Sickness can either be for God’s glory or for sin and Scripture does not provide any other reasons. However, sin can open the doors to unclean spirits that cause more suffering. In this post, we will discuss sickness from unclean spirits.
1Sam 2:31 ‘Behold, the days are coming that I will cut off your arm and the arm of your father’s house, so that there will not be an old man in your house.
2Kgs 5:27 “Therefore the leprosy of Naaman shall cling to you and your descendants forever.” And he went out from his presence leprous, as white as snow.
Sickness can be due to a curse and not necessarily due to our own sins. As in the above passages, we see that the curse upon Eli’s house was pronounced by God, leading to death of men at young age and no one reaches old age in his house. In other words, men die young in the house of Eli where sickness can be a cause of death. In the same way, leprosy upon Gehazi’s descendants was a curse pronounced by Elisha. Hence, sickness can be due to a curse because of sin but the suffering by the descendants are not necessarily a punishment for their sins. This is explained in Generational Curses. Here in this post, we will discuss about suffering from sickness that arise out of unclean spirits where the root cause is sin.
Unclean spirits cause sickness
Mark 9:17 Then one of the crowd answered and said, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit. … (25) When Jesus saw that the people came running together, He rebuked the unclean spirit, saying to it: “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more!”
Matt 12:22 Then one was brought to Him who was demon-possessed, blind and mute; and He healed him, so that the blind and mute man both spoke and saw.
Several sicknesses and diseases are due to unclean spirits and we can clearly see Jesus casting them out to cure sicknesses. Unclean spirits, demons and Satan – all refer the same as the Scripture and gospels teach us in this post.
Matt 12:43-45 “When an unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest, and finds none. Then he says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when he comes, he finds it empty, swept, and put in order. Then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there; and the last state of that man is worse than the first. So shall it also be with this wicked generation.”
In the above passages, Jesus Christ explained to us what the unclean spirit does when it goes out of a man. It goes out through dry places seeking rest and returns with seven more wicked spirits and the last state of the man is worse than the first. It is these spirits that cause diseases, sometimes worse sicknesses that are not directly due to a man’s sins but due to several wicked spirits entering a man.
How does an unclean spirit or a demon enter a man?
Rev 18:2-3 And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! …. (4-5) And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues. For her sins have reached to heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities.
As we see in the above verses, it’s because of sins and iniquities.
Job 1:10 “Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.
Just as God put a hedge around Job, He puts around His people who truly follow Him, including everyone in the house and everything that belongs to them. But if we sin and did iniquity, we break our own protection from God and invite unclean spirits into us.
John 13:27 Now after the piece of bread, Satan entered him. Then Jesus said to him, “What you do, do quickly.”
Acts 5:3 But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself?
Satan entered Judas to betray Jesus and also filled the heart of Ananias to lie to the Holy Spirit.
Ps 51:11 Do not cast me away from Your presence, And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
1Sam 16:14 But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and a distressing spirit from the LORD troubled him. … (23) And so it was, whenever the spirit from God was upon Saul, that David would take a harp and play it with his hand. Then Saul would become refreshed and well, and the distressing spirit would depart from him.
When anyone sins, the Spirit of God departs from them for He cannot dwell in uncleanness and tolerate sin. It is like an open invitation by sinners to demons and unclean spirits into their hearts for there is no protection from God against them.
1Kgs 22:20-23 “And the LORD said, ‘Who will persuade Ahab to go up, that he may fall at Ramoth Gilead?’ So one spoke in this manner, and another spoke in that manner. Then a spirit came forward and stood before the LORD, and said, ‘I will persuade him.’ The LORD said to him, ‘In what way?’ So he said, ‘I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ And the LORD said, ‘You shall persuade him, and also prevail. Go out and do so.’ Therefore look! The LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these prophets of yours, and the LORD has declared disaster against you.”
Just like a lying spirit came from God to speak lies in the mouth of false prophets, we can clearly see the a distressing spirit sent by the Lord was troubling Saul. We can also see that the distressing spirit came when the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul. If there is no Holy Spirit in us, we have no protection against unclean spirits and demons.
How to get protection from unclean spirits?
The only way to protect ourselves is by receiving the Spirit of God and not sinning so that the Holy Spirit will not depart from us.
Luke 9:1-2 Then He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases. He sent them to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.
Matt 12:28 “But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you.
Luke 17:21 “nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”
Jesus appointed His disciples to preach the Kingdom of Heaven and to heal sickness and diseases. Jesus also explained that if He casts out unclean spirits by the Spirit of God, the Kingdom of God has come upon us. In other words, if the Kingdom of heaven is in us, there is no place for any unclean spirits, nor can they enter where the Spirit of God is.
John 14:17 “the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.
The world cannot receive the Holy Spirit and have no protection against unclean spirits and demons. This is also why we must receive the Holy Spirit, not only to guide us into His truth but also for protection against unclean spirits and demons. Hence, some sicknesses are not primarily due to sins, but sins leave them unprotected from unclean spirits who bring trouble and sickness upon sinners.
Beware of the doctrine of Balaam
John 15:14 “You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.
John 15:18 “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.
2Chr 19:2 … “Should you help the wicked and love those who hate the LORD? Therefore the wrath of the LORD is upon you.
We must be a friend of Jesus, not friend of those who hate Him. If we are friends with sinners who don’t obey Him and those who hate Him, God’s wrath abides on us. If you are a fake/name-Christian who never knew what Jesus taught, but deceived by the song, “Jesus, friend of sinners” by Casting crowns, I suggest to read your Bible on what Jesus said in John 15:14 that He is only friend of those who do what He says, or read this post.
Jas 4:4-7 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”? But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
Even if the Holy Spirit dwells in us, it does not mean we will not be tempted to do sin. To avoid sinning, James warns us not be a friend of this world. This includes friendship or fellowship with sinners. If we are a friend of the world, we make ourselves enemy of God. This is called the doctrine of Balaam as Christ warned the church of Pergamos in the book of Revelation. What is the doctrine of Balaam?
Num 22:12 And God said to Balaam, “You shall not go with them; you shall not curse the people, for they are blessed.”
Num 31:16 “Look, these women caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to trespass against the LORD in the incident of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD.
The doctrine or the counsel of Balaam is simple: God cannot curse since He had blessed us and given us His Spirit. No evil can come upon us since God is with us. To have evil, sickness, suffering and curse come upon us, the only thing demons needs to do is to remove the Spirit of God from us. But demons tremble before God. The only thing they can do is tempt us into sin because, if we sin God departs from us for He is holy who cannot dwell in us if any uncleanness is found. It is important to note that God will never force us into holiness. He convicts us when we are tempted, gives us opportunities to avoid the sin, but never forces us not to do the sin. This is why James warns us to submit to God and resist the devil for Him to flee. Remember, Satan can even enter a man (e.g, Judas) when Christ is sitting very near to him (John 13:27). Hence, it is our holiness and our submission to God will make the devil flee. Just as Balaam advised to send women to the camp of Israel to cause them commit sin which brought a great plague on the same people who God blessed and refused to curse, if we become a friend of the world and sinners, we too will fall into their sins and temptations, making compromises to holiness in our lives bring upon ourselves great sickness and diseases.
While sins cause sickness, sins also makes the Spirit of God to depart for the Holy God cannot dwell on uncleanness and sin. If the Holy Spirit is departed because of sin, it is an open invitation for the demons and unclean spirits to enter a man, since there is no protection from God. When an unclean spirit enters, it not only causes sickness but sometimes, it brings more wicked spirits and cause far beyond suffering. The only way to stop unclean spirits from entering us is to receive the Holy Spirit and not to sin. Demons needs to remove the Spirit of God from us for them to cause sickness in us but they tremble before God. The only thing they can do this is by tempting us into sin because, if we sin God departs from us for He is holy who cannot dwell in uncleanness. This is why we need to be cautious in not following the doctrine of Balaam, by not being a friend of the world or sinners to get tempted, but submit to God and resist the devil.
1John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.
Finally, it is also equally important to note that unclean spirits not always bring sickness. They can sometimes cause people to error from way of Truth and deceive others.