April 7, 2019

What Does It Mean That Even The Demons Believe and Tremble? Demonic Intelligence — No Match for the Power of Jesus Christ, The Living Breathing WORD Of God. Holy Spirit Is The Breath Of God.

[source: Got Questions?]

Question: "What does it mean that even the demons believe
                 (James 2:19)?"

Answer: James 2:19 says, “You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder.” James is showcasing the difference between mental agreement and a genuine saving faith. Many people were claiming that, because they believed in the God of Moses and they could chant Deuteronomy 6:4, which says, “Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one!” they were right with God. James shatters that false hope by comparing that kind of belief to the knowledge held by Satan and his demons. If all that is required for salvation is mental agreement with the truth about God, then Satan and the demons can be saved, too. They know it is all true. Satan’s minions are more aware of God’s reality than most people, yet the demons are not right with God. The demons may believe some things that are true about God, but they’re certainly not saved.

So what is the difference between the demons’ belief and the faith required for eternal salvation? Fortunately, James does not leave us to wonder. The rest of the chapter goes on to explain that faith without any resulting action is useless (James 2:20). The kind of faith that saves us is the kind that changes us. We can understand this better through an illustration:

Imagine standing on the brink of the Grand Canyon. A narrow suspension footbridge spans the canyon. It dips in the middle, sways slightly in the wind, and has a few planks missing. Standing with you on the edge is the architect of that bridge. He is world-renowned for his designs, and he holds the plans in his hand. He asks if you have faith in his bridge. You eagerly reply, “Yes! I have faith in you. I believe that bridge will hold my weight.” But real faith does not remain on the brink of the canyon. That is only hope. Faith is when you step out onto the bridge and begin walking across the chasm.

So it is with salvation. The demons know more than we do about the awesome power of God. They watched Jesus Christ come to earth, live as a man, and then be crucified (Matthew 20:28). They trembled in horror as the God-Man rose from the dead and walked out of the tomb (1 Corinthians 15:3–8). They saw Him ascend back into heaven, and they believe that Jesus is the Son of God (see Mark 1:24). But demons do not have saving faith, and neither do we if that is where our faith ends.

The difference between the demon’s faith and saving faith is a question of lordship. Who is the boss of my life? To whom have I entrusted my life and my future? Who has the final say on my lifestyle decisions? Demons have already made their choice to follow Satan (Revelation 12:3–9). For our faith to be of a different variety, we must surrender our lives to God’s control. We must forsake all lesser loves in order to put Him first in our hearts. Jesus said plainly that, if we love anything or anyone more than Him, we are not worthy of Him (Matthew 10:37–38).

It’s not enough to believe in God. The demons believe in God, but they do not love God. They believe that Jesus is God’s Son and that He died on the cross for the sins of humanity, but they do not care. They know He rose from the dead, but that fact does not affect their allegiance. Many people are in the same category, not realizing that what they call “faith” is nothing more than what the demons possess. Perhaps they prayed a prayer, got baptized, or went to church, but the direction of their lives never changed. They remain the undisputed sovereigns over their own lives. Jesus told us what it costs to become His followers: “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me” (Luke 9:23). That cross we must carry represents death to the right to direct our own lives. Without that cross-carrying, we are still standing on the brink of the Grand Canyon.

People may believe in God, angels, heaven, and hell, yet never trust Christ as their Lord and Savior. They are satisfied with a demon-level belief that will never save them from God’s righteous punishment (Romans 6:23; Revelation 21:8). We can escape the demons’ fate, however (Matthew 25:41). We each have the opportunity to bow our hearts to the lordship of Jesus and humbly receive the forgiveness of sins. God offers to us what He does not offer demons—a chance to be adopted into His family as His own children (Galatians 4:5–6). It is a free gift that costs us everything we are (Luke 9:24). But the rewards are never-ending (Matthew 25:21; Psalm 23:6).

[source: Renner.org Teaching you can trust]
And the evil spirit answered….
— Acts 19:15
Yesterday we saw how seven exorcists attempted to add the name of Jesus to their repertoire of magical incantations. As the story unfolds in Acts 19, we find that the seven sons of Sceva had a major confrontation — an unsuccessful one — with a demon-possessed man in Ephesus. As noted earlier, these exorcists saw Paul successfully using the name of Jesus to exercise authority over demons. Hoping to expel demons from a man in Ephesus, they added the name of Jesus to their list of magical names, even though they had no personal relationship with Jesus.

According to Acts 19:15, their attempt was futile. In fact, the verse says that the demon indwelling the man challenged them: “And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?”

The actual structure of the Greek text says, “And answering, the evil spirit said….” The Greek tense tells us this was not a single answer; rather, the demon spirit that possessed the man verbally responded to each attempt the seven exorcists made to drive it out. Thus, the spirit was answering each time they tried to use a new magical name, spell, or incantation to drive it out. This, of course, tells us that evil spirits have intelligence and the ability to speak and even to converse.

This ability of evil spirits to speak is evident in the four gospels and in the book of Acts. A study of the Scriptures makes it clear that demon spirits are intelligent:
  • They can possess specific information about things, places, or people.
  • They can know the names of people.
  • They have the ability to indwell a human being and engage that person’s vocal apparatus to terrorize others, to blaspheme, to challenge, to make requests, and to scream, shriek, and cry out.
Vivid examples of evil spirits possessing intelligence and having the ability to speak can be found in Matthew 8:29 and Mark 5:7-12, where we read about the demoniac of Gadara. This tortured man was indwelt by a legion of demons that demonstrated both intelligence and the ability to speak. Mark 1:23-25 relates another example of this phenomenon. In this instance, evil spirits in a man spoke so freely that Jesus had to command them to stop talking and be silent.

Then in Mark 1:34, we are told that many sick people and those possessed with demons gathered to be healed and delivered by Jesus. The evil spirits referred to in this verse were so fluid in speech that Jesus actually had to forbid them to speak so they wouldn’t reveal who He was before the time. These are just a few New Testament examples demonstrating that demons have both intelligence and the ability to use the vocal organs of the person in whom they dwell.

Going back to Acts 19:15, we read that this man had an “evil spirit.” All demons are evil, but the word “evil” in this verse is the word poneros. If used in connection with animals, the word poneros depicts ferocious, savage, and dangerous beasts. Likewise, when this Greek word is used to describe spirits that indwell people, these spirits are ferocious, savage, dangerous, and malicious to those in whom they dwell and bring harm and danger to those who are in close proximity to them.

First, the evil spirits often create harmful and self-injuring behavior. The New Testament has many examples of such savageness. One example is found in Luke 9:37-39, where Luke tells us of a boy who periodically experienced demonic attacks that were injurious. Luke described it like this: “And, lo, a spirit taketh him, and he suddenly crieth out; and it teareth him that he foameth again, and bruising him hardly departeth from him” (v. 39). Matthew related the same account in Matthew 17:14 and 15, adding that the evil spirit would hurl the boy into fire and water. This was ferocious, savage, dangerous, and malicious treatment by the demon spirit against the one it possessed.

Another example is found in Mark 5:5, where we find the demoniac of Gadara, who was continually wandering in the mountains and among the tombs, crying out and “cutting himself with stones.” He continually wandered around that isolated region, crying out in pain and agony while slicing his body with sharp stones — and it was all the result of the “evil spirits” that indwelt him. It is no wonder that these spirits are called poneros in the Greek, for they truly are evil.

But this description of the destructive impact of demonic control in a person’s life should not cause us any fear. In my years of ministry, I have occasionally found myself in a confrontation with a demonized person. Just like the stories referred to in the Bible, I have heard demons speak, and I have seen them exercise physical power beyond human ability. But in each case, I have also seen them wilt and shrink when the name of Jesus is employed against them. We must remember that Jesus taught, “And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils…” (Mark 16:17).

If you really know Jesus as your Lord and Savior — if you are in Christ — you can be sure that you have authority over demonic powers in the power of His name. Unlike the exorcists who used magic and incantations to manipulate the spirit realm and failed, you are empowered by the Holy Spirit, and you are given the name of Jesus to take authority over and to cast out demons. You are empowered by the Spirit of God and have real God-given authority in the spirit realm!

I am so thankful that the Bible clearly shows us that demonic powers shrink back at the name of Jesus. In fact, spirits are so fearful of that name that James 2:19 says demons “tremble” in the presence of faith and the name of Jesus. The word “tremble” is the Greek word phrisso, which means to bristle, as when the hairs stand up on a person’s neck when he is suddenly “spooked” or startled by an unexpected noise, etc.

This means that even though demons may have intelligence to speak and power to be able to put forth superhuman strength, none of that helps them when they find themselves in the presence of a believer exercising his authority by faith in the name of Jesus. That prospect sends them into shock, panic, and dismay. Figuratively, it causes the hair to stand up on their necks. It terrifies them!

As a believer, you have the Holy Spirit living in you and you have the name of Jesus Christ to use at your disposal. That means you are in a position to make demons tremble! And it doesn’t stop there. You also have the power to cast them out in Jesus’ name, just as promised by Christ in Mark 16:17.

So the next time you find yourself in the presence of evil, don’t you shrink back in fear. Release your faith and lift your voice to take authority over the devil’s strategies in the name of Jesus — and as you do, you’ll send those evil, malevolent powers scurrying away in terror! Then as you release the peace and the love of God in Jesus’ name, His power will go into operation to calm those who had been adversely affected by that demonic oppression and turn that situation completely around according to God’s purposes and to His glory!
MY PRAYER FOR TODAY

Father, I am inspired and thankful to learn I have authority that is given to me because of my relationship with Jesus Christ and His matchless name that He has entrusted to me. When I encounter situations where demonic power is present, I thank You for giving me the boldness to take authority and to expel those powers in Jesus’ name!

I pray this in Jesus’ name!


John Ramirez, author of Out of the Devil's Cauldron shares testimony of growing up a Satanist, touched by Jesus. Listen to his amazing testimony. Satanist, the dark spiritual powers, pray from 7pm until 5am in the territory they're in. So basically the dark spiritual powers are praying 24/7. There is a Supernatural spiritual battle happening behind the scenes. Know that this is not about religion at all. It is a battle for souls and territory. (emphasis mine)

[source: StudyJesus.org]

Scripture Reading: James 2:19 (KJV)

This interesting verse tells us that monotheism does not save. Even the demons believe that there is one God, but they tremble.

"Thou believest that there is one God ..." James' readers were not atheists; they believed there was one God. The Lord calls an atheist a fool. "The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God" (Ps. 14:1). Everything in creation cries out, "There is a God." How can one see a beautiful flower and question God's existence? How can one observe the marvelous construction and beauty of tulips, hyacinths and daffodils, and still be an atheist? Equally marvelous is animal and bird life, and even more marvelous human life. Use a telescope on the vast heavens, or a microscope on the tiny microbe, and the only answer is "God."

The effect of atheism: We have all seen examples of what happens when atheism grips a people. We have seen it in Germany with Hitler; in Russia with Stalin. We have seen every vestige of mercy go and the black demons of lust, envy, and hatred sweep across the scene.

Not idolaters: James is not writing to idolaters either. They believed in "one God." In times past the Jewish nation did sink into idolatry, as we see in Ahab's time, and even in connection with Solomon. However, after the Babylonian captivity the Israelites never again sank into this sin. From then on they always laid great stress on Deuteronomy 6:4, "Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God is one Lord." This verse had a great effect on the Jews at the time of James. They quoted it constantly, and laid great stress on the word "one." They thought it proof against the trinity and thus the deity of Christ. The devil used it as a trick to keep Christ away from the Jews generally. The Pharisees taught that if one would quote Deuteronomy 6:4 often, holding the word "one" a long time, his life would be prolonged on the earth.

94% believe there is a God: A newspaper stated perhaps as many as 94% of the people in our land profess to believe there is a God, but what percentage of that number are truly saved? To believe in "one God" is correct theology, as far as it goes, but such correctness does not necessarily mean salvation. No, just believing in God and living in a so called Christian land does not automatically make one a Christian.

Orthodox, but not saved: Notice that James says nothing about faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. It is simply, "Thou believest there is one God." However, it is possible to have an orthodox creed, and still not be saved. One might know much doctrine and be able to quote Scripture, yet not trust and obey Christ. It is more than knowing the truth; it is letting Christ enter into our hearts and control us. One God in the New Testament: Though God the Father, God the Son and God the Spirit take center stage in the New Testament, it might be well to mention that the New Testament never denies the oneness of the Godhead. The Lord Jesus Himself quotes Deuteronomy 6:4 in Mark 12:29. Paul says, while contrasting God with idols, "there is none other God but one" (1 Cor. 8:4). He reaffirms this in verse 6. Then, in Galatians 3:20 he says, "Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one."

"... the devils ..." The word "devils" would be better translated "demons." There is one devil, but many demons. When the devil fell from his high place in glory many fell with him. We read of these demons many times in the New Testament. We also read of some who were demon possessed, but liberated by Christ. There is the man of Gadara with his legion of demons, and Mary Magdalene, out of whom he cast seven demons (Luke 8:2). This demon possession seemed prevalent in Christ's time, but a few missionaries have asserted, privately, its presence in various ways in foreign countries even today. Some in our land seem possessed, too.

The demons believe: The demons are not atheists; they believe there is a God, and tremble at the thought of Him. They know all about Him and His power. They knew Christ when He was here. We hear the legion of demons in the man of Gadara say, "What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? Art thou come hither to torment us before the time?" (Matt. 8:29). They not only recognized and acknowledged Christ, but they actually prayed to Him and had their prayers answered. "So the devils besought Him, saying, If thou cast us out, suffer us to go away into the herd of swine. And he said unto them, Go" (Matt. 8:31, 32). Yet for all this, demons are not saved, nor can they be.

Demons believe but remain demons: These demons believed and yet remained demons. Some humans profess to believe, yet act much like demons. A professed faith may exist with the deepest condemnation. To have head-faith and head-knowledge that does not affect the mouth, hands, or feet, is profitless and dead.

"... believe, and tremble." "Tremble" in our verse, would perhaps be better translated "shudder" (R.V.). Did you ever have such a scare that it made cold chills run up your back and your hair stood on end? This is the thought here. When the demons think about God and the judgment awaiting them because of their sin, it makes them shudder from fear. If men could but see what awaits them because of their sin and rejection of Christ, no doubt they would shudder, too.

A trembling human: The faith of some men has not gone as far as that of the demons. They believe and tremble. Some men say they believe, but have never trembled before the Lord at the thought of the seriousness of sin. Many have never trembled at the thought of being called into account by God. There is no mercy for a trembling demon, but when a human trembles before the Lord, he is nigh unto salvation. "But to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word" (Is. 66:2). Remember, there are no unbelievers in hell, but then it will be too late. Weeping and gnashing of teeth will be the lot of the unsaved forevermore.

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