In my last post I touched on the origins and traits of the demonic.
Now, we’re going to look at how they are structured. Remember, Satan is nothing more than a lying imitator, and as such he has organized his “kingdom” in such a way as to mock God. Ephesians 6:12 gives us the organization or the demonic:
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. – Ephesians 6:12, NIV
Let’s break this down.
Principalities (Authorities): A principality is the territory or jurisdiction of a prince. Satan has placed a ‘prince’ over each principality. The prince of the Persian kingdom is brought up in Daniel 10:13. Ever wanted to know if/how Satan functions on a national level? Here it is – a principality. He uses it to direct the affairs of a nation through a territory organized and terrorized by his minions.
Powers and rulers of this dark world: These two groupings of demons work in the social, political, and cultural systems of the world.
Spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms: These demons are often organized in groups that vary in size. For example, Mary Magdalene had seven demons in her before meeting Jesus. Luke 8:30 mentions a “legion” of demons. In the Roman Army, a Legion referred to 6,100 soldiers and 726 Cavalrymen! In the case of the demon possessed guy in Luke 8:30 the demons were united in their purpose, which in this example was a total possession of the man. The same is true in Matthew 12:45 and in the case of Mary Magdalene who had seven demons (Luke 16:9).
The Bible teaches that man has a body, soul, and spirit. There are three major kinds of demons that attack the body and spirit of people. In Militantis, Fr. Jack Ashcraft breaks it down like this:
- Evil or unclean spirits: They are responsible for immoral acts, unclean thoughts, oppression, possession, depression, and other tools of Satan which we’ll study later. They afflict the mind and actions (Matt. 10:1; 12:43; Mark 1:23-26)
- Spirits of Infirmity: These spirits afflict the physical body (Luke 13:11)
- Seducing Spirits: These demons afflict the mind and spirit of man, influencing him to believe lies, false doctrines, etc. These demons seduce people to believe a lie and be damned to Hell. They are demons behind cults, false teaching, false Christs, and the occult.
Demons follow orders given by their ‘king’ Satan. We can sum up the activities of demons by understanding first and foremost that they are always directed against God.
They are against God’s plan of redemption, against Jesus, against His Church, and against believers. Satan uses his demons to accomplish this strategy throughout the world. Demons extend Satan’s power by promoting lies and evil. They affect individuals, governments, nations, and the world system en masse. They spread insurrection and lie about God and humanity. They bolster idolatry, false religions, bad teaching, and can blind people to the truth of the Gospel (John 12:40; 2 Cor. 4:4).
These demons can sometimes attack unbelievers and can drive them to commit the most unspeakable actions like murder, incest, violence, suicide, etc. They can affect the mind with emotional and psychological problems and the body with physical illnesses and pain.
Demons attack Christians by what is called “diabolic temptation, obsession, deception, depression, and oppression.” They will try to keep a person locked up to sinful habits and fears/anxiety. They accuse and slander you as well as excel in creating division in the Church. They hone in on your spiritual walk with Christ and fight against the Church. They also can attack your physical body.
Unbelievers are defenseless against the attacks of demonic entities, but Christians have the Holy Spirit and powerful spiritual weapons at our disposal: Prayer, communion, worship, the Scriptures, and the redemption provided through Jesus Christ!
We’ll tackle all of this in-depth as we continue our study!
Post comments if you have any questions!