We often get asked by clients about how effective deliverance ministry is… that is, will it “work” for them? We’ve seen deliverance ministry over-emphasized as a solution to people’s problems but we believe that is really just a special type of counseling therapy and the requirements for success are quite similar in some respects as for other methods.
We specify and ask upfront for three things for the people we minister to:
- They are (or become) born again believers who commit to a walk with Christ
- Does the person really want freedom? We ask them to stir up their faith for God to do a work in their lives and finally,
- We ask them to commit to do doing the preparatory homework that we have for them.
With those criteria in place, and emphasizing that the fruitfulness of their experience is ultimately in their hands, we feel comfortable praying deliverance for most people. Our deliverance process involves five sessions: an interview, two teaching sessions, the deliverance ministry session (typically two hours) and then a follow-up session to assess progress and teach the person how to stay free.
We have ample opportunity along the way to assess whether or not the three criteria above are being met. If we feel they are not, then we have no problems choosing to delay ministry for that person although we are always willing to consider another treatment option.
Deliverance Ministry: Driving Out Demons
It is not always evident during the deliverance ministry session whether or not a person is getting set free. Often there are manifestations such as coughing, crying, burping, yelling, body pain, eye twitching and the like but sometimes there are little or no indications. That means that the person is getting free quietly or possible not getting free at all. It does happen and when it does, we go back and assess the first three questions again.
Sadly, we have seen people who do get set free from demonic spirits but very quickly they seem to fall back into the sinful behaviors: addiction, lusts, angers and so on. Does that mean that deliverance did not “work” or that the person was not truly committed to walking ahead in freedom? Our fifth sessions, and follow on sessions as appropriate, are vitally important in teaching people how to stay free, win the spiritual battle of the mind and walk out their deliverance.
As ministers and counselors, we know that deliverance ministry can be effective for many people because we have seen the fruit in people’s lives and because we are comfortable carrying out Jesus commandment to do deliverance. Just as any pastor, counselor, doctor, lawyer or other professional person can only do the best they can to help people, we see ourselves as vessels that God can use but He does the work and it is ultimately up to each person to move ahead on their own spiritual journey.