Breaking our hedge (Defilement explained)
Understanding how demons enter helps us identify how and where our bondage(s) started, and helps us guard ourselves against opening any doors in our lives to the enemy. This teaching takes a closer look at defilement, perhaps the #1 door to demonic bondage. Biblical demonology is a great topic to understand, because it reveals to Satan's devices by which he gains access into our lives. Paul was well aware of Satan's devices, as he states in 1 Corinthians 2:11, "Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices."
The purpose of this teaching is not to list all the ways by which we can be defiled, but to give you a general idea of how defilement can open a person up for demonic bondage.
Breaking the hedge
Ecclesiastes 10:8, "He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him." There is a natural hedge of protection around God's people (Job 1:10), but if there's a hole punched in that hedge, it is an open door to the enemy and we can get bitten by serpents (evil spirits). Look at what happened to Job when the hedge around him was removed! Demons affected many things in his life, including his body... which was covered with sores that were caused by demonic spirits!
The first thing that people try to tell me about this verse, is that it's a physical snake and not a spiritual snake. This is as silly as saying that the Bible is a gardening and home improvement book. Here are some very good reasons to believe that this is a spiritual snake:
- If you look at the first part of this verse, it tells us that if you dig a pit, you'll fall into it (which in the physical realm is RARELY true). The first part of Proverbs 26:27 also tells us this, "Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him." Not only does the second half of this verse in Proverbs make no sense in the physical realm, but the contextual verses give a 100% spiritual context to what is being said. Verse 26 tells us, "Whose hatred is covered by deceit, his wickedness shall be shewed before the whole congregation." and verse 28 tells us, "A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin." There's no way you can tell me the context of this verse isn't spiritual.
- This "digging a pit" concept is also covered in Psalms 7:15-16, "He made a pit, and digged it, and is fallen into the ditch which he made. His mischief shall return upon his own head, and his violent dealing shall come down upon his own pate." This verse is very clear that it is talking about spiritual mischief, not physical things.
- If we go back to Ecclesiastes 10 and look at verse 5, it tells us, "There is an evil which I have seen under the sun, as an error which proceedeth from the ruler:" This is obviously not speaking of the physical realm but the spiritual realm.
- In verse 9 (the following verse), it tells us that if you remove stones, you'll get hurt. Physically speaking, this is untrue roughly 99.99% of the time. Apparently, it's not speaking of the physical realm at all here: "Whoso removeth stones shall be hurt therewith."
- Verse 11 doesn't tell us that the serpent 'may' bite us, it says that it WILL bite us without enchantment: "Surely the serpent will bite without enchantment." If it were a physical snake, then how can the Bible make such a statement when it would be untrue 99% of the time? For one thing, many times when people tear down old walls, there are no snakes there at all!
- If this were a physical snake, then is the Bible warning us not to tear down any hedges because snakes WILL bite us? How does the Bible know that we will be bitten? Many times when people break hedges, there are no snakes even there to bite anybody at all!
- This verse is not telling us to be careful not to get bitten, it is telling us that if we tear down a hedge, we WILL be bitten. In other words, it's telling us NOT to break down hedges!
The Bible isn't a home improvement book, it's a spiritual guidebook that tells us how to live our lives for the glory of God. It makes no sense to claim that our Bible is warning us not to tear down physical hedges because we are going to be bitten by physical snakes. The context of this verse makes it very clear that it is speaking of spiritual serpents.
Defilement: A door for the devil
The Greek and Hebrew both agree that the term defiled means to be made unclean or polluted. If you cut your hand, and let it get dirty (defiled), it would make you vulnerable to infection, wouldn't it? In the spiritual realm, the same is true, except the germs are spiritual (unclean spirits).
Defilement linked with giving Satan an advantage: 2 Corinthians 2:10-11 tells us, "To whom ye forgive any thing, I forgive also: for if I forgave any thing, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ; Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices." In a nutshell, it's telling us that through unforgiveness, Satan (who operates through demon spirits) is given an advantage over us. Hebrews 12:14-15 tells us that many are defiled through bitterness, which is the fruit of unforgiveness: Hebrews 12:14-15, "Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled;" Unforgiveness (which produces bitterness) is known to both defile a man, and give Satan advantage in our lives. Matthew 18:23-35 also tells us that if we are unforgiving, we will be turned over into the hands of the tormenters (demons).
Some examples of defilement
Seeking others with occult power: We are told not to seek out those with familiar spirits, or we can become defiled by them in Leviticus 19:31, "Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God." Seeking demonic knowledge or power whether directly or through somebody else (a medium, etc.) is grounds for defilement.
Idol worship: Ezekiel 20:7, "Then said I unto them, Cast ye away every man the abominations of his eyes, and defile not yourselves with the idols of Egypt: I am the LORD your God." Ezekiel 22:4 also tells us, "Thou art become guilty in thy blood that thou hast shed; and hast defiled thyself in thine idols which thou hast made..."
Cursed objects: The Bible is clear that physical objects can be cursed, and that bringing such a cursed object in your home can bring a curse upon you as well. Deuteronomy 7:26, "Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thine house, lest thou be a cursed thing like it: but thou shalt utterly detest it, and thou shalt utterly abhor it; for it is a cursed thing." (The context of this passage is speaking of idols, which are known to defile a man.)
Bestiality (sex with animals): Leviticus 18:23, "Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion."
Sex outside the scope of Godly marriage (fornication, adultery, homosexuality, etc.): Genesis 34:2, "And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, prince of the country, saw her, he took her, and lay with her, and defiled her." Matthew 15:19-20 clearly agrees that sins such as fornication and adultery are things which defile a person. 1 Timothy 1:10 tells us that homosexuality can defile a man, "For whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and if there be any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine."
The power of the tongue: Proverbs 18:21 tells us that the power of life and death is in the tongue, "Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof." Our spoken word has the power to bring salvation (Romans 10:9), bless others (Genesis 14:19 and James 3:10) and curse (Genesis 9:25 and James 3:10). James 3:6 clearly tells us that the tongue is capable of defiling the whole body, "And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity; so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell." Matthew 15:11 also warns us that the tongue is capable of defiling us, "Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man."
Land and homes can become defiled
It's Biblical for land and property to become defiled just as people can become defiled. Property, homes and land can be defiled through the sins of it's inhabitants. Isaiah 24:5 tells us that, "The earth (land) also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant." Leviticus 18:25 also tells us that land can become defiled, "And the land is defiled: therefore I do visit the iniquity thereof upon it, and the land itself vomiteth out her inhabitants." Jeremiah 3:9 is an example of somebody defiling the land through adultery, "And it came to pass through the lightness of her whoredom, that she defiled the land, and committed adultery with stones and with stocks."
The solution to defilement
How can a person become clean again? When they turn from their wicked ways, repent of their sins and turn to Jesus, 1 John 1:7 tells us that, "...the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin." 1 John 1:9, "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." If you have physical objects that are cursed, it is important to get rid of them. In Deuteronomy 7:25 it speaks of burning idols (cursed objects) with fire (which completely destroys them), "The graven images of their gods shall ye burn with fire." and Acts 19:19 tells us of new converts who came out of the occult and burned their demonic books, "Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver." Another verse is Micah 1:7, "And all the graven images thereof shall be beaten to pieces, and all the hires thereof shall be burned with the fire, and all the idols thereof will I lay desolate..." Another thing that may need to be addressed is remaining ungodly soul ties; if there was sexual immortality in your past, then ungodly soul ties should be broken as well. The teaching on Soul Ties will walk you through this.
When we involve ourselves in things that defile us, it gives the devil advantage in our lives; it gives him access into our lives. If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us (1 John 1:9), but if we have picked up demons between the time we defile ourself and the time we repent (become clean), those demons usually remain and must be driven out.
We may be clean, but unwelcome guests (evil spirits) may still need to be told to leave. Let's say that you lived in an apartment and had a roommate, but one day you chose to have the place to yourself, so you started paying the full rent for your apartment (so you have full legal rights to live there alone), but where your problem lies is that your stubborn roommate (who no longer has a legal right to live there) refuses to leave. The same principal applies in the spiritual realm when dealing with demons. This is why Jesus gave us authority over demon spirits to cast them out. If they left on their own, there would be no need to cast out demons! But Jesus made it clear that them who believe will be casting out demons (Mark 16:17).
The Lord showed me something... if demons left automatically when their legal grounds were removed, why didn't Jesus simply tell those who were possessed with demons that their sins were forgiven, as He did with others? Instead He rebuked demons and commanded them to come out and they often made a big scene when they came out! Wouldn't it be easier to tell them that their sins were forgiven? One time Jesus even said, "For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk?" (Matthew 9:5) If you ask me, it would be a LOT easier to say "thy sins be forgiven", than to rebuke demons and have them throw the person to the ground, foam at the mouth, scream to the top of a person's lungs, etc. There's a clear purpose in casting out demons, and Jesus' life here on earth was an example for us to learn from (John 14:12, "He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also."), and a large part of His ministry was casting out demons.