Episode 086 | Ghosts, Demons and Even Stranger Things
On this special Halloween episode, Pastor Matt tackles questions on how Christians should engage with the supernatural and what the bible has to say about ghosts, demons and evil spirits.
Learn more about the ROGO School of Leadership and apply for the 2018 cohort at rogo.school!
This Week's Topics
13:33 - Should Christians avoid Halloween? Is it wrong for us to participate in Halloween events?
There’s no specific Bible verses about Halloween so what we have to do is look at how the early Christians responded to holidays that were opposed to their upbringing. Deuteronomy 18.9 says, “When you enter the land which the Lord your God gives you, you shall not learn to imitate the detestable things of those nations.” We don't need to be paranoid of Halloween. Fantasy is important for child development and God uses imagination to grow children. It’s fun to dress in costumes and have a fun time. However, as Christians we have to discern what God is calling us to do and we need to be careful about what we participate in because dark spiritual things, possession and the unseen world are very real.
22:45 - Does watching scary movies and participating in haunted houses invite evil in?
Engaging in scary things can be fun, but we don’t need to engage with things that are demonic. Hebrews 13.18 says, “Pray for us, for our conscience is clear and we want to live honorably in everything we do.” God is not against you having fun, but if you are drawn to darkness you are not drawn to Jesus. Make sure that what you’re participating in is good, right and true. Who you are in Christ needs to reflect how you participate in the holiday. It doesn’t matter what the holiday has been, it matters what you make it.
33:42 - Is there any biblical evidence that would support the idea that a genuinely born-again Christian could still be filled with one or more evil spirits or demons?
Demons do three things: misinformation, demonization and possession.
- Misinformation: The devil blinds non-believers to the truth and that’s why there’s so many of them who don’t understand the message of Jesus Christ. He wants people to remain dead and condemned as he is dead and condemned. The devil attacks Christians by attacking the character of God. When you question the goodness of God, you participate in the evil of sin.
- Demonization/Affliction: A Christian cannot be possessed by a demon because demons cannot dwell with the holy spirit who is more powerful. But demonization can happen and that’s when a demon is hanging around a Christian. Paul said he had this in 2 Corinthians 12.7. One of the signs of demonization or affliction can be physical sickness that doctors cannot explain and that’s when you need to come the church. We have to be careful not to give the devil a foothold in our lives through things like anger or sexual immorality.
- Possession: Not only can the devil attack non-believers but he can go inside them. After the last supper, Satan entered into Judas and scripture is clear on that. Judas had a choice and he allowed it. God asks for permission to take over your life and the devil has to do the same thing. Every time Jesus kicks a demon out they leave. If you are a born-again Christian you can be afflicted but you will never be possessed because Jesus is greater.
49:01 - Do demons ever die or will they always exist? Where do demons come from?
We don’t know where they come from, the Bible simply says they exist. In 1 Timothy 4.1 it says, “Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from the true faith; they will follow deceptive spirits and teachings that come from demons.” In the last days there’s going to be a fascination with demons. Some people say they’re fallen angels, but 2 Peter 4.2 says, “For God did not spare even the angels who sinned. He threw them into hell, in gloomy pits of darkness, where they are being held until the day of judgment.” It’s most important to remember that demons are bad and make sure not to become overly fascinated with them but become fascinated with Jesus.
56:13 - If I think there is a spirit in my home I usually tell myself it’s my grandma or a past loved one and not to fear. But I have also heard that our loved ones are gone and it cannot be our family and is something else. What is your take on spirits in our homes?
Revelation 18.2 says, “And he cried out with a mighty voice, saying, "Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great! She has become a dwelling place of demons and a prison of every unclean spirit, and a prison of every unclean and hateful bird.” Demons seem to relish shelter. They’re disembodied spirits that are looking for a place to dwell. If there is a spirit in your house it is not a loved one. We’re talking about an unseen world that we don’t know much about but the Bible does specifically say, “do not speak to the dead” because we don’t know who or what they are.
63:25 - In Luke 24.39, Jesus says "Look at my hands and feet, so you can see that this is really me. Touch me and make sure I am not a ghost, because ghosts don't have bodies, as you see that I do." What is Jesus referring to when he is talking about ghosts? I have read about angels having bodies so is Jesus saying that there are lost souls roaming the earth?
Jesus is using contemporary language and understanding. Ghosts were something that were contemporary. What he was saying there is that he arose physically and physically walked out of the tomb. That’s important because on the great day of the Lord everyone will rise. Some to everlasting paradise and some to everlasting judgement. Ghosts are part of the unseen world and we don’t know. We barely understand Jesus and the whole New Testament is about him. We don’t understand what’s happening, but there’s a fight going on here and in heaven. Jesus will make it right not just for humanity, but for all creation. He’s not just a global savior, he’s a cosmic savior.