A close-up photo capturing a weathered Bible, with a candle illuminating a page containing scripture passages addressing the biblical teachings on demons.

What Does The Bible Say About Demons?

Demons are evil spirits that afflict people in the Bible. If you want a quick answer, the Bible says demons are fallen angels who joined Satan’s rebellion against God. Jesus and the apostles cast out demons and commanded believers to resist the devil.

In this comprehensive article, we will examine everything the Bible teaches about demons. We will look at where demons came from, examples of demonic activity, the authority believers have over demons, and how to resist demonic influences.

The Origin of Demons

Demons are Fallen Angels

According to the Bible, demons originate from a group of angels who rebelled against God. These angels, who were led by Satan, attempted to exalt themselves above God. As a result, they were cast out of heaven (Isaiah 14:12-15; Ezekiel 28:12-19; Revelation 12:7-9).

Though created as good angels, they chose to disobey God, causing them to become evil spirits known as demons.

The Bible indicates that Satan was originally a beautiful, high-ranking angel named Lucifer. But Lucifer became arrogant and desired to be worshipped like God. When God refused to grant his request, there was war in heaven and Lucifer was cast out.

The angels who followed Lucifer in rebellion were thrown out of heaven with him and became demons. Other names for Satan include Beelzebub, the prince of demons (Matthew 12:24), the evil one (1 John 5:19), and the angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14).

Demons are invisible, spiritual beings that can inhabit or possess humans and animals, causing afflictions and illnesses. They oppose the work of God and promote evil. However, their power is limited, and they can be overcome by the power of Christ.

The ultimate destiny of demons is to be cast into the lake of fire on judgement day (Matthew 25:41).

Satan’s Rebellion Against God

The rebellion of Satan is described in Isaiah 14:12-15 and Ezekiel 28:12-19. These passages symbolically portray Satan as the kings of Babylon and Tyre. However, they reference Satan’s rebellion and why he was cast out of heaven.

Isaiah 14 reveals that Satan, as the king of Babylon, desired to make himself like God and exalt his throne above the stars (angels) of God. But he was brought down to the pit of Sheol. Ezekiel 28 indicates that Satan, as the king of Tyre, was a beautiful, high-ranking angel.

But pride caused his downfall, and he was cast out of God’s holy mountain.

Revelation 12:7-9 also describes the rebellion and defeat of Satan: “And there was war in heaven, Michael and his angels waging war with the dragon. The dragon and his angels waged war, and they were not strong enough, and there was no longer a place found for them in heaven.

And the great dragon was thrown down, the serpent of old who is called the devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.”

Examples of Demons in the Bible

Demons Possess People

Demons are nefarious spirits that can invade and control a person’s body and mind in the Bible. Jesus frequently expelled demons from individuals who were possessed, displaying his power over evil spirits (Mark 1:21-28, Luke 4:31-37).

The demons completely took over the physical faculties and mental capacities of the possessed person, manifesting wild and erratic behavior. They spoke through the vocal cords of the possessed, often recognizing Jesus and pleading with him not to torment them (Matthew 8:28-34, Luke 8:26-39).

Demonic possession caused physical afflictions like muteness (Matthew 9:32-33), suicidal mania (Mark 9:22), and supernatural strength (Mark 5:3-4). People tormented by demons were outcasts in society. However, Jesus brought healing and restoration to them, reintegrating them into community.

Demons Cause Physical Afflictions

There are instances in the gospels where demons seem to cause physical problems like deafness, epilepsy, and muteness without full possession of the person. Jesus healed people of these maladies by rebuking or casting out the corresponding demons (Matthew 12:22, Mark 9:25, Luke 11:14).

For example, a demon kept a boy from speaking according to Matthew 9:32-33. After the demon was exorcised, the boy was able to talk. The accounts indicate that demons could be the underlying cause of some illnesses even without taking complete control of the person’s body.

Demons Display Superhuman Strength

Demons within possessed individuals sometimes granted them extraordinary strength. In Mark 5:3-4, a demon-possessed man was able to break free from chains and shackles. The possessed man lived among tombs, crying out and cutting himself with stones (Mark 5:5).

It required supernatural strength from the demons to break his restraints.

The devil and demons have prowess exceeding human capabilities. While inhabiting people, demons exerted their superhuman powers through the possessed. However, Jesus and his disciples consistently overpowered demons when confronting them, displaying Jesus’ supreme authority and the limits of demons’ influence.

Spiritual Authority Over Demons

Jesus Cast Out Demons

During His earthly ministry, Jesus frequently confronted and cast out demons. Many remarkable accounts are recorded in the Gospels, demonstrating Jesus’ complete authority and power over the forces of darkness.

With just a word or a command, Jesus could drive out the most powerful and evasive evil spirits (Mark 5:1-13, Luke 8:26-39). His ability to deliver people from demonic oppression provided stunning confirmation that He was indeed the Son of God and the Messiah (Matthew 12:22-29, Luke 11:14-23).

Jesus gave this same power and authority to cast out demons to His disciples (Matthew 10:1, Mark 3:14-15). As His ambassadors, the disciples healed the sick and cast out demons, preaching the kingdom of God (Luke 9:1-6).

The book of Acts records several instances where the apostles exercised Christ’s authority to set people free from demonic control (Acts 5:16, 8:7, 16:16-18, 19:11-12).

Believers Have Authority Through Christ

As Christians, we have been given authority in Jesus’ name to drive out demons and overcome satanic forces. Jesus declared, “Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy” (Luke 10:19).

He assured his followers, “In my name they will cast out demons…” (Mark 16:17).

Through faith in Christ, we have been rescued “from the domain of darkness and transferred into the kingdom of the Son” (Colossians 1:13). We now share in His authority as citizens of God’s kingdom. The apostle John proclaimed that Christ gives us authority to become God’s children (John 1:12).

As His children, we can resist the devil through the power of His Word and Spirit (Ephesians 6:10-18, James 4:7, 1 John 4:4).

Using the Name of Jesus and Prayer

The book of Acts provides numerous examples of driving out evil spirits by calling on the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 16:18, 19:13-17). His name holds infinite power and authority because He is the Son of God and overcame sin and death.

Romans 10:13 promises, “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” This applies to deliverance from any form of spiritual bondage, not just salvation from sin.

Prayer is an essential weapon for battling against demonic forces. We can pray in faith, trusting the Lord to deliver and heal those oppressed by the devil (Mark 9:29). The prayers of righteous believers “have great power as they are working” (James 5:16).

As we pray, the Holy Spirit’s power is manifested to bring freedom and victory in Christ (Acts 4:24-31).

Resisting Demonic Influences

Put On the Armor of God

The Bible tells believers to “put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” (Ephesians 6:11). This means daily clothing ourselves with truth, righteousness, the gospel of peace, faith, salvation, and the Word of God, while praying constantly.

When tempted, we can resist the devil by submitting to God and drawing near to Him (James 4:7-8).

Some key ways to put on God’s armor include:

  • Reading the Bible daily and memorizing/meditating on Scripture
  • Praying regularly for God’s protection and discernment
  • Living righteously by making choices aligned with God’s will
  • Sharing the gospel with others
  • Trusting firmly in Christ’s power and sacrificial work on the cross

The more we abide in Christ, the less foothold the enemy has in our lives. When clothed in God’s armor, we can stand firmly against any spiritual attack.

Guard Your Heart and Mind

The Bible urges believers to be alert and of sober mind, because the enemy prowls around seeking someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8). We must guard our hearts and minds against ungodly influences by being careful about what we allow into our lives.

Some key ways to guard ourselves spiritually include:

  • Monitoring the media/entertainment we consume and avoiding harmful content
  • Being wise in friendships and peer groups, avoiding those who pull us from God
  • Taking every thought captive and rejecting lies/accusations from the enemy (2 Corinthians 10:5)
  • Renewing our minds daily in God’s truth through Scripture reading and study (Romans 12:2)
  • Confessing and turning from sinful thoughts or behaviors that open doors to the enemy

Guarding our hearts and minds is an intentional, ongoing process. But the spiritual protection it provides is well worth the effort!

Rely on the Holy Spirit’s Power

Although temptation and spiritual warfare are realities for believers, we never have to resist the enemy’s attacks in our own strength. The Bible encourages us to rely on the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within every Christian (1 John 4:4).

Here are some ways to tap into the Holy Spirit’s power when facing spiritual battles:

  • Praying persistently and specifically for His help
  • Trusting His wisdom and discernment in all situations
  • Seeking to stay filled with the Spirit through worship, gratitude, and obedience
  • Reading Scripture out loud as a powerful spiritual weapon
  • Crying out to Jesus and claiming His blood and authority over the enemy

No matter what demonic influences we may face, the Holy Spirit is greater. He is our divine Helper who equips, empowers, guides, and protects us. Relying on Him is key to resisting the devil and living victoriously!


The Bible has much to say about the reality and danger of demons. But Scripture makes it clear believers have victory over the powers of darkness through Jesus Christ. By putting on God’s armor, resisting the devil, and relying on the Holy Spirit, we can overcome demonic influences and walk in freedom and spiritual authority.

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