Some Christians believe in angels but not demons, heaven but not Hell, and blessings but not curses.
We should not focus on evil, but we must not ignore what Jesus taught. One third of His ministry dealt with demons, and Jesus never called anyone to the ministry without telling them to cast out demons. Evil spirits cannot enter anyone they choose, or else everyone in the world would be demonized. Demons must first find a door through which to enter. A legal door is opened because of sin, but not just any sin. The Bible speaks of two kinds of sin (see 1Jn. 5:16). One sin leads to death and the other is a besetting sin (see Heb. 12:1). A besetting sin will stop one’s blessings and progress. A sin that leads to death is one that brings a curse. A curse is a judgment and it opens the door for demonic activity. Only in Christ can sins be forgiven and curses be broken.
The Dynamics of a Curse
The entire world came under a curse because of Adam’s sin. That and all other curses were removed through the cross, but the practical outworking comes in stages. That is why Christians continue to get older and their bodies continue to show it. Just because people are saved from the penalty of sin does not mean they have been perfected. Nor does it mean that Christians cannot sin. If they commit a besetting sin it will hinder a level of God’s blessings from coming to them. If they commit a sin that leads to death, a curse will follow and that could bring demonic activity. Whatsoever we sow we will reap, even if we are Christians.
A curse is a sworn judgment (see Da. 9:11). They come because of our sin, sins of our forefathers, or sins of our nation or community leaders. Nations, cities and families are under curses because of wicked sins (see Da. 9, Ez. 22).
A curse can extend for 4 generations as is mentioned in the 10 Commandments (see Ex. 20:4). That means that a sworn judgment can be over a family and effect the grandchildren and great grandchildren, unless it is broken.
What Can Cause Curses?
Curses come because of a variety of terrible sins such as: occult involvement, dishonoring parents, hurting widows, orphans, immigrants or the poor, hurting the handicapped, business corruption, sexual perversion including adultery, the shedding of innocent blood, being an assassin, hurting the Jews, or not paying your tithes and offerings. (see Dt. 27:15-24, Ez. 22, Mal. 3, Ge. 12).
Breaking curses is a provision available to all believers, because of the work of the cross. It is like physical healing, deliverance and many other blessings that Jesus paid for. In Daniel’s prayer, (see Da. 9) we see that he acknowledged and repented for the sins of his forefathers. He asked for forgiveness for the nation even though he himself, was a righteous man (see Da. 6: 4). As an intercessor, he renounced Israel’s sins and asked God to remove the generational curses.
We should do the same if a family curse in evident. Then in the name of Jesus, we should verbally break the curse. This is no different from other exercises of ministry. Legally we have it, experientially we must take it.
Signs of a family curse or generational judgment becomes evident when we see unrealistic, on-going, repeated traumas that persist generation after generation. This can include abject poverty, suicides, infertility, generational sicknesses, marriage failure or a family being accident prone, to name only a few. Note, one should not jump to conclusions because these things have happened periodically, but if they detect a pattern they should consider the possibility of a generational curse.
One third of Jesus’ ministry involved deliverance. Demonic oppression and possession are commonplace today as they were in Bible times. Christians cannot be possessed by demons, for that infers ownership, and Christians belong to Jesus. Demonic aggravation or oppression, however, is common.
Wherever curses remain, a door is open for demonic activity. Demons, entice, deceive, compel, enslave, torment, and defile people. Pastors know these things are common with members of their churches. Lovely Christians battle with such struggles.
If a demon attacks from without, the Bible says, resist it (see Js. 4:7). If a demon is within, it must be cast out. The Bible says that a certain person had an evil spirit, had a demon, had a spirit of infirmity, or had a dumb spirit, etc. (see Mt.11:18, Mk. 7:25, 9:17, Lk. 4:33, 8:27, 13:11)
If a person has peace in body, soul, spirit and family they have no inner demons. If sickness, emotional turmoil or torment, constant relational upheaval, spiritual resistance to worship or good Bible teaching, or any paranormal activity persists, then a demon may be the cause. In that case, it should be rebuked and cast out.
There are some dynamics that should be mentioned regarding deliverance. Jesus taught on the subject and warned that a person who is delivered should not go back to a life of sin or 7 more demons may enter them and their end condition will be worse than when they started (see Lk. 11:26).
It is also important to follow the Biblical pattern for deliverance. The longest deliverance session mentioned in the Bible was less than 1 hour and that was the deliverance of a functioning fortune teller who was possessed (see Acts 16:18 KJV).
Most all the time the demons came out instantly and people were healed or delivered with a word. There are many examples of shaking, screaming, falling to the ground and even death-like symptoms being manifest when demons came out of a person. However, there were no lengthy deliverance sessions in the Bible.
Every situation is different, but I want to warn against an excessive focus on demons. After more than 45 years in the deliverance ministry, I observe that many people become worse after extensive deliverance sessions. I am not in favor of folks digging up people’s past, trying to hunt for more and more spiritual entities. Some ministers have long lists of demon types and dozens of ways they can enter. They spend hours questioning, investigation and fighting each demon. I believe this is a wrong and dangerous approach and it is not Biblical. Such an intense focus on the demonic brings added fears, and often more demonic involvement.
The Holy Spirit will quickly reveal or remind a person of sin. Then repentance and forgiveness should be exercised. Then renounce witchcraft and curse-causing sins. Proclaim the work of the Cross and your place in Christ. You may need help from a minister as you do this. Then worship the Lord and focus on Jesus. Keep your mind stayed on Him and only on that which is good. He promises to keep in perfect peace those whose mind is stayed on Him.
Keep your life and your heart pure, your house clean from spiritual darkness, and dedicate yourself to be an obedient servant of Christ. Furthermore, be sure to be an active member of a Holy Spirit led church and be in good fellowship with God’s people.
Realize, as a believer, your path is one of righteousness, peace and joy. You shall know the truth and the truth will set you free. The life of a believer gets brighter until the full light of day.