One of the obstacles to seeing the ministry of deliverance fully restored and active in the church today is that there is often an unnecessary stigma associated with it.
Because of misunderstanding and fear, the thought of needing deliverance from an evil spirit sounds alarming, embarrassing, or shameful. And if you come from a background that inclines toward skepticism and resistance to anything supernatural, the concept of deliverance from demons can easily be seen as primitive, foolish, or superstitious. Without proper understanding, to suggest that a person might need to be set free from the influence of an evil spirit seems insulting or down-right crazy!
The unfortunate result of this is that many people who should be set free remain bound. Some who are tormented in their mind, oppressed by darkness, or bound by various sins or addictions, never think to consider that what they are facing may have a demonic component. To do so would seem shameful.
But this stigma need not be the case. In the New Testament, deliverance from evil spirits was practiced and spoken about openly and plainly. Consider Luke 8:2: “…and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities—Mary called Magdalene, out of whom had come seven demons.”
Notice first that being freed from evil spirits is paired side-by-side with being healed of infirmities. This is often the case in the New Testament (see for example Matthew 8:16-17, Luke 6:17-19, and Acts 5:16). There is no need to be ashamed if you need healing from the flu, the common cold, cancer, or some other disease. In the same way, there is no shame in needing deliverance from evil spirits. Mary Magdalene was identified as someone “out of whom had come seven demons.” This was spoken of matter-of-factly, and not something that needed to be kept secret or hidden.
Needing deliverance from evil spirits is much more common than you might suspect. And it does not automatically make you an evil person to need freedom from the torment or oppression of a demon. Jesus ministered deliverance to everyday, synagogue-attending Jews like the man in Mark chapter one and like the woman He called a “daughter of Abraham” in Luke 13:10-17. Even children needed to be delivered from evil spirits (see Mark 7:24-30 and Mark 9:14-29).
It’s time to remove the stigma that is associated with deliverance from evil spirits. When this obstacle is removed, it will pave the way for many to be set free from things they thought they would live with the rest of their lives!