I have noticed an interesting trend among believers of the day. It seems that some of us in our prayers have taken up the habit of praying about Satan and his angels, even to the point of actually addressing Satan in our prayers! Just this week I heard someone do this, interrupting his prayer to say, “And, Satan, we want you to know that you have no place here,” and he went on to lecture Satan about our freedom in Christ as believers and so forth. This seems to me a strange trend to say the least. To interrupt our prayers to talk to Satan? Does this seem rather strange to anyone else? Why should Satan be interested in what we are praying? Do we really suppose that we will teach him anything by lecturing him about it?

Another interesting and related trend is the attempt to cast demons out of the room, something that has also become a staple in the prayers of some. They loudly tell all demons and fallen angels to leave this place “in the name of Jesus.” But I wonder, does this really make sense either? I have to go back to my idea of conversational prayer…when we are praying, we are really talking with God. We are not doing a religious act, we are not following a special formula for success, and we are not casting a magic spell! Rather, we are talking to the One Who loves us and Who gave Himself for us!

Now in conversing with someone, it is not necessary that we worry about some malignant force disturbing our conversation. The only thing an enemy power could possibly do to interrupt the conversation would be to confuse the one to whom you were talking, thus making him unable to understand what you were saying. However, when using some sort of mystic power or casting some kind of spell, it becomes very necessary that one make sure that no evil creature is sapping your power! And this seems to be what is behind this common occurrence in the prayers of some. It seems that they think that the “power of prayer” will not be unleashed if some evil creature is present disrupting the spell! Thus it becomes necessary to remove any opposition by the formula of rebuking and casting away that foreign power. And this seems to be what those who pray this way, whether consciously or unconsciously, are trying to do. They are trying to “clear the way” for the power of their prayers to be accomplished! But surely the Lord needs no such help in making certain that the communication lines between Himself and His Own dear children are not cut off. Do we really need to help Him to insure that our prayers will reach His ears? I don’t think so!

I would question anyone who believes in praying in this manner to reveal to me somewhere in the Bible where such a prayer is made! Does any Biblical believer ever interrupt his prayer to God in order to speak to Satan? Certainly not!!! The Lord did pray that the Father would “keep us from the evil one,” but this was prayed to God, not to Satan. Do we really think that we can get rid of the evil one on our own? However, this is usually prayed “in the name of Jesus,” which obviously makes it all better! But what right do we really have to request such a thing in His name? Wouldn’t it be better if we made our prayer to Him to protect us from Satan and let Him do the actual speaking to Satan? Why should we interrupt our conversation with God to speak to the evil one ourselves? This makes no sense to me!

Then there is the casting of demons out of a room. There are many examples of the casting out of demons in the Scriptures, but I don’t recall that ever once it is mentioned that they are cast out of a ROOM. Out of men and women and even children, yes. They are cast INTO things as well, such as when Christ cast the Legion into a herd of pigs. But when do we read of demons possessing an inanimate object, or a region within a house? Do we really believe that there could be such a thing as a “demon-possessed room”? This seems unlikely to me. And besides, if it were really necessary that we cast those pesky demons out of a room so that they will stop messing with us, then why isn’t an example given in Scripture of someone doing so? Why is the casting out of demons only mentioned in connection with actual living creatures? Doesn’t this seem to indicate that the casting of demons out of rooms is probably not necessary? Since we know so little about the realm of heavenly beings, I think it is best for us if we do not wander too far from the few facts we have in Scripture. And since the Scripture never mentions casting demons out of rooms, it seems to me that we should not be trying to do it, either.

So, if there are demons hovering in the air around me, then let them stay there, or else let God kick them out. But I will not take it upon myself to do so! And if Satan needs lecturing, then let God lecture him, but I will not interrupt my prayers to do so. No, when I pray I will pray to God and ask Him to keep me from the evil one, but Satan I will leave well enough alone. I doubt that he would be interested in anything I have to say anyway.