It was a bitterly cold morning in the middle of January '17 in the Rocky Mountains, and I invited her in to sit with me in the office (as opposed to my study, which does not have a camera). She smelled of smoke, not from any local forest fire, but perhaps of a Marlboro, and she sat down across from the desk, trembling in fear.
I asked her what I could help her with, and she told me that she was terrified. She did not go into great detail about why she was terrified, but the look in her eyes told me that she believed that she was in terrible, imminent danger. I asked her why she was terrified and she asked me a question concerning possession. This was her deep concern, that she was possessed by a demon. I half expected to see a home-made Ouija Board or some small bones roll out of her bag.
I asked her if she knew Jesus. She told me that she did. I asked her if he considered herself a Christian, and she did, and then I explained the Roman Road to her and basically re-asked her the same questions. She confirmed. I then explained to her that this is a great thing, and that I could definitely help her in this situation.
I read her a story from the Gospel of Mark:
And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “by the prince of demons he casts out the demons.” And he called them to him and said to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but is coming to an end. But no one can enter a strong man's house and plunder his goods, unless he first binds the strong man. Then indeed he may plunder his house.
I emphasized, explained, and repeated verses 25-27: “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand…” She clearly understood it and was not tweaking out, like several people that come here to speak with me during mid-week do. She did not seem to be on meth, she was calm, and yet still trembling.
I then took her to a passage in Romans chapter eight:
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.
I then explained to her that this passage tells us that if we are a Christian, that the Spirit of God lives in us. I emphasized verses 9-11: “If in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you…” I said that the thing that this verse is showing us is that God lives in us. I then took her to 1 Corinthians in chapter 6 to prove my point. “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” At this time, she did not make any connections, but was definitely listening intently.
I then told her the two main points I drew from the text of the Gospel of Mark and the Romans passage: “If the Spirit of God lives in you, which He does if you are a Christian as the Bible teaches, then there is no room for anything else. “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” Her gaze fixed on me.
I elaborated, “If God and a demonic spirit were living in you then you would know it, because you wouldn’t be alive any longer. You are alive because the Spirit of God lives in you… and only Him. A Christian cannot be possessed. This is not the case for an unbeliever. If the Spirit of God does not dwell in a person as Romans 8:9 teaches, ‘Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him,’ then this is quite different.
“Therefore, saturate yourself in the Bible, the Word of God. Trust in Jesus alone, and grow deeper in your relationship with Him. James says, ‘Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.’ Not only does this tell us that the devil will flee from our presence, but it tells us that God will draw near to us. Meaning, our relationship will become better with Him. When it does, you will know about it. Commit these verses and references to memory. When something comes up to where you are afraid of spiritual activity, recall these verses. Trust in Jesus alone, He who holds the keys: ‘Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades.’”
Immediately her face brightened up. She was extremely grateful and told me that she felt much better about things. She thanked me profusely as she walked out of the church office, almost backwards. Her countenance changed from terror/skeptic to a softer look of peace and endearment.
To this day, I have never again seen this woman, and when I described her to people in telling this story, it didn’t ring any bells. I never heard a car start when she left, and I was alone in the church, hence why I have meetings such as this in the room with a camera. It is a small town and everyone knows everyone, but no one seems to know, or have ever seen the self-proclaimed Witch in the Rocky Mountains.
Written by Nace Howell through the grace of the Lord Jesus