Misconceptions of Deliverance Ministry

Deliverance was a core ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ. Whether the oppressed person was a mute boy who suffered from seizures [Mark 9:14-25] or a demoniac man who had been driven from his community [Luke 8:29], Jesus was sent to liberate those who were oppressed [Luke 4:18]. This is the heart of deliverance ministry. After his ascension, this vital ministry was passed on to the apostles and his disciples, and like those early believers, we are instructed in scripture to cast out demons.

Today, however, we find a mixed mindset when it comes to the topic of deliverance. Even among church leaders this fundamental ministry is often viewed as either obsolete or as having been replaced by the more common “counseling sessions.” Clearly, not everyone embraces deliverance ministry, specifically the casting out of demons.

Having been engaged in deliverance ministry for several years, I can testify of the tremendous need for this ministry to be active in the lives of all believers. Many people are coming out of the occult, witchcraft, spiritualism, and the New Age movement and into our churches. Others come in seeking help with emotional issues and wounds that have built up over decades.

The church and specifically its leaders must be properly trained in the area of deliverance to provide solutions to these problems. Deliverance ministry is a ministry of compassion that places the finger of God on a person’s life and emancipates them from the pain of their past and delivers them into the reality of who they are in Christ. There simply is no greater joy that comes to my heart than to see a person who has been emotionally or mentally bound, become liberated from torment, agony and pain.

Before we can see this ministry excel within the Body of Christ, however, we need to eradicate some of the misconceptions that exist.

Misconception – Deliverance ministry is only for leaders.

Casting out demons (or deliverance ministry) is not an exclusive ministry that only a few have. While it is true that we all operate in varying degrees of anointing and gifting, every believer needs to be equipped to perform basic deliverance.

In Mark 16 Jesus appeared to His apostles and said “And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”

From the above scripture it is evident that a “believer”, not necessarily a leader, is to cast out devils. If that was not the case then one could make the argument that only leaders should speak in new tongues or lay hands on the sick.

In surveying the landscape of the church, however, it is not difficult to see that many believers today cannot recognize the presence of demons or strongholds in their life or the lives of others. If they can, they typically lack the training necessary to get the people that are in bondage free from the enemy’s tactics. They usually become frustrated and ultimately bring the one in bondage to leadership for a solution.

Misconception – Leaders do not need to be equipped to understand deliverance.

Unfortunately the lack of equipping in the area of deliverance ministry is not unique to the sheep but is also prevalent among the shepherds or leaders. I can attest to this by the sheer volume of people that seek out my ministry for deliverance due to the fact that their Pastor or church does not have a deliverance ministry and does not believe in casting out demons.

In Ephesians chapter 4 we see that the Lord gave 5 gifts to the Body of Christ for the purpose of “equipping of the saints for the work of ministry.” Since every believer has been commanded to cast out demons, it is only reasonable to ascertain that the ones doing the equipping need to be skilled in the area themselves. Leaders have a responsibility to get the believer equipped whether by their ministry or by reaching out to other leaders who have the revelation and expertise in the specific area. As leaders we must provide a “well-balanced” diet of biblical truths and applications. Deliverance ministry is no exception. Leaders must remain teachable and receive quality training also.

Without proper deliverance training we run the risk of opening the door to spiritual warfare tactics that are esoteric, bizarre, and flaky. There is probably no other area of ministry have been more sensationalized than deliverance and spiritual warfare.

A quality deliverance minister is one that is well-trained and understands his or her vocation. They understand the complexities of the deliverance process and can assess emotional issues and wounds that have built up over decades. Engaging in deliverance ministry without proper training can bring more harm than good. As a minister who focuses on deliverance, I’ve often encountered individuals who desperately wanted believe that they could be delivered from bondage, but they had been disappointed in the past by ministers who had not been properly trained. Poorly-trained leaders attempt to provide deliverance by throwing anointing oil or some other fleshly tactic instead of engaging in genuine deliverance ministry.

Misconception – Deliverance ministry will frighten people and they will leave.

In actuality I have found just the opposite to be true. People need and want deliverance. Once the word gets out that there is a place for people to truly receive their deliverance, your ministry will grow – exponentially.

Today, many leaders talk of diminishing attendance and a lack of true power in their services. To compensate for this, many have focused on creating programs or an environment that is “seeker-friendly” or “culturally relevant.” The dynamis – that miraculous power for which we so passionately pray – is replaced by energetic bands, digitalized lighting systems, and fog machines. Certainly there is nothing wrong with state of the art technology, but it is a fraudulent substitute for the miraculous power of God.

In the 1st century people flocked to Jesus because He was a problem solver. He eliminated an issue that a woman had for 18 years. He solved the problem of a frustrated father whose son was stricken with seizures and convulsions. Jesus brought the miracle-working power of God into people’s lives and once word travelled that they could get free from years of agony, His meetings got so big that His family couldn’t get in the service. In one meeting the roof had to be torn apart just to get in. When is the last time that happened at your service?

Mark 9:38-39 Now John answered Him, saying, “Teacher, we saw someone who does not follow us casting out demons in Your name, and we forbade him because he does not follow us.” But Jesus said, “Do not forbid him, for no one who works a miracle in My name can soon afterward speak evil of Me.” The casting out of demons is supernatural and the manifestation of a miracle. Miracles solve problems and we need leaders that can solve problems using Kingdom tactics. Jesus demonstrated the kingdom of God by driving demons (problems) out of people lives.

People spend billions of dollars trying to get free from sickness, disease, addictions, and emotional issues. Deliverance ministry solves the problems of mankind. The church needs to be the spiritual hospital, urgent care, emergency room, surgical center, and recovery room for the oppressed.

Because deliverance is a hands-on ministry, it is a practical way to shift people from sitting lethargically in pews to actively participating in spiritual warfare. Being involved in deliverance ministry will grow your church because people want solutions to their problems.

Misconception: A believer can’t have a demon.

Once I was praying with two individuals who were having problems. In the middle of praying I stopped and said, “you don’t need prayer you need demons cast out of you.” They were shocked because they were both believers, and they had never considered that their problems stemmed from demonic oppression.

There is so much confusion in regards to the ministry of deliverance that some people have sided with the idea that a born-again Christian cannot have the Spirit of God in them and at the same time have an evil spirit. I once heard a prominent Christian television host say, “Christians do not need deliverance because when they got saved they got it all.”

While it is a true statement that we are complete in Christ, we must understand that this is speaking specifically of our spirit man and not our body or soul. Let me give an example. If you had a scar on your body or bills to pay prior to conversion, did you still have that scar or those bills after conversion? Of course you did! Likewise, if evil spirits are present at conversion, they are probably still there after conversion.

Much of the misunderstanding resulted from the King James Version of the Bible’s translation the Greek word daimonizomai as “possessed with devils.” A more accurate translation is: “to be under the power or influence of a demon or to be demonized.” To be under the influence of something is not the same as being possessed. Possession has to do with ownership. Therefore, as believers we cannot be possessed in our spirit since Christ owns our spirit at the new birth. However, our mind, will, and emotions have not been redeemed and are subject to the influence of the enemy. The fact is that believers are being influenced and oppressed by demonic powers.

Misconception: Demons gain access through your spirit

While that may be true for an unbeliever, it is not true for a born-again believer. The Soul realm (mind, will and emotions) is the main gate by which demons are granted access into one’s life.

As believers we know that the life we live is by faith in the Son of God and is based solely on the grace of God. There is nothing that can defile our spirit-man. We have been made new and have been forever sealed by the Holy Spirit. However, WE are responsible for renewing our minds. When we do not guard the way we think about ourselves, others, or our environment, we open the door for the enemy to bring accusations against us.

2 Corinthians 10:4-5 provides insight into this: “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;”

When we do not engage in warfare the enemy can devour our lives. Warfare occurs on the battlefield of the mind. Our spiritual weapons were designed for the express purpose of taking thoughts captive and making them obedient to image of who we are in Christ. If we have not been equipped properly, or we are negligent in this area, then that which is in opposition to the knowledge of God (evil/demons) can become a stronghold. A stronghold is a fortified and safe place that demons can dwell in. Once demons create a stronghold in the mind, bondage occurs. This bondage will affect other areas, specifically the emotions and physical parts of the body.

Deliverance is the children’s bread and it is time that all believers partake of the bread. Deliverance ministry is a wonderful ministry that has been misunderstood by some but is needed by all. By using a balanced approach and being correctly trained, every believer can and should be equipped to set the captives free.

As always, walk in your dominion and authority.

Apostle Summers

*Apostle Robert Summers is the visionary leader of Authority of the Believers Ministries, Inc. and the New Breed Equipping Center, an apostolic-prophetic training hub strategically located in Columbus, Ohio. He and his wife Apostle Dixie, upgrade churches and ministries in the area of Deliverance by educating and equipping in demon extraction & the renewing of the mind.


  1. I have read what you have said about deliverance. What must one do to receive the training about being deliver them self before you are able to help others. My Church suppose to be a deliverance church but people are prayed over but they still be the same as when they came in. The next time you see them it is like they are worse than before. I would love to learn more about deliverance to help other as well as myself.
    Thank you for opening up my eyes for better understanding.

  2. If you have any suggestion, would appreciate them


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