How interested are Christians supposed to be in the spirit world?

Christians should be interested in the spirit world; it is just as real as the physical world. However, Christians should not be preoccupied with the spirit world. As humans, we are made up of our body, soul, and spirit—they are all equal components that make up who we are (1 Thessalonians 5:23; 3 John 1:2; Psalm 16:9). It is important for us to tend to our spirits, just as we do our bodies and souls. When we are saved, we are filled with the Holy Spirit and our human spirits are born again (John 3:1–8; Ephesians 1:13–14; 1 Corinthians 6:19). It is the Holy Spirit who makes us into a new spiritual creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).

As we allow the Holy Spirit to transform us, we become more and more like the God in whose image we were created—God Himself is spirit and we worship Him through the Spirit (John 4:24). We see God at work in the physical world (Psalm 8:3; 107:24), and it is by cooperating with Him in our spirits and through our actions that we are transformed and empowered to live according to the Spirit (Romans 8:14–16; Galatians 5:16, 25). We learn to recognize His voice that speaks to our spirits (John 10:27).

There are different components within the spirit world to consider, however. Not everything that is "spiritual" is of God. Satan and his demons also reside within the spirit realm where he "prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8). The enemy's attacks are on our bodies (Luke 9:42), souls (James 3:14–15), and spirits (Matthew 16:23; 2 Corinthians 10:3–5). Tapping into ANY spirit that is not the Holy Spirit opens one up for Satan's destruction. There are many people who consider themselves to be spiritual, but this is not the same as life in Christ, empowered by the Spirit of God (2 Corinthians 4:4; 2 Timothy 3:1–9). Spirituality apart from the one true God through Jesus Christ is, at best, a false spirituality bereft of true life. At worst it is a spirituality empowered by evil. Even the evil spirits can recognize the difference (Mark 3:11) and will not submit to a false version of the Holy Spirit (Acts 19:13–16).

When we read the Bible, there's no denying that the spirit world is real and there is a battle going on at this very moment (Daniel 10:12–14; Ephesians 6:12; Jude 1:9). On one side is those who follow and serve God—His angels and believers. On the other side are the spiritual forces of darkness. This is why we, as believers in Jesus Christ, are commanded to be vigilant and alert, so that we will be able to recognize the attacks of Satan (1 Peter 5:8–9; 2 Corinthians 2:11). There is no need to fear, though, "for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world" (1 John 4:4). God has given us the tools and weapons we need to be victorious against any spiritual attacks of the enemy (Ephesians 6:10–18). And we do not fight alone. God Himself is with us, and He sends His angels to serve on our behalf as well (Hebrews 1:14). There is no question about the outcome of the war; Satan is a created being with no power over God. God has the ultimate victory (John 16:33; 1 Corinthians 15:54–57; 1 Peter 1:3–9; Revelation 20:7–10). Until Jesus returns, we are called to "be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil" (Ephesians 6:10–11). We are also told to "submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you" (James 4:7).

Yes, the spirit world is real, but our focus should be on glorifying and inviting the Holy Spirit in our lives rather than paying too much attention to demonic powers. Overemphasis on the powers of darkness is unhealthy and useless for our walk with God. Only God has total power and dominion in the spirit world, and through Him we can overcome any attack that Satan sends our way (1 Peter 5:11; Isaiah 54:17). We were once in darkness, so why would we look back into the darkness? "For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them" (Ephesians 5:8–11). We thank God for bringing us into His marvelous light and empowering us to live in step with the Holy Spirit.

Related Truth:

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Spiritual warfare - What does the Bible say?

What is the full armor of God?

What does it mean to worship the Lord in spirit and truth?

What is the human spirit?

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