Are you in need of healing?
Do you know someone who does?
What does the bible say to do?
Well, if Jesus was here as when he was in Galilee, there would be no problem. So, some would think.
After all, everyone who came to Jesus for healing are all recorded as being healed.
But, that is not to say that where Jesus was all were healed. Only those who are recorded as coming to Jesus for healing were. Some places where Jesus went did not see him do many miracles:
He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief.
So, even if Jesus was here today, not all would be healed.
But, if you needed healing or brought someone to Jesus who needed it and you believed, all the bible records show, you would be healed or indeed the friend you brought would be. So if you believe and want to be healed, what do you do now, since Jesus is not physically here anymore?
Well, Jesus was not alone to heal. Those who followed him and learned from him were also told to go and heal: Just as Jesus did. Jesus said to them:
Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.
Jesus told his followers to do as he did and their approach to this was to do it freely. Now some think this was just for his immediate followers to do: Jesus' "12 apostles". But, when you read on in this same gospel, just as Jesus was about to leave his disciples, he also told them to teach all new followers to do what he had commanded them.
Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations . . . teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you . . .
And what Jesus had clearly commanded in this regard was "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give." So what now?
Well, it is not the only instruction made by Jesus' followers for those who need healing. James tells us,
Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.
Just as mentioned with Jesus we can see here that belief plays an important part, since James wrote "the prayer of faith will save the sick". But we also see how sin can be involved when some are sick. Something Jesus also knew and equally dealt with when this was the case.
In Matthew 9:1-8 is a case of a man that is paralised and Jesus also declares his sins are forgiven him. However some could read the paralysis is not explicitly linked to that sin. A better example then is the paralised man by the pool since after he was healed Jesus says to him:
See, you have been made well. Sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon you.
So sin can be a direct cause for infirmity and sickness.
So that if dealt with first the healing would follow.
The very attitude of one's heart towards another is a prerequisite in the kingdom of God for effective faith and for walking in the light. So faith for healing is hindered by wrongful judgment activity, let alone being a regular cause for sickness.
In Mark 11 Jesus tells us to have God's kind of faith "Have faith of God" (Mark 11:22 YLT) and then confirms this meaning by saying "whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them" (Mark 11:24). But Jesus then clearly links this with,
And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.
Un-forgiveness hinders effective faith and perverts a walk in the light. For John also says:
He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
1 John 2:10-11
In my early years as a car mechanic, within moments of having a bad thought against a brother in Christ I would find my body would not function perfectly, so that quickly, my knuckles or other areas of skin on my hands would get bloodied as I worked in and around engines and metal parts. When I held a presumptuous thought and wrongly judged my brother in Christ I ceased to walk in the light and got my knuckles "rapped": An effective discipline!
We read the very cause that Miriam, a great woman of God, a prophetess and sister of Aaron (Exodus 15:20), was afflicted with leprosy, was because she gossiped evil things against God's servant Moses.
"Why then were you not afraid to speak against My servant Moses?" So the anger of the LORD was aroused against them, and He departed. And . . . suddenly Miriam became leprous, as white as snow.
Thinking evil and speaking evil of your brother in Christ does not just stop you walking in the light. It opens you up to the Lord's discipline and this can involve sickness and death. This is why it is important when the elders of the local church pray for the sick, they help uncover the hidden secrets - any root cause - that may have initiated an ailment.
As Miriam repented and was prayed for she was healed. Let's not forget Paul's clear words that:
Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition...
1 Corinthians 10:11
And having said that, Paul went on to describe what happens to Christians who partake of communion with the wrong heart:
For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep.
1 Corinthians 11:29-30
By sleep here, Paul is saying many are dead (see also 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 for "sleep" used for "dead"). But that many are sick among Christians due to an unworthy manner is clear. Sin as a root cause for many being sick is explicit.
So a good first step when praying for the sick is to have a ready heart to hear from the Lord and, as we speak with and pray for forgiveness for any hindrance to healing e.g. A wrong judgment of heart, then the Holy Spirit can immediately provide a word of knowledge (1 Corinthians 12:8) to a specific that needs confessing (just as with Miriam) if more than just a covering prayer for forgiveness is needful.
I recall praying privately for a brother called Stephen whose wife had MS and was in a wheel chair. If I recall I was having a shower at the time and I asked the Lord what the root cause was (if any). The Lord highlighted a judgment made by the husband early on in their relationship (I got a pictorial impression of the place where the heart decision was made). So that this outward disability was the outcome of an inner crippled heart/core issue in their relationship. Over time I was able to share this privately, but to every one's grief a few years later, I learned Stephen then went further the other way and was uncovered seeing someone else...
An example of a word of knowledge with a positive outcome is that of a sister in the Lord where the Spirit 'dropped in' the name of the demon afflicting her: Timidity which was then duly rebuked and cast out. It was great to see her free from then on with confidence to decide things and speak freely.
A demon can be a cause for an ailment too.
But just as in the case of the paralysed man above, before Jesus saw him a second time as mentioned in John 5 and THEN spoke about sin with him, so healing can happen by faith and if there is any sin related, it can be addressed later. But it can be seen it is helpful to search one's heart and pray a genuine prayer covering forgiveness and renouncing the enemy as a prerequisite to seeking healing.
A heart judgment expressed in some outward way can lead to physical discipline from the Lord and this can mean leaving oneself open to sickness. We know the Lord can use sickness to help bring someone to their senses when we read:
Man is also chastened with pain on his bed, and with strong pain in many of his bones . . . He shall pray to God . . . For He restores to man His righteousness . . . He will redeem his soul from going down to the Pit, And his life shall see the light. "Behold, God works all these things, twice, in fact, three times with a man, to bring back his soul from the Pit, that he may be enlightened with the light of life.
Job 33:19, 26, 28-30
Let's not forget that for the Christian death is just a separation from this life on earth, and he goes to be with the Lord, but since earlier than was originally planned it does mean a loss of rewards and the loss of opportunity to bless God more on earth and to serve the saints. But it is a necessary discipline where a heart attitude or a false dogma (sincerely believed due to deception) would otherwise be an ongoing cancer in the Body of Christ.
So brothers and sisters let's give our hearts a check up and recognise where we may be in need of coming clean and returning to the Lord. Let's see God's healing and faith walk triumphant in our daily lives.
For further reading and useful for check ups I recommmend Making an idol? And Pride is a killer
My latest on healing is called What do I do if I need healing?