“Then He appointed twelve, that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach, and to have power to heal sicknesses and to cast out demons.” Mark 3:14-15
It was my junior year in college and the morning started just like every other. I woke up, climbed down the ladder from the loft, where my bed was located, and head to the bathroom. Several minutes later, after I’d showered, I came back into the room and began to get dressed. At this point my roommate came down the ladder from his bed and I turned to greet him. He looked terrible. His face was pale and he was shaking. Before I could asked he what was wrong he began to tell me.
He’d been dreaming and in the course of his dream he’d been possessed by a demon. He briefly described how that experience had felt and how scared he’d become. Then he told me that at the same time as this possession had happened he’d woken up but his coming awake had happened so smoothly, in relation to the dream, that he wasn’t sure if the possession had been part of his dream or had really happened when he was waking up. He was so scared that he spent the remainder of the night wedged into the corner of his bed, afraid to move because he didn’t know if he’d have control of his actions if he did.
So that morning, as one of the best friends I’ve ever had literally sobbed onto shoulder, I prayed, and asked that Jesus would banish the presence of Satan from us and our room. And I believe he did.
It’s easy or many, in the western world, to believe that the devil isn’t real. But the testimony of scripture, and the experience of billions in other parts of the world, tells us that there are demons in this world and they seek to influence and control.
Jesus came to conquer sin and Satan and if we’ll genuinely enter into a relationship with him he’ll give us authority to set people free from the power of the devil in their lives. But we have no authority without Jesus and he’s not merely a talisman or a name to be invoked. We must know him and have him in our lives as our God, Savior, and friend. And if we’re submitted to God the devil will flee from us. (James 4:7)