affliction, disease, divine healing, faith, faith healing, fever, God's will, healing, healing ministry, Jehovah Rapha, Jesus Christ, Luke, mark, Matthew, Mitchel Payne, mother-in-law, Nazareth, prayer, rebuke, Salvation, Scripture, Simon, televangelism, televangelists, trust, weirdos
Luke 4:38-39 ESV
And he arose and left the synagogue and entered Simon’s house. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was ill with a high fever, and they appealed to him on her behalf. And he stood over her and rebuked the fever, and it left her, and immediately she rose and began to serve them.
This passage tells us a lot about divine healing. Jesus did not ask the Father if it was His will to heal Simon’s mother-in-law. He knew it was. Neither did Jesus offer a lengthy, over-the-top, showy prayer. He simply rebuked the fever, and it left her.
It is always God’s will to heal. Matthew gives the following account of Jesus and a leper And behold, a leper came to him and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately his leprosy was cleansed (Matthew 8:2-3, ESV).
Matthew also records: And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people (Matthew 4:23, ESV), and: And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction (Matthew 9:35, ESV).
There is only one place that Jesus’s healing power was hindered–Nazareth. Mark recorded, And he could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. And he marveled because of their unbelief (Mark 6:5-6a, ESV). Lack of faith hindered Jesus’s healing ministry in Nazareth. Why? Because faith (which might better be translated as trust) appropriates what God has provided.
There is no magical power in faith, or power in positive thinking. Faith is not mere belief, it is active trust in God’s promises. The power is with God, and we receive what He gives us through faith. That is why biblical Christian healing is divine healing, not faith healing.
Many Nazarenes were not healed by Jesus because they did not trust him, and therefore did not receive His healing power for them. The power was there, they just failed to receive it. Those who had faith, who trusted Him, He was able to heal.
A common Christian objection to divine healing is, “If you believe in healing, why don’t you empty the hospitals?” My answer, and the answer of my Senior Pastor, Mitchel Payne, is, “If you believe in salvation, why isn’t everyone you meet saved?” Then the answer to the question is clear: the sinner must trust in Jesus Christ to receive salvation; the sick must trust in Jesus Christ to be healed. Just as my faith for salvation cannot save others, my faith for healing cannot heal others.
I will add before, I go on, that some who have faith are not healed. Other things, such as unforgiveness, can also restrict healing. It is never a question of God’s will to heal. If we do not receive healing, the failure is always on our part and never on God’s. However, that is another subject for another time.
I realize there are some real weirdos out there who also preach healing (most of them are on television), but healing is promised in the Bible. If you truly believe all Scripture is God-breathed, then here is a Scripture passage for you:
Psalm 103:1-5 ESV
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all that is within me,
bless his holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits,
who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
who satisfies you with good
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
Put your trust in Jehovah Rapha, the Lord our Healer. He forgives your iniquity and heals all your diseases!