Some individuals do not believe that objects or places can be haunted or possessed by evil influences. This disbelief, however, is difficult to argue with those who have lived in just such places and who have already experienced the various strange and unusual happenings that have occurred through forces of evil.
Reports of unusual happenings have occurred, such as TVs, radios, and computers that turn on or off without assistance, pictures or vases falling—for no apparent reason, lights coming on automatically, sounds of people moving or screaming in the night, etc. Both John Sanford (Deliverance and Inner Healing) and Frances McNutt (Deliverance from Evil Spirits) report that their computers either refused to work or printed unholy words and symbols as they were preparing manuscripts for books they were writing.
I once personally received e-mail messages sent by an evil influence from a computer in the home of a disciple friend of mine who, for some time in his home, had a problem with dark influences. In some instances persons have reported that their gas pedal stuck at full force and the brakes did not work when they were driving their automobile, nor could they shut off the key until they prayed mightily to the Lord for deliverance.
Why do such things occur? There are at least four possible reasons for these disturbances.
1. There are defiled objects in the house
2. The house is occupied by the presence of evil due to the sins of previous owners
3. The house is located on or near defiled land
4. The ghost of someone who has departed needs to be released (a haunting is occurring)
Much has already been written about evil influences that manifest through objects. Idols and other objects used in occult practices can serve as points of contact and access for demonic powers. Israel struggled for thousands of years with idols, notwithstanding the Lord’s direction: “The graven images of their gods shall ye burn with fire… Neither shalt thou bring an abomination into thine house, lest thou be a cursed thing like it: but thou shalt utterly detest it, and thou shalt utterly abhor it; for it is a cursed thing” (Deut. 7:25-26 and 12:3).
The Israelites were often admonished to remove the idols, cut down the Asherah poles, get rid of the mediums, spiritualists, and household gods, and to remove the high places where they were worshiped. Occasionally the kings were obedient (2 Ki. 23:8, 13-15; as opposed to disobedient, 2 Ki. 15:1-5). While we may not be as guilty of worshiping other gods as the Israelites, we are nonetheless negligent in using wisdom in what we bring into our homes. Artifacts, gifts, souvenirs, handmade objects (fashioned, for instance, like miniature statues of Buddha) are all suspect. Even pieces of rock or earth from some parts of the world can be contaminated.
Defiled objects separate us from God’s purposes, His protection, and His power; they give the enemy their access point. Defiled objects draw evil, like flies to dung. This entry brings spiritual pollution into the home. Additionally, the evil spirits in people draw power from defiled objects in the home. Refer to the following applications, symptoms and sources:
Physical things carry spiritual significance.
Blood (Ex. 12:7-13)
Tabernacle, its furnishings, utensils (Ex. 26 and 27)
Moses’ brass serpent (Num. 21:5-9)
Gold, silver, a robe (Josh. 7:10-26), a spear (Josh. 8)
Water baptism (Luke 3:21-22)
Last Supper (Mat. 26:26)
Miraculous handkerchiefs, aprons (Acts 19:11-12)
Healing oil (Jas. 5:14)
Certain things are forbidden to be possessed.
List of things that dishonor God (Deut. 4:15-19, 23-24)
Other gods, idols, or an image (Ex. 20:3, Deut. 27:15)
Certain activities are forbidden to be engaged in.
Witchcraft and astrology (Deut. 18:9-13; also see the section on “Healing from the Occult”)
Use of an item can establish its spiritual significance.
Carvings, idols, statues—in worshiping other gods
Groves and/or Asherah poles, heathen items, and idols (Deut. 7:5 and 12:3, Judges 3:7)
One person’s sin can create corporate consequences for the body.
Achan kept gold, silver, and a robe from the spoils (Josh. 7)
Israel suffered much because of the decisions of many sinful kings
Jonah (on the ship, Jonah 1:3-15)
Possible symptoms of spiritual pollution from defiled objects or land:
Sudden chronic illness
Recurrent bad dreams and/or nightmares
Insomnia or unusual sleepiness
Relational problems, continual fighting, arguing
Lack of peace
Restless, disturbed children
Continued bondage to sin
Foul, unexplainable odors
Atmospheric heaviness, making it hard to breathe
Continual nausea and headaches
Possible symptoms of spiritual pollution from previous occult activities:
Poltergeists (movements of physical objects, made by demons)
TVs, radios, and computers that turn on or off by themselves
Pictures or vases falling
Lights coming on
Sounds of people moving or screaming in the night
Possible sources of defilement from objects:
Things related to heathen worship (voodoo dolls, spirit masks, snakes, dragons, thunderbirds, phoenixes, etc.)
Things related to past sin or to unholy soul ties (necklaces, rings, love letters, photos, diaries, journals)
Things with an unknown history which are not inherently evil by design, such as wood figurines, pictures, tourist purchases
Any objects used in witchcraft or psychic activities, such as fortune telling, Ouija boards, tarot cards, charms, crystals, etc.
Games such as “Dungeons & Dragons,” “Masters of the Universe,” “Pokemon” (meaning “pocket monster”)
Buddhist, Hindu, or other Eastern worship-type artifacts
Items or books related to Satanism, witchcraft, New Age, zodiac, crescent moon, crystal ball, pyramids, or martial arts
Things or books related to astrology, horoscopes, and geomancy, or to certain authors (Edgar Cayce, Jean Dixon, etc.)
Comic books, rock posters, hard rock music, and materials with obvious images of darkness
Pornographic materials of any kind (videos, books, magazines, pay-per-view cable or satellite TV channels)
Art with obvious demonic representations, such as snakes, spirits, death, gargoyles, skulls, dragons, etc.
Items or books relating to secret societies like freemasonry (Masons, etc.), Eastern Star, Knights of Malta, Skull and Bones
Masonic aprons, books, or rings (oriental yin-and-yang symbols)
Certain children’s books or movies, such as Harry Potter (which encourage children to seek access to spiritual power unauthorized by God)
Movies with occult messages, extreme violence, excessive foul language, or explicit sexual content
Objects specifically cursed by others (items of which you are unaware—unless God reveals them to you)
Books that focus on sensuality or death and destruction (Steven King)
(The above list is taken from Spiritual House Cleaning by Eddie and Alice Smith.)
It is noteworthy that new converts to the early church brought their defiled objects and books and burned them: “Many of them also which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver” (Acts 19:19).
Possessed objects can end up in your house innocently or by the design of others. During a deliverance prayer for a young woman, the Lord revealed that there were a number of defiled objects in her house that were gifts from her father. Because of anger, he had a powerful medicine man curse the objects before sending them to his daughter (out of resentment for his ex-wife who had divorced him). The young woman could not be totally free until the objects had been collected and burned.
The spiritual climate is a result of the previous contaminated objects, or evil activities that have taken place there. The purification of objects or buildings, land or places requires changing the spiritual atmosphere.
Purification Process (for Defiled Objects)
Believe that God wants to reveal all defiled things, if we ask in faith.
If possible, invite someone with the gift of discerning of spirits to go through your house with you, praying and asking God to reveal anything defiled.
If possible, burn all defiled objects found (or throw them in the trash).
Ask God to sanctify the places where the objects have been.
Defiled Buildings and Houses
Land, places, buildings and houses become occupied by the presence of evil through a number of methods including the following:
Satan ritual abuse
sins committed there
occult or demon worship
bloodshed of innocent people
covenants made with darkness
land used by new agers, Masons, Mormons,
contaminated objects buried in the ground
deceptive political/governmental leadership
early pagan spiritual beliefs and practices
sexual sins such as prostitution, adultery, fornication, rape, bestiality
temples of active idolatrous worship such as Islam, or Buddhist temples
activities such as divination, sorcery, spiritualism, clairvoyance
The land is therein contaminated by the presence of evil, or by the presence of evil in those that inhabit the land or place. Which in turn changes the spiritual atmosphere, or climate. (see the following website for an example of a contaminated house. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2549165/We-lost-lives-Woman-possessed-demons-portal-hell-house-terrified-police-chief-details-familys-terrifying-ordeal.html>
Because these activities occur as a result of the choices and actions of those involved, the powers of darkness are given a spiritual right (or permission) to claim the land or place for evil purposes. This is similar to what happens in our human spirit when we sin; we give the evil one permission to influence that part of our spirit. To a less severe extent, people with evil spirits bring some evil with them and they tend to leave some evil behind. Examples abound of problems people have had as the result of previous involvements in evil activities.
Some years ago a woman who was renting a home in another town visited with me about the evil influences in her home. She asked us (our ministry team) to come pray for it. Because the house was about 50 miles away, and not wanting to rush in where the Lord had not called, we assembled a small group of people to pray about whether or not we should accommodate her and bless the home. While we were praying, a woman in the group with the gift of discerning of spirits was able to see the house, to see that it had once housed Satan worshipers, and that sacrifices had been made in occult ceremonies in the garage. We also learned that the woman who requested for us to pray for her home was living with a man to whom she was not married. She was counseled that even if the house were to be spiritually cleansed and blessed, the cleansing probably would not remain because of the continuance of immoral sin in the home, leaving an opening for the evil to return. She finally moved.
Another family explained they were experiencing symptoms of spiritual pollution. In the process of cleansing the house, the couple found satanic symbols painted on the ceiling of the attic and on the garage walls. Similar examples and confirmations attest to the fact that a house where adultery has occurred can also carry a curse.
Healing Defiled Places
The cleansing process for defiled places involves the following:
1. First, remove all defiled objects.
2. Cleanse the occupants who reside there (as they can bring spiritual pollution into a clean house).
3. Find the root problem—determine how the place became defiled.
4. Cleanse the house (or place) (2 Chr. 29).
5. Bless the house (or place) (1 Chr. 17:27).
6. Hold a Eucharist in the house (or place).
A more detailed explanation of the steps involved in the healing and cleansing process for defiled places follows:
1. Remove all defiled objects: Pray about being made aware of any objects in the home that may be defiled. Have someone with the gift of discerning of spirits go through the home one room at a time, praying to the Lord to reveal all defiled objects. The Bible says to burn these objects (Duet. 7:5 and 12:3, Acts 19:19).
2. Cleanse the occupants who reside there: It is important that the occupants believe in Jesus Christ, are baptized, and have received the baptism of the Holy Ghost. The occupants must want Jesus more than they want their house cleansed. Have them use the sections of this study to identify areas of evil influence that they might have been associated with. Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal any areas of unrepentant sin in the lives of any individual who lives in the house, that all open doors may be closed. As it is very difficult for us to see our own “stuff,” it is beneficial for someone of great faith to pray with and for you.
3. Find the root problem: If the house seems to be spiritually contaminated, begin the process of finding the root cause by trying to learn why the place is the way it is. Ask questions such as, “What caused it to be this way?” “When did the evil first occur?” “Have you noticed any specific patterns?” Interview neighbors for additional input. If possible, study the history of the house (place or land). Who lived there previously? What kinds of activities were performed there? What were some of the involvements (clubs, societies, etc.) of former occupants? Check with local historians to see if there was any significant Native American activity held there, or if it was a burial ground. Was it the site of a battle where people died? The answers to these and other questions may allow you to draw noteworthy conclusions which lead to the discovery of the root problem.
If there was any evil activity that took place, it’s likely at least some of the neighbors may know about it. In addition, if you know of someone who has the gift of discerning of spirits, ask them to come and pray for enlightenment to reveal the root cause. It is best if the root cause can be determined (just as it is in the process of inner healing) or else the opening still exists, allowing the demonic influences to return.
4. Cleanse the house (or place): If the root cause, sins, or offenses committed can be determined, the owner (in the place of whoever sinned) must stand in their stead and pray for forgiveness and repentance sometimes called identificational repentance (refer to the section titled “Healing from Generational Influences” for a more detailed description of this practice). If the original evil is Satan worship or satanic ritual abuse, a sizeable group of experienced intercessors of great faith may need to be assembled as it may require significant prayer power to overcome the evil resident in that place.
Pray that the Lord will cleanse the place and land of all evil deposits. Ask the Lord—who is not confined to our limitations in time—to walk back through the history of the house and the land and heal all these defilements; pray that all resident demonic spirits be cast out and that it be cleansed from all deposits of rancor and disagreement.
Pray that the Lord wash it with His blood and burn away (by His fire) whatever devices or objects might still give demons and satanic forces access from which to operate. Apply the cross, the blood, and the resurrection life of Jesus to whatever in history has not as yet been redeemed. Ask the Lord to accomplish forgiveness, to take authority over the house and land, and declare it righteous and sanctified in Jesus’ name. Then dedicate it to Jesus and His purposes.
5. Bless the house (or place): After the house is cleansed, offer a blessing on it. Walk around the exterior of the house, praying for the Lord’s warring angels to stand in protection over it. Pray aloud Psalm 91. Afterwards, go inside the house and pray, asking that the light and life of Jesus come fill the house. Ask the Holy Spirit to come and be resident in the house. Ask God to fill it with His goodness, power, and the presence of His holy angels. Pray God’s peace be upon this house (Mat. 10:13, Luke 10:5).
Rededicate the house to God. Anoint each doorway and window frame with holy consecrated oil in remembrance of the Passover. If the use of holy water is used in the fellowship you attend, obtain some—or bless water especially for this purpose—and sprinkle some in each room of the house. Be sure to pray in gratitude for what you know the Lord “is” doing in this place.
6. Hold a Eucharist in the house (or place): Finally, hold a Eucharist service in the home (as detailed further in the section titled “Healing Power of Communion.”)
Resources for Healing Objects and Places
1. Eddie and Alice Smith, Spiritual House Cleaning (Regal Books, 2003). ISBN 0-8307-3107-5.
2. Chuck Pierce, Protecting Your Home from Spiritual Darkness (Wagner Publications, 1999). ISBN 0-9667-481-7-4.
3. Henry Malone, Portals to Cleansing, (Regal Books, 2002) ISBN 0-9717065-0-6
4. Francis MacNutt, Deliverance from Evil Spirits (Chosen Books, 1995): 253-68. ISBN 0-8007-9232-7.
5. John and Mark Sandford, Deliverance and Inner Healing (Chosen Books, 1992): 205-40. ISBN 0-8007-9206-8. pg 205-240
Evil influences are not only in houses and buildings but they are also over much larger areas. Defiled land is mentioned over 15 times in the Bible (refer to Ps. 106:38, Is. 24:5, Jer. 2:7 and 3:1). Just as carcasses attract the vultures of the air, so defiled land, objects, or places attract spiritual wickedness. Where the land has been defiled, demons cluster. Notable references follow:
• In Genesis 4:10, God is speaking to Cain after he killed Abel and God declares “the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground.”
• Leviticus 18:24-25 suggests the land of Israel became defiled because of the sins of the nations that had inhabited it.
• Jeremiah 4:23-29 suggests the earth will mourn.
In one such experience, a developer was trying to subdivide a certain tract of land for the development of new homes. Every contractor he hired to build the roads had equipment problems and failure. The Holy Spirit finally revealed that the area had been a holy place, a special meeting place for Native American spiritual dances and celebrations. The Indians became angry when their land was taken from them during the early 1800’s and had placed a curse on it.
One story in an issue (October 27th, 2000) of the Wall Street Journal reported on occurrences of evil influences following several tourists who took black volcanic rocks from the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the big island of Hawaii. A tourist from Florida reportedly scooped up the black volcanic sand with a soda pop bottle and brought it home with him. After returning to his home, his pet died, he split up with his fiancée, and FBI agents arrested Him. He sent the sand back and things began to improve. He believes Pele—the Hawaiian volcano goddess—apparently punishes people who take anything belonging to her. In addition, the Park Ranger reports the anonymous return on a weekly basis of several rocks from Pele, with notes attesting to “bad luck” having occurred since these items were taken.
In his book Commitment to Conquer: Redeeming Your City by Strategic Intercession, Bob Beckett describes a number of unusual experiences when he and his family lived near land that was defiled. There are a number of other books that record and describe the influences of evil over towns, cities, and regions. These evil influences severely hinder evangelistic efforts and will continue to do so until they are prayed against and broken.
Resources for Defiled Land
1. Rebecca Greenwood, Authority to Tread, (Chosen Books, 2005) ISBN 0-8007- 9387-0
2 Ed Silvoso, That None Should Perish (Regal Books, 1994). ISBN 0-8307-1690-4.
3. C. Peter Wagner, Warfare Prayer (Regal Books, 1992). ISBN 0-8307-1513-4.
4. C. Peter Wagner, Breaking Strongholds in Your City (Regal Books, 1993). ISBN 0-8307-1638-6
5. John Dawson, Taking Our Cities for God (Creation House, 1989). ISBN 0-8841-241-
6. C. Peter Wagner, Editor, Wrestling With Dark Angels (Regal Books, 1990). ISBN 0-8307-1446-4. (Specifically Chapter 3—“Territorial Spirits”)
7. Bob Beckett, Commitment to Conquer: Redeeming Your City by Strategic Intercession (Chosen Books, 1997). ISBN 0800792521.
8. Henry Malone, Portals to Cleansing, (Regal Books, 2002) ISBN 0-9717065-0-6
It should also be noted that power exercised by the demonic is stronger in some areas than in others. Those areas in which Satan worship or satanic ritual abuse has taken place will be among the most difficult to cleanse. Likewise, areas in which the local culture accepts medicine men, witches, and voodoo are also most difficult to cleanse. Those areas that have been inhabited temporarily by those committing sin (such as the use of a hotel room for immoral sexual activity) are much easier to cleanse.
Healing an area of land is accomplished in a similar way to healing places (using steps 3, 4, 5 and 6 above). The process of identifying the sins of the previous owners, who sometimes have been long-dead, is called spiritual mapping. Sometimes this identification can be retrieved from people familiar with the property, through old newspaper references, or by divine revelation. The larger the area—and the more people who lived there—the greater prayer power is required.
Some prayer warriors recommend “staking” the land. Prepare at least four 2”x 2” stakes. Write scriptures on each one. With a group, drive a stake into each corner of the property with prayers for cleansing and claiming the land for Jesus.
On a vacant piece of land in America (for example) two or three prayer warriors might be sufficient. To pray for a whole town or city would take a number of prayer warriors an extended period of time. To pray for an area in a country that is under the influence of voodoo or witchcraft should only be done under God’s direction and would require multiple prayer warriors. There are numerous examples of successful results within the books referenced above. (Also refer to the section on “Territorial Spirits”).