THE REASON FOR THE EVIL SPIRITS’ ATTACK
Why are the believers’ minds so attacked by evil spirits? One answer is that the believers themselves afford evil spirits (also called demons) an opportunity to attack in their minds. We should realize that it is possible for the believers’ minds to suffer the demons’ attacks. This is proven by the experiences of many believers. The place the demons most often attack is the mind because the mind and evil spirits have a special rapport. The attacks of evil spirits on the believers’ minds produce the aforementioned phenomena. Parts or the whole of man’s mind have already isolated themselves from man’s sovereign rule and fallen into the hands of evil spirits. As a result, evil spirits are able to think and stop as they wish and ignore the believers’ own will. Although the mind still resides in the body, its sovereignty belongs to someone else. Even though the believers may oppose it, nothing will avail. In whatever aspect the believers give place to evil spirits, that aspect will not thereafter obey man’s own will. Instead, it will obey another will. When the believers give any ground in their minds to evil spirits, they have lost their sovereignty over their own minds. To put it in another way, if the mind of a believer has lost its sovereignty and is no longer able to rule over itself, the mind is already occupied by evil spirits. If evil spirits have not attacked the believer’s mind, his will should be able to rule over everything; he can think when he wants to think and stop when he wants to stop. He will not encounter any difficulty.
The minds of the believers are attacked by evil spirits because the believers have given place to evil spirits in their minds. Believers are prone to give more place in the mind to evil spirits because the mind is related to evil spirits in such a special way. These places become leverage in the believers’ minds upon which evil spirits freely work. We should remember that man’s mind is of man; if evil spirits do not have man’s consent, they cannot use his mind. If man does not volunteer—intentionally or unintentionally—to hand over the mind to evil spirits, they cannot infringe on man’s freedom. This does not mean that evil spirits will never tempt us in the mind (such will not happen in this life). But it means that when we exercise our will to oppose them, they will immediately stop. The problem today is that even though many believers exercise their own will to resist, temptations still do not stop. This should not happen; it is a proof of the work of evil spirits because it is done in disregard of man’s will.
After a believer has indeed yielded to evil spirits, his mind will inevitably be filled with the works of evil spirits. Evil spirits will work on him according to the ground he has given them. Since he has given ground to evil spirits in his mind, they can do whatever they want in his mind. The most important principle in the work of evil spirits is that one has to give ground for them to work. They can only work when they have the ground. Without the ground, they have no way to work. The amount of their work is determined by the amount of ground they receive. Whenever believers give ground in their minds to evil spirits, the evil spirits will work in the believers’ minds. There are six kinds of ground that believers can give to evil spirits. Let us consider each one of them briefly.
(Spiritual Man, The (3 volume set), Chapter 31, by Watchman Nee)