Hollywood loves scary movies. They are big money makers. Horror films bring in a billion dollars annually, almost 10% of all movies. And demons are a go-to topic: “The Exorcist,” “Paranormal Activity,” “The Devil’s Advocate,” “The Devil Inside,” “Hellraiser,” “The Pope’s Exorcist,” and “The Conjuring” to name a few. But almost always, Hollywood gets it wrong! There are four basic lies that Hollywood keeps retelling about demons.
- POSSESSED PEOPLE HAVE ONE DEMON: Wrong. Most people with demons have more than one. Seldom do I, as an exorcist, deliver someone from a single demon. They come in packs like wild animals. They swarm to a vulnerable person. Once inside, a demon welcomes others of his kind to diversify and multiply the evil. For example, a lust demon invites others like himself such as Jezebel, Perversion, Rape, Incest and so on.
- ALL DEMONS ARE TERRIFYING AND HIDEOUS: Wrong again. Second Corinthians 11:14 tells us that Lucifer sometimes transforms himself into an “angel of light.” Yes, some demons are frighteningly gruesome. But others come as enlightenment in the New Age, peacefulness in mindful meditation, and consciousness expansion in yoga and angel cards. I have had many people describe how their demons came as a beautiful woman or a smooth-talking cult leader, far from a fearful appearance.
- PEOPLE GET DEMONS THROUGH BIZARRE CIRCUMSTANCES: Still wrong. Some do get possessed by demons through UFO encounters, astral traveling, bad LSD trips, or near- death experiences. But most people get demons by simple things like lying, cheating, stealing, fornication, smoking weed, partying, and exploring Wiccan beliefs.
- THE EXORCIST MAY HAVE TO SACRIFICE HIMSELF TO SET THE POSSESSED PERSON FREE. Absolutely, unequivocally wrong. Movies like “The Exorcist” and “The Pope’s Exorcist” perpetuate this lie that, by an act of self-sacrifice, by the exorcist offering his own body for demonic inhabitation, a possessed soul can be freed. That is ridiculous, trading the damnation of one soul for the martyrdom of another. That is nowhere in the Bible. Jesus overcame every demon He confronted, and we can do the same through His Name without giving the devil one soul in trade for another.
There are so many things wrong with how Hollywood depicts demons and deliverance. Those who know their Bibles can spot these errors in a moment. The challenge of those who believe in Christ’s power is to demonstrate the reality of demonic possession by overcoming all evil spirits according to the model of Luke 10:19: “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.”