Each city, region, and nation on the globe, have demonic spirits at work attempting to attach themselves to the leaders of those areas. In their attachment, they have a primary mission – to hinder belief in the Lord. Discerning what spirits are attached to these influencers and dealing with them in the Spirit, is part of the mission of the Church.
A model for how this is done is spelled out in Acts 13 where Paul and Barnabas were ministering on the island of Cyprus in the town of Paphos. The governor of the region, Sergius Paulus was noted as an intelligent man. Influencing the governor was a Jewish sorcerer, a false prophet named Bar-Jesus. He “interfered and urged the governor to pay no attention to what Barnabas and Saul said. He was trying to keep the governor from believing” (Acts 13:8). This event is evidence that our human intelligence and intellect are not a protective barrier against such attachments and their influence. This can only be accomplished by the Spirit.
The governor invited Paul and Barnabas to speak wanting to hear the word of God. This request would have threatened the sorcerer’s influence over the governor and, as a result, his influence over the region.
When Paul realized what was taking place, “Saul, also known as Paul, was filled with the Holy Spirit, and he looked the sorcerer in the eye. Then he said, ‘You son of the devil, full of every sort of deceit and fraud, and enemy of all that is good! Will you never stop perverting the true ways of the Lord? Watch now, for the Lord has laid his hand of punishment upon you, and you will be struck blind. You will not see the sunlight for some time.’ Instantly, mist and darkness came over the man’s eyes, and he began groping around begging for someone to take his hand and lead him” (vs. 9-11).
What took place was not the result of wishy-washy, make-no-waves, New Age talk show kind of faith that allowed demons to have free reign over people, cities, and nations without a challenge. It was a to-the-point, in-your-face kind of confrontation with an evil spirit that had attached itself to a person in leadership attempting to influence their decision-making process.
As a result of that confrontation where the attachment between Sergius Paulas and the sorcerer was broken, something deeper and more profound took place, “When the governor saw what had happened, he became a believer, for he was astonished at the teaching about the Lord” (vs. 12). Belief took place once the attachment was broken.
In the coming weeks and months, expect to see these kinds of attachments broken with increasing rapidity. The time is short and the potential harvest is great. God is ready to intervene on our behalf if we are willing, under the direction of the Spirit, to address and call out the demonic influencers who are attempting to stifle belief.