Matthew 12: 43-46
“When an impure spirit comes out of a person, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first. That is how it will be with this wicked generation.”
Let’s say you have a house guest. Let’s say it’s someone you meet who doesn’t have a place to live and you let them come stay in your guest room for a couple of weeks; just until they get on their feet. We’ve all done that, right? And we all know what happens – the guest gets too comfortable there, makes a mess, meddles in your life, screws up your marriage, steals from you and eventually you get to the point where you have to throw them out. Maybe you tell them that you need the room for someone else and they need to leave, just to avoid conflict.
And they leave.
And you breathe a sigh of relief. You clean up the room and close the door and go on with your life.
Then a couple of weeks later, when they’ve worn out their welcome somewhere else, they show up at your house and they peek into that guest room and they see that there’s no one in there! And they drop their bags back in the room and maybe even invite a few of their friends over – and now there’s a REAL mess!
Demonic possession is a lot like that. Someone who is possessed can undergo an exorcism, and the demon can be cast out and the person can be free of that demon for a while and go about their life as normal… because that “guest room” within them is now empty. But if no one else comes to live in that “guest room” right away, the demon is going to come back, see that the room is unoccupied, move back in and bring his friends with him! This is why some exorcisms have to be done over, and over, and over again. This is why some of them drag on for years with periods of seeming normalcy.
So, let’s get back to the guest room. Let’s say the evicted “friend” comes back and looks into the guest room and sees that there’s someone else living in there now, someone he can’t bully or push around. There would be no room for the interloper and he’d leave, right? Well, who can take up residence in our spiritual guest room who’s powerful enough to deter a demonic entity from coming back in? How about the Holy Spirit? Certainly, no demon is a match for Him.
If a person is possessed and has an exorcism done, the “after care” is more important than anything else. The Holy Spirit needs to be invited into their heart immediately and their life needs to be surrendered to Christ. If they have that unclean spirit cast out and don’t make changes in their life, it will be back, and it will be worse. If there are any doors left open for that spirit, it will not hesitate to come back in because the environment is still perfect for it. Someone who has gone through an exorcism has to create a hostile environment for anything demonic or it will be back.
Bible study – surrender to God – baptism – it’s all like spiritual chemo after cancer surgery.
Let’s go back and visit with my friend Mary’s case for a moment. The first exorcism she had was a spiritual joke for a lot of reasons. Anyone can read words, without faith they mean nothing. The second exorcism was performed by a man of tremendous faith, very strong in his walk with God and some changes were made in her life after the exorcism. However, she still had a lot of pagan articles in her home like dreamcatchers and shaman sticks and crystals, so there were still doors open and she was still being demonically harassed and oppressed for a long time to come. The harassment, oppression and physical illnesses continue to this day. We’ll go a little deeper there later.
So, who is an “exorcist” and what is the role of the exorcist in all of this? Stay tuned.
…to be continued…