I decided to write on this topic as a form of just collecting my thoughts on a topic that is controversial for many. It is the topic of the spiritual realm and what we humans do not see with our eyes. It is the topic of Satan and demons. It is topic of how do these spiritual things we cannot see with our eyes affect our lives. I am far from an expert on this topic and in all honesty I never wish to be an expert of this topic. I would rather know, understanding and experience The Holy Spirit, Jesus and God the father rather than Satan and demons. But completely avoiding the topic is also unwise.
I have meet many people that do not really believe in spiritual beings. The American culture has made Satan out to be a guy wearing horns and carrying a pitch fork. We have entertainment that depicts demons as human like beings who are cleaver, bad ass but also have a certain appeal to them. These images and ideas often shape how we define Satan and demons. We have people who dress up as Satan or demons for Halloween. It makes the idea of the existence of Satan like the existence of a fairytale. It is a story we tell ourselves but is not real. I have meet people who believe in God but do not believe in Satan. I find this interesting.
But similarly I have experience the opposite end of the spectrum. As someone who has struggles with a mental illness that at times affects my behavior, personality and thinking I have been told things by well meaning Christians that implied they thought I was demon possessed or oppressed. As someone who when I am healthy often suffers from a tremor people sometimes take this medical issue and put spiritual things on it. As a doctor with medical training who understands the reason for my symptoms has a very real physical component and explanation people referring to my symptoms as demonic or need of deliverance is hurtful. But then I also understand the opposite end of the spectrum where we have numerous stories in the gospels where Jesus healed a person who was showing signs of personality changes and mental illness. These accounts say the person was demon possessed.
I do not feel like I have a absolute answer to all of these questions but this is what I have come to terms with. Is it correct? I do not know but it has helped me make sense of some of these question. I absolutely believe there is a spiritual realm that we cannot see. I absolutely believe that Satan and demons do exist and are working in this spiritual realm opposing God and his will for us his children. I also believe that we humans have very real physical conditions that are treated with modern medications and therapies. That these issues are intrinsic to our bodies and a result of our fallen world. But I also believe Satan and demons are very smart and cleaver and they know what these intrinsic physical issues are.
I like to think of it as if you have someone you are trying to hinder. Someone you are trying to prevent from being who and what God wants them to be. And you also know there greatest weakness. You know that the easiest way to prevent a person from doing God’s work would be to attack that weakness then wouldn’t you use that knowledge to your advantage? I think this is how Satan and demons work through our own biology and our own unique weakness to bring about havoc.
So for me I believe my mental illness is real. I believe there is a real physical component in my body that needs medication and therapy. I believe that one of the greatest things I can do is to work to keep this illness at bay so that I can serve the lord. But I also believe the spiritual realm is very aware of this weakness of mine and knows the fastest way to preventing me from living the life I should would be to target that weakness. I believe there is a very real physical component, emotional component and spiritual component to many of the illnesses we experience as humans. This is why I believe all illness needs prayer and God’s word. For I believe Satan likes to work through our biology