How does God heal?
Does He always do it the same way?
Did Naaman have to call for the elders of the church? Did Jesus make all those that He healed to dip seven times in the Jordan River? Of course not! Today, we see patterns, and we see some expect God to heal all the same way. Some healing lines, have all be anointed with oil, all have the laying on of hands, and all have the elders of the church pray. But, what if God chooses another way? We have to learn to listen to God give His direction on the method of His healing.
There are giftS of healing.
That means plural methods are used in God’s plan.
1. Sometimes, we need to press through to touch Jesus.
The woman who touched the hem of Jesus’ garment. She was healed, and Jesus felt the ‘virtue flow from’ Himself. Not all are healed that way, but God lets some be healed that way.
Another example is the blind man who called out to Jesus until he was heard. Jesus stopped to heal the man.
God sometimes wants us to be determined and to seek God enough to get that personal touch from God. Others are not needed, no elders need be called, no hands of others need laid upon the person, no oil needs to be anointed upon them. The person in determination pushes into the presence of Jesus, and there finds healing.
2. Some need to call for the elders of the church, and confess sins and wrongs.
Church prayer can be needed, as one method of healing.
James 5:14-16 (KJV)
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:
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.
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.
Many ‘call for the elders’, but then they stop. The prayer of the elders is only a part of this method. Sins need repented, and faults need confessed, and then the ‘effectual fervent prayer’ of that person who is now a ‘righteous’ (in right standing) person. That prayer ‘availeth much’.
We need each other, and yet, sometimes, wrong relationships in the church body result in sickness.
Paul referred to this in I Corinthians.
1 Corinthians 11:28-31 (KJV)
28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.
30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.
31 For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.
If we partake unworthily, with bad relationships, with wrongs and sins between the members of the church, the elders need to step in, get confession of sins, encourage confession of the faults, and then, with a righteous congregation, the sicknesses will be healed.
Many in Corinth were ‘weak, sickly,’ and some had died, because of those kinds of unconfessed sins.
3. Some need to rebuke the disease, and the devils’ oppression.
Some disease is due to demonic oppression. Jesus went about and healed all who were ‘oppressed by the devil.’ We still find some who are ‘oppressed’ in that way. The sickness is therefore not from God, and it is not due to the person’s own sins. Therefore, still today, God wants to heal those that are oppressed due to the devils’ choice. We have authority to rebuke the devil, rebuke the sickness placed upon the person.
Matthew 17:18 (KJV)
18 And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.
Mark 16:17-18 (KJV)
17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
John 14:12 (KJV)
12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
4. Some need to know that oftentimes, God wants some kind of OBEDIENCE first.
Naaman had to go to the muddy Jordan River, and obey by dipping seven times in that river. This was humbling, and showed faith, to obey that directive.
The blind man needed to wash in the pool of Siloam.
John 9:7 (KJV)
7 And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.
Lepers were told to go to the priests. There, the priests would examine them, and declare them clean from leprosy. These lepers started on the trip, while they were still lepers. It was while they were on their way, that the healing came.
Would these healings have happened if there had not been obedient? Some people need to respect Jesus as Lord, and that can often be shown to be true that they do, or false, that they don’t, when the test of obedience is given. Sometimes, God will lead one with a word of wisdom, and a word of knowledge, to give instruction to a sick one, and if followed, healing will come.
5. Some need a ‘point of faith’.
This can be the ‘anointing oil’, the laying on of hands, Peter’s shadow, prayer cloths, the hem of Jesus’ garment. It is not the article that is the healing feature, it is something that sparks the faith. Sometimes there is great typology in the article. The oil is the type of the Holy Spirit anointing. The hands laid upon represent the flowing through a vessel of God’s power. The shadow of Peter was also the shadow of Him, Who dwelt in Peter, the hem of the garment, represented the power of the One wearing the garment. Recognizing the symbology of the article, can spark one’s faith in God.
6. Prayer as Elijah prayed from rain is often needed to bring healing.
James 5:17-18 (KJV)
17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space
of three years and six months.
18 And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.
When the time for restoration of rain came, Elijah prayed seven times, and each time, he sent a servant up the mountain to see if any cloud had appeared.
1 Kings 18:41-45 (KJV)
41 And Elijah said unto Ahab, Get thee up, eat and drink; for there is a sound of abundance of rain.
42 So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he cast himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees,
43 And said to his servant, Go up now, look toward the sea. And he went up,
and looked, and said, There is nothing. And he said, Go again seven times.
44 And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man's hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down, that the rain stop thee not.
45 And it came to pass in the mean while, that the heaven was black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain...
Sometimes, we pray and pray again. We must keep on asking, and after often praying, the answer finally comes.
Matthew 7:7-11 (KJV)
7 Ask (and keep on asking), and it shall be given you; seek (and keep on seeking), and ye shall find; knock (and keep on knocking), and it shall be opened unto you:
8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?
The Bible says that we shall ‘reap if we faint not’. This ‘asking’ process is part of the plan of God. We would prefer to ask only once, and to then receive immediately. God chooses often, not to heal that way, but to do it His way. Go figure ! So, we should not be discouraged and not give up, if not immediately healed. One of His methods is to build persistence and perseverance in us.
Some criticize the healing evangelist, if no answer at first request. Yet, God made it plain that often He wants us to ask often.
7. Another method of healing is fasting and praying.
Matthew 17:14-21 (KJV)
14 And when they were come to the multitude, there came to him a certain man, kneeling down to him, and saying,
15 Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water.
16 And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him.
17 Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation,
how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me.
18 And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour.
19 Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out?
20 And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.
21 Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.
Sometimes, prayer and fasting is needed, in order that one’s faith might be increased. Full faith in the Lord is oft needed for certain ailments. Some, like this one here, had a devil oppressing, a strong evil spirit, a ruling power. This one could not only taunt in the brain, but could also throw the boy around physically. This took a bit more faith to handle. They needed a word of knowledge to know the problem, how to handle it.
8. There are many methods of healing, and one final one to mention now, is the exercising of the office of healing.
Some are given a ministry of healing. This is their job to which God has summoned them. A supernatural endowment of healing power can often flow through that one. They will have accompanying gifts of word of wisdom, word of knowledge, discernment of spirits, to aid them in this healing ministry.
Kathryn Kuhlman comes to mind, as to one who was often used with this ministry. Smith Wigglesworth was another one with this calling. Sometimes, God will call others of us, to have this calling for certain occasions, and perhaps other times be used with our primary calling, whatever that may be. It is an anointing of power, to be led to situations, and to people which need healing, need released from demonic oppression, need to handle sins and failings which led to sickness.
We need to believe that God still wants to heal. God, though, will choose the method. God knows the reason for the sickness, and the purpose of His plan.
Our problem therefore, is to learn from God, why someone is sick, what is the purpose, what is the method of God, how do we proceed to be part of God’s plan.
The first step in finding out all these things is found in:
Acts 6:4 (KJV)
4 But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.