We saw in my blog posting this past Wednesday that the spirit world is teeming with life. God is a spirit and the third person of the Trinity is called the Holy Spirit. We also know that God created countless numbers of spirit beings called angels, of which one-third of them were deceived by Satan, followed him instead of God, and became what we know to be demons today.
We saw in my blog posting for yesterday that it is highly unlikely that the spirits of dead people are able to come back to this present life from the after life to communicate to us or, worse yet, to haunt us. But in this final posting on this topic, let's answer the question, "If there are ghosts, and they are not the spirits of dead people, what are they?
Obviously, if they are not the spirits of the dead, then the only other two options are that they are angels or demons. There is no question in Scripture that angels appeared to humans in the Bible often, but never did they appear in a haunting sort of way. They did appear at times taking on a human form while bringing a message from God or being on a mission from God. So I do not see it as consistent with Scripture to say that if ghosts exist today, they are angels.
I think it is safe to say that many "ghostly" encounters have a natural explanation, but I do believe that some are of a supernatural category. And if these supernatural encounters are not the spirits of dead humans and they are not angels, that only leaves one explanation. They most likely have a demonic origin.
In fact, instances of demonic involvement in Scripture far outnumber instances of interaction with dead people (which we only see in the story of Saul speaking with the spirit of Samuel, which many would say was demonic as well; and Moses and Elijah appearing with Jesus at His transfiguration). Remember that Satan and his demons have two main goals regarding people today - to deceive us and to frighten us. Certainly, ghostly encounters and experiences involving so-called spirits of the dead would go a long ways to accomplish these goals.
I won't go into detail here, but for years (as a child through my early adult years) I had a regular ghostly encounter that caused me to live in fear. However, I learned that this encounter was no doubt of a demonic origin and that through my position in Christ and through His authority, I could resist that demon and he had to flee form me, just as we learn about in the book of James..."Resist the devil and he will flee from you." That authority is not based on who I am but rather who I am in Christ. It's His authority - not mine!
I started this 3-part series by talking about the theme song to the old movie, "Ghostbusters." One of the lines in that theme song is "I ain't afraid of no ghost!" That line may be part of a silly song from an even sillier movie, but I can say the same thing today - "I ain't afraid of no ghost!" And if you have put your faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus for the forgiveness of your sin and have become a child of God as a result, you don't have to be afraid of ghosts either! Greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world!