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What Power Do Demons Really Have?

Contributing Writer
What Power Do Demons Really Have?

One of the most mysterious things about faith is that we cannot see spiritual activity, but we know it is happening. We read about angels and demons all throughout the Bible. Colossians 1:16 tells us that visible and invisible was created through God and for Him. The book of Job has many discussions on the topic, and Revelation tells us of thousands upon thousands of angels who will one day be worshiping Jesus, as well as the demons who will be punished into their eternal destiny.

Today instead of looking at the bright side of spiritual beings, we are going to take a deeper study into understanding the dark. What can we learn from Scriptures about demons?

Demons Are Limited and God Is Omnipotent

What is a demon? The Bible teaches us that a demon is a spiritual being that was once an angel (Revelation 12:3-4). When Satan went against God, he took 1/3 of the angels with them, hence the fact that Satan has demons.

When we think about Colossians 1:6 (that all things were created through and for God) this makes complete sense. Satan and the demons were originally created by the Lord, never intended for evil, but God allowed Satan and the demons to fall.

The Lord never sins, (2 Corinthians 5:21, Hebrews 7:26, 1 John 3:5). We can take such a great comfort in knowing that our God truly reigns omnipotently over all. He even rules over all evil. The demons have to get permission from the Lord.

Demons Know Jesus Is Lord

“You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that — and shudder” (James 2:19).

We see Jesus’ encounter with Legion (many demons) whom He casts out. Mark 5 tells the account of a possessed man who meets Jesus. He had lived in the tombs and was wild and had to be chained down, but he broke the chains and no one could control him. Night and day he would cry out and cut himself. We read of an incredible moment in Mark 5:6-8, which says, “When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. He shouted at the top of his voice, ‘What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In Gods name dont torture me!’ For Jesus had said to him, ‘Come out of this man, you impure spirit!’”

The demon recognized Jesus as God. Then in verse 10 the demon says, “And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area.” This reveals that demons fear Jesus because they know He is God. Ponder too that this was before Jesus ever died or rose. They knew who was in charge. They knew who was the Lord.

Demons Cannot Possess Believers in Jesus

We can rest assured that demons cannot possess those sealed with the Holy Spirit. There are no examples of believers being controlled by a demon anywhere in Scripture. Got Questions tells us, “Notice that in all the New Testament passages dealing with spiritual warfare, there are no instructions to cast a demon out of a believer (Ephesians 6:10-18). Believers are told to resist the devil (James 4:7; 1 Peter 5:8-9), not to cast him out.”

The resisting is done in spiritual warfare, by prayer and resting in the identity of the child of God. We lean on the Holy Spirit, not our flesh, to have victory against such powers of darkness. The above article continues, “Demonic influence and oppression are realities for Christians, no doubt, but it is simply not biblical to say that a Christian can be possessed by a demon or demonized.”

1 John 4:4 tells us clearly that He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world. We do not have to live in fear because we were bought by the blood of Christ and we are His. The attacks of the enemy are very real, but we can have a comfort and a confidence in knowing that we have the Holy Spirit in us and are able to use the full armor of God.

Demons Focus on the Body of Christ

Even though Christians cannot be possessed by demons, they do love to wreak havoc in the lives of believers everywhere. Have you ever heard jokes like, “The demons are in the sound system” or “I hope that is not a wolf in sheep’s clothing.” The truth is that demons love to try to divide and distract the global church’s great mission of sharing the gospel of Jesus. They want to bring down those who are making an impact for Christ.

1 Timothy 4:1 says that some within the body of Christ will follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. That is a terrifying thought that demons are teaching their own material. The truth is that if it is not of God or in line with His Word, then it is Satan’s. There is sin and there is holiness. You cannot be “kind of” sinful or “kind of” holy. You either are sinful or you are holy. This is why it is always vital that we test what others say with the Bible and pray about anything confusing or seemingly off for the Holy Spirit to guide us.

Maybe you have had moments where you believed that you had an encounter with a demon? Spiritual attack is real, but we do not have to fear. God tells us to “fear not” 365 times in the Bible. Every day we can pray for discernment, pray for protection, pray for strength, pray for the Spirit to fight in our weakness, and pray for us individually and the body of Christ as a whole to stand firm and put on the armor of God and not allow the enemy to have any kind of foothold.

What Will Happen to the Demons?

Thankfully, like a story with a happy ending, we are given a glimpse into the eternity awaiting all believers in Scripture. This includes having the confidence of knowing that the Devil and his demons will be put away for good. Jesus already defeated Satan through His death and resurrection, but right now we share the gospel and await Jesus’ return. Matthew 25:41 says that, “Eternal fire is prepared for the devils and his angels.” We can take hope that their time is limited, and it is running out.

Photo credit: ©Getty Images/francescoch

Emma DanzeyEmma Danzey’s mission in life stems from Ephesians 3:20-21, inspiring young women to embrace the extraordinary. One of her greatest joys is to journey with the Lord in His Scriptures. She is wife to Drew for over two years and mom to baby Graham. Drew and Emma serve with Upstate CRU college ministry in South Carolina. Emma is an avid writer for Salem Web Network and provides articles on the Bible, life questions, and on the Christian lifestyle. Her article on Interracial Marriage was the number 1 viewed article on Crosswalk for the year 2021. All the glory to the Lord! She had the joy of hosting Her Many Hats podcast where she explored the many roles that women play while serving One God. Most recently, Emma has released her first Bible Study Book, Wildflower: Blooming Through Singleness.

Emma enjoys singing/songwriting, fitness classes, trying new recipes, home makeover shows, and drinking tea! During her ministry career, Emma recorded two worship EP albums, founded and led Polished Conference Ministries, ran the Refined Magazine, and served in music education for early childhood. Emma also had the privilege of having been a national spokesperson for Mukti Mission based out of India. Mukti has been working to restore shattered lives in India for over 120 years. You can view her articles through her blog at and check out her Bible Study videos on Instagram @Emmadanzey.