ISRAEL IN BIBLE PROPHECY | home
Demons in the Church | Publisher's Note | Dedication | Contents | Proverbs 24:11-12 | Introduction | The Battleground | First Encounter | Old Testament Typology | Battle Doctrine | Who Says It's Legalistic? | Hazardous Theology | Spirits In My House | Lying Spirits | Magic Show | Witchcraft | Mediums & Psychics | Deceiving Spirits | Satanic Visions | Facing Reality | Epilogue
Demons in the Church
Within our ranks are servants of the enemy. Some of them are
highly exalted, with vast television audiences. They not called
by demon names, frightening everyone out of their minds.
Instead, they are known as pastor or evangelist so and so, and
are respected by all, just as Scripture said they would be.
JER 5:31 The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule on their
own authority; and My people love it so!
Why don't we discern them? Because they are pretty "close"
to the truth, and we ourselves are not clinging single-heartedly
to the Bible as our only infallible source for doctrine, HOS 4:6.
Many of these false prophets claim private interviews with
Jesus, and other signs and wonders:
COL 2:18 ...taking his stand on visions he has seen, inflated
without cause by his fleshly mind. (NASB)
Walking by sight, rather than by faith. The minute you hear
of someone having a vision of Jesus, alarm bells ought to go off
in your head, particularly if what that person teaches is not in
line with Scripture. Here is why: If Jesus were to appear to
one of these tel-evangelists today, the first thing He would tell
that man would be to get his doctrine in line with the Bible!
Now here's the point:
The church is not identifying the spirit behind the
words these men are speaking! Instead, we are being
dazzled by the supposed works they are performing!
But works tell you nothing about the prophetic office.
General Schwarzkopf did great works, but that didn't make
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him a prophet. According to Scripture, it's not the works we
should be looking at, but the spiritual fruit, because Jesus
MAT 7:15-16 & GAL 5:22-23 "Beware of the false prophets, who
come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.
You will know them by their fruits..." But the fruit of the Spirit is
love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentle-
ness, self-control; against such things there is no law. (NASB)
As you know, Satan doesn't imitate the fruit of the Spirit
very well, so false prophets can sometimes be recognized by
rotten fruit. A spiteful attitude is rotten fruit. If someone is
a true servant of God, he will bear good fruit.
On a so-called Christian television network, one of the most
acclaimed Pentecostal celebrities (we'll call him Benie) shared
this little gem with his viewers:112
"Somebody's attacking me because of something I'm teaching.
Let me tell you something, brother: You watch it!... You
know, I've looked for one verse in the Bible; I just can't seem
to find it. One verse that said 'if you don't like them, kill
them.' I really wish I could find it!... You stink, frankly that's
the way I think about it!... Sometimes I wish God will
give me a Holy Ghost machine gun; I'll blow your head
Abominable. Of course that "anointed" Pentecostal luminary
couldn't find a verse like that, or even close. It appears that
he missed the whole spiritual fruit message of the Bible. Only
112 I have agonized about what is to follow, and have asked the Lord
to help me to interpret His Word correctly, and to help me explain
this spiritual battle accurately. I know the spiritual danger of
exceeding what the Lord would have me write on this issue. We will
all stand before God for what we say, but a Bible teacher has a special
burden because he is responsible for the well-being of the souls he
teaches, JAM 3:1. What follows could be written of many of today's
church "leaders." Once you understand the guidelines of how to hold
dubious fruit up against the straightedge of Scripture you should be
able to insert the name of your choice.
113 Praise-a-thon Broadcast on TBN, November 8, 1990; as cited by
John McArthur, Charismatic Chaos, (Grand Rapids, Zondervan)
144 Demons in the Church
the god of this world sounds like that. The above threats
against a Christian were made by a tel-evangelistic celebrity
who claims to be "anointed" by the Holy Spirit to the absolute
max. In this man's meetings, people are "slain in the spirit" by
the hundreds, and multitudes are supposedly healed. But it is
madness to believe that this man's "anointing' is of the Holy
Spirit of God, because The Bible tells us plainly what Jesus'
true servants are like:
2TI 2:24-25 ...the Lord's bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but
be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness
correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant
them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth.
So whose spirit would lead this celebrity to display such a
mean and aggressive nature? Could it be the Holy Spirit of
God? Don't be ridiculous. That spirit was not the Spirit of
peace, gentleness, mercy and brotherly kindness. It was the
spirit of murder! A spirit so belligerent that one fears for the
soul of the man who made those remarks, and for the souls of
those he is enchanting. Contrast the Holy Spirit's voice with
that celebrity's voice. The voice of Holy Spirit says:
1JO 3:14 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because
we love the brethren.
1JO 3:15 Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you
know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
But there is more. That celebrity's book, Good Morning Holy
Spirit, is heresy by its very name!114 In the Bible we are
directed to pray in (i.e. under the guidance of) the Holy Spirit.
We are not directed to pray to the Holy Spirit, EPH 6:18. The
Holy Spirit is He who enables us to communicate with Jesus.
Jesus is the central figure of the Christian faith, so will the
Holy Spirit lead us unto a spirit? The Lord Jesus' voice says:
114 Jesus clearly told us to whom we should direct our prayers: MAT
11:28 Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give
you rest. MAT 6:9 "Pray, then, in this way: 'Our Father who art in
heaven. Hallowed be Thy name.'" Nowhere in Scripture are we
directed to pray to the Holy Spirit.
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JOH 15:26, 16:13-14 When the Helper comes, whom I will send to
you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the
Father, He will bear witness of Me... when he, the Spirit of truth, is
come... he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear,
that shall he speak... He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of
mine, and shall show it unto you.
Do these charismatic false prophets lead people straight to
the cross, as true Christians have done throughout the ages?
It doesn't seem so. Instead, they are leading people to a spirit.
According to JOH 15:26 and JOH 16:13-14, the real Holy Spirit
leads you directly to Jesus; and following that, the Holy Spirit
is GIVEN to you, ACT 5:32, ROM 5:5. Consequently, any man
who leads you to a spirit would be going directly against what
the Holy Spirit inspired the writers of the Bible to say... and
it's tragic, not only for these leaders, but also for all who are
listening to them. If a man goes against what the real Holy
Spirit said in the Bible, and spiritual phenomena are still in
evidence, whose spirit do you suppose is empowering that
2CO 11:14-15 ...for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of
light. Therefore it is not surprising if his servants also disguise
themselves as servants of righteousness; whose end shall be
according to their deeds.
COL 2:18-19 (excerpts) Let no one keep defrauding you of your
prize by delighting in... the worship of the angels... inflated without
cause by his fleshly mind, and not holding fast to the head, (Jesus
is the head, EPH 1:22).
Are all those millions of misled people who are following
these deceivers lost? Well, it is not for us to say; but if the
verses about "Jesus' voice" mean anything at all, those millions
are following the voice of a stranger.
JOH 10:27, JOH 10:5 "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them,
and they follow Me. And a stranger they simply will not follow,
but will flee from him, because they do not know the voice of
We are to hold fast to Jesus. Going to a spirit is what the
witch of Endor did, and that's what got Saul killed, ISA 28:19.
"Evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse,
deceiving and being deceived," 2TI 3:13. Since we are com-
manded NOT to call up a spirit, will God's Spirit come to us if
146 Demons in the Church
we call for Him? Don't be absurd. After salvation, the Holy
Spirit continually indwells the heart of the believer, as many
verses show.116 He doesn't need to be called up. He already
indwells us, not just part way, but in full, COL 2:9-10. If we
don't accept that truth, and continue to call up a spirit, a spirit
will come alright... but it won't be coming from above.
LEV 20:27 Now a man or a woman who is a medium or a spiritist
shall surely be put to death. They shall be stoned with stones, their
bloodguiltiness is upon them. (NASB)
Now brethren, I am in no way against the Holy Spirit of God,
nor any of His blessed and wonderful works; but these are
demons we are calling up who are masquerading as the Holy
Spirit! This isn't just some exquisitely thought out doctrinal
point. These are real mind-bending evil spirits we are flirting
with. Remember the story of Sally? Remember Rachel, Alvin,
Fritz, Janice, and Charles the ex-satanist?
As Jesus said, "Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is
wide, and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and many
are those who enter by it, For the gate is small, and the way
is narrow that leads to life, and few are those who find it,"
MAT 7:13-14. In one of his excellent little books, William
McGrath of Minerva, OH, writes:
"It is quite possible that the whole charismatic movement of
our time is nothing more than a colossal religious swindle, a
masterpiece of deception, doctrines of demons in which an
apparent 'spiritual renewal' is simply a drawing together of
what has been called The Three Sisters: Evangeline (the
Protestants), Charisma (the Pentecostals), and Roma (the
Well, what about all these claimed "anointings?" Is all this
a sham? One of the most misused words in the church today
is "anointing." We hear of this person being "anointed" to
preach, or of that person being "anointed" to heal. These
115 ISA 57:15; JOH 7:38, 14:16-17, 15:26, 16:7; ACT 5:32, ROM 5:5,
8:1, 8:16; 1CO 3:16, 6:19; 2CO 1:22, 6:16; GAL 3:2, 4:6; EPH 1:13,
4:30; 1TH 4:8; 2TH 2:13; 2TI 1:7; TIT 3:5; IJO 2:20,3:24.
116 William R. McGrath, How Superstitious Preaching Spreads Panic,
(Minerva, OH, Christian Printing Mission, 1992), pp13-14.
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claims of special "anointings" take our eyes off Jesus and put
them on a man.
ISA 8:19-20 And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that
have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter:
should not a people seek unto their God?...
To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to
this word, it is because there is no light in them. (KJV)
Isaiah says, don't go after the miracle workers; go to the
Word of God. Any "anointing" that brings glory to some
"wizard" is not biblical. When the Holy Spirit anoints some-
one, Jesus gets the glory! In fact, that is one of the tests for a
false prophet: Who is getting the glory? Whose name is up in
lights? Jesus' or the man's? The Holy Spirit's office is to lead
us straight to Jesus, with no side detours through someone's
JER 17:5 Thus says the Lord, "Cursed is the man who trusts in
mankind And makes flesh his strength, And whose heart turns
away from the Lord. (NASB)
When the Holy Spirit really anoints, like He did at Pentecost,
miraculous things happen that can be verified: Mighty
winds and tongues of fire, ACT 2:3, ACT 11:15. Houses
shaking, ACT 4:15. People were not just "slain in the spirit,"
they were slain dead as a hammer, ACT 5:1-11... and Jesus got
the glory! Seen any "anointings" like that lately? Any mighty
winds... houses shaking... tongues of fire? No? Well don't feel
bad, neither have I. However, similar signs have taken place
during the Christian Era. Here is what happened in Holland
...the Waterland brethren, on account of the severe persecu-
tion, could not live in houses, but had to keep themselves in
boats and in the fields, because they knew not where to hide
themselves from the constables, who were looking for them
everywhere, and sought their lives. It was at this time that
six brethren, who were together in a boat, were apprehended
in the Oostsaner field, and brought to Amsterdam, where
they were sentenced to death. It was in the beginning of the
winter when they were brought in the Volewijk, and all
strangled at the stake. There was freezing weather for
thirteen weeks from this time on, and, what is remarkable,
during all these thirteen weeks a light like a candle stood
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over each stake to which the bodies of the six brethren were
fastened, and burned all night.
...The persons who saw this...were...pious and credible per-
sons, who related it to many, in order that this miracle
should never be forgotten, but be remembered, to the edifica-
tion of the pious.117
Now that's an anointing! "Precious in the sight of the Lord
is the death of His godly ones," PSA 116:15. I am not sure
that the Lord did not permit some of these dearest of brethren
to die so that we, 400 years later, could see the difference
between His sovereign hand, and the deceptions of the enemy.
The false prophets haven't figured out a way to counterfeit
tongues of fire yet, but if they find one, they'll probably use it:
2PE 2:18-19 For speaking out arrogant words of vanity they entice by
fleshly desires, by sensuality, those who barely escape from the ones
who live in error, promising them freedom while they themselves are
slaves of corruption. (NASB)
As a sad but interesting note, after the miracles recorded in
the Christian Era were performed, there wasn't anyone left
standing around who could crow about his "anointing." It
seems that every spectacular miracle (recorded after the
apostolic era) was performed by some dear saint who was being
martyred for the sake of the Lord Jesus. But just like John
the Baptist, that is as it should be. Not the dear brethren, but
Christ Jesus Himself gets the glory.
Some critic might say that some of the miracles in church
records would not pass a legal test for evidence. In a couple of
instances that may be true. But these accounts were written
by brethren being tortured and burned alive for Jesus' sake.
Truth is what they died for. If they were willing to be burned
at the stake for refusing to accept the false doctrines of the
Roman Church, rest assured, their followers wouldn't lie about
how they died.
Other Christian authors have written many books that
expose the egregious heresies and blasphemies of today's
Charismatic, Third Wave, Word-Faith and Vineyard move-
ments; and on the horizon there are worse heresies still, going
117 Thieleman J. van Braght, Martyrs Mirror, (Scottdale, PA, Herald
Press, 1950) p568.
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so far beyond scriptural truth that what they teach can no
longer be called Christianity.118 These other writers report
a tragedy of monumental proportions. The Lord predicted it,
but it is still a tragedy, not only for the deluded Charismatic
leaders themselves, but also for all the souls they carry off into
error with them:
2JO 1:9-11 Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the
teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the
teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to
you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into
your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who
gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds. (NASB)
Very soon, the saints will again need to separate themselves
from "the blasphemy by those who say they are Jews and are
not, but are a synagogue of Satan," REV 2:9. In these last
days, we will need to be vigilant as never before in our stand
against satanic deception from within our own ranks. Jesus
said, "Night cometh," and if we look around us with our eyes
open, we can see that a spiritual night is already covering our
land. Verbal attacks against the brethren can be seen nightly,
prime time, on national TV networks. Many saints are being
shunned, while others are being harassed and are losing their
jobs for the sake of Jesus' name. Physical persecution cannot
be far behind.
In Nazi Germany, it was the Jews who were killed. In this
country, it will be the Christians and the Jews. That sounds
improbable, I know. But just seven years after the Nazis came
to power, millions of naked men, women, and children were
being herded into gas chambers. A murderous adversary lurks
beneath the thin veneer of every civilization, and through
sadistic movies and satanic rock he has captured the hearts
and minds of our children. On whose side will they be when
they begin to rule in the land?
MIC 7:6 For the son dishonoureth the father, the daughter riseth up
against her mother, the daughter in law against her mother in law; a
man's enemies are the men of his own house. (KJV)
118 John McArthur, Charismatic Chaos, (Grand Rapids, Zondervan,
1992). Dave Hunt, The Seduction of Christianity, (Eugene, OR,
Harvest House, 1988)
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REV 12:17 And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went
off to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the
commandments of God (the Jews) and hold to the testimony of Jesus
(the Christians). (NASB)
Each individual saint will need to guard his own soul and
the souls of his family, against the ever louder and more
strident assaults of the enemy, 2PE 3:17. How? By clinging
to the Bible. Put your trust in God's Word. It is a haven of
truth amidst a sea of lies. It is a mighty fortress against the
deceits of the enemy. The doctrines of demons, and turning
aside to myths predicted for the last days sound good, and
we're feeling good, but Scripture says:
MAT 24:24 For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will
show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even
2TI 4:3-4 For the time will come when they will not endure sound
doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate
for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires; and will
turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to myths...
2TH 2:10-12 ...they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be
saved. And for this reason God will send upon them a deluding
influence so that they might believe what is false, in order that they
all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in
2PE 3:17, MAR 13:9 You therefore, beloved, knowing this before-hand, be on your guard lest, being carried away by the error or
unprincipled men, you fall from your own steadfastness ...for they will deliver you to the courts, and you will be flogged in the
synagogues, and you will stand before governors and kings for My
sake, as a testimony to them. (NASB)