Are Demons, Exorcisms Real?
By James N. Watkins
The Exorcism of Emily Rose and the legion
of Exorcist films raise important questions about the spiritual
realm. Having personally witnessed what I believe was a very real
exorcism with very real demons, my answer to the question is "yes."
"My mom's completely flipped out. I mean, she sees demons
everywhere. Just this morning the car died on the way to school.
She got out, pounded on the hood, and yelled, 'In the name of
Jesus, I command the foul spirits of engine stalling to come OUT!"
Tina [all names have been changed] was one teen I could always
count on to be in church and youth meetings. She shifted in the
office chair and twisted a strand of her blonde hair. "It's
really weird, Pastor Jim. She threw out my Oxy-10 and tried to
cast out the demons of clogged pores. Now she's convinced that
my room's a wreck because I have an 'unclean spirit.'"
Tina stared out the window as she tried to sort it all out. "Mom's
acting really weird. But after last week, I know that Satan and
demons are real."
Last week, Tina, her friend Karen, and two guys from the youth
group, Kevin and John, a couple of guys had been at our house
playing Uno when the phone rang.
"Pastor Jim, Bret's growling and snarling like a wild animal
and trying to jump off the balcony! He keeps saying that Satan's
coming for him." I yelled for Kevin and John to come with
me, and for Tina, Karen, and my wife to pray for Bret--and for
When we arrived, Bret was thrashing around on the second-story
balcony, with two other guys from the youth group sitting on his
"Stay away from me or I'll kill you!" Bret screamed.
I decided that was good advice.
"Do you know if he's taken anything like 'PCP' or 'speed'?"
"No, he's been here all night!" Roy yelled from the
balcony. "He was okay until we started talking about he Lord."
Bret showed up occasionally for videos and pizza, but he always
seemed to avoid the Bible studies. I cautiously began climbing
"I told you I'd kill you! He's mine!" The screeching
voice sounded nothing like Bret's--it reverberated with a raspy,
hollow sound. The August air hung hot and heavy, but I instantly
felt chilled and my body began to shake. Still suspicious that
he was on something, I sniffed the air. I nearly gagged on the
rotten-egg smell of sulfur.
"In the name of Jesus Christ and by the power of his blood,
I command you to come out of Bret." The words coming out
of my mouth surprised me, as if someone else had voiced them.
I was even more amazed when Bret instantly relaxed and stared
at the two young men sitting on his chest while he laid sprawled
on the balcony.
"What's happening? What are you doing here . . ." Bret
completed the sentence by sneering "Pastor Jim " in
a threatening voice, his eyes burning straight through me. He
tossed his two friends against the house with no apparent effort.
"I told you that you can't have Bret. If we can't have him,
neither can you." Bret bolted for the edge of the balcony
as all five of us pounced on him.
For over an hour we struggled, prayed, and pleaded for Christ's
power over the evil that seemed to possess Bret. Finally, and
only after Bret himself asked Christ to come into his life did
the attacks cease.
Now, one week later, I couldn't explain away satanic manifestations
as merely primitive superstition or mental disorder.
"I think we now know, Tina, that demons are real--even in
We talked about the animal sacrifices that police were investigating
in a nearby cemetery. Officers had found black candles, inverted
pentagrams etched in the dirt, and the charred remains of cats
and chickens. We also talked about the satanic images and messages
in some heavy metal albums.
"It seems as if Satan is doing everything he can to get
people's attention off Christ, Tina. Whether or not those people
in the cemetery and the heavy metal groups are demon possessed
is anybody's guess. But Satan certainly is keeping people's attention
off Christ with occult activities and music that praises death
Now it was my turn to stare out the window.
"Your mom has probably been listening to someone whose entire
ministry consists of preaching against Satan. Don't get me wrong,
Tina. Last week taught me that we need to talk in youth group
about his power and activities--and soon.
"But if we spent all our time in youth meetings talking
about Satan, the occult, satanic lyrics, and demons, we'd be taking
our attention off Christ. I wonder if Satan is just as content
with demon obsession as he is with demon possession?"
"You know, Pastor Jim, now that you mention it, Mom's been
watching that preacher on TV who's always casting out "foul
spirits" of someone or something. And she's bought a bunch
of this tapes and books."
"Satan is subtle. He can cause even sincere Christians to
take their focus off Christ's power and to direct it to his. And
that creates the kind of fear that grips your mom. The enemy is
powerful, but we need to remember that 'greater is He [Jesus]
that is in us, than he [Satan] who is in the world.'"
"Thanks, Pastor Jim. Oh, could you give me a ride home?
Our car's in the garage with a clogged-up carburetor or something--but
Editor's Note: Since posting this article
on his Web site, the author has received numerous comments from
readers. On his site, he responds to one comment he received.
One particular comment, I need to address:
"Amen! Just yesterday a sister from our church got a demon(s)
casted out of her. It was pretty wild…it was saying all
these things in this raspy voice (of which this woman does not
have). I, as well as the other brothers and sisters in church,
as well as the Asst. Pastor who laid hands on her prayed and
it was cast out! Praise God! That’s not the only time
I’ve experienced someone with demons being exorcised.
In fact…that’s not the only time I saw anyone with
demons…anyone with a serious “mental” problem
is possessed by demons. Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder, Manic
Depression…those are the names of those demons. However,
Greater is He who is in us than He that is in the world! --
Alan (September 2005)"
Satan attacks people at their area of weakness. (He tempted Jesus
after He was famished from a fast of forty days in the desert.
And the very first temptation was aimed at his hunger Matthew
It would make sense that if someone had a mental weakness, such
as a chemical imbalance, that is the area Satan would attack.
That doesn't mean, however, that that mental illness is caused
by Satan. It's amazing how the anti-psychotic drug Haldol casts
out the "demons" of voices in one's mind. Before claiming
anyone is demon possessed, he or she should be thoroughly examined
by a qualified professional for any physical or mental issues
in concert with a qualified spiritual advisor such as pastor or
To accuse someone with schizophrenia or any other mental disorder
as being demon possessed is not only inaccurate, but incredibly
(c) 2005 James N. Watkins. Used by permission. For more information
about James Watkins visit www.jameswatkins.com.
CBN IS HERE FOR YOU!
Are you seeking answers in life? Are you hurting?
Are you facing a difficult situation?
A caring friend will be there to pray with you in your time of need.