And why not this “sign?”

There is an ever-increasing need out there in the world today. In my years of ministering out and about with people, I see a huge need that is basically going unnoticed. In some cases it falls under not wanting to believe that it exists, or in other cases, it is not wanting to address it because of fear.

And what might this need be?

People from all walks of life are increasingly being possessed with demonic spirits, or as biblical and mildly put, unclean spirits. From a worldly perspective, most are considered as “mentally ill”. Precisely. That is what happens to one who is filled with unclean spirits. The physical manifestation shows up in their speech and actions. Most would say that when they have seen a person acting strangely or talking to themselves, that person would be mentally ill and needs medication and help. Certainly there are cases where a person has been affected physically that would alter their mind. But to put all under this classification is a grave mistake.

Certainly the world in most cases would not look at something through spiritual lenses. The physical is the much more readily acceptable way to deal with things, right?

But, in this post, I want to address a huge need for those of us who are believers. To be awaken to and hopefully come to a place where we will take action. For the time will soon come where this need will be so prevalent that many hearts will fail because of fear. It is pass time to look into what Jesus taught us believers, and what would “follow those who believe”.

Most of us have no problem with believing that Jesus taught that his followers would pray for the sick and they would be healed. In fact, many do this on a regular basis. Some are healed immediately, others are not, and some are healed later. We have understood and believe that “healing” is common and does occur. For most of us, our understanding and faith takes in physical healing. And at times, even takes in “mental” healing. But what about demonic spirits? What did Jesus have to say about this type of healing? Was it something that should be occasionally done? Was it separate from physical healing? Was it in a classification all by its self and only practiced by a few who were chosen to do so?

Let us take a look into what Jesus taught about this.

First off. When Jesus sent out the Twelve Apostles, “he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out,” (Mt.10:1)

“and to have power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils (Mk.3:15)

“and gave them power over unclean spirits;” (Mk.6:7)

“and gave them power and authority over all devils,” (Lk.9:1)

Not only were they sent to “preach” and “heal the sick”, but just as equally, they were equipped with the “power against, power to cast out, power over, and authority” over all unclean spirits/devils.

But you say, “that was the twelve, that was their calling”. One could stop here and rightfully say that. But…

Jesus made sure that one would not fall into this trap of thinking. And how did he do that?  He commissioned “the seventy”. He made sure that if you were (key) one of his disciples, you are sent and you are equipped.

This is also why he first said to them,

“The harvest truly is great, but the labourers  are few:” (Why? Because not many want to be his true followers, obey his commands and go out into the world). “pray to the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into the harvest.” (Lk.10:2)

Jesus says to the seventy labourers, and he says to those of us who are followers of him,…..

“Behold, I give to you the power to tread on serpents (Aramaic idiom for enemies) and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” (Lk.10:19)

Here he says that we will have the “power” and the “protection”.

Now to address those who still might have doubt as to whether this would still include all his followers.

In the book of Mark we have the very well-known “Great Commission”. If you are one of those who would say that this was only for the “eleven” that he appeared to after his resurrection, then all we would have to do is read all the books of the New Testament that follow the gospels and see if that is true. What about all his followers after him? History bears the fact that his true followers have always followed his commands, and are still doing so today.

Jesus said that after his followers go out into the world (this is key) and preach the gospel, these “signs shall follow them that believe” (Mk.16:17). This word “signs” means “an indication, a mark, to indicate-signify”. So we can safely say that those who are true followers will have these marks. Namely, “they will cast out devils, and lay hands on the sick, and they will recover”.  These signs will signify that they will either be believers and doing the works of God, or unbelievers. The dividing line between believers and unbelievers will be much clearer and profound in the coming days. This is not just for a select few that are gifted or called to the ministry of casting out devils as most would think.

“And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name (key) shall they cast out devils; they (those with whom had the devils cast out of them) shall speak with new tongues.”

If you have ever dealt with a demon possessed person, one of the first things that is noticed is their speech. Their language is not comprehensible. Here Jesus says that once they are set free, they will speak again with a new language.

In closing, the two main reasons that we are not seeing more unclean spirits cast out of people is because of fear and unbelief. However, the good news is that in the coming generations, God will be raising up many younger people who will be fearless and believing. They will not only be that, but because of the times at hand and the prevalence of demonic possession, they will either be in or out as a believer. In fact, the generations that He is raising up, will no doubt be showing and teaching the older believers who never had the wherewithal . When this begins to happen through us, we must remember what Jesus told them that came back rejoicing because the demons were subjected to them.

“Nevertheless do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” (Lk.10:20)

The times are a changing. Will we be ready and active? Will we believe by our actions all that Jesus taught? Or will we be only selective followers and thus not be a disciple at all?

(PS. The Lord laid this on my heart last week when a spotted a young man (maybe 20-25) on several occasions during the day. One look at him would tell the story. Each time i saw him walking, he was in a complete trance as if he had no control of where he was going or what he was doing. I had never seen him before. He was not a drug case. His eyes were pure darkness and piercing. He was talking quietly to himself as he walked all around the downtown area. He appeared to be completely robotic and controlled.

I have been in prayer since. My heart is heavy for this need. This man is someone’s son. Should we just sit back and say “oh well, that so sad?” Should we just go after the easy? Again, i say that unbelief and fear will keep us from being all we should be for the Lord. May God help us all.)

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6 Responses to “And why not this “sign?””

  1. Steve Foltz Says:

    Brother, as Jesus said, “This kind only comes out with prayer and fasting.” Too many of us (myself included) are not as concerned with these folks as we should be, perhaps. But I do believe Jesus’ main purpose at the time this happened regularly was to prove that He was the Messiah to his disciples, as well as to deliver people according to Isaiah’s prophecies..

    I also, sadly, think many people have willingly allowed themselves to become possessed and must come to the place where they want to be delivered. Jesus did not cast out everyone’s demons, nor did the disciples. Paul took many days to finally decide to cast out the prophetic demon in the young girl in Phillipi (Acts 16). He did it because he was annoyed with her following him around and for fear of his message being confused as “fortune telling”.

    We cannot help people quit drinking or taking drugs until they want to change and hate their sin. I think this applies in every case. I would be curious to see what would happen if you would approach one of these persons and ask them if they would like Jesus to deliver them. I would be willing to accompany you and support you in this, because the example we see is that Jesus sent out disciples in twos to do this kind of work. I don’t think anyone is called to do this alone. Also, the exorcism horror flicks over the past 40 years have probably scared many people out of thinking that the name of Jesus is more powerful than any demon.

    Don’t get me wrong. I believe Jesus can deliver people from any sin and any kind of bondage. But let me pose this question to you: God sent Jonah to warn the people of Ninevah to repent or be destroyed. He did the same with Israel and Judah. Yet the Lord and His angels did not send anyone to preach or warn Sodom and Gomorrah before destroying them. I think it all depends on what kind of heart a person has, whether they are lost in their own bodies due to drugs or devils or fully aware of what they are doing.

  2. lyricals1 Says:

    I love that we have ” power & Protection! The fear and unbelief is something that can be a strong hold. Love can release that! and I’m so very thankful for the words everyday that are given and received! Satan has his grip on a whole generation of young people.

  3. Richard Says:

    Greetings my brother Steve!
    This is my first post in quite a while, other than the FB posts which i copy over and put them occasionally here.
    Thanks for your comment in which i want to reply to.
    Yes, Jesus did say to his disciples that “this kind” could only go out by prayer and fasting. In taking a closer look at this, what did He mean by “this kind?”.
    In Matthew’s gospel it says that this son was a “lunatick”. The Greek meaning is “to be moon-struck, ie crazy”. However, in the Aramaic it is an “Epileptic”. In 4:24 it separates “this kind” from those who had “torments” and those who were “possessed with devils” etc.
    In way we cut it, I’m sure fasting and prayer is certainly a good start for any work of God, be it the casting out of demons/unclean spirits etc.etc.
    In context of both the Mt.&Mk.scriptures here, “unbelief” was the main problem as to why the demon was not cast out.
    I would certainly agree with what Jesus did in his time was to prove that He was the Messiah and to fulfill prophecy. But i don’t believe that it just ended there. Nor do i believe that it was just for that time period as some might say.
    Yes there are those who have given themselves over “willingly” to the devil. It no doubt starts small and then leads into complete possession in most cases. What happens when one becomes totally controlled by the devil? Is it too late for them? Was this the biblical account of all those who were?
    I agree with your comment regarding that we can’t help alcoholics and drug addicts until they want help and hate their sin. I believe this is the standard for most cases. But all?
    There are those who no longer have their right use of mind, be it the addict or the demon possessed one. What about them? Do we just say that they are “given over to the devil” and let it go at that? I believe that the easy way out.
    While most who are filled with unclean spirits have either a drug or alcohol issue, or both, it is not in every case.
    As far as approaching an addict and asking them if they want Jesus to deliver them, i get that opportunity all the time. Most often they will accept prayer. But do i see instant results? Not usually. In some cases i never see them again, only to believe that they will be set free. Thus, the great need for instant delivery!
    As far as approaching the demon infested person and asking them? No. I believe in this case, it is having the authority by faith to act upon. There is no room for doubt. It’s BOOM! Just like Jesus said and did.
    True. He did send them out in two’s. It would take two who had like faith to be able to get the job done. Otherwise, unbelief would prevent as told by Jesus.
    Yes, “what kind of heart a person has” is key. And of course, God only knows completely the heart.

    In my post here, we centered in on Mark 16:15-20….”these signs
    shall follow them that believe”….. It was for then, and its for today.

    May God continue to help us all, and may we all avail ourselves to be wanting to be used to fulfill His will in all that we do here on earth. God bless you brother!

    • Steve Foltz Says:

      Thank you, brother Richard, for your reply.

      I may be a bit cyncial in some points and that would probably qualify as unbelief. You hit the nail on the head with that statement, though. Without faith that God can deliver people, we can do nothing and it prevents God from doing things, too! That alsways amazes me when I read that even Jesus was prevented from doing great miracles simply because of the people’s unbelief.

      But, that is exactly the problem we have today. Most people are convinced that the Bible is not true and that Jesus was just a good man, at best. As long as this is predominant in society, it also affects our ability to be used by the Spirit. If Satan was able to hinder Paul and Jesus, I suspect we are even more susceptible to this.

      I will say this: I just read today about many people who were sick and oppressed by demons were brought to Peter and the apostles and they were healed and delivered. This has more to do with the faith of those who brought them, than those who were brought. Same with the cripple who was lowered by his friends through the roof. Jesus commended those who had brought the man, and forgave him of the sin that had brought his disease (?).

      “And when he saw their faith, he said, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.” (Luke 5:20)

      So, it seems that it is very important for people involved with these folks, and the afflicted themselves, to truly believe God can deliver them. Not to mention those who command spirits to release their victims. I think we have a lot to learn, but unbelief is the real hindrance here.

  4. Richard Says:

    lyricals1 so true! The young people of today are mostly consumed up by the world and Satan its ruler. But……out of the midst of them… God is raising up a few that will get the job done! Bless the Lord! Glory to Him!

  5. Richard Says:

    So very true Steve. There has to be a surrounding faith present for faith to operate. Bless you brother!

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