Monday, 12 February 2018

Freedom from the Occult 3 of 5

Speaker: Mike Connell

When people get involved in this area, they always make agreements with evil spirits. There’s an invitation to the spirit to come into their life; there is an exchange of some kind, and sometimes blood is shed. We need to just be aware of this, when we’re working with people; because if blood is shed, this is another level of connection to the demonic spirit. There’s a reason for that, I’ll come back to later.

Let’s have a look – magic, practicing magic. Now, I’m not talking about the magician slight-of-hand, card-trick kind of thing. That’s just all a trick to make you think one thing, when something else is happening. We’re talking about real spiritual power that causes influence in the world, and on people. So, one doorway to the occult in this area is practicing magic.
A second common one is fantasy computer games. Many of the computer games represent sorcery as entertainment. Some computer games involve role-playing, where you take on a new identity - you become a different person online. In some games, people take on the identity of a sorcerer. Then they begin to cast spells, and battle various people to gain more power - and it can become addictive.

In Matthew 5, Jesus said: “If you look on a woman to lust after her, you have committed adultery”. Notice that adultery, as a sin, begins in the heart. So a person can have the sin of adultery, but no physical act has taken place. Matthew 5 makes that very clear, in Matthew 5:28 – “But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” That means that sin begins in the heart, with your imagination and desire.

I felt the Lord show me, that when people are involved in computer games like this, for extended periods of time - the imagination, coupled with desire for power, can open the door for sorcery to enter. So what was initially a little bit of entertainment, becomes an open door for sorcery spirits - this creates a problem. Now, can you turn on and play the game and get demonised? I think that: not initially, but over time, you will become demonised. I think probably the best way to recognise that, is if you become addicted to the game.

I had word of knowledge of a young man in City Harvest, that he was addicted to the game - couldn’t get it out of his mind, kept being drawn back to the game. So the guy came up, and we found the game was World of Warcraft, and he indicated the name of the character he played. When I asked him to renounce the game, and renounce the identity of this sorcerer; as we prayed, the spirit of sorcery manifested on his face, and he fell, yelling on the ground. He had opened his life to a spirit of sorcery while he was playing these games! We had an alter call, and nearly 200 people came up, and there was massive deliverance.

This is amazing! People at Bible school learning about God, but privately practicing sorcery. What it alerts us to, is the way it is disguising itself, and become acceptable. You understand now, that this is still a problem. It’s an old problem in a new form.

Another doorway to the Occult is the area of addictive drugs. The word sorcerer in the New Testament is the word ‘Pharmakeia’ from which we get the word ‘pharmacy’. So certain drugs put people in an altered state, and people can become addicted to drugs because of pain in their lives. Rather than resolve the root cause of the pain, they medicate it. So, Pharmakeia – taking drugs, can be an addictive substitute for relationship with God, and proper resolution of issues.
It’s quite interesting that when people get onto some of these drugs, the hallucinations they have can be quite similar. I went to pray for one man, and he was hallucinating under prescription medicine, but he had a history of alcohol and drug addiction. Although he’d given it up, when he got on those pain-killers, he started to hallucinate. He was seeing spiders literally coming out of the walls at him. When we came against the spirit of sorcery and cast it out, the hallucination stopped, and all the pain in his body left as well. So, addictive drugs can open the doorway to sorcery.

Related to that, there’s another form of this. What’s happening in many places in the Western world, and possibly here too, is the use of drugs to render a woman unconscious; so a man can have sex with her, without her realising it. They were called ‘date-rape’ drugs. When the person comes under the influence of the drug, they are literally unable to respond, or unable to control their life, and I believe a spirit of sorcery is involved behind that.

I had a person come to me who said: “I think this is what’s happened to me”. What happened was that I prayed for this girl, and when I prayed for her, I commanded the spirit of sorcery to leave her. In other words, the power the man had bought over her life, by using the drugs - and there was a massive manifestation.

Another example of that, I found in Malaysia. I prayed for a woman, and she was bleeding from her womb. Her belly was very swollen; and it turns out, they told me, she had been charmed. I said: “What do you mean, charmed?” And she said: “Well, there was this man, and he consulted with a evil spirit; and made up this powder, which he dedicated to the evil spirit.

He took the powder, and went knocking on this lady’s door. When she opened the door, he blew the powder in her face. Immediately, she went under the influence of the spirit, and then he sexually violated her, and then left her. When she came out of the trance, or out of the spell, she had this problem that her belly began to swell, and she was bleeding. There was no way to stop it. So we prayed for her, broke the attachment to this man, and commanded the spirit of sorcery to go - and she was healed.

No doubt there are other forms of sorcery. For example, martial arts can open the door to spirits of sorcery. In Mark 5:4, the man had unusual strength – he could break chains, and there was demonic power behind it. So, martial arts - now, you get into trouble the moment you start to talk about some of these areas. I had a son who wanted to get into martial arts, so I talked to him about the doorway to the demonic. I said, “It will start as physical exercises, and it will move to where you have to meditate, in order to open your life for greater power. At that point, if you do that, you’ll be demonised. The power you receive will be a demonic power.” I said: “You’ll notice that at some point, the instructor will give away this aspect of it.” So, he went on for a while, and got involved in doing this martial arts training. Eventually it came to the point where this was exactly what was the issue. At that point, he left and gave it up. So, martial arts can lead towards meditation, which opens the door for spirits.

We have to be aware and alert to various doorways for these spirits to come in. Some forms of music can open up the doorway for demonic spirits. Quite interesting, in the mass murders at the school in USA in Columbine, Columbine massacre, that there were two things that were involved there, that were part of what happened. 1) The guys were on the drug Prozac. 2) They were into heavy music, with these horrendous lyrics and driving beat that shifted them, and opened them up to spirits. That’s not the only reason, but we need to be aware that some forms of heavy music can open the door to demonic spirits.

Idolatry can open the door to demonic spirits. In 1 Corinthians 10:12-21, things the gentiles sacrificed, they sacrificed to demons and not to God. So idolatry opens the door for demons; as does dedication to a temple or an idol.

I want to look just briefly at the issue of blood. Sometimes you’ll find that when you’re dealing with people involved in the occult, then there is blood involved. You need to be alert for this one. In Leviticus 17:14, the Bible says: the life is in the blood. Demonic spirits seek to bring people into agreements, and they seek to engage in trading. One way they do it is by blood covenants. Blood covenants originated with God, and the devil realises the power of this – the powers of alters and sacrifice – so he tries to encourage people to build alters, or to make sacrifices.

In 2 Kings 3:27, Israel was in a place of great victory, pursuing an enemy army, and then suddenly the battle totally turned. The king that they were facing, offered his son as a sacrifice on the wall of the city. The Bible says: there was great indignation against Israel. In other words, he invoked spiritual powers, because of the shedding of the blood of his own son. So, when you are dealing with people involved in the Occult, enquire whether they’ve made any blood covenants, shed any blood, invited demons and cut themselves. Just enquire whether there’s any bloodshed, because that needs to be clearly broken.

The Bible tells us in Colossians 1:14 “We are redeemed by the blood of Jesus”. In other words, the blood of Jesus has more power than any other offering. In 1 Peter 1:18 “we are redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus”. But we need to apply the blood of Jesus, and what it has done. So, putting it in a very simple basis - life is in the blood. When blood is shed, covenants are formed. God’s plan is we’re in covenant with Him through the blood of Jesus. Demons want us to covenant with them, through our own blood.

We prayed for someone just recently, and her blood was taken by her parents, and then taken to the temple, and dedicated to the idol. She didn’t go there, but her blood went there. So, we need to just be aware of these kinds of things, and understand the great power released by blood. The blood of Jesus releases great power. So in various parts of the world, those involved in sorcery will make offerings, and they will shed blood - the blood of animals, or the blood of human beings - in order to draw supernatural power around their life.

Just be aware when you’re dealing with the occult, to enquire how the connection was formed. Whether there was blood involved, or sacrifice involved. You’d be surprised how many young people have made blood covenants with demons; and they need to renounce the agreement and the shedding of their blood.

I want to move on a bit now. I want to give you a number of symptoms of people who are under occult oppression. In other words, what would we look for? What are some of the evidence? It helps if you can recognise that. Usually, they’re reasonably self-evident. For example: 1) Unexplained noises at night; unexplained noises in the house - that’s usually an occult activity. 2) Hearing voices – the person’s hearing voices talking to them - that’s usually evidence of demonic activity. 3) Objects moving unexpectedly - that’s scary. 4) Doors opening and shutting. 5) Lights going on and off. It’s quite scary stuff really. 6) The appearance of spirit beings. When spirit beings appear, that can be a major source of problem. 7) Physical sensations of being sexually molested, but there’s no one there.

Now this one’s more common than you think as well. There are particular spirits that sexually molest women and men. The sexual demon that molests women is called the Incubus spirit; the one that molests men is the Succubus spirit. These are sexual demons, occultic demons, and they will molest people at night - possibly even pinning them on the bed, and the person may go through all the feelings and sensations of being molested or raped - but there’s no one there to see. That is a demonic spirit. Of course, people are ashamed to tell about it, because they feel they won’t be believed. So you need to be alert, if you hear anything like that, or sense anything like that - just enquire of what has been happening, and be willing to believe the person if they tell you: this is what is happening to me.

A person having tormenting sexual thoughts - that can be an occultic demon e.g. extreme heaviness and oppression; or agitation in meetings where anointing is flowing; inability to focus on spiritual things; literally confusion. These are some symptoms that show occultic activities are taking place, so we need to be able to look and ask: what’s happening in your life. There may be a whole number of doorways that people have gone in. We’re going to have to then look at how we’re going to minister to people. What are the steps in setting people free?

First thing is: we need to ask the Holy Spirit to help us. We need Him to expose the roots. We need power from Him. 1) Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the roots - this is totally dependent on the Holy Spirit. 2) Diagnosis – we need to find out what the problem is.

You have to ask questions. What is your problem? How does it affect you? When did it start? That tells us whether it could be a generational problem. What happened at that time when it started? Was it something you did, or was it something that happened in your family? Those are sorts of the ways I would look and ask. I’m looking – did you do something that opened the door; did someone do something to you that opened the door; or did this come from the family. The person must be open and honest. So we have to find out what the real problem is. Have you opened the door to evil spirits; and has it been opened in your family by someone else?

I’ll just give you an example. I had a woman call me, whose house was haunted. “Please come and fix the haunted house”. So I went there, and the woman and her boyfriend, and her daughter and boyfriend, were all in the house. They were all very afraid - they said: “Our house is haunted. There are noises and things. We can’t sleep and we’re frightened”. As I began to talk with them, I could hear the noises. “Wow. Can you hear this?” I said: “Yeah I know there’re things there - they’ll go soon. I want to know how they got here.”

So I started to ask questions. In finding the root of problems, you have to ask questions - and listen - then ask more questions. Develop a listening attitude. Listening to the people, and listening to the Holy Spirit - because He’ll show you where to ask. You’ll have a thought come, to ask something.

So this is how I did it, because I knew what the problem was – there were ghosts in the house, I said: “How long has it been like this?” “A while, it was two weeks”. “What happened two weeks ago?” “I don’t know”. Then they tell me “Oh yes, my daughter and her boyfriend came to live here”. So I get this clear: “Before they came, no problems at all?” “That’s correct”. “After they came, now the problem’s here?” “Correct”. “Therefore the boy and the girl have brought the problem to the house”. Quite simple - not hard to ask these questions.

So I said to the two of them: “Tell me this, before you came here and had this problem here, did you have this problem in your house?” Yes they did. So you brought it with you then. “Yes we must have”. “So it came with one of you - we can find out who it came with”. I said: “Was it in the house where you previously lived?” “No it wasn’t”.

Let’s have a look again. So I asked them: “Has either of you been involved in the occult?” “No.” “No.” I said: “Has either of you slept with someone involved in the occult?” The girl said: “That was me - it was my last boyfriend.” I said: “Did that relationship end badly?” She said: “Yes.” “Did he curse you?” She said: “Yes.”

I said: “Well, by sexual relationship with that man, you become one with him, so the demon had every right to enter your life. As a result of sexual relationship, and him cursing you, the demon has come to you, has come into your house - and you brought it to this house. So when you leave, it will go - it’s with you.” This was a shock! She said: “All they could think of was there’s a ghost in this house. They didn’t think of finding: if there’s a ghost there, how did he get to be there.” I said: “Your sin has opened the door for the spirit.”

So we led them all to the Lord, renounced the relationship and agreement with the spirit, commanded them to leave, and the house came to rest - and they came to rest, and they moved back to their own place again. It was easier to blame the house of being haunted, than to take ownership of the problem. Do houses get haunted? Yes they do, and usually someone has invited the spirit in- either they were involved in the occult, or some form of Spiritism; or there was a tragedy in the house - otherwise it wouldn’t be there.

So, you see then you’ve got to actually diagnose the root of the problem. If you find the person has been involved in some form of sorcery or occultic activity - and there’s just so many of them - you’ve got to enquire, and ask the Holy Spirit to help you locate the root. So asking questions like: when did it first start; and what happened about that time; can draw out this issue.

So I begin to identify: is this generational; or is this personal – they did something themselves. You got to really get this clear: we’re diagnosing what the cause of the demon being there is.

Then, step 3: you need to explain to them what Christ has done. Briefly explain what Christ has done. They need to understand the power of the blood of Jesus, the power of God - He has authority over all these demons. It doesn’t need to be long, but you need to present Jesus to them. Jesus is the deliverer; Jesus is the conqueror of demons - share a little bit like I just did with you about the scripture.

Then you need to explain their part in getting free - explain to them what they must do. Explain their part, and their part involves: you need to repent, and confess the sin. Go through the foundations - you have to deal with your sin. You’ve invited the spirits in, and you must confess, and ask Jesus to forgive you.

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