I have a serious warning for those seeking freedom from demonic attacks. Beware deliverance ministers doing the devil’s work. Let me be clear about what I AM NOT disparaging—those doing deliverance who are unwise or inexperienced. I may cringe at some of their tactics and things that they say, but they aren’t working for the devil. Lack of wisdom, experience, or training is not the same as deliberately deceiving innocent people. Second Corinthians 4:2 addresses THIS spiritual error with these words: Not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God (KJV). The Amplified Version states it this way: Not walking in trickery or adulterating the word of God.
This matter came to my attention recently when a virtual encounter client who was a new Christian described his unfortunate contact with a “deliverance ministry” that he found online. A seasoned follower of Christ might have caught the inconsistences on this ministry’s web site, but a tormented new Christian could easily be tricked. The site was called Christ’s Favor Ministry. It offered relief from “paranormal terror” and listed symptoms consistent with demonic possession. But the word demon is never used, just references to “darkness.” Though the terms “deliverance” and “exorcism” are referred to, there is no mention of casting out demons. Help is offered to anyone of any “belief, color, creed, lifestyle, and religion.” No need of a Christian confession to get delivered. Once a person is “free” and on the “other side of the door” they will experience “Christ-like evolution and the Unity of One.” All “negative energy/dark forces” will be banished. All New Age gobbledygook.
But there are other deceptions you need to be aware of. I speak of those who fly the banner of “deliverance” but commit one of several errors:
#1—They don’t have a clue about what they are doing. They are riding the current wave of interest in the demonic supernatural and the so-called “paranormal.” These individuals have a very confused theology about what demons are, usually referring to them as disembodied entities not having passed over to the “other side.” They try to convince these beings to move on and thus relieve the oppression of those to whom they are attached. That’s the error of the web site I’ve just described.
#2—They lack spiritual depth and adopt tactics which have the opposite effect of setting people free. An example would be someone who incorporates astrology or numerology into their methodology. Yes, there are proclaimed Christians who do this and even consult “star signs” to tell people what demons are attacking them. They mix practices of divination with Christian thinking and declare they are being “prophetic.”
#3—They came out of witchcraft and experienced an encounter of some kind with Christ, but their epistemology is distorted. Some such individuals still have demons themselves and end up putting more demons on the people they minister to. This can be true with some self-declared “prophets” and “apostles” who may mean well but transfer some of their own demons by the laying on of hands. I’ve dealt with many cases of this.
#4—They know what they are doing and are deliberately deceptive. They use Christian terminology and concepts to put curses on uninformed Christians. They have studied deliverance ministries and know all the buzzwords. They mix New Age ideas like energy manipulation and meditation to induce states of apparent calmness. Unfortunately, the momentary relief of the seeking individual is followed later by even greater spiritual torment.
As the deliverance movement continues to gain attention and traction, deceptions will also proliferate. So, before someone takes you through deliverance, require these basic things:
- A detailed statement of faith.
- A list of books they’ve written disseminated by a reputable publisher.
- Published position papers supporting the biblical basis for their methodology.
- A list of spiritual leaders to whom are they accountable theologically.
- Information regarding their educational background, theological training, and spiritual affiliations.
Beware deliverance ministers who do the devil’s work. In your quest to get rid of your demons, you might get even more evil spirits.