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The English transliteration of a Greek term (daimôn) originally referring to any one of numerous, vaguely defined spirit beings, either good or bad. In the NT the term is reserved for evil spirits, opposed to God and God’s people. Some people in the ancient world believed that demons could take control of people or animals (causing physical or mental ailments). In the synoptic Gospels, Jesus exorcises demons (Matt 8:28-34; Matt 12:22-32; Mark 3:22-27; Mark 5:1-20; Luke 8:26-39; Luke 11:14-23).

  • Powell, Mark Allan, ed. HarperCollins Bible Dictionary. Abridged Edition. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2009.