by Matt Slick
The Bible tells us that there are demons who war against God and His people (Eph. 6:12). And if that weren't bad enough, sometimes people open themselves up to demonic oppression without realizing it. Now, if you're a Christian, you need to understand that you cannot be demon possessed. Demonic oppression, on the other hand, does occur against Christians. Demonic oppression is the attack by demonic forces that can result in illness, depression, financial difficulty, abnormal fear, etc. So, it is a good idea to be aware of things that can open up a person to spiritual oppression. Let's take a look.
- Past involvement in occult activity - Occult activity includes such things as Ouija boards, tarot cards, astrology, séances, necromancy (contacting the dead), and divination.
- Past involvement in false religion - False religions are, ultimately, doctrines of demons (1 Tim. 4:1; Matt. 24:24). To dabble in them is to directly dabble in demonic activity. Such false religions would be Mormonism, Jehovah's Witnesses, Islam, Roman Catholicism, etc.
- Drug use - Drugs alter the state of the mind and can invite demonic activity since it promotes the loss of control of the mind as well as denying God’s intention for us to be soberminded. The Greek word for sorcery is pharmakeia (Galatians 4:20; Revelation 9:21; 18:23)
- Pornography - This is a sin of lust that can easily open a person up to having demonic influences and control.
- Occult meditation techniques - Emptying the mind, centering prayer, repeating a single word or phrase for long periods, etc., are all practices that can induce an altered state of consciousness and can promote the loss of personal control of your mind.
- Curses from other people - Sometimes people involved in occult activity will curse you or your family. It is not that you can actually be cursed as a Christian. Rather, those who are against Christ and his people can focus demonic activity on you.
If you are aware of what can cause a problem, you can take steps to avoid it. Likewise, if you're aware of what might cause demonic oppression, you can take steps to avoid it. For more information on this see What should I do if I suspect demonic oppression?
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