man of God proclaimed, who proclaimed these words.
(iv). Declare absolution and freedom from all condemnation, contamination and confusion according to God’s Word. This assures the delivered person of the certainty of his/her freedom and pardon for faith comes by hearing God’s Word declared. They need to hear it declared that you are convinced and agree with them that they are healed, that they are free, that they are saved, that they are born again, that they are forgiven, that they are delivered, that they are made whole according to God’s Word. This strengthens faith and ministers grace.
According to Christ’s teaching, deliverance without spiritual renewal is creating circumstance for worse bondage:
Luk 11:21-26 (KJV2000)
(21) When a strong man armed keeps his palace, his goods are in peace:
(22) But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he takes from him all his armor in which he trusted, and divides his spoils.
(23) He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathers not with me scatters.
(24) When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walks through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he says, I will return unto my house from which I came out.
(25) And when he comes, he finds it swept and in order.
(26) Then he goes, and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself; and they enter in, and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first.
It is a necessity to ensure that those who experience deliverance are followed up into a life of spiritual renewal – a life of fullness of the Spirit – which involves:
■ Constant spiritual fellowship among Bible-believing, Bible teaching, non-syncretistic and Spirit-filled believers who can support them with intercession, biblical counsel and such ministrations till they are fully confident of their standing in the Lord;
They continually devoted themselves to the teaching of the apostles, to fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to times of prayer. (Act 2:42 ISV)
Heb 10:23-25 (KJV2000)
(23) Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)
(24) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:
(25) Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as you see the day approaching.
■ Consistent motivation to spiritual growth through personal Bible Study and Prayer.
With prayers and deep desires, making requests at all times in the Spirit, and keeping watch, with strong purpose, in prayer for all the saints, (Eph 6:18 BBE)
1Th 5:16-24 (KJV2000)
(16) Rejoice evermore.
(17) Pray without ceasing.
(18) In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
(19) Quench not the Spirit.
(20) Despise not prophesying.
(21) Test all things; hold fast that which is good.
(22) Abstain from all appearance of evil.
(23) And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
(24) Faithful is he that calls you, who also will do it.
1Pe 2:1-3 (ISV)
(1) Therefore, rid yourselves of every kind of evil and deception, hypocrisy, jealousy, and every kind of slander.
(2) Like newborn babies, thirst for the pure milk of the word so that by it you may grow in your salvation.
(3) Surely you have tasted that the Lord is good!
■ Readiness to share Christ’s Gospel and to testify of God’s power at work in their lives;
Rev 12:9-11 (KJV2000)
(9) And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, who deceives the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
(10) And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, who accused them before our God day and night.
(11) And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto death.
■ Resilient resistance against the devil and all appearances of evil. The devil operates by cunning disguise and confusion about the truth. Though he operates with power, he usually has no guts to face resistance head-on. The devil will always retreat and flee when confronted with resistance, albeit temporally.
Mat 4:10-11 (ESV)
(10) Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.'”
(11) Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.
Luk 4:12-13 (ESV)
(12) And Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'”
(13) And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time.
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. (Jas 4:7 ESV)