Dear sister M. T.
We appreciate your letter. We do well to cry to God to save us from the influence of demons. How little we know of their power! I have read the tract you sent, and noted carefully the paragraph that you underscored.
The New Testament teaches that heathenism under the dominion of Satan worships both him and his angels as the power behind their pagan gods. (1 Cor. 10:20-21). It also teaches that evil spirits are behind the errors of Christendom (1 John 4:1-4). From this passage one assumes that evil spirits control false teachers. The following principles are deduced from John’s warning:
RESTRAINT: “Beloved, believe not every spirit.” The Christian must be cautious at the approach of teachers of novel things.
RESPONSIBILITY: “Try the spirits whether they are of God.” In the early Church there were those who were specially gifted in this, “To another…discerning of spirits” (1 Cor. 12:10). There is need of spiritual discernment capable to detect the evil spirit behind the false teacher.
RECOGNITION: In Scripture demons are referred to under different appellations which reveal their character and activity.
· Their character: “Evil spirits” (1 Sam. 16:14. Acts 19:12-16): Demons are wicked malignant spirits.
· Their purpose: “Spirits of error” (1 John 4:6. Isa. 19:3; 29:4): They seek to pervert any truth.
· Their method: “Seducing spirits” (1 Cor. 12:10. 1 Tim. 4:1): Demons pervert the truth by seduction.
· Their operation: “Spirits of divination, wizards” (Acts 16:16), seductive work, they possess an unusual power to predict future events and to reveal hidden facts.
· Their deception: “Familiar spirits.” In order to accomplish their error, they so familiarize themselves with the dead as to be able to impersonate them, and thus display the spectacular.
RELIANCE: Thank God for the power of the Lord Jesus Christ! When here He cast out many demons and healed their victims. We also thank God for the power of the Name of the Risen Lord, “Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the Name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour” (Acts 16:18; 19:12). Our only hope of preservation from so mighty a foe lies in the power of our Lord Jesus. May we ever rely upon Him alone; not upon our own ability or wisdom.
Sincerely in Christ,
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Hudson Taylor at the age of 16, in Argyll Street, Glasgow, wept as he considered the multitudes on their march to a lost Eternity. His compassion resulted in consecration, his sorrow in sympathy and service. The condition of the multitudes today still cries for compassion to those who have ears to hear.
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The Bible is the Word of Life. I beg that you will read it and find this out for yourselves; and read not little snatches here and there, but long passages, that will be the road to the heart of it.