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On Binding Satan…

Upon clicking through the religious channels at any given hour of the day–and there are many on my AT&T Uverse set up–there are certain catchphrases I hear consistently.

The most prominent, I’ve found, is the term “plant a seed.” Another is “seed faith brings harvest.” The phraseology is issued forth by the prosperity propagandists, as I term them. These invariably twist and convolute scriptural truth in pursuit of their gullible followers’ contributions.

While there is usually a “seed” of factuality in their pontification that claims planting financial seeds will bring increase, the whoppers I’ve heard some of these “preachers” tell are far beyond anything promised in God’s Word.

For example, I heard not long ago one man with whom most would be familiar because of his constant presence on the fund-raisers say that he once sowed $100,000 into a ministry. This greatly pained him at the time because of his amazement that the Lord would “tell” him to do such a thing.

He complied, despite his pain, and the result was a return of $100 million within a month or so. That’s right. The man said he received $100 million for his $100,000 seed.

That was the only reference I’ve heard to this phenomenal “harvest,” so I presume this sort of return isn’t all that unusual in the prosperity circles…or else such claims are just part of the pitch. Looks like, though, that this amazing sort of miracle return on investment should have made the financial news or something.

Another phrase the prosperity preachers are prone to issue on a rather regular basis is that, in the name of Jesus, they “bind Satan.”

Now, this is even more amazing than the $100,000 being turned into $100 million within a month. This implies not a promise based upon biblical return for faith in planting a financial seed, but claims for any human being who is a Christian direct, supernatural power to completely paralyze almost certainly the most powerful being God ever created.

There have been books sold by the hundreds of thousands telling of how this “binding” can be done. Most all of the prosperity ministries hold this teaching close to their statements of faith. This is often a declaration I’ve heard made as a reward for one ministry or the other receiving a large “seed faith” contribution. The on-air person will declare that he or she binds Satan in Jesus’ name for the benefit of the contributor.

Only–I can find no place in Scripture where Christians can “bind Satan.” The old serpent certainly doesn’t seem to be bound these days–does he?

The Bible tells us: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5: 8).

There is no chain on our adversary, according to God’s Word. There is restraint, to be sure, upon the old devil’s activity, but that comes from one source and one source only. The Bible reports the following incident, which gives clue to this restraint on our great enemy.

“Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee” (Jude 1: 9).

There will come a time when a chain will be used to bind Satan. We learn of this future binding in the following account which is prophecy yet future:

“And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season” (Revelation 20:1-3).

So, that we can “bind Satan” is a false teaching. But, we are confronted constantly by the serpent and his minions. Here is the Scripture that tells about this constant confrontation. How then, can we deal with this powerful enemy in the biblically-prescribed way? God’s Word has the answer, of course.

First, we are told how to deal directly with that roaring lion–the devil.

“Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world” (1 Peter 5: 9).

We are to do certain things to prepare for this “resistance” against that old serpent, the devil. Here are our instructions:

“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:11-17).

We as God’s children cannot and must not claim to “bind Satan.” This is the most powerful instruction for the battle in which we find ourselves the nearer we get to Christ’s call to His Church.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you (James 4: 7).


  1. Carol says:

    problem is with resisting, many don’t discern the enemy at work and passively accept the attacks, also if you do discern God tells us He has given us power over all the power of the enemy.

  2. Ole says:

    I have friends who have used Matthew 18:18-20 to substantiate their view that God allows us to “bind” the plans and actions of demonic spirits and “loose” the works of angels. How would you, Terry, interpret these verses?

    • Terry James says:

      Jesus, in these interactions with His disciples, was teaching about relationship those who belong to Him have with regard to needs while going through this life.

      Everything requested of God by God’s children must be –if they are within God’s Will– governed by what is wrapped up in the Name that is like no other name.

      I.e., everything one asks should be asked in that Holy Name in order to be heard and acted upon by God the Father.

      Here are a number of such scriptures involving this principle.

      Jn 14: 13

      Jn 16: 26

      Jn 14: 14

      Jn 15: 16

      Jn 16: 23

      Jn 16: 24

      To ask in Christ’s Name is to agree to abide by what is Righteous and in agreement with what God the Father Knows to be the best Answer.

      If we ask in Jesus’ Name we are agreeing that He alone is Righteous and knows what is best in considering our requests.

      God will Answer in the way that is best for us as we request. We agree to this in Christ’s Name and acknowledge that whatsoever we ask, His Answer is the right one.

      To put it in one sentence: God will give us what we ask for when we agree that His Answer is always the right answer to our request.

      We see this principle most succinctly in Jesus’ lessons about God’s Provision in the following.

      “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matt 6: 33)

      Binding of Satan and his minions is reserved for God alone. Therefore we know that such a prayer to give individual human beings the ability to “bind” Satan and his minions is not within God’s Holy Will.

      Not even the mighty angel Michael had such permission (Jude 1:9).

  3. above45th says:

    Terry James–we need more teachings on discernment.

  4. Jacque Hagedorn says:

    Thank you for this article. I have always wondered if Matt. 18 was taken out of context. I have read the bible from cover to cover for years and could not find it applicable or in the context TV preachers put it. I could not see it anywhere about Christians binding satan. I have done it many times in the past but would get this twinge of .. I guess could have been conviction? It made me nervous because of what Jude said , so for instance last week concerning an attack on a loved one , as I prayed , I also said ” the Lord rebuke you..” But had decided not to ” bind” the enemy , feeling that I could not find it applicable concerning my walk with God. I needed this confirmation about my feelings on this. I quit watching those prosperity preachers many years ago but too many friends say to bind the enemy . I will memorize Ephesians verses on the armor of God . I practically do have it memorized , but not fully- it will be a goal for this week for me. Thank you again, I’m sure I’m not the only one who has wondered about this.

  5. Rodrigo De luna says:

    We cannot claim to bind Satan, any fallen angels or demonic spirits ourselves. We can only claim the Blood of Jesus Christ to bind them. There are many actual true accounts of individual who have called upon the Blood of Christ when physically confronted with a demonic spirit and have overcome them. Just as the apostles Peter and Paul have cast out demonic spirits in the Name of Jesus Christ. Faith in Christ is the key.

  6. […] Source: On Binding Satan… […]

  7. Sylvia Herrera says:

    I have needed to go through lots of spiritual warfare myself. What about Matthew 12:9? There are scriptures! You can’t convince me that taking authority over Satan in the name of Jesus doesn’t work!

  8. Well I cannot Bind Satan in Jesus Name! Spiritual Warfare is very real in my Life, I live by Faith in resisting Him and His ways, I just do not see in the bible we can bind Satan, I never could. I tried ! that old teaching all it brought me was more confusion,dismay and hopelessness, The word is only to be read as it says that is the only for me. Demons oppress enough I do not need to spend my pray time binding them forget that!

  9. This is a serious topic, so please forgive my entering a bit of levity, just for momentary relief:

    Concerning the prosperity hawker who claimed to have sown $100,000 and reaped $100M, immediately I thought of Hillary, whose insider trading in cattle futures reaped $100,000 overnight.

    Sad that Hilary didn’t know this preacher–she’d have prospered even more. 😉

  10. Tami Petersen says:

    Matt 16:19 tells us to bind..!!! We were given the authority over the things of this world. But when I pray to increase my faith and remind myself of my authority, I often bind satan and the mental games he plays in my mind. And I believe in binding and loosing the things on earth also in Heaven.

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