How Demons Are Benefited By Possessing Mankind
But why should demons obsess, possess, and rule the personality of man? Is there any advantage to the demon? Evidently there is.
Possession by demons of the body, mind, or soul of man (for we conceive .they possess either separately or dominate all) relieves or rests the demon. Some unaccountable demon instinct is gratified thereby. Jesus’ contact with the poor Gadarene demoniac shows the advantage to the demons of possessing or indwelling the human body.
Hear the demon’s language: “I adjure thee by God, that thou torment est not.” For Jesus said unto him, “Come out of the man, thou unclean spirit.” See here double or dual personality, the second personality, the demon’s usurping the man’s normal personality, and dominating it, and speaking through his organs of articulation. See also the confession of the demon indirectly that he was resting from torment temporarily while he possessed the man and was undiscovered and that his discovery by Jesus and calling oat, or exorcising, was torment to him and the end of his rest! “I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not.” How? By casting out.
That demons find rest by dwelling in men is shown by Jesus’ account of the unclean spirit being cast out of a man. He, the unclean spirit, goeth about in dry places. What does the demon go about for? Jesus says, seeking rest. How? In the disembodied state? Nay! In the dry places? Nay! But by seeking some human being whom he can obsess or attack and deceive into giving him entrance, or possession.
Then he finds the coveted rest. And so insistent is the demon on finding the rest that he gets reinforcements from seven other spirits worse than himself, and beats down or overpowers the man’s defenses, the man’s unrest beginning at the same time with the demon’s rest. Disembodiment, or casting out the demon from the man, reverses this state-it torments the demon, ends his rest, and rests his victim (e. g., the man who, after he was delivered, was found clothed, in his right mind, at rest at the feet of Jesus). By indwelling men demons gain temporary rest from torment before their time.
Again, they possess men for the purpose of having a medium through whom to manifest their power in spiritistic seances, also in devil worship. Satan is God’s competitor for worship. He offered Jesus lordship of the universe for a single act of worship.
Paul speaks of the ministers of Satan transforming themselves into ministers of righteousness. He speaks of offerings to devils and of the table of devils. And Jesus speaks of the synagogue of Satan. The healings of Christian Science, falsely so called, are demoniacal. Dr. Nevius gives cases of women in China who had and were offered power to heal through demon possession. Christian Science is Satan’s counterfeit of healings through the prayer of faith in Jesus.
Another reason why demons seek to indwell men and women is for physical gratification. Demons are parasitic. In addition to the melancholy, gloom, despair, dejection, lowness of spirits, and contrariness, demons affect also the physical health of the poor victim indwelt, appropriating to themselves in some mysterious way the vitality of the victim, thus robbing health, in part or in full, according to the degree of possession. The demon parasite appropriates to himself or themselves the vital forces, like the leech. However strange what we write may seem, those who have had the conflict with demons and have suffered from partial or full possession, will understand. And, invariably, according to numerous cases which have received deliverance, health, from the hour of exorcising or casting out of the demon, has improved.
Dr. Watson says the demons live off the human body forces, absorbing to themselves even the affection of wife for husband and vice versa, so that they are without natural affection. A sister who had known Jesus but lost fellowship, was trying to get forgiveness and restoration and, finding no help, said: “I am so perplexed and bewildered and bound I do not know what the trouble is unless I am demon possessed. At times a strange power, contrary to my will, seizes me and at such times against my will, and with no apparent reason, I hate my husband with all the hatred of hell itself.” She was delivered by an appeal to Jesus’ name, and later entered the victorious sanctified life.
By alienation of natural affection the adversary works to ruin husband, wife, and home. Many divorces are demoniacally inspired. It is Satan’s way of destroying the sanctity of the home. Satan has affinities cross the path as the first step of the after crash. Demons incite sensuality. The world lust wave is demoniacal.
A sister, naturally amiable, of sweet disposition, even tempered, who had known the life of the sanctified, was partly paralyzed. At certain times there would be the consciousness of another personality overmastering her personality, forcing her contrary to her will into violent paroxysms of uncontrollable anger toward her devoted ones, which she and they deplored but were powerless to help.