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Christian personalities and entities


All about demons a.k.a. diabolical
spirits, evil spirits, unclean spirits,
devils, etc.

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The word "Demon" comes from the Greek word "daimon" which means "intelligent." According to passages in the Christian Scriptures (New Testament),  Satan is has a personal army of demons to assist him in attacking humans and accomplishing evil tasks. They roam the world looking for people that they may destroy. The Gospels and the book of Acts describe many exorcisms where Jesus and his disciples release people from demonic possession. The Bible implies that  demons are the same fallen angels that once joined Satan in a heavenly revolt. By the 1st century CE in the Galilee where Jesus preached,, many mental disorders were believed to be caused by indwelling demons. Other demons were responsible for bad weather, accidents, etc.

Christians hold different beliefs about demons, demon possession and exorcism:

bullet Conservative Christians generally believe in the inerrancy of the Bible. The Christian Scriptures have many dozens of references to demons. The passages seem obviously intended by the authors to be interpreted literally. Jesus, his disciples/apostles, and the general public of 1st century CE Judea and Galilee are reported as believing in the existence of demonic spirits and in the possibility of demon possession of an individual. Exorcism formed a large part of Jesus' ministry on earth. Bible literalists have no option but to believe in demonic possession; otherwise, they would have to accept that Jesus was deluded, or the gospels are inaccurate. Neither of these options is a possibility for a conservative Christians whose foundational beliefs are in the deity of Jesus, the inerrancy of the Bible and God's inspiration of the Bible's authors.
bullet Liberal Christians have long abandoned belief in demons. They consider Bible passages about demons to be of little value - much like the verses that condoned and regulated human slavery, required the execution of non-virgin brides, and other practices considered immoral by today's religious and secular standards. These passages from the Christian Scriptures are simply reflecting the pre-scientific view of the biblical authors living in the 1st and 2nd century CE.

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Topics covered in this section:

bullet Introduction: Worldwide beliefs; Bible concepts of demons.
bullet Beliefs about demons: By the general public, by religious liberals, by religious conservatives. Is belief in demons rational?
bullet What the Bible says about demons

Related essays on this web site:

bullet What the Bible says about exorcism
bullet Exorcism and Demonic Possession
bullet Satan: Overview; what the Bible says about Satan; 2,600 year history

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Copyright 1999 to 2006 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Originally published on 1999-JAN-27. 
Last update: 2006-AUG-30
Author: B.A. Robinson

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