Enemy Strongholds and Nightmares

Dear Andrea,I have reoccurring nightmares about evil bullying or attacking me. Enough to scare me. I wake up trembling and anxious. I say my prayers. I believe my actions are are not one with the Lord and I am attracting evil into my life.Could this be true?–Monique

Dear Monique,

Most nightmares come from us working out the bad stuff in life that we don’t want to deal with while awake, but not all. If a nightmare clearly doesn’t relate to anything you’ve gone or are going through, that leaves two possible sources: the devil, yes, and God. The latter kind of nightmare is comparatively rare and usually prophetic/intercessory in nature. A, ah, holy nightmare will sometimes warn of the future, reveal happenings in the spiritual realm, or even something happening to a perfect stranger, but regardless amounts to a prayer prompter.

Now, third, demons do attack in our sleep, and often in the form of a nightmare. This doesn’t necessarily mean we’ve done something wrong. The devil will usually attack us in the same areas where we’ve given in to him in the past, but he also tends to attack Christians strongest when we’re hurting him, and that means we’ve done something right. If you’re in right relationship with the Lord, stand firm, and rebuke the devil in the authority of the Lord, and he will flee, I promise (or more to the point, God does.)

If the devil has a stronghold in your life, however, that’s a different story, yes, and it’ll be much, much harder. In this case, it’s important to locate the breech in your armor, or the area in which you’ve compromised with the world and not been transformed by the renewing of your mind (or gone back to old habits). Overcoming the sin the demon behind the nightmares has dominion over will empower you to throw off the dominion he’s trying to stake over you. We cannot do this in our own strength–only the blood of the Lamb can cleanse us from sin. But we can do all things in Christ, He who strengthens us.

Now, normally, the blood of Christ protects his followers from demonic oppression or out right possession, (which are simply varying degrees of control they’ve gained over a person) but if we give the devil a foothold, it can come to that, and sometimes these will require assistance from the Body to be delivered from. Talk to your pastor or a trusted elder woman in the church (men should go to men for assistance and women to women where feasible.)

Where do they arise from? We can inherit them from our parents via what’s known as a generational curse. This is where we find ourselves caught in vicious intergenerational cycles (the most publicized being codependency, physical, sexual, and substance abuse) often don’t know how to break free. We also pick them up from poorly-chosen friends as easily as a bad habit. Our thought lives and the media we follow in all forms are also common, but sometimes overlooked, windows the devil can enter in through. As it is with a computer, so it is with our minds. Garbage in, Garbage out.

Pray, but don’t just say your prayers. Seek the Lord with all your heart and place your trust in Him. It’s not easy. Daily, we must make the decision to crucify the flesh and follow after Him. We all stumble sometimes. His grace does not ignore our condition and merely love us anyway just as we are–His grace is an outstretched hand waiting to give us the strength to stand.

In Christ’s Grace,
Andrea Graham

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  1. i have a friend who is an orphan and his dad has rejected him and he has problems with rejection i want to give him advice but not sure of what exactly to say any ideas?

  2. This is a beautiful teaching and often one that is neglected. Many Christians live under the delusion that if they’ve simply become a Christian all is going to be fine. The fact is you’ve just made enemies with the enemy of God. It’s kind of like walking around with a bullseye on your back. Solution, don’t turn your back on him. Instead focus all of your attention on the Lord. People talk about tithing their money, but what about tithing your time? How often do you spend in prayer or the study of God’s Word? If your answer to this is, “Not much” then you can expect to be harassed by the enemy quite often. Jesus broke down the Commandments into 2; Love God and Love your neighbor. Do this, pray and praise God, get His Word inside you and the power and authority of Jesus is yours. Don’t do this and you will be hindered, bound and harassed greatly. This doesn’t even count persecution. We will all suffer persecution. How will we respond when we go through it will tell us just where we stand with Jesus.

  3. Author

    Thanks, David. If nothing else, not abiding in Him via prayer and keeping in the Word, definitely leaves us vulnerable to deception and crippled against the attacks of the enemy.

  4. Author

    Liz, before I answer, would it be possible to get more specific details as to his situation, what he’s currently struggling with? Rejection has been a source of pain in my own life, so I can relate. When you’re caught in a cycle of rejection, it’s no simple thing, though the answer can sound deceptively simple in print. We need to have our mindsets and thought patterns completely changed. The biblical prescription is to read in the word about and meditate on the truth of a loving Father in Heaven who will never leave us, never forsake us, a Lord who takes our care upon Himself when our earthly mothers and fathers forsake us. And first he has to open himself up to the possibility enough to take the time to do that, which is the hardest step of all, it’s like leaping out into the darkness on what seems at the time (thanks to the devil) a whimsical hope there really is a loving god waiting to catch us.

    This transformation process is very, very, very slow. It takes time, and lots of it, to heal from this kind of pain.

  5. I found your site while browsing on google and read a few of your other articles too. I’ve just added you to my yahoo rss Reader. Just wanted to say” keep up the good work” and congrats on a job well done! I am looking forward to reading more from you in the future.

  6. One thing that I wanted to add alone this topic is that we need to watch our mouth. When we begin saying things like, “I believe my actions are are not one with the Lord and I am attracting evil into my life,” we are creating a door for the enemy to walk in and harass us. Remember, Satan is a defeated foe, and as long as we are in Him we are seen by the Father as if we possessed that same righteousness. In fact, Scripture says that we “are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.” Claiming that your actions are not what God wants and that you may be attracting evil into your life is the same as making yourself stand outside of God’s protection, outside of the righteousness of Jesus. In this instance we actively are drawing evil to ourselves because we think that is what is happening. We must not be deceived by circumstances, by trials and tribulations, by our failures, but trust wholly in the Lord. Begin to speak words in line with God’s will. “I am a child of God, made righteous by the precious blood of Jesus. Evil comes my way only to try to steal the joy I have in the Lord. I rebuke this evil in the name of Jesus. I do not claim a fallen state for myself, but holiness and purity and righteousness. This I have because I live in Jesus Christ and by the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead God has raised me up and made me a new creation in Christ Jesus. Devil you have no power over me. I belong to Jesus.” Even when you stumble and fall it is good to get back up. The apostle Paul said, “I die daily” and advises us to “mortify the flesh daily”.

  7. That depends, David. The bible says if we confess our sins, he is just and able to forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Scripture has a strong precedent for lament. It’s not what our mouths say that really gives the devil a gateway into our lives so much the thoughts of our hearts. Thus the one who confesses their fears and pours out their emotions before the Lord in lamentation, *and* then takes in scriptural truth will walk in paths of righteousness–while one who names and claims it all day long and sounds righteous and holy may well be secretly living deep in satanic bondage, because of the hidden thoughts and beliefs of the heart.

  8. I don’t disagree with you, however Jesus said, “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaketh.” So when we speak, it’s from the stuff we’ve been stowing away in our heart. If we are putting away good things, Godly things, in our heart, then these are the kinds of things that will come out of our mouths. If, on the other hand, we have been filling our hearts and minds with worldly things, then you can be sure that these are the things that are going to escape our lips. So when I same not to claim bondage with our speech, I am actually telling a person to change the direction of their heart. Confession before God of sin is one thing. Claiming and owning a sin isn’t confession or lamentation, it’s speaking defeat. We do this because our heart is not right, or we don’t know better. So I advise people to change the way they think and therefore the way they talk. It has nothing to do with hiding some satanic bondage, but averting one’s self from such bondages.

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