Spiritual warfare and deliverance are not very popular topics within the ecclesiastical community, and not because the topics are considered unbiblical, since we have all read in the Gospels that Jesus cast out demons from those suffering from chronic illnesses and diseases; the unattractiveness of spiritual warfare and deliverance is due, in good measure, because most believers flee from anything that represents dealing with demons, or the manifestation of demons.
However, if we carefully review the Scriptures we will see that deliverance was one of the main functions that Jesus delegated to His disciples; in Matthew 10:8, we read: “Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.”; delegation of functions that is still valid today for all those who are called to the Kingdom of God, especially those who exercise a ministerial function.
Reviewing the Scriptures about the value of spiritual warfare and deliverance, we discover that spiritual warfare and deliverance is the ministry that establishes the Will of God on earth, it is the only way determined by God to establish the Kingdom of God on earth, and the most forceful way to establish and proclaim the preaching of the cross.
The apostle Paul defines spiritual warfare and deliverance, as the working of his mighty power, operated by the Spirit, but exercised by faith, which means that the only thing the believer has to know is what the Lord’s Will is, and establish it with the authority of faith, knowing that Satan and the demons see in the believer a man and a woman not subject to the law of sin and death; therein lies their authority.
The preparation for spiritual warfare and liberation is not enough to say that Satan is defeated, it is not enough to say that Jesus defeated him on the cross of Calvary; it is necessary that whoever wants to operate in it, lives in faith, knows the work of God, and knows the work of Jesus on the cross; it is the understanding of what all this means as part of the Grace of God, which gives the authority to the believer, as it was established by Jesus, and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
Jesus taught His disciples in daily practice on the basis of the multitude of deliverance cases they worked on together, so many cases, that in a direct reference by Mark, he claims that at times Jesus and the disciples did not even have time to eat. The gospel writers did not make many direct references to Jesus’ instructions on spiritual warfare and deliverance; the few direct references we have, however, teach us that demons do not leave of their own free will, that demons tend to return to the place from which they were cast out, that demons are cast out by the intervention of the minister of the Holy Spirit, that demons have a ‘right’ to be in a person, that acts of unrighteousness give demons a ‘right’ to oppress people, that lack of understanding and disobedience to the instructions of the Word of God causes a movement of demons in a person’s environment, and that there are genera (families) of demons that do not yield easily to rebuke, that these only come out by fasting and prayer.
Regarding the fact that there are kinds of demons that can only be cast out by prayer and fasting, with this instruction Jesus established the need for the deliverance minister to periodically undergo times of fasting and prayer. In daily experience I have found that the instruction has been interpreted the other way around, that it is the one affected who must submit to fasting, which contradicts the instruction.
No one is stronger spiritually just by fasting; in natural terms, the value of fasting depends on the attitude of the person, and all it achieves is to strengthen the resolution that moved him to fast; as for one who lives by faith, fasting has the meaning of showing by his act, that he lays down his own self-sufficiency, to wait for salvation from the Lord.
However, in order to understand the reason for Jesus’ instruction, we have to take help from the definition that God Himself gave in Isaiah 58 about the meaning of fasting; in it we read about three purposes; the first purpose is that the one who fasts ’empties’ himself of everything that represents his own personality, that is, of his self-sufficiency; let us read verses 3 and 4, and then we explain: Wherefore have we fasted, say they, and thou seest not? wherefore have we afflicted our soul, and thou takest no knowledge? Behold, in the day of your fast ye find pleasure, and exact all your labours. Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high. (vs. 3-4). The verses clearly state that whoever fasts seeking personal benefits for himself, fasting has no significance, for his voice is not heard on high.
Fasting has the purpose of ‘weakening’ the flesh, meaning the self-sufficient personality, for he who does not learn to trust in the Lord, and wait for His intervention, cannot live according to faith. The flesh is a living organism, that is precisely what is meant by the term ‘living soul’, which was how the Lord defined man when He formed him, so, as such, the body has the capacity to ‘accept’ external influences, material and spiritual, many of them causing its contamination and hindrance in faith.
The second purpose of fasting is to remove any satanic trait that the person may still have in his inner self, let us read verse 6, and then explain: Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? (vs. 6). That there are satanic traits even in a deliverance minister, let there be no doubt, for the apostle Paul’s teaching to the Ephesians makes this clear:that ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts. In the first epistle of John we also read: If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. So, fasting has the purpose of removing any satanic traits that still remain in the person, and this must be a conscious act, in order for fasting to produce benefit.
No deliverance minister can ‘deliver’ another if he is not free first, otherwise there is a risk that the contamination in the infected person will be increased to the maximum by the irresponsibility of the deliverance minister; the biblical basis is found in the teaching of Jesus,
3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? 4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? 5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.Matthew 7:3-5
and having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.2nd. Corinthians 10:6
Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.Matthew 10:8
The third purpose of fasting is to make us aware that God demands that we seek the Kingdom of God, and His Righteousness. Fasting establishes the demand to do righteousness as a merit to establish deliverance; no one can be delivered without first doing acts of righteousness in others. Let us read verse 7, and explain: Is it not (the fast I chose) to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?
The teaching that it is necessary to do acts of righteousness as a merit to establish liberation in others is a teaching established since the Old Testament, we read in the book of Deuteronomy:
And thou shalt do that which is right and good in the sight of the Lord: that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest go in and possess the good land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers,Deuteronomy 6:18
God established His statutes, decrees and commandments to give instruction by them to His people as to His character and divine Will,
17 For the Lord your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a terrible, which regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward: 18 he doth execute the judgment of the fatherless and widow, and loveth the stranger, in giving him food and raiment. 19 Love ye therefore the stranger: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.Deuteronomy 10:17-19
Thus, in conclusion, fasting has the purpose of ’emptying’ ourselves of the self-sufficient personality, and knowing how to wait on God’s provision; it has the purpose of weakening the flesh so that all acquired defilements, material and spiritual, are cast off; it has the purpose of removing all satanic traits that may still exist because of the past way of living; and the purpose of making us conscious to re-evaluate our acts of Righteousness.
Having understood the meaning and value of fasting, we must now understand why Jesus instructed His disciples that this kind of demons do not come out except by prayer and fasting.
The process of deliverance is as follows. Demons do not come out of their own free will, in deliverance every demon will resist to the point of exhaustion to prevent them from being thrown out of the body they have occupied; usually the demons hold on to the manifestations of the ‘flesh’ of the body they have inhabited, it is as if they throw anchors into the flesh of the body to attach themselves to it; but the strength of the faith of the one who ministers deliverance will finally cause them to be cast out.
The kind of demons that come out only by prayer and fasting operate differently from the rest; this kind of demons are subject both to the ‘flesh’ of the body of the infected and to the ‘flesh’ of the body of the one who ministers deliverance; if he who ministers deliverance has not emptied himself of the personality of self-sufficiency, nor has he bent his flesh to the obedience of Christ Jesus, nor has he removed from himself every trace of Satan in him, nor has he works of Righteousness to merit his work of deliverance, he will not be able to cast out any demon for the demon is ‘anchored’ to the flesh of his own body; under these conditions the demon will not come out. The teaching is clear.
Returning to the definition of fasting in Isaiah 58. When a person seeks the Lord in prayer and fasting, under the conditions He established, we will see the following results,
Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and shew my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. 2 Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness, and forsook not the ordinance of their God: they ask of me the ordinances of justice; they take delight in approaching to God… 5 Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the Lord? 6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen?… 7 Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry,… 8 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the Lord shall be thy rereward. 9 Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity; 10 and if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness be as the noonday: 11 and the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not. 12 And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in. 13 If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words: 14 then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.Isaiah 58
Let us pray and fast, let us return to the principles of the Word… this was the foundation of the church that Jesus established in Jerusalem over His twelve apostles, the church that the Lord calls ‘the Body of Christ’.
And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.Acts 2:42
And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God.Acts 10:4
And Cornelius said, Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and, behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing,Acts 10:30
And when they had ordained them elders in every church, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they believed.Acts 14:23
Scripture quotations are taken from the Authorized King James Version, 1909 (AKJV).
Pastor Pedro Montoya
 Mark 3:15: and to have power to heal sicknesses, and to cast out devils:
 Luke 11:20: But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. (Mathew 12:28)
 Hebrews 2:14-15: 14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; 15 and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
1st. Corinthians 2:1-4: And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God… 4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:
 Romans 8:2: For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death..
 John 8:32
 Mark 3:20; 6:31
 Mark 5:7-8: 7 and cried with a loud voice, and said, What have I to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of the most high God? I adjure thee by God, that thou torment me not. 8 For he said unto him, Come out of the man, thou unclean spirit.
 Matthew 12:44: Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.
 Matthew 12:28: But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you. (Luke 11:20)
 Luke 11:20-22: 20 But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. 21 When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: 22 but when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.
 Matthew 5:25: Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.
 Matthew 13:19: When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.
 Matthew 17:21: Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. (Mark 9:29).
 1 Samuel 14:24: And the men of Israel were distressed that day: for Saul had adjured the people, saying, Cursed be the man that eateth any food until evening, that I may be avenged on mine enemies. So none of the people tasted any food.
Acts 23:12: And when it was day, certain of the Jews banded together, and bound themselves under a curse, saying that they would neither eat nor drink till they had killed Paul.
 Esther 4:16: Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.
 Genesis 2:7: And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
 2nd. Corinthians 7:1: Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
 Ephesians 4:22
 1st. John 1:8
 Matthew 6:33: But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
 Galatians 5:19: Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
Romans 8:13: For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
 Luke 11:22: but when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.