A MIND UNDER THE ATTACK OF THE EVIL SPIRITS
If we carefully examine the mental experiences of a Christian we shall see that not merely is he narrow-minded but that he contains many other defects too. His head, for instance, may be teeming with all kinds of uncontrollable thoughts, imaginations, impure pictures, wanderings and confused ideas. His memory may suddenly fail; his power of concentration may be weakened; he may be obsessed by prejudices which arise from unknown sources; his thoughts may be retarded as if his mind were being chained; or he may be flushed with wild thoughts which revolve unceasingly in his head. The Christian may find he is powerless to regulate his mental life and make it obey the intent of his will. He forgets innumerable matters both large and small. He carries out many improper actions, without knowing why and without so much as investigating the reason. Physically he is quite healthy, but mentally he does not comprehend the explanation for these symptoms. Currently many saints encounter these mental difficulties, but without ever knowing why.
Should a person discover that he manifests the above mentioned signs, he needs to check out a few matters to determine the origin of those signs. He need only ask himself a few questions: Who controls my mind? Myself? And if so, why can I not control it now? Is it God who manages my mind? But according to scriptural principle God never governs the mind for man. (We shall enlarge on this principle subsequently). If it is neither I nor God who regulates the mental life, who then is in control? It obviously is the powers of darkness who foment these mental symptoms. So whenever a child of God notes that he is no longer able to govern the mind, be ought to perceive at once that it is the enemy who is managing it.
One fact which we must always bear in mind is: man possesses free will. God's intention is for man to control himself. Man has the authority to regulate his every natural endowment; hence his mental processes should be subject to the power of his will. A Christian ought to inquire of himself: Are these my thoughts? Is it I who am thinking? If it is not I thinking, it must then be the evil spirit who is able to work in man's mind. Since I will not to think (and my mind usually follows my will) then the thoughts which presently arise in my head cannot be mine but rather are those which emanate from another "Person" who uses the ability of my mind against my own will. The person should know that in case he has not intended to think and yet there are thoughts arising in his head, he must conclude that these are not of him but of the evil spirit.