Jesus had authority over demons.
Wherever Jesus went, crowds gathered. Demoniacs were often healed in those crowds.
In some cases, the demons became disruptive (see Mark 3:10-11 and Luke 4:41; see also Acts 8:7, where demons shrieked in Philip's large meetings as they were driven out of people).
Most of the time, Jesus commanded the unclean spirits not to reveal His identity:
"In the evening, when the sun had set, they brought to Him all who were sick and those who were possessed with demons. The whole city was gathered at the door, and He healed many who were sick with various diseases and cast out many demons. And He
did not let the demons speak, because they knew Him" (Mark 1:32-34).
Regardless of the behavior of the demons, Jesus drove them out with as little as a single word (see Matt. 8:16). He also healed people who were "troubled by impure spirits" (Luke 6:18, NIV). This seems to imply a lesser degree of demonic influence—"affliction" or "oppression" as opposed to "control" or "possession."
Looking at all of the biblical examples, including those that involve Jesus' disciples, we can observe at least six different ways that evil spirits can be compelled to leave people alone.6 Effective Ways
- By the command of faith (see Mark 1:25, 9:25).
- Through the laying on of hands (see Luke 4:40-41).
- Through anointing with oil (see Mark 6:12-13).
- By exposure to Jesus' authority (see Mark 5:6-7, 9:20).
- Through a verbal expression of faith (see Matt. 15:28, Mark 7:29).
- By means of prayer and fasting (see Matt. 17:21).
As Jesus' modern-day disciples, whenever we encounter demons or unclean spirits, we can use any of these means of deliverance, as the Holy Spirit leads.
Jesus has demonstrated for us what to do.