Let us now state emphatically that true followers of Jesus cannot be “possessed” by demons! The idea of “demon possession” is rooted in an unfortunate mistranslation into English hundreds of years ago of what the original Greek of the New Testament actually says. The Greek says a person “has a demon” or is “demonized.” “Possession” speaks of ownership. Christians belong to Jesus himself, who purchased us with his own blood at the Cross and transferred us from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of light (see 1 Peter 1:18-21, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 and Colossians 1:9-14). There is a huge difference between being possessed and possessing. If I am “possessed” by a demon the demon has me (owns me, controls me) and I have no free will. This is a very different situation from me having a demon (a demon present in my life harassing and influencing me through lies, fear, the manipulation of emotional and physical wounds, etc.)!
Most Christians have been taught that we cannot be “possessed” by a demon (absolutely true!), but by that they have understood we cannot “have” a demon (absolutely untrue!). This misunderstanding has cost the Church dearly. Unfortunately, because of a faulty paradigm, many well-meaning Christian leaders have left their people vulnerable to the Enemy’s attacks through inaccurate (albeit well intentioned) teaching on this subject. This has left the members of the Body of Christ wide open to attack by the Enemy of our souls, like clueless mechanical ducks in a shooting gallery. Then we wonder why we are not experiencing abundant life and freedom in Christ! Satan and his forces attack the followers of Jesus viciously precisely because we are the greatest threat to their dark kingdom and they want to cripple us. The last thing Satan wants is a healthy Church, unchained from what has bound us and walking in power and authority!
The followers of Christ should not obsess about demons, nor should we fear them; but we also should not be ignorant of their devices so as to be taken advantage of by them (see 2 Corinthians 2:11). While demons cannot totally own Christians, they can be present and live in the souls (Mind will and emotions) of persons life and take advantage (for many different reasons) of things which gives them a foothold or opportunity in the life of the person to harass that person and to lie to that person in order to keep unhealthy patterns in place (see Ephesians 4:26-27 for a remarkably simple and straightforward example). When we minister healing to people in Jesus’ name, we often encounter demonic opposition to that person getting completely free. This should hardly be surprising. We believe this is just what the first followers of Jesus encountered when Jesus sent them out to preach the gospel and to heal (see Luke 10:1-24). When this happens, we deal with it using the power and authority Christ has given us to help people to freedom (see Luke 9:1-2).