Demons are evil spirits which follow the will of their prince, Satan (Matthew 12:24; Ephesians 2:2). The Bible does not explain how they came to be, except to say that God is the creator of all things originally, both spiritual and physical, and that he created everything good in the beginning (Colossians 1:16; Genesis 1:31). According to the Old Testament, the idolatry which was so vehemently condemned by God in the Old Testament, involved the worship of demons (Deuteronomy 32:17; Psalm 106:37; 1 Corinthians 10:20-22). Demons are evil spiritual beings with an influence over many people.
In the ministry of Jesus, we encounter the idea of demon possession as Jesus does battle with the forces of Satan and drives them out before him like a conqueror. The most indepth story of demonic possession and exorcism is the story of the Gardarene demoniac (Matthew 8:28-34; Mark 5:1-20). In this case, a man who was super strong and super violent and very self-destructive in his behavior came to Jesus and fell down in front of him. His voice cried out, “What do you want with me Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Swear that you won’t torture me!” Jesus replied, “Come out of this man you evil spirit!” Then Jesus asked the demon, “What is your name?” “My name is Legion, for we are many,” he replied. As the story goes on, Jesus drives the demons out of the man after which they enter a herd of pigs which then go running over a cliff and drown in the sea. In this account, the demons caused horrible self destructive behavior which was also dangerous to others. The demons spoke using the man’s body and the man’s voice. However, the fact that the man came to Jesus and fell down before him, suggests to me that the demon possessed man still had some of his own free will. He wanted to be rid of the demons. Jesus freed him from the demons. Then, when the man was clothed and in his right mind, Jesus told him, “Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you!” (Mark 5:19). The demons had great power over this man but could not stop him from coming to Jesus.

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