Not long ago the subject of Healing came up in the fellowship after services. So it seemed like a good subject to cover.
As God’s people what can we expect from God as regard’s healing. I thought I would bring to mind just a few of the promises that God has given us regarding healing and go over what our attitudes should be toward it.
Over the years I have seen the church drifting away from healing. That is it seems to me that many ask God for healing almost as an after thought. Their first reaction is to go to the doctor to see what is wrong and then take what ever medication is suggested by the Doctor. Then they go about some of them at least to ask God for healing and maybe or maybe not requesting an annointed cloth or the anointing of a local minister. Usually at least it seems that request for healing comes after the medication does not work.
I am not saying that any of you readers do that, I have no way of knowing one way or the other but the attitudes I have heard from brethren in some of the groups sure indicates that kind of an attitude. And why not given the drifting away from our core beleifs that is so extant in the churches of Laodicea today.
I came into the church in the early 60s. Back then it was frowned upon to even take asprin. At the first sign of sickness we were to go to our knees and ask for God’s intervention. It was taught with such intensity that we never even thought about calling a doctor. That of course is a little over simplified as there were times with broken bones or stiches needed etc. where we did call the doctor but ONLY after we had insured ourselves that God was on the job.
However, as the church grew, the responsibilities legally of the church, actually the intrusion of the world into the matters of our church, began to wear away at the depth of the teaching on healing.
Many pressures were developing to cause the church to “tone down” it’s teachings on healing. They became aware and rightly so that it was indeed a matter of the faith of the individual.
But as the doctrines of the church began to be watered down so did the teachings regarding healing. The down side of this is that the faith of the individual member of God’s church in many cases has been weakened by this.
So that today there are several large groups of God’s people who are being taught that there is no difference between physical sin and spiriutal sin that would affect our ability to be healed. I believe that to be a great blow against the faith of our people to receive healing from God.
So I wanted to go over a few of the scriptures in the word that are put there to guide us and to increase our faith to depend on God for our healing first and for all.
Turn to (Gal 4:19) My little children, of whom I travail in birth again until Christ be formed in you,
It was the desire of Paul that Christ be “formed”in us. Notice what He said to the Collisians in (Col 3:10) And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:
The “New Man” that we have become after baptism is be the “IMAGE” of Christ. That is havein Christ “Formed in Us”.
We are to begin to see life as Christ sees it. To react to the circumstances of life as Christ would react in our sted. To have the “AGAPE” love spread abround in our hearts as we apply it to our life.
So consider what Peter is telling us in; (1Pe 4:1) Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind:……..
Christ suffered for us in the flesh so then we should be of like mind with Christ. So notice then (1Pe 2:24) Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
Brethren the blood of Christ could have been enough to have atoned for our spiritual sins. But because He is the Jehovah-Rapha in Hebrew The God that heals us -(Exo 15:26) And said, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee.
Because He wanted to make that healing available to us when we needed it he suffered the physical tortures of the Romans so that by His stripes we are healed.
Bretheren you are God’s people. I am not telling you anything you don’t already know. But I want you to consider what has just been said as we read this next verse in (Jas 5:14) Is any sick among you? 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:
(Jas 5:15) And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.
(Jas 5:16) Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
Doesn’t that knowledge make these scriptures stand out that much more? If we are going to learn to react as Christ reacts will we look to the doctor as the first step in our healing or will we give to God and follow the instructions that we are given. FIRST! Before we even think of a doctor. Does that mean that we would never use a doctor? Of course not. There are many issues here not the least of which is your faith.
I had to go to a doctor not too long ago. I feel guilty about it even now but the symptoms of what was wrong with me were causing my body to breakdown in other ways. While I waited on God’s healing I used a doctor to releive the symptoms by giving me a mild antibiotic. I told her that I had not been to a doctor in 40 years so what ever she gave me needed to be as mild as she had available because I was NOT used to medicine. It worked and the problem went away on its on after that. Did she heal me? No way. But she did help me keep the symptoms at bay till my body threw off the sickeness which is how God healed me.
I am not saying this to make myself look special in some way. Did I say that I had not been sick in 40 years? No way as many of you can attest to. But because the doctrines of the church in the 60s were so much stronger than now I was never willing to go to a doctor first and in fact I waded though a lot of suffering at times because I had just made up my mind to wait on the Lord. Now to me brethren that is how Christ would have reacted to my sicknesses and ailments over the years so that is how I have tried to react.
So think about those scriptures that were just read to you look at what Christ has asked each of us to do:
If we are sick:
call for the elders to pray over us and anoint us with oil
That prayer will cause God to heal us and forgive us of any sins(known or unknown) that might have caused the sickness.
Confess your faults that you might be healed. As any other prayer of forgiveness God wants us to dig down into the sin and see what we have done and perhaps why we have done it so that true repentance can be given.Do the same for the physical sins if you are aware of any that might have made you suseptical to or may have caused the sickness. In other words learn what you can from the sickness so that you can stay well. And so that you can go and “sin no more lest a worse thing come upon you” as Christ told us in-(Joh 5:14) Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.
Remember also what James said earlier in the book (Jas 4:2) Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not.
Brethren sometimes we are sick because we simply do not ask according to the instructions given.
You might say that there is no minister near that can anoint us and pray over us but that is wrong. The tradition of sending out a cloth annointed with oil that a minister of God has prayed over for your healing is as old as the Apostle Paul notice-(Act 19:11) And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul:
(Act 19:12) So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them.
So you see we can have faith in an anointed cloth being used in our healing process.
You see this is just part of the process by which God works with us the have Christ “Formed in us” by learning to think like He does and react to emergencies like He does we are growing in faith and the grace of God and the knowledge of Christ is growing strongly in us each time we humble ourselves and go to the Living God for our healing rather than going to this world’s medical system.
If we want the faith of Christ to be growing in us we need to begin to learn to think like Christ would. Would he call the doctor before He had even asked His Holy Father?
In this Laodicean Age of God’s people where Christ Himself is working with each and everyone of us( Rev 3:20) and where He is requiring us to Repent anew and to move forward with Zeal (Rev 3:19), our repentance and way of life must now more than ever conform to the living Christ as it has never done before. We must learn to apply our faith because there is coming a time when that faith will be tested like never before.
Now brethren let us show the living God that we are willing to step out and apply that faith. Show Him that we believe that Healing does indeed exist in the Church of God in Laodicea and that we indeed HEAR HIS Voice in the Knock of Jesus Christ to the church of the Laodiceans in the end-time ERA of His Church.