November 19, 2010 — 24 Comments

Do You Smell the Smoke?

The Discipline of Smelling Smoke

As a young man I fought fire for the US Forest Service. They taught us was the discipline of smelling smoke. It may seem a fire is out, but if you still smell smoke, there’s fire somewhere and you’re living with a false security. If you walk away from that fire, it will rekindle and may burn the forest down.

In the same way, Christians need to learn to smell smoke. Not the type of smoke that would burn down a forest, set off our smoke detectors, or initiate our sprinkler system. But a spiritual smoke, smoke from the pit of hell, the putrid stench of the forces of evil.

The Smoke of Hell

Right now there are hundreds, probably thousands of the invisible beings that inhabit the spiritual world in your immediate area. They are angelic beings with awesome powers to make spiritual war, and they have been sent to the battlefield of your life with specific orders having to do with you and me by their perspective commanders.

Some of these angelic beings have been sent by God Himself to do His bidding—to protect and guard His people on this battlefield in the war for souls. Others of these angelic beings have been sent by Satan to tempt, accuse, and confuse God’s people. These fallen angels the Bible calls demons, and they are here among us this morning to promote division, to encourage doctrinal error, to discourage followers of Christ and slander the name of Christ. Now do you smell the smoke?

Many of these invisible beings, God’s angels and Satan’s demons alike will follow you home, go to work with you, follow your children to school…they never tire, never sleep, never stop fighting the spiritual battles in the invisible world that determine our experience in the physical world.

Now Do You Smell the Smoke?

Christian, whether you know it or not, we are at war against the forces of evil and the battles are being lived out in our daily lives…and the lives of those we love. You can run from this battle but you cannot hide—you will be caught in the crossfire. And if you are a believer in Jesus Christ I can tell you by the authority of God’s Word that demon assassins are taking aim right now, and their crosshairs are on your life, your marriage, your family, your church, your community.

The Battle is Real

Paul said we are at war against the forces of evil (Ephesians 6:10-12).

C. S. Lewis put it this way: There is no neutral ground in the universe: every square inch, every split second, is claimed by God and counterclaimed by Satan.

There is a bloody anarchy going on in our world and the figure undermining the plan of God and underwriting the forces of evil is a fallen angel named Satan.

Christian, wake up and smell the smoke. We are at war and our enemy is real. His name is Satan and he is a formidable foe.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places (Ephesians 6:12).


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24 responses to Do You Smell the Smoke?

  1. Hi. I am looking for answers on smelling smoke – I truly believe that I am baptized by the Holy Ghost, but because I do not speak in tongues my church don’t believe me. I can feel wrong spirits from time to time, but lately I smell smoke. One night I awoke with heart beatings and the smell of smoke and I constantly smell smoke in my lounge. nobody else smells it. I also believe that God speaks to 2 when he has something important. my husband knows that I have the gift of discerning of spirits (although I am still new in this), but the smelling of smoke is still an uncertainty for him. what is my next step? When I pray and clean my house it goes away but it comes back. Spiritual warfare is going on in my house, how do I prepare?

  2. Hi Zel: You could go to our website at Church of the Open Door to get the sermons and the notes from the series I did on Spiritual Warfare. There’s a great book by Robert Lightner, Angels, Satan, Demons.

    Hope this helps you some.

  3. Im smelling smoke too. We dont smoke at all…..

  4. I smell smoke from time to time too, not always when I am praying. I know it means something but I have no idea what – any clues?

  5. It may mean your heart is telling you something. But before you conclude that it’s necessarily evil, you need to submit your fears to a few trusted and mature friends.

  6. Doris Richardson December 5, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    I smelled smoke in church after feeling the Holy Spirit.

  7. Doris Richardson December 5, 2011 at 4:41 pm


  8. thanks for the comment, Doris.

  9. On the subject of smoke, a couple co-workers and I, all born again and spirit filled Christians, smell smoke at work. We work in a non-smoking building and are searching for answers. We are in prayer over this. It is like cigarette smoke and just wafts up every now and then and it sets all of us on edge.

  10. Not sure there’s any way to diagnose that one spiritually. All I know is that Satan is very real and he hates us and our Lord.

  11. Last night my daughter and I smelled smoke and could not find a fire of any kind. I am a spirtual warrior and have seen a demon. Yesterday God told me to change the atmosphere in my home so we played gospel music all day long and night while we slept. The prsence of God has been strong in my family the last month. My daughter and I just got back from a Holy SPirit Conference in Vegas. After smelling the smoke and looking for the fire I went to bed and right when I laid down the thought occured to be that maybe it was the presence of the Lord. What do you think?

  12. I’m always careful not to worry about the identity of any presence because I believe that Satan, as an angel of light, can deceive effectively. I try to simply let my fears and concerns be handled by Jesus who, after all, created the angelic host.


  13. I have smelled cigarette smoke in my house frequently but last night the smell was so bad it woke me up, a terrible combination of acrid smoke and rancid bacon. As I was waking up, my initial response was to silently pray and I wasn’t afraid.It was as if it was right over my face. But when I got up and walked around the house trying to locate the source the smell went away. Went back to bed and odor was gone. What should I do?

  14. My prayer is always the same in these situations. “Lord Jesus, remind all creatures that you made them and that you love me.”

  15. Ed, may I ask you something? My husband and I are fully aware of the forces behind the scenes, so to speak. We are well-aware of spiritual attacks and how they can grip you and tear you apart if you are not familiar with them. My question is about the smell of cigarette smoke when no one is smoking in or around your home. On occasion, my husband and I have smelled cigarette smoke as described above. Recently, it’s happened a few more times than normal all in a condensed time frame. Either he or I will smell it, usually not at the same time. So, if we are together, he may smell cigarettes, bring it to my attention, and I’ll smell nothing. Tonight while he was gone and I was at home alone with our two young daughters, I walked into the garage and was assaulted with the smell of cigarettes. As quickly as I smelled it, literally by the time I could take my second breath, it was completely gone. I was astonished.

    Do you have any words of wisdom on this? Experience? Knowledge you can share? I have been in my office all day working on some Godly writings and the garage, where I smelled cigarette smoke, is directly below my office. I don’t know if this matters but I thought I would share.

    Any insight? Thank you so much for your guidance. God bless you and your work.

  16. I have no specific guidance. When I suspect demonic activity I meditate on Ephesians 6 and ask the Lord to protect me rather than trying to handle the problem on my own. Sometimes my requests of Him are specific, like, “Please take this smell away” in your case. There may also be a logical reason for this. It may be that there’s a cause you’re not aware of. What I do know is that the Lord cares for His own.

  17. while I was at a youth camp teaching on the shield of faith to the 7th & 8th grade girls.
    after the lesson I went to our dorm room to store my teaching materials. I smelled burning in the dorm. It smelled like sulphur. My cabin girls also smelled it. I’ve seen a demon before but never smelled sulphur before. Many on staff checked out my room and smelled it too but never found the source!

  18. I smell the smoke right before things go wrong around the house or before someone in the house. I pray immediately. I recomend you all do the same and pray for the blood of Jesus Christ. Defenitely look up for spiritual warefare. I have seen something walk out of my garage around the corner of my home … I have other ministry gifts also. I have consulted my pastor. God bless you all. Share you light with others. Share your joys and Love.

  19. Typically the forces of darkness are going to want to remain stealthy. So, be careful of seeing something that may not be there. Often we may ascribe blame to demons when really there is another explanation.

  20. I was actually looking for something more literal when I found this, but I’m glad I found it anyway. I have a very difficult time talking to many Christians about demons. They tend to believe in them in a very ‘ethereal’ or real-but-not-real sort of way. As if, they agree with the existence of them, but to actually believe that they might enter one’s home, dreams or thoughts or feelings . . . is too much.

    Thank you for trying to spread the knowledge. God bless.

  21. Thank you for the comment, Mary. I do believe that angels, both fallen and holy, are real. I also believe that I’m in a personal relationship with the One who created them.

  22. Hi! I loved your article “Do you smell the smoke”. My sister has been in an emotionally devastating spot In her life, she tried to commit suicide. I just spent a week with her and she told me she has been having a fog come over her that smells fowl. I have never heard of that, so I typed in “Do evil spirits smell?” And I was kind of scared but relieved when God led me to your article”. Do you have any advice? Also I was glad to find your website, your articles look anointed. Thanks Hollee

  23. Thank you, Hollie. I’m happy that the website is helping you. My first advice to anyone suspecting spiritual oppression is to be a part of a healthy church, especially a small group. Christian fellowship is sustaining and protective. Don’t try to face this alone with personal research. You need community. Thanks for the reply!

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