Spiritual Warfare: Winning the Battle

Could the psychological and emotional struggles I'm going through be an attack from Satan and his demons? Years ago I got involved in the occult. I made some horrible moral choices that left me wrestling with terrible anxiety and deep shame. I've prayed and tried to leave it all behind – but every time I seem to make progress, I spiral back down into guilt, remorse, anger, helplessness, and hopelessness. How can I break this cycle?
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email

As evangelical Christians who take the Bible seriously as the living Word of the one true God, we believe in the reality of spiritual warfare and the unseen spiritual world. So yes: It’s possible that your suffering may have a demonic component to it.

But the good news is that Satan and his minions don’t have complete or final power over genuine disciples of Jesus Christ – people who’ve placed their lives entirely in His hands and who claim His blood as a covering for their sin.

Winning the Spiritual Battle

If you belong to Jesus, there’s a lot you can do to get out from under the destructive weight of a painful past.

    • Admit that you’re a sinner, and ask Christ’s forgiveness for your sins every day. Then trust God to deliver you from the powers of darkness.
    • Pray and read Scripture regularly. Spending time with God and His Word will help you know Him better and be assured of His love for you. Personalize Psalm 91 as a covenant prayer – be confident of the Lord’s sheltering care.
    • Remember that God is stronger than the devil. Christ defeated Satan on the cross, so He can deliver you from Satan’s traps and keep you in the protection of His grace. That’s what the apostle James had in mind when he wrote, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7).
    • Keep a journal of all your thoughts and emotions. Write as if you were talking directly to the Lord; this will help you be honest with yourself about your struggles. Re-read what you’ve written to identify how Satan is trying to deceive you (for example, through fear, bitterness, or shame). Then shred those pages as a physical reminder that you’re laying your struggles at the foot of the cross.
  • Find a pastor, Christian counselor, or trusted fellow believer (of the same sex) you can talk with openly. Ask them to pray with and for you. Remember: This isn’t the kind of thing you can overcome on your own. As James puts it in another biblical passage, “Confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed” (James 5:16).

Where to Find More Help

For an overview of spiritual warfare, we invite you to take a look at the summary from our Counseling department: Satan’s Strategies Against Us … And God’s Solution.

You’re also welcome to call us for a free phone consultation. Our caring Christian counselors would be happy to talk with you about your concerns, and they can give you a list of professional counselors in your area.

If a title is currently unavailable through Focus on the Family, we encourage you to use another retailer.

101 Answers to Questions About Satan, Demons, & Spiritual Warfare

Reclaiming Surrendered Ground

The Full Armor of God

The Invisible War

Copyright © 2019, Focus on the Family.

Talk to a Counselor

Focus on the Family offers a one-time complimentary consultation from a Christian perspective.
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email

Thank you [field id="first_name"] for signing up to get the free downloads of the Marrying Well Guides. 

Click the image below to access your guide and learn about the counter-cultural, biblical concepts of intentionality, purity, community and Christian compatibility.

(For best results use IE 8 or higher, Firefox, Chrome or Safari)

To stay up-to-date with the latest from Boundless, sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter.

If you have any comments or questions about the information included in the Guide, please send them to [email protected]

Click here to return to Boundless

Focus on the Family

Thank you for submitting this form. You will hear from us soon. 

The Daily Citizen

The Daily Citizen from Focus on the Family exists to be your most trustworthy news source. Our team of analysts is devoted to giving you timely and relevant analysis of current events and cultural trends – all from a biblical worldview – so that you can be inspired and assured that the information you share with others comes from a reliable source.

Alive to Thrive is a biblical guide to preventing teen suicide. Anyone who interacts with teens can learn how to help prevent suicidal thinking through sound practical and clinical advice, and more importantly, biblical principles that will provide a young person with hope in Christ.

Bring Your Bible to School Day Logo Lockup with the Words Beneath

Every year on Bring Your Bible to School Day, students across the nation celebrate religious freedom and share God’s love with their friends. This event is designed to empower students to express their belief in the truth of God’s Word–and to do so in a respectful way that demonstrates the love of Christ.

Focus on the Family’s® Foster Care and Adoption program focuses on two main areas:

  • Wait No More events, which educate and empower families to help waiting kids in foster care

  • Post-placement resources for foster and adoptive families

Christian Counselors Network

Find Christian Counselors, Marriage & Family Therapists, Psychologists, Social Workers and Psychiatrists near you! Search by location, name or specialty to find professionals in Focus on the Family’s Christian Counselors Network who are eager to assist you.

Boundless is a Focus on the Family community for Christian young adults who want to pursue faith, relationships and adulthood with confidence and joy.

Through reviews, articles and discussions, Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live.

Have you been looking for a way to build your child’s faith in a fun and exciting way?
Adventures in Odyssey® audio dramas will do just that. Through original audio stories brought to life by actors who make you feel like part of the experience; these fictional, character-building dramas use storytelling to teach lasting truths.

Focus on the Family’s Hope Restored all-inclusive intensives offer marriage counseling for couples who are facing an extreme crisis in their marriage, and who may even feel they are headed for divorce.