In my previous article, I went over 6 signs someone can be under demonic influence based on the demon-possessed man found in Mark chapter 5. However, there are many more signs of a demonic influence being present in someone’s life. That’s why I wanted to make the second part of that article in order to go over more symptoms you can use to identify an unclean spirit in someone’s life.
All scriptures are from the NKJV unless otherwise noted.
Sign #1: Addictive Behaviors
In today’s world, people are addicted to a wide array of things. Certainly, not all addictions indicate a demonic presence. Yet, there are many that do. People can be addicted to food, drugs, alcohol, lying, gambling, sex, fighting, arguments, and many more dangerous lifestyles.
A demon can easily convince someone that they need something or else they’ll lose their minds. It’s easy to constantly put thoughts and images into the mind of someone until they cave to the behavior. Destructive behaviors are an effective way to destroy someone’s life.
It can be easy to look at someone who’s homeless and on drugs and say, “That’s unfortunate, but they did that to themselves.” While that may be true to an extent, that person may very well be bound in that addictive behavior and lifestyle to the point that they are incapable of living a normal, functioning life.
Sign #2: Wrong Religious Doctrines
“For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many.“
– Matthew 24:5
Do you ever wonder why there are many divisions amongst today’s churches? The short answer is that the enemy knows the only way to subdue the church is to destroy it from within. He cannot beat God, but he can render His people ineffective by division.
The enemy will lead many astray and deceive them with false doctrine. By keeping these individuals away from the true gospel of Christ, they won’t be able to fully know Him. Therefore, they won’t be able to live in the Will of God and do the purpose He desires of them.
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!“
– Matthew 7:21-23
There are many scriptures in the Bible that can send chills down your spine and this above scripture is one of them. Look at what the Lord says. He states that not everyone who calls Him Lord will enter into His Kingdom, but only those who keep His Will. How utterly scary is that?
Knowing this, we see why the enemy will do his best to keep people believing a false gospel. There’s nothing more important than studying the Word of God and seeking His face for yourself.
Sign #3: Witchcraft And Occult Behaviors
“When you come into the land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not learn to follow the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord, and because of these abominations the Lord your God drives them out from before you.“
– Deuteronomy 18:9-12
According to the above scripture, occult behavior can take a variety of shapes. If you don’t know the definition of the terms used, I can break them down for you:
- soothsayer- a fortune teller
- witchcraft- the practice of magic or the use of spells
- sorcerer- a wizard, or someone who is believed to have magic powers
- medium- someone who communicates with the dead
The Bible clearly states that anyone who practices these things is an abomination to the Lord. Doing these things call for the involvement of demonic powers. Without the power of a spirit to access the spiritual realm, these actions would not be possible. However, God is not the spirit that provides these powers.
These powers come from demonic sources. Stay far away from these kinds of people, but do not fear them. There’s a reason the Bible says, “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4) Pray for these people that they may turn from their wicked ways and repent.
Sign #4: Problems Speaking
“As they went out, behold, they brought to Him a man, mute and demon-possessed. And when the demon was cast out, the mute spoke. And the multitudes marveled, saying, “It was never seen like this in Israel!“
– Matthew 9:23-33
This scripture tells a story about a man who couldn’t speak due to his demonic possession. When the demon left his body, the man was able to speak again. Therefore, we can clearly see that some speech difficulties could be caused by a demonic influence. The enemy can also influence speech in other ways such as cursing and idle talk.
Sign #5: Legalism
“O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified?”
– Galatians 3:1
I find it incredibly interesting that Paul decided to use the word bewitch in this scripture. The word bewitch means to be under a demonic spell. In verse 5, you find out that the fault of this specific church was that they were under the works of the Law, not faith.
Although we should look to the Law as guidance, we need to understand that following rules and regulations will not get us into heaven. The only way to heaven is through forgiveness in the Lord Jesus Christ. I’m convinced there are many churches that still get this wrong.
I believe that those who are filled with the Holy Spirit and have a relationship with God will have measurable results to show it, yet some people have not been completely set free from the habits of their flesh. We should always look at how far someone has come instead of how far they still need to go.
Churches that are strict in their rules are a target for the enemy. A spirit of control can keep people in bondage with this kind of atmosphere.
“…whatever is not from faith is sin.”
– Romans 14:23
Sign #6: Uncurable Illnesses Or Diseases
“And behold, there was a woman who had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bent over and could in no way raise herself up. But when Jesus saw her, He called her to Him and said to her, “Woman, you are loosed from your infirmity.” And He laid His hands on her, and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God. But the ruler of the synagogue answered with indignation, because Jesus had healed on the Sabbath; and he said to the crowd, “There are six days on which men ought to work; therefore come and be healed on them, and not on the Sabbath day.” The Lord then answered him and said, “Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound—think of it—for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?”
– Luke 11:16
Jesus called this woman a daughter of Abraham which means she was a faithful believer in God. However, there was a spirit of infirmity that tormented her for eighteen years. That’s a long time to suffer from an illness. Jesus miraculously healed her in the matter of a few seconds with a spoken word.
Illnesses and diseases can be caused by all sorts of things, but we see here that there are demons that can cause them also.
Related: Nine Characteristics Of Demons
Sign #7: Ungodly Sexual Behaviors
“They do not direct their deeds
Toward turning to their God,
For the spirit of harlotry is in their midst,
And they do not know the Lord.“
– Hosea 5:4
The spirit of harlotry can destroy entire nations. It happened many times to ancient Israel and the land of Sodom and Gomorrah. This spirit brings forth many abominations. For example, adultery, fornication, homosexuality, and child sacrifice are all results of the infection of this spirit.
God gave us sexual desires, but He also gave us guidelines to safety indulge in these behaviors. The Bible teaches us that sex is between a married man and a woman in order to reproduce. When done correctly it should glorify God.
However, sex outside of marriage is a dangerous sin. It leads to soul-ties and can even transfer evil spirits among the two parties. The action can lead to heartbreaks and many more destructive outcomes.
Today’s movies and music industry glorify fornication and adultery. It’s indoctrinating the minds of the youth and teaching them that this kind of lifestyle is normal and expected. Be very careful about what you watch and listen to. Do not entertain these evil spirits.
The spirit of harlotry is also used to lead people away from God. Whenever people flirt and entertain other spirits, God calls them adulterers. If our hearts truly belong to God, we shouldn’t even consider putting something else before Him.
“Moreover you took your sons and your daughters, whom you bore to Me, and these you sacrificed to them to be devoured. Were your acts of harlotry a small matter, that you have slain My children and offered them up to them by causing them to pass through the fire?”
– Ezekiel 16:20-21
The majority of the text found in Ezekiel chapter 16 talks about this spirit of harlotry. I recommend you read it when you have time. Click here to access it.
Sign #8: A Trampled On Christian
The enemy can show up in the Christian’s life and harass them until they feel defeated and depressed. In my post, “Can A Person Be Demon-Possessed,” I explore the topic of demon oppression in a believer’s life.
“Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil.“
– Ephesians 4:26-27
If you read the Bible, you’ll see many times where it warns us of giving the enemy a door or access into our lives. We must protect our hearts and minds from these behaviors.
“Now whom you forgive anything, I also forgive. For if indeed I have forgiven anything, I have forgiven that one for your sakes in the presence of Christ, lest Satan should take advantage of us; for we are not ignorant of his devices.“
– 2 Corinthians 2:10-11
If you feel depression creeping upon you, recognize it as an attack. I’ll admit that sometimes I’m slow to recognize attacks, but I know better and the enemy cannot attack me for long without being detected. Also, if you feel defeated or like a failure that’s an attack of a spirit as well. The Bible tells us the enemy is the accuser of the brethren (Revelation 12:10). Therefore, don’t get caught up in your past mistakes, but continue to press on the life and Will of God that’s in store for you.
There are quite a few signs of demonic influence that you can use to identify evil spirits. However, please understand that many of these things can also be caused by other sources. I pray you found this article helpful. If so, please share and comment below. Thanks for reading!