I am a bit worried about the issue of demon possession.
- How does a person become possessed? Can a good person become possessed, or is it just those who live a sinful life?
- How can we protect ourselves from becoming possessed?
- If a Coptic Orthodox Christian dies in a demon-possessed state, is it possible for such a person to be in paradise and eventually heaven after his death; or is he condemned for sure? What if the devil makes him commit suicide, is it possible for him to still be saved and enter paradise and heaven? will the Church pray for him after his death or treat him as a normal person who has committed suicide?
- Will the Coptic Orthodox Church still continue to pray for such a person after his death; or is he considered to have died in his sins?
Worry is against the commandment of God so do not let yourself fall into this trap.
Salvation from all evil is attained by obedience to God and His plan. This world is a battleground between good and evil. It is out of our own will to choose either to be close to God and keep His Word in our heart in order that it may save us from every evil, or just live our life letting our guards down, establishing confidence in ourselves, allowing Satan to lead us away from God; thus enslaving us under his power.
During the Sacrament of Baptism, the priest prays for the expelling of all evil, the spirit of error, idolatry, covetousness, lying and every impure act that arises from the teachings of the devil. The renunciation of the devil by the person baptized or their parents is a ritual performed during every baptism at the Orthodox Church.
We ought to keep in view the Biblical teachings that Satan has been defeated by the Son of God who was manifested to destroy the works of the devil; and that we, too, are enabled by our Lord Jesus Christ to defeat him with the blood of the lamb and the Gospel of God. "Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you" (Lk 10:19).
In his epistles to the Ephesians, St. Paul instructs us to take up the whole armor of God to be able to withstand against the devil (Eph 6:13-18).
A spirit possessed person is someone who has not armed himself to resist the devil; but allowed him to enter his heart and have control over him. In weakness, he has given Satan the opportunity to have power over him. Our God is a just God; He knows the heart and judges accordingly.
The Church prays for the dead whether that person is a sinner or not. She does not judge an individual; for he might have repented before his death. In the case of a possessed person, he would be regarded as a sick person; and the church would still pray for him. However, if a person commits suicide, the church has to make sure that this person was not in a right state of mind; with no control over his life before it can rule out premeditated or intentional suicide.