Some Christians mistakenly presume that inviting Jesus Christ into their lives makes them "bulletproof" from evil. But Christian author and revivalist John Burton, also the director of International House of Prayer (IHOP) in Kansas City, said that is a gross misunderstanding of liberty, love and fear.
"The truth is that ungodly fear of the enemy is an expected result if we are aligning ourselves with him. The warning is to resist the devil, not to ignore him. If we resist, we can walk free from fear. However, if we ignore the enemy or dismiss worldly attractions as benign, we open ourselves up to a very real nightmare. We can't embrace evil and avoid fear. It's not possible," Burton wrote for Charisma News.
He clarified that the blood of Jesus does not guarantee Christians immunity from attack. Rather, it gives them authority to pierce through darkness. "If we walk in authority, the power of the blood is beyond our ability to imagine! Sin is eradicated in a moment. Disease is healed, demons are cast out and people are transformed for eternity!" he said.
Burton then shared a personal experience more than 20 years ago when he watched the movie "Silence of the Lambs." He said common sense dictated that he shouldn't have watched the movie, but he did anyway.
When he vacationed with his wife in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, the repercussions of his decision took place. While his wife was watching "Silence of the Lambs" on television, he drifted off to sleep and had a dream where he wanted to kill his wife.
"I couldn't breathe as the demonic atmosphere overwhelmed me. In the dream I was in the same bed, in the same hotel room as I was in reality. I looked over and saw my wife next to me. She was watching 'Silence of the Lambs,'" he recalled.
"I then started levitating above the bed and was maneuvered above my wife. Somehow I had a very large knife in my right hand. As I was convulsing due to the inability to breathe, I took the knife and violently advanced against my wife with the intent to murder her. Then I woke up," he said.
His wife was shaking him awake, and she was so worried because Burton had started convulsing and became aggressive. "Silence of the Lambs" was still on television, and Burton immediately turned it off.
Still, demonic activity was still present in their hotel room. So Burton and his wife did the only thing they could do to cast off the evil they had unwittingly invited into the room: pray.
"After turning off the television, we didn't rely on immunity and ignore the myriad of demons in the room. That immunity wasn't there. What we did, however, was move in our authority," he said. "We repented for our sin and commanded every demon to leave, in the name of Jesus. Instantly they obeyed and left. The room was clean again and I could breathe."