Tony Evans - Deleting Your Demons
When you're facing a medical challenge that won't go away and where over the counter remedies are not working, that will drive you to the doctor because you need a professional analysis of your crisis and your cure. Inevitably, the doctor will look much deeper than you can see. Through the MRIs, the CT scans, the X-rays, they're going to delve deeper into the issues that are causing you the pain, struggle, stress, difficulties that you are facing. He's going to look or she's going to look in places that you can't see because the problem is deeper than you are able to fix.
In Mark chapter 5, we have an electric story of demonic oppression. We look at the demoniac in the whole chapter, in the whole first half of the chapter is dedicated to a man gone wild. The first five verses describe the crisis facing this man. We're told that Jesus, when he gets out of the boat in verse 2, having crossed the sea of Galilee, comes to a man from the tombs with an unclean spirit who met him. He dwelt among the tombs, we're told. That is, he didn't live in the vicinity of life, he lived in the vicinity of death because the tombs were his home. We're told that he was a man out of control. Verse 3, "No one was able to bind him anymore, even with the chain".
So the powers that be couldn't stop the chaos he caused. We're told that because he often had been bound with shackles and chains, and the chains had been torn apart by him, and the shackles broken in pieces, and no one was strong enough to subdue him. Consistently, night and day, he was screaming among the tombs and in the mountains and gashing himself with stones. You are now looking at a person out of control. Our human designation for him, some would say, "He's crazy". Others would say, "That man has lost his mind". When Luke tells the story in Luke chapter 8 and verse 27, it says that "He lived without clothes".
So he walked around in death, in nudity, out of control. When you look at our world today, it's made up of a lot of demoniacs, people who are out of control. And you know that something deeper is wrong because the powers that be can't make it right. Verse 2 says, "A man from the tombs with an unclean spirit met him". What we are told is that this man was being influenced and controlled by something other than what you see. There was something deeper going on in this man's life than just mental instability. He was being informed and defined by an unclean spirit, that is, a demon. This man had been demonized.
Now if you saw him, you didn't see demons. If you saw him, you didn't see devils, you didn't see red jumpsuit and a pitchfork, all you saw was a crazy man. And so you just would think he is mentally deranged, but when we look deeper, the passage tells us that this man was under the influence of an unclean spirit. That is, demons was controlling his mental instability. Now, before I go on, I do not wanna be misunderstood. All mental illness is not tied to demonic oppression. How do you determine whether it's purely a mental illness, a chemical imbalance that needs to be addressed as many do through the professional mechanisms that God has allowed us to erect in our culture or whether something is much deeper?
We're told that this man's actions were controlled by an unclean spirit, that is, unresolved sin operating in his life, unrighteousness that had not been addressed. When there is out-of-controllness, this man is out of control. You want to be able to identify any spiritual issues that have gone unresolved, or else you could be trying to address a problem with over-the-counter medicines and not with spiritual causation. Demons are at home with unresolved, unaddressed unrighteousness in our lives. When there is unresolved or refusal to address unrighteousness, what you have done is you have invited demonic attention to make a bad thing worse. When there is unresolved sin, you have amplified the uncontrollness in a life, in a family, and in a culture.
So we are now living in a culture gone mad where people don't care about life, where people don't care about property, where people don't care about how they talk to one another, where people don't care about abuse, where people have lost their minds but don't know demons are helping a brother out, helping a sister out. He says this man's uncontrollness was being amplified by an unclean spirit. That's what was making him act mad. Now, you may be saying, "Well, I'm a Christian, and the Holy Ghost lives in me, so the demons can't mess with me". Well, in 1 Corinthians chapter 10, verse 22 and 24, he's writing to the Christians at Corinth and he says, "Many of you are eating at the demons's tables".
When we finish our sermon and have communion, many folk will be having communion with demons in the name of Jesus. So even Christians can fellowship with demons. So some of the things that we can't get rid of in our lives, in our families, in our addictions, is because demons have grabbed them, amped them up so that you're not just fighting the problem, you're fighting the demonization of the problem. An unclean spirit. And when they come in, they take over, 'cause demons have relatives. And as 1 Timothy 4 verses 1 to 5 says, "They come with a lot of false information". Paul calls them doctrines of demons with a lot of false information. They may be sounding good, talking sweet, acting nice, but he says they are doctrines of demons because there's information contrary to the truth and knowledge of God.
So what I'm starting off saying here is that if your life is being ruled, authority, by something illegitimate, have you checked out whether the problem is deeper than you are aware of? Whether there's inflammation in your soul? Because the demons have been invited in the uncleanness of the environment. So, day and night, we're told in verse 5, that means it's your lifestyle. Day and night, 24 hours a day, 24/7 if something is illegitimately holding you hostage day and night, all the time, you're living in the realm of the illegitimate, and there is unresolved unrighteousness connected to your life, and you can't get rid of it, it won't go away, you can't defeat it, and what you need to know is the thing that's keeping that addictions alive is the demons who have attached themselves to the addiction.
And so you're fighting something deeper than you realize, than we realize. "Seeing Jesus," verse 6, "From a distance, he ran and bowed down before him; and shouting with a loud voice, he said, 'What business do we have with each other, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I implore you by God, do not torment me!'" Okay, wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute. Verse 9, "And he was asking him, 'What is your name?' And he said, 'My name is Legion, for we are many.'" Okay, I don't know if you caught that. He runs to Jesus in verse 6, bows down before him, and he said, "What business do we have with you"? He, singular, says, "What business do we," plural, "Have with you"? So we have a confused individual here. He says the he is also a we. You can't make sense of reality because your humanity has been messed up, tore up from the floor up.
So this self-identity is confused, but the man in his confusion comes to Jesus, why? Because his problem was not merely mental, it was spiritual affecting the mental. Again, not all mental illness is tied to demonic possession. But when there is unresolved unrighteousness, there is a high degree of potentiality that the problems that do exist have created inflammation in the soul that has resulted in the uncontrolled nature of the life. Many people have demonized attitudes about themselves, that's why they can become racist day and night, because their evil has become demonized, have drawn the roaches and the rats. And so, this man comes and the spiritual confronts the spiritual because he's dragging the demons to Jesus. Now, he bows down, recognizing Jesus's position. He humbles himself.
To bow down is to enter into a posture of worship. He recognizes Jesus, the Son of the Most High God. Please notice the word here, the word is found in verse 7, the word is found in verse 10, the word is found in verse 12, "I implore you". Verse 10, "He began to implore him". Verse 12, "The demons implored him". Okay, so you have a man and demons begging. To implore is to beg. So the man says, he implored them, but then he comes right around and says, "The demons implored him". Both of them, the human and the spiritual, were begging Jesus, which means the man in his humanity needed Jesus, but the demons couldn't even do anything without Jesus's permission.
So the devil, demons, had to get permission from Jesus even to be demons. "We implore you". He says, "You are a Son of the Most High God. Do not torment me". You know when a person is an alcoholic or a drug addict, you go through a period of torment in order to become whole. You go through a period of discontinuity where things are not flowing in concert one another because you want this evil that's controlling you to get off your back, which means you are going to be torment, things are gonna get worse before they get better. And so you have this request, don't torment me, because I know for this thing to get resolved, it's gonna cause me some inconvenience and pain.
Jesus says in verse 9, "What is your name"? In the Bible your name is your identity. "Who are you"? Now, Jesus is not asking because he doesn't know, he's asking for you to affirm. "What is your name"? Who are you? What is your identity? And the voice says, "I am Legion". A Roman legion was 6,000 soldiers. Roman Legion is 6,000 soldiers, so we got a man here with 6,000 demons in him because demons run in crowds. The reason why... the wilder you get, the more demons you have. We are living in a world now where people are not only been demonized, but we have a society that's demonized, so you got demons running everywhere. "My name is Legion, for we are many". Six thousand had consumed a man, no wonder the man's life is operating in madness. And so the demons say, "We are many, we own this place, we call the shots".
Now, right there, that tells you a bunch. Number one, it tells you demons can talk, they communicate. That means they can think in order to put together a language so they have a mind. So he implores them, they have the qualifications of personhood. They're not human beings, but they are persons. Verse 12, "The demons implored him, saying, 'Send us into the swine so that we may enter them.'" "Send us into the swine that we may enter them". Luke 11 verse 24 to 26 says that demons need a place to reside. So when the demons were exorcised from him, they said, "Can we go to another unclean location"? And please notice what happened, there was a large herd of swine feeding nearby. The demons implored, "Send us into the swine". Verse 13, "Jesus gave permission," 'cause even the demons have gotta get an okay from Jesus.
"And coming out of the unclean spirits entered the swine; and the herds rushed down the steep bank into the sea, about two thousand of them," so that means that 2,000, there was 6,000 demons, "And they were drowned in the sea". So what is the goal of demons? To kill you. But the beautiful thing is when Jesus spoke, the demons left. Because the spiritual had to be addressed before the personal could be changed. Now, stay with me just a little bit longer. They asked for permission 'cause they didn't know whether Jesus was gonna give it or not, but the man had positioned himself. Now watch this, "The herdsmen ran away," the ones who had the pig farm, they ran away, "And reported in the city and in the country," okay. "And they came to Jesus and observed the man who had been demon-possessed," watch this, "Sitting down," instead of roaming, "Clothed in his right mind," instead of crazy.
"The very man who had Legion, and they became scared". They got scared. Why are they afraid? "Those who had seen it described to them," verse 16, "How it happened to the demon-possessed man, and about all the swine, and they began to implore him to leave their region". Why did they ask him to leave? Jesus was messing with their money. They made their living with the swine. And because their business was being interrupted, because their economics was being interrupted, "We don't wanna hear no more about Jesus". And the reason Jesus is being kicked to the curb in our culture today is if you follow Jesus, he's gonna mess with your lifestyle, he's gonna mess with your... look, look, if you follow Jesus, he gonna mess with big pharma.
If you follow Jesus, he gonna mess with drug prices. If you follow Jesus, he ain't gonna just let you make a profit off of the back of the poor, off of the back of the oppressed, off of the back of those who are being misjudged. If you follow Jesus, he ain't gonna let you mess folk up in the name of money in your pocket. He's not gonna tolerate crooked politicians, he's not gonna tolerate messed up economic systems. He's not gonna tolerate the evil in society. So what do they do? They gotta get rid of Jesus, they gotta dumb down the church, they got to shut the mouths of Christians, 'cause if we let Jesus stay in this country, he's gonna mess with how our capitalistic system operates. He gonna mess it up, he got to leave here. Which is why in most cases of socialism and communism, you gotta dumb down religion or cancel it altogether so that man can rule instead of God and place mandates on everybody else how you should function in spite of what God said.
And watch this, now I don't have time to develop it, but the bigger the mandates, the more satanic the system. Now the Bible believes in safety, the government's responsible for safety, but when you control through mandates something that God has not allowed, the Bible says in Revelation 13, "It is the system of the antichrist". And so in conclusion, the man says, he's imploring him. The demon-possessed man says, "Look," he says, "I want you to let me go with you". Verse 18, he says, "Can I go with you"? But look at verse 19, "He did not let him, but he said to him, 'Go home to your people and report to them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how he had mercy on you.'" He says, "I want you to tell it. They won't let me stay, but you live here, I want you to tell it".
And he said, verse 20, "He went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis what great things Jesus had done for him; and everybody was amazed". Wherever you go, I want you to talk about what Jesus has done for you. So if you ain't telling nobody, what you're saying is, "Jesus ain't done nothing for me". But if Jesus has met you along the way, if he forgave your sins and gave you eternal life, if he has kept you going when you wanted to throw in the towel, if he has kept you in your right mind when you thought you were gonna go crazy, I'm here to tell you, you better go tell it, you better let it be known that "Jesus is in my life, Jesus has changed my life, Jesus has resurrected my life, Jesus has empowered my life, and I'm not gonna be ashamed of Jesus. I'm gonna go tell it in the ten city region".
So I challenge you, I challenge us, don't leave Jesus in the sanctuary, don't leave him in your private time. You let it be known in the region of this church and in the region of whatever church you are a part of that "I belong to Jesus. I believe in God, but I follow Jesus. And I'm not ashamed to say it because I know what he's done for me". And if you're here today and you need some demonic deliverance, he still cast out demons, he still cast out demons.