Several times in the Bible, Jesus spoke to demonic spirits and they left. He gave instruction about what takes place when a demonic spirit leaves a person. Jesus said when an unclean spirit goes out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest (Luke 11:24).

Jesus went on to say when these unclean spirits do not find any rest, in desperation they return to the body they left. If that body is swept clean and has not been filled with the Spirit of God, the evil spirit re-enters with seven other spirits who are more evil. The result is the man who was delivered is in much worse condition than before his deliverance (Luke 11:24-26).

Not only do we learn from this passage that there are varying degrees of evil among the demonic spirits, but we also learn there is a responsibility to fill the emptiness within a lost person who has been delivered from demonic oppression with the Holy Spirit. Deliverance without salvation accomplishes nothing. In fact, it creates a worse situation for the person who has been delivered.

For two years Paul lived in Asia and preached the Word of the Lord Jesus to both the Jews and the Gentiles. During this time, God worked many unusual miracles through him. There were times when handkerchiefs or aprons that had touched his body were taken to people who were sick and the diseases left them. It's also interesting to note that the anointing on the handkerchiefs and aprons even caused evil spirits to leave those who were possessed. (Acts 19:11-12.)

As his fame grew and people saw the results of these unusual miracles, they attempted to imitate his actions and duplicate the miracles they had observed. Sceva, a Jewish priest, had seven sons who attempted to duplicate Paul's miracles. They spoke to a demon-possessed man by saying, "We exorcise you by the Jesus whom Paul preaches" (v.13). The evil spirit answered and said, "Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?" (v.15). Immediately the man who was possessed of the evil spirit overpowered them, beat them, and stripped them of their clothing and they fled naked. (Acts 19:13-16.)

This event that occurred during the early years of the church explains another spiritual truth concerning the spirit world. Attempting to operate in the things of the spirit without the anointing of the Holy Spirit is dangerous. Even though these young Jewish men had been raised in the family of a Jewish priest, they were not born again, they did not have the Holy Spirit living inside of them, and had not been given the authority over the power of the enemy. The result was that they fled stripped and whipped. As a Christian, you should always be led by the Holy Spirit when encountering the forces of the enemy.