Demonic Attack?

During prayer, I experienced an uncontrollable twitching of my muscles. Was I under attack?

On occasion, I feel led to pray in the name of Jesus for the protection of my family against any evil (demonic) spirits. Once during a time of intense prayer, I suddenly experienced the uncontrollable twitching of the muscles of my face. I wasn't frightened—it lasted only a few seconds. But it was so bizarre. I'm too embarrassed to tell anyone I know, but I'm wondering … could there be a spiritual explanation for this?

—Name Withheld

I can understand your reluctance to share this story in your Sunday school class or small group Bible study. Someone who has never had an experience like yours might find it frightening and confusing—or very hard to believe. Many Christians are wary of attributing spiritual significance to these kinds of experiences. They're worried that it will lead to an unhealthy preoccupation with supernatural phenomenon, that they might be deceived or misled by nothing more than superstition and fear. And there's some basis for that concern. Some people do get carried away—far away—from a sound biblical perspective on these things. We've got to stay firmly grounded in the Word of God and what it teaches us.

The experience you describe could have been a coincidence—there may be a simple physical explanation. But there could also be a spiritual explanation. Scripture is clear that demons and evil spirits do exist, and that they can manifest themselves in the physical, material world—sometimes causing very real physical sensations or symptoms (Matt. 17:14-18, 12:22; Mark 9:25). There is such a thing as spiritual warfare—a battle that rages between the angels and demons, believers and the enemy of our souls (Eph. 6:12).

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