Thursday, September 1, 2011

It is God can heal and God does heal (PART I)

Preamble: This is 2-parts article, Part I (this article), we will cover God can heal. In Part II we will finish off with God does heal.

PART I – God can heal

It is NOT God MUST and WILL heal. If it is God must heal, then every time we pray, God MUST heal, and every sick will be healed. Our experience, even though we are NOT to rely wholesale on it, tells us that it is NOT true that God MUST and WILL heal. More importantly, we know from the Word of God that it is NOT God MUST heal. In my separate article, “People are NOT healed all the time, why we still pray”, I expounded that in short, the reason why NOT every sick is healed all the time, is because God did NOT promise unconditionally to heal every sick, in His Word. While there are many scriptures in the Word that support God heals, none is an unconditional promise. The further explanation to that, that God did NOT give such an unconditional promise, is that it is NOT part of the Lord’s redemptive works to FULLY redeem the body of a Man in his current living on earth. Full redemption of the body is to be had, only after we passed on or when Jesus returns (with rapture following), when we take on our incorruptible body. Since the Fall, it was never intended that Man will live forever and NOT die physically; rather Man is destined to die physically to take on the incorruptible body. If it is God MUST heal, then it is Man cannot die physically, and when Man cannot die physically, he will NOT be able to take on the incorruptible body, and the words of Jesus concerning the taking on, of our incorruptible body, will NOT come to pass. Of course, Jesus’ words MUST come to pass, and so, we must die physically.

Please don’t go round promising
We mustn’t go round promising that God MUST and WILL heal so-and-so. We mustn’t tell people that God heals every sick all the time, or we exaggerate our success at praying for the sick, to the extent that we have 100% success all the time. It does NOT edify, and you are NOT doing God a favor; rather you may put people off, for it is NOT a truth that every sick will get healed all the time.

It is God CAN heal and DOES heal
What is the difference? What is the difference between “God MUST and WILL heal” and “God CAN and DOES heal”? The difference is we do NOT misrepresent God, and we do NOT put people off. No one like to be misrepresented, it is the same with God. We should NOT put people off, because if people are put off, they may shut themselves from the gospel, and miss the salvation grace of God; we want to advance the gospel, NOT hinder it.

Temporal vs permanent
In fact, healing is only a temporal solution; God’s overarching desire is that a person be redeemed from the destiny of burning fire of Hell. Healing of a person of any sickness only enables the person to live another some tens of years of life on earth, but the redemption of our Lord, Jesus Christ, serves to grant eternal life, eternal living with God in Heaven. Receiving Jesus Christ as one’s personal Lord and Saviour is far more important and is the permanent solution to Man’s fallen predicament.

The Word tells us that God CAN heal
Does the Word tell us that God could heal? If it does, how great is God’s capability to heal? Could He heal a virus infected fever? Could He heal the lame? Could He heal the blind? Could He heal the leprous? How about cancer? How about the demonized or even demon-possessed? How about bringing back to life a dead person? Could God do all of that and more? Did God do all of that and more? If we find from the Word that God did do all of that, and more, then it is at least showing that God is indeed a great Healer; He healed, and He CAN heal, unless He lost those powers or anointing or authority.

Below are from the Word, and they are more than enough to show that God CAN heal:

1. Who is God? Amongst others, scriptures tell us that God is God {Elohiym} (Gen 1:1; Jer 32:17 – nothing too hard; Luke 1:37 – nothing is impossible; Ps 115:3 - cannot be stopped, does as He pleases), God is the Creator (Gen 1:1), God is Almighty {El Shaddai} (Gen 17:1), God is Wisdom (Rom 11:33-36; James 1:5), God is the Healer (Jehovah Rapha} (Ex 15:26). Being such, can God NOT able to heal? It is more than reasonable to expect He CAN.

2. Examples of recorded healings from New Testament. From the simplest to the most difficult:

- Peter’s mother-in-law healed of fever (Matt 8:14): When Jesus came into Peter’s house, he saw Peter’s mother-in-law lying in bed with a fever. 15 He touched her hand and the fever left her, and she got up and began to wait on him. (Matt 8:14)

- Paralyzed servant of “Centurion of great faith” healed (Matt 8:5-10, 13): 5 When Jesus had entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking for help. 6 “Lord,” he said, “my servant lies at home paralyzed and in terrible suffering.” 7 Jesus said to him, “I will go and heal him.” 8 The centurion replied, “Lord, I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. But just say the word, and my servant will be healed. 9 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” 10 When Jesus heard this, he was astonished and said to those following him, “I tell you the truth, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith. 13 Then Jesus said to the centurion, “Go! It will be done just as you believed it would.” And his servant was healed at that very hour. (Matt 8:5-10,13)

- Blind Bartimaeus Received Sight (Mark 10:46-52): 46 Then they came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (that is, the Son of Timaeus), was sitting by the roadside begging. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 48 Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 49 Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.” So they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” 50 Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus. 51 “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him. The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.” 52 “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road. (Mark 10:46-52)

- Many healed at one seating, the mute, crippled, lame, blind, etc (Matt 15:29-31): Jesus left there and went along the Sea of Galilee. Then he went up on a mountainside and sat down. Great crowds came to him, bringing the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute and many others, and laid them at his feet; and he healed them. The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel. (Matt 15:29-31).

- The “are you willing” leper healed (Matt 8:2-3): A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” 3 Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Immediately he was cured of his leprosy. (Matt 8:2-3).

- Demon-possessed daughter of a Gentile healed (we can pray for non-believers for healing) (Matt 15:22-28): A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession.” Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.” He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.” The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said. 26 He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.” “Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. (Matt 15:22-28).

- Lazarus raised from the Dead by Jesus (John 11:17, 38-44): 17 On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days. 38 Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. 39 “Take away the stone,” he said.
“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”
40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” 41 So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face. Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.” (John 11:17, 38-44)

- Demons cast out and all sick THERE were healed (Matt 8:16-17): When evening came, many who were demon-possessed were brought to him, and he drove out the spirits with a word and healed all the sick. This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet Isaiah: “He took up our infirmities and carried our diseases.” (Matt 8:16-17).

- Jesus healed all kinds of sicknesses and diseases (Matt 9:35): Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. (Matt 9:35).

3. Some healings examples from Old Testament:

Barrenness healed (Gen 20:17): “Then Abraham prayed to God, and God healed Abimelech, his wife and his slave girls so they could have children again” (Gen 20:17);

- God healed as a sign and wonder (Ex 4:7): “Now put it back into your cloak,” he said. So Moses put his hand back into his cloak, and when he took it out, it was restored, like the rest of his flesh {no more leprous}. (Ex 4:7);

- Miriam healed of leprosy (Num 12:10, 13-14): 10 When the cloud lifted from above the Tent, there stood Miriam—leprous, like snow. Aaron turned toward her and saw that she had leprosy; 13 So Moses cried out to the LORD, “O God, please heal her!” 14 The LORD replied to Moses, “… Confine her outside the camp for seven days; after that she can be brought back {healed}.” (Num 12:10, 13-14);

- Many healed of snake bites (Num 21:8-9): The LORD said to Moses, “Make a snake and put it up on a pole; anyone who is bitten can look at it and live.” So Moses made a bronze snake and put it up on a pole. Then when anyone was bitten by a snake and looked at the bronze snake, he lived. (Num 21:8-9)

- Naaman Healed of Leprosy (2 Kings 5:1, 9-10, 14): 1 Now Naaman was commander of the army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the LORD had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy. 9 So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of {prophet} Elisha’s house. 10 Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.” 14 So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy. (2 Kings 5:1,9-10,14)

- King Hezekiah healed and given another 15 years of life (2 Kings 20:1-6): 1 In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to him and said, “This is what the LORD says: Put your house in order, because you are going to die; you will not recover.” 2 Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD, 3 “Remember, O LORD, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes.” And Hezekiah wept bitterly. 4 Before Isaiah had left the middle court, the word of the LORD came to him: 5 “Go back and tell Hezekiah, the leader of my people, ‘This is what the LORD, the God of your father David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will heal you. On the third day from now you will go up to the temple of the LORD. 6 I will add fifteen years to your life.(2 Kings 20:1-6)

- Elijah raised the Zarephath widow’s son from the dead (1 Kings 17:17-22): 17 Some time later the son of the woman who owned the house became ill. He grew worse and worse, and finally stopped breathing. 19 “Give me your son,” Elijah replied. He took him from her arms, carried him to the upper room where he was staying, and laid him on his bed. 20 Then he cried out to the LORD, “O LORD my God, have you brought tragedy also upon this widow I am staying with, by causing her son to die?” 21 Then he stretched himself out on the boy three times and cried to the LORD, “O LORD my God, let this boy’s life return to him!” 22 The LORD heard Elijah’s cry, and the boy’s life returned to him, and he lived. (1 Kings 17:17-22)

- Elisha raised a Shunammite woman’s son from the dead (2 Kings 4:32-35): 32 When Elisha reached the house, there was the boy lying dead on his couch. 33 He went in, shut the door on the two of them and prayed to the LORD. 34 Then he got on the bed and lay upon the boy, mouth to mouth, eyes to eyes, hands to hands. As he stretched himself out upon him, the boy’s body grew warm. 35 Elisha turned away and walked back and forth in the room and then got on the bed and stretched out upon him once more. The boy sneezed seven times and opened his eyes.(2 Kings 4:32-35)

- A dead resurrected by touching Elisha’s bones of old (2 Kings 13:21): Once while some Israelites were burying a man, suddenly they saw a band of raiders; so they threw the man’s body into Elisha’s tomb. When the body touched Elisha’s bones, the man came to life and stood up on his feet.(2 Kings 13:21)

4. No loss of powers, anointing or authority. Nowhere in scriptures was there a recording of any loss of powers, anointing or authority of God to heal and to perform signs and wonders and miracles. The conclusion can only be one – God is still with all those powers, anointing and authority to heal and to perform miracles.

From the above, it is clear that God CAN heal, and He did heal, and there was no loss of powers, anointing or authority to heal, meaning we can still expect God CAN heal.

Anthony Chia, high.expressions – God, you are Jehovah Rapha, God the Healer. Your name tells of you, of who you are. Jesus, when you walked the earth, you healed sicknesses of every kind and delivered people from demonic oppression and possession; and you said that for those who believe, greater works would they do, meaning for us who believe, we too, can pray for the sick to be healed and the oppressed freed. Lord, help us in our unbelief, so that your will be done, just the Father’s will was done by you, Lord Jesus, in your time on earth. Amen.

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