"WHEN AN UNCLEAN SPIRIT
The scripture:"When an unclean spirit comes out of a man, it passes through parched places in search of a resting-place, and finds none. Then it says, 'I will go back to my house out of which I moved'; and on arriving it finds it unoccupied but swept clean and adorned. Then it goes its way and takes along with it seven different spirits more wicked than itself, and, after getting inside, they dwell there; and the final circumstances of that man become worse than the first. That is how it will be also with this wicked generation." (Matthew 12:43-45 NWT).
According to scriptural evidence in the Word of God, most men and women since the first human pair have been under the influence of at least one unclean spirit.
This is borne out by the
Godless attitudes and behaviour in the daily lives of the majority of mankind, and the
evil activities of those actively opposing righteousness today. The Christ's words,
as recorded in Matthew, make clear the evil activities of unclean spirits. It is only when an unclean spirit is tormented beyond
what they can bear while occupying one human soul, that they leave to find a resting-place
Evil spirits can only rest (for want of a better term) within unclean places of their own evil kind, or occupy those they can soon bring to ruin. In The Christ's illustration, the type of person that would force an unclean spirit to leave them would be one that had turned to God, having cleaned up his own spirit and life. As almost all mankind since the time of Christ have been infested with unclean spirits (and even more so since they were hurled down to the vicinity of the earth), evil spirits would find it impossible to locate a wicked human not already occupied. (Rev 12:7-9). According to Christ, on returning to the place from whence it came, the unclean spirit found it too difficult to get back in to occupy the man's spirit, even though unoccupied. This was because the man had been "swept clean" and "adorned" through his newly acquired righteous standing. In such cases, the unclean spirit goes away and enlists several evil spirits far worse than itself. Notice the next expression: "and, after getting inside, they dwell there".
One may ask: 'How could these evil spirits get in and ruin a righteous man?'
for the illustration says, "the final circumstances of that man become worse than the first." Well, the answer is that only
those who become steadfast in righteousness and faith put on the complete
"suit of armour" from God against marauding wicked spirits and their
machinations. (Eph 6:10-13). It is important to note that because demonic
ambitions have been realized in most humans during the "time of the end" (wickedness now being full-grown
on earth), demon spirits find it far more difficult to find unoccupied places. (2 Esdras 15:5
Furthermore, those who have suffered and endured various trials and tribulations, and the demonic temptations that visit to entrap them, but uncompromisingly hold onto their faith, have learned how to be watchful and test the spirits of others. In short, they have learned how to thwart the attempts of invisible unclean evil spirits to break in, to corrupt, and to steal away their souls. But few are they who go in through the narrow "Way" of true faith and proven fidelity to God that leads to everlasting life. (John 14:6). This is due to the incessant evil pressure, persecution and social ostracism that all true Christians have to face.
Because the man in the illustration (and there have been many such men)
did not have accurate knowledge of the Word of God, when his faith was tested he
was not prepared. It is therefore wise to warn newly
Because he was possessed by a legion of unclean evil spirits, the demonized man who rushed towards The Christ was easily identified. (See Luke 8:27-33). But what about those persons who have but one or two unclean spirits of lesser evil in residence? How can one identify such persons today? The answer is that all spiritually unclean persons instinctively persecute or ostracize true Christians, even if they are total strangers. As to the case of one evil person persecuting another evil person, it is of no consequence.
Our Lord Jesus while on earth had holy angels to call upon, enabling him to oust evil spirits holding humans prisoner. (Isaiah 42:6,7). But Christians today do not have such power, so we are told to bless our persecutors so that angels of God may administer either His mercy or His condemnation.
(1)Why would an unclean spirit come out of a man to search for a resting-place? For the reason that the man's spirit was being "swept clean" of the sinful activities he used to engage in. The unclean spirit no longer felt comfortable occupying such a man.
(2)Why did the unclean spirit return? Because unclean spirits have been expelled from heaven to the vicinity of the earth, and wickedness on earth is now full-grown, there are no longer any unoccupied sinful humans for them to inhabit, for they are already occupied by other evil spirits. (Rev 12:7-9).
(3)Why did the unclean spirit enlist several other evil spirits worse than itself to get inside the man's spirit? Because the unclean spirit had found the place he had left was cleaner (more righteous) than before and even "adorned" ! The unclean spirit realized he needed the assistance of several evil spirits worse than himself to reoccupy the man, and this is what happens today throughout the earth. Notice the words describing their ease of entry: "and, after getting inside, they dwell there; and the final circumstances of that man become worse than the first."
(4) So what can righteously disposed persons learn from this? That they should be vigilant at all times, and anticipate the attempts of evil spirits within men and women who try to corrupt the faith of righteous ones. Become informed about their evil inroads, and be ready for their evil activities. Pray to God, and He will reveal to you the large "nets" they have spread to trap you, and will provide you with the means of escape. (Jeremiah 5:26 NEB).