(Ver 1.3) Today’s lesson is Part 17 in one of the most important Bible study series that I have ever given to you about the subject of “Understanding Bible Faith”. If you have not read all of the lessons I would strongly recommend that you go and start reading with “Part 1” first and then continue through the series. Today is going to be a really different kind of post in this series. The Spirit of God led me in a way this week that I really did not expect to go. This week I was spending some time on Facebook and I was led to talk to a friend and the conversation went in a direction that only God could have orchestrated. Today I am going to share my friend’s testimony that I received this week about her mother’s miracle of healing. Hopefully you will read this testimony with an open mind and will learn something from it while being also encouraged that no matter what the diagnosis is from the doctor, that nothing is impossible or too difficult for God to solve and help you through. I will let you read the entire testimony that she wrote and then I will comment on it at the end and help you to understand what happened and why her mother has lived past the age of 80 after being given a near death sentence by the doctors at a young age. This testimony is from over 25 years ago. Here is what she sent to me and I want you to know that it was her anointed writing that produced this:
HEALING FROM CANCER TESTIMONY
My senior year in high school was Straight A’s, Dean’s List, Honor Roll, National Honor Society, Best Writer Award on the school newspaper and a small scholarship to help pay for college. Just when things seemed to be turning out pretty good for me, things got pretty shaken up.
Found out my dad was sneaking around with a young gal from his college classes. My mom found out the lump in her breast was cancer & decided she didn’t want to put up with both my dad & the cancer, so after 28 (not so happy years) of marriage, they split up.
My mom went into the hospital at the Air Force Base, and had a Bi-lateral, Radical Mastectomy – both breasts removed, and most of the lymph nodes from under the arms too.
With my dad out of the house, this left me and my older brother Tony on our own. The task of calling family, friends & church people to give them the news about Mama’s diagnosis, fell to me, because Tony thought it sounded better if I the person giving the info was crying and emotional (rather than him, in his ever monotone, emotionless way).
Mama was in the hospital 18 days – she was afraid to come home because she feared the dog might jump on her & hurt her, but she did finally come home. That was hard. Moms aren’t supposed to get sick. At least not that sick. And with chemotherapy treatments, she got pretty darned sick. Kids aren’t supposed to have to deal with that kind of stuff – they’re just not equipped for it. Teen-agers are still quite self-centered, at least I was, and so looking back at this time is hard, because I just wasn’t there for Mama like I would be today. This was a battle that she fought on her own, just her & God.
Because she was now separated (not divorced, because then she would lose her medical coverage from the military), she was on her own financially… with two teenagers at home. Tony did move out around this time. And the house had to be sold as part of the divorce settlement. I was not emotionally equipped for college, so I dropped out after the 1st semester. I had never had a job, so I wasn’t equipped for that either. I was pretty lost and self-absorbed. Mama, endured 9 months of awful chemotherapy while still driving 20+ miles each way to work & back; often driving with a bucket on her lap, because she was so sick from the chemo.
Somehow God brought her through all of this by His grace and a series of miracles.
Back when she first found the lump, a friend asked her what she would do if the doctor told her it was cancer. Mama said, “I’ll just tell him to sew me up & let me go home to die.”
But when the doctor gave her the news, he took her to the room of another patient. In that room, she saw a lady lying in the bed, one side of her chest flat and with stitches, and her husband standing next to her. First Mama saw the surgical wound, but then their eyes met. She said it was like the lady was saying, “But I’m alive!” Mama then felt “billows of peace” rolling over her with each breath she took. Instantly she did the first three steps of AA: 1) Admit there’s a problem too big to handle; 2) Admit there is a God that can restore her; 3) Turn her life, will & problem over to God.
She told the doctor to schedule the surgery, and then she went to bed. Sometimes, in the midst of a battle, the best thing you can do is rest and sleep, and let God take over.
The surgery was done. She was bandaged up and mostly alone in her hospital room. Mama, was always one to have her hair and make-up done up nice before going anywhere, so these endless days in the hospital were challenging in that respect as well. Wanting to try to regain some normalcy, she asked a nurse if someone could come wash her hair for her – apparently not! So Mama went in her bathroom, bent over the sink and washed her hair herself. Of course it hurt, but it had to be done. The next step was to pin her hair up. Pinning up her hair was a ritual Mama had done every night since she was 13 years old. It consisted of methodically taking very small sections of her hair, wrapping the hair around her finger, sliding that bit off her finger to lay flat on her scalp, and securing it in place with two bobby pins. This would cause the hair to dry in with a curl in it, rather than the pin-straight style that came naturally to it. This process of pinning up her hair required both hands working on top and above her head.
When the nurse walked in on her, she gasped, turned around and left. Nurse number two came in and did the same. Apparently, in the course of the surgery, the muscles needed to raise the arms are cut, so that movement is not possible… or is very painful. As they say, where there’s a will, there’s a way! Some days or perhaps weeks later a volunteer from “Reach to Recovery” came in to teach Mama how to walk her fingers up the wall, to exercise her arms and regain that movement. Well, Mama was way ahead because of her hair pinning chores.
Somehow life did go on. The house sold. Mama found an apartment for her and me. Although I don’t remember packing, I know we must have. Then somewhere along the way, sometime after the 9 months of chemo, Mama had another divine intervention.
Battling with pain in her liver as well as depression, one morning it was just too much to face. Mama lay in bed, and told God, “You gave me a job to do, if you want me there, you’re going to have to do something.” And then she pressed her head even deeper into the pillow. Before she knew what happened, she found herself sitting on the edge of the bed, with her feet on the floor, and no idea how she got there!
She made her way to the bathroom, where the orange glow of the countertop made her look even worse as she stared at herself in the mirror. Her response was only, “Unh–uh, God!” Out of the corner of her eye, she saw this small, brilliantly colored rainbow with block lettering. The message read “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. She closed her eyes, yet still she saw it. “Great, now I’m hallucinating!” She thought.
The rainbow went with her as she got in the shower, and with her eyes closed, she kept reading it. Every time she read it, it moved, like it was dancing and it was progressively moving closer to her. “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. “I HAVE HEALED YOU”. Until it went inside her mouth and exploded! She said it felt like the explosion shook and vibrated all through her. As she stepped out of the shower, she knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that God had healed her.
As she walked through the doorway from the bathroom to the bedroom, she saw something above her, shine down on her, and she said it “Tattooed” on her brain: “It doesn’t matter what it looks like, I Have Healed You.”. She said it was so real that she answered aloud, “Okay”.
She had not gotten a doctor’s report or diagnosis back yet, so she didn’t know what she was healed of, but she knew she was healed.
On the way to work that morning, Mama told me this whole story. And she said that she had been so sick with chemo that she would not go back on it. She said we serve a God who heals. I agreed (I did not know about the prayer of agreement: Matthew 18:19 “Again I tell you, if two of you on earth agree (harmonize together, make a symphony together) about whatever [anything and everything] they may ask, it will come to pass and be done for them by My Father in heaven.”). When she got to work, she shared her story with her co-workers; Christian counselors, who prayed over her.
By the time she went to see the Oncologist to get the news of the liver scan that had been done, the doctor was quite upset by the many new spots he saw. He motioned for Mama to look at the slides hanging on the light boxes. As she turned to look, all she could see was a hand, with fingers grasping a round pull ring, and a white shade pulled down preventing her from seeing the slides. At the same time she heard again, “It doesn’t matter what it looks like, I HAVE HEALED YOU!”
She left that doctor’s office without a prescription or a treatment plan; after all, she was healed.
That was more than 25 years ago. Mama is now 80 years old and is still healthy & well. Every now and then a pain will trigger a fear, but as she shares her story of God’s power, faithfulness and love, she is reminded of God’s word to her, that she was healed…. and still is, no matter what it looks like!
LEARNING THE FAITH LESSONS REVEALED IN THIS TESTIMONY!
I can possibly understand different things from reading this testimony of deliverance than you can see right now. I can see many hidden faith lessons presented to us that I feel are valuable for us to understand in this story. But, I also believe that I understand the subject of faith now much better than when I first started to study this subject of faith extensively well over 20+ years ago. Too often people do not understand that their current level of spiritual knowledge places limitations upon the things that they can receive from God’s Word. God tells the Corinthian church in 1 Cor 3:1 they are still carnal and unable to receive the spiritual things of depth and substance. Thus their spiritual maturity level placed severe limitations on what could be taught to them by Paul. Everything that is being taught by me or any other real Bible teacher is relative to two realities. What I teach you is totally relative to what I know on the subject and what you can understand about the subject is also totally relative to what you already know on the subject and the basics found in the Bible. I could easily go over your head with deep information, but I try very hard not to do that. That is why I teach using a series of lessons style of progressive information with limited content in each lesson. I try to go with the basics of a subject first, introducing you to progressively more complex parts of the subject in succession like they do in school with math for example. Therefore as you progress in this knowledge of God you should be able to grow into more complex sections of the information presented. I recommend that you go back and reread all the lessons more than once. This way you will catch new things that you did not see or understand before.
I am going to go through the testimony and give you some new perspectives to look at on the subject of faith. For example, many times we get the wrong idea from reading the Bible that a miracle of God is only an instantaneous spectacular phenomenon of the power of God and does not fit with a slower extended over time process like this testimony speaks of. Clearly this testimony was a new extension of the miracle working power of God over time. God was certainly involved in her deliverance even though it took an extended duration of time to fully manifest. Perhaps the reason why this detail took time will become clearer as I continue to go through the analysis of what was said and make some direct comparisons of this modern life experience with another Old Testament example that God gave to us as an example of faith to follow and to learn from. I will be teaching you using the story of Joshua and how they took the Promised Land as you will see soon.
Satan is definitely an equal opportunity oppressor, destroyer and murderer. He comes at anyone, anywhere and at any time that they will let him. The Bible says that “Your adversary the devil goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour” (1 Peter 5:8). That is exactly what is occurring in this testimony. I believe that is one of the first things to learn from this testimony. The origination of the cancer was not from God. God did not send the cancer and then deliver her from it for that would be idiotic. The next lesson to learn is that sometimes bad things happen to good people and we can understand that this occurs because of what Adam chose in the garden. After Adam sinned God said “The man has become as one of us, knowing good and evil” (Gen 3:22). Therefore Adam allowed all evil to cross the threshold into the world because of his sin. When Adam let evil into the world he also let sickness come in the same door. I have a Bible lesson series on the specific subject of “Understanding Healing, Sickness and Disease” if you would like a more complete definition for why sickness is an evil and why it exists in our world. You need to settle in your mind and your heart today and determine who your God is. Is your God good or is your God evil or perhaps you are really confused and think that your God is both simultaneously? As long as this is not established in your heart it will cause you to doubt. This is exactly what Satan wants, since doubt will defeat you from receiving healing. Let me ask you again? Where does cancer come from? Is it from God or is it from Satan? Jesus gave us the answer and He taught us something very important in the Gospels and gave us some direct clues to that question. In the book of John Jesus informed us that it was not God who performs the evil in the world. Jesus said “the thief has come only to steal, kill and destroy but I have come that you might have life” (John 10:10). Jesus said very clearly that “I am not the thief”. Jesus said I have come to give to you, life abundantly. This was God in the flesh telling you He does not do anything evil to hurt you. Is cancer a good thing or a blessing? If you think it is good then you are cleverly deceived by Satan the thief. Cancer steals your health, your time, your ability, your strength, your money and your life if you let it. But Jesus said I am here to give you life and not to give you cancer. This is really not rocket science but you need to settle it.
Jesus revealed in John 10:10, that there exists two opposing forces; one of evil versus one of good and He attributes death and doing evil to you as being from Satan and life and doing good to you as being from God. Therefore, if any evil is working in your life it was Satan that was behind it and not God. Acts 10:38 teaches us that Jesus went about DOING GOOD, healing all those that were “oppressed” of the devil. That verse clearly teaches us that all sickness is the opposite of good and is an evil satanic oppression. Therefore, cancer is also a part of this unified set of evil oppression brought to people by Satan. Consider the synonyms of “oppression” because they are fascinating to learn. Oppression means “domination”, “coercions”, “cruelty”, “tyranny”, “subjugation”, “persecution”, and “harassment”. None of these describe God at any time or under any circumstances. These words are the antithesis of God and His goodness (Rom 2:4).
Here is another interesting bit of factual information that I learned from studying this information in the Bible. Satan can cause physical diseases, illnesses and symptoms to manifest in your external natural physical body. I really do not have time to fully elaborate why this is possible or what gives Satan access, but know that there was something that you did that opened the door for him. I know this because of the verse that I gave you earlier about “Satan goes about as a roaring lion, seeking who he may devour”. We can clearly read that Satan is not able to devour just anyone that he wishes or he would not need to seek. To seek means to look for something like a hidden door or search for something like a hidden passage that will allow him access to devour you. What is it that you do that opens the door for him? I really can’t explain it completely here, but if you want to know you can begin to read my series of Bible lessons on the power of your tongue and gain many clues to how this is possible. You see the Bible says “Life and death are in the power of the tongue, and those that love it will eat the fruit thereof” (Prov 18:21). Did you notice that this verse in Proverbs repeats the same two elements described by Jesus in John 10:10? Here we have two opposing forces of life versus death and good versus evil. Therefore, life must be produced by us choosing to speak God’s good Words and death must be produced by us choosing to speak satanic evil words. This is more relevant and important than you can imagine right now. Your words got you into this mess, and your words can be changed to get you out of this mess. Let’s go back and read Deuteronomy 30:
Deu 30:19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:
You see your life is more in your hands than it is in God’s hands. People want to abdicate and relieve themselves of any personal responsibility for what happens to them. However, God says that I have given to you the choice, and therefore choose wisely and select to live. If Satan puts cancer upon you based upon something you said to open the door, then you can begin to reverse that curse that you initiated by speaking life. How do you do this? Jesus said “the words that I speak they are Spirit and they are life” (John 6:63). Therefore you need to find out what God says and speak that. I think I’m getting ahead of myself but I just said some very important things. Let’s go back and verify using the Bible that God is not the initiator of sickness and that Satan is. Let me give you a verse that links evil spirits with the subject of sickness:
Mat 10:1 And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all manner of disease.
I want you to understand that whenever God mentions two or more subjects in a one verse statement that there is an undeviating connection between them by direct word association. Clearly power was given by God to do two things; to cast out unclean spirits and to heal. This word “power” means “delegated influence” within a realm of jurisdiction or authority. It is a legal term indicating a transferred right of legal supremacy. Why does Jesus give His disciples power to cast out unclean spirits and was this, the same as healing someone? In other words is casting out unclean spirits equivalent to healing or are they potentially two separate spiritual activities of God’s power. You do understand the implications given here, don’t you? I believe what is being revealed is a cause and effect relationship between demons causing the sickness and then when you get rid of these causes then you have eliminated the effects of sickness. I hope that you understand these concepts of physics. I believe that this is all very significant information and you need to pay close attention to what is revealed. First do you know what an unclean spirit is? How do we define that and what is different between a clean spirit and an unclean spirit? What makes a spirit unclean? Perhaps it would be helpful to study the definition in the Strong’s of the Greek word translated as “unclean”:
From G1 (as a negative particle) and a presumed derivative of G2508 (meaning cleansed); impure (ceremonially, morally (lewd) or specifically (demonic)): – foul, unclean.
We can see that this word is associated with the demonic by Strong. It means something that is foul and impure. The opposite of pure is impure. A pure substance like gold is the most valuable in the pure form and the value decreases as you mix more filler elements with it. The concept of water is best as pure H2O and adding other elements soon makes it undrinkable. This is clearly a difficult concept to grasp until we search and find God’s use of this word in the Old Testament. God uses “unclean” to describe a leprous man in the natural realm. A leprous man was one with his flesh in a state of rot and decay. A leprous man was required to be separate from the non-leprous people so that they would not be infected. Any time a leprous man came near clean people they were required by law to yell out “unclean” so that everyone would be warned (Lev 13:45). I believe that God is using this natural example of sickness to demonstrate a spiritual truth about the angels that have fallen with Lucifer. They have left their state of perfection to become imperfection by their own sinful choice. Therefore sin is again a cause for spiritual imperfection making a clean spirit one without sin.
To be an unclean spirit is never mentioned in conjunction with a man’s human spirit in the New Testament. 23 verses in the N.T. mention unclean spirits and they are directly associated with spiritual beings that inhabit people. We can learn this a little more clearly by reading what Jesus speaks of in Matthew 12:43.
Mat 12:43 When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.
Mat 12:44 Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.
Mat 12:45 Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.
An unclean spirit is revealed to us in this discourse as a spiritual being that enters into and exits from a man’s house. However this is not a physical dwelling like a brick, mortar or wood building construction. These are all symbolic expressions of a much greater truth. The man’s house in this explanation is his symbolic natural body. A clean house or body is one that is free from evil influence or inhabitation and an unclean house is a man with one or more evil spirits living within. The real man is a spirit that lives in a physical body. The unclean spirits that are coming into the man’s house (body) were those spiritual beings that followed Lucifer from heaven. We can understand this concept of the human body house better by reading other verses in the N.T. like when Paul writes this:
2Co 5:6 Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:
Clearly the body of a Christian man is his temporary dwelling place while still being present here on the earth. It is self-evident to me that this verse is speaking of an implied house being called a home to the spirit of man. The contrasted antithesis truth found in this verse is to be with the Lord in heaven when we are found apart from this physical body. What I just said is more clearly stated in verse 8:
2Co 5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
To be absent from the body is to no longer be at home in the natural body. To be “present” with the Lord is defined as our spirits having left our body after death here on the earth and going to be with Jesus. This is called rightly dividing the Word of Truth (2 Tim 2:15). Did you notice that the unclean spirits mentioned in Matthew were there for the purpose of the destruction of the natural house? The implied part of the story is that they were cast out and that the man was able to get his house back into the physical order of health. Let’s call this being physically healed since Jesus is describing his body and not a house that we live in. Jesus is describing spirits that cause havoc to a man’s body. Jesus says if you get rid of them and then let them back in they will bring 7 more with them the next time and it will be worse than the previous time.
Do you recall reading about the demon possessed man that Jesus ran into at Gadara? This man was described as a madman that could not be chained and Jesus came to him and commanded the “unclean spirit” to come out of him and they had a conversation first. Jesus asked for the name of the “unclean spirit” and they said “We are legion for we are many” (Mk 5:9). Here was a clear example of many evil spirits being present in the body of a single man. It does not say that this man had a physical illness, but it does say that he had a great mental illness. Therefore, mental illness is also demonically inspired manifestations of “unclean spirits”. That is exactly what Jesus was teaching in Matthew could occur. No doubt the man in Mark 5 had cleaned house before but has let the same spirits return with many more until now he has enough unclean spirits to be called a great army of them.
“Unclean spirits” are the evil spirits that inhabited the bodies of men and women on the earth that cause physical disease and mental illness and I could give you many more scriptures that help to support this evidence if I need to. Going back now to Matthew 10:1 do you better understand why Jesus connected the “authority” to cast out unclean spirits with the ability to heal ALL manner of sicknesses and diseases? According to the Bible when you get rid of the cause the resulting affects also has to go. What am I saying? I am saying cancer is caused by evil spirits. If you don’t understand that or believe that then you will not know to resist it and you will let it come in stay and live, run its course and kill you. You are going to have to take the authority that Jesus gave to you over your house that you live in. Just because Jesus gave His disciples this authority does not mean that it was not also transferred to you. You are the same body of Christ as they were. I do not have time to teach the subject of Bible Authority completely. I did one lesson on the subject of authority and great faith in this series, but I should probably do more just on this subject soon.
One seminary graduate man that I worked with many years ago told me once that God had given his wife cancer, yet they still went to the doctor to try to get out of the perfect will of God. That really did not make any sense to me. He desired his wife to live but then he had to believe that he was fighting against God to get her healed by a doctor. He was mixing up who was the oppressor and who was the healer ignoring the Bible while attempting to put God in both roles in his mind. Why pray to God and ask for healing if God sent you the sickness in the first place? Whatever God sends to you are we supposed to refuse it? Clearly that is illogical human reasoning and turns God into a liar when Jesus said “a house divided against itself will not stand” (Mark 3:25). If God is sending you the sickness and then healing the sickness, His house is a mixed up divided kingdom about to perish. I alluded to this statement earlier, but you MUST believe that Satan is the oppressor and that he has brought you the sickness or disease to kill you or you will not resist it like God says in His Word (James 4:7). Physical and spiritual resistances are both absolute requirements for any faith victory. The ultimate faith battle is on the inside, but the ultimate victory result is only seen by others on the outside in the natural. However, victory always starts on the inside and then this will works its way to the outside and I’ll talk about this more later.
I cried when I read this testimony. It touched my heart how much this lady endured in her life. I felt great compassion for what she went through. However, I also saw several things that developed in her over time that God used to deliver her. At first she did not want to fight the cancer, but then the doctor showed her another lady that was still alive and that seemed to make a difference in her to give her a fighting spirit. God can use anyone to try to change your heart. You need a fighting spirit within you or you will be easily defeated before you start the first battle. The Bible clearly teaches us that we are to “fight the good fight of faith” (1 Tim 6:12). This clearly implies to us that there will be a series of faith battles that will occur in your life for your life. No fight is over instantly. In fact a fight further implies endurance is necessary. Natural fighters train for months before they go and fight one event. During this time they are strengthening their bodies to be an overcomer. This is a physical quality that can be transferred into the spiritual arena. If you go into this faith fight unprepared and passively expecting to automatically win, then again you are going to be defeated. I have never seen any fight with a passive winner natural or spiritual. If you think that you have automatically won the fight because of what Jesus has done for you, then again you will be defeated. There is nothing in the Bible that teaches us what God has given to us is automatically transferred to anyone without them believing, receiving and fighting to keep it. This pattern was first introduced with Adam when God told him to hedge the garden. Sure God gave Adam the garden without a fight, but to keep it safe was not God’s responsibility because God had given it to him to rule over. Threfore Adam held responsibility to keep every enemy out of the garden, but failed.
The children of Israel learned this lesson the hard way in the wilderness. When they finally decided to take their Promised Land, they still had the exact same enemies as before but now there were probably many more of them than there was 40 years earlier. The children of Israel had to couple a physical external fight with their internal spiritual faith fight in order to produce an external physical victory for the possession of the land. That is really no different than what we go through as revealed by this great testimony. Taking the Promised Land is really no different for us than what Israel endured. I would recommend that you go and read the book of Joshua. The entire book of Joshua is only 24 chapters and can be divided into three sections of information. The first 5 chapters represent the preparation part before the actual battle occurs. In these chapters God taught Joshua and Israel to start by being strong and courageous. This is a basic of any spiritual fight using your faith. God then told Joshua to not let the book of the law depart from his mouth, but to speak it day and night (Joshua 1:8). How does faith come? Surely you understand from the previous lessons that faith comes by hearing and that this act of Joshua speaking God’s word was God’s way of giving His people faith. This is exactly where you must start your faith fight also. If you are not getting prepared correctly you are already in trouble. Learn to be strong and then learn to speak God’s Word day and night.
The second part of the book of Joshua is chapters 6-12 where they actually take the Promised Land in phases. During these chapters the nation of Israel has multiple encounters with their enemies. God gives specific instructions for each encounter that must be believed and obeyed in order to be victorious. So far we have 5 chapters of preparation and 7 chapters of battles. The rest of the book of Joshua is Israel settling in the land. It is important to note that the conquest of the Promised Land is a duration of time of nearly seven years. What we learn from this is that just because God gives you something does not mean it does not take time to possess it. Clearly this was not an instantaneous miracle of God. But yet it was still clearly the power of God at work throughout the battles. Are you seeing any parallels with this information to the testimony yet?
Take the battlefield of Jericho in the O.T. as being no different than the battlefield of cancer for this lady in the testimony. The battle is not all yours, but yet you still have a major role to play in producing the victory. For example in the battle for Jericho, the children of Israel were given specific instructions from God and they were required to believe them by faith alone without proof or evidence, obey them and then expect God to do His part. They were required to march around the walls for 7 days. On the seventh day God told them to march around the wall 7 times and then have 7 priests blow their 7 horns and God brought the walls down so that they could take the city. That was an O.T. typology picture of a N.T. spiritual faith battle. They had to believe what God said and then become obedient to what God said or God was not going to help them win or make it happen for them. This is still true today. If you expect God to do everything, you are going to be defeated and the walls you are told to march around will remain upright.
Let’s compare what is different between this woman’s testimony and the fight of Israel to take the Promised Land. In the testimony, she did not believe in divine healing at first because of her ignorance of God’s word. Therefore she completely lacked faith to receive anything from God. Before this she did not have any courage to even continue to fight and thus she has failed to prepare as Joshua did. Thank God for His mercy. If you do not know what you are lacking, God will help you to get there. God ended up giving the woman courage to begin the fight by showing her another woman that had done the same. Later in the testimony God shows her a Bible verse and this is for the advancement of her faith in God’s word to allow her to believe what He has said. God sent His word to the prophet Moses and it was recorded bevore the battle can be fought. This written word of God was the faith source for Joshua’s fight. Are you seeing how God achieved what He taught Joshua in the first 5 chapters as this testimony unfolds?
It is very difficult to believe in the truth, if you do not know the truth or have never heard the truth. God did eventually show this woman a portion of a Bible verse found in 1 Peter 2:24 that states we were healed. We should be able to understand that this was God’s attempt at building her faith since faith comes by hearing the Word of God (Rom 10:17). In the testimony did you notice what God said to her? Maybe I should ask, did you notice what God did not say to her? God did not say “I am going to heal you”. God looked past her current physical condition where it did not yet look like she was healed and He called those things that be not as though they were (Rom 4:17) and said to her in the testimony “I have healed you”. God is never going to change what He says today and make it something different than what He has already said to you yesterday in His Word (Mal 3:6). That is why many of your prayers probably do not work, you are asking God to heal you someday and He has already said to you “I have healed you” (1 Peter 2:24). You are therefore, not in agreement with God. If you do not know what He has said, then that is your number one weakness and why you believe wrong. If you believe wrong then your faith is not based upon the Word of God but rather your misconception of the truth. When the answer to your prayer doesn’t come you will let your circumstances and your symptoms dictate the final outcome. If you learn to change your perspective and start believing “I am healed” simply because that is what God says I am, then you are now in full agreement with His Word and not your symptoms (Amos 3:3).
Physical symptoms of sickness, disease, and cancer are very real just like the giants were very real in the Promised Land to the children of Israel. Both are parallel manifestations of the same enemy. Both the natural giants and the physical symptoms are designed by Satan to put fear into your heart in order to take away any faith, hope or expectation in what God has spoken to you. The spoken Words of God were designed to give you faith (Psa 107:20). This is exactly what Jesus described would happen in the battle of the field also known as the Parable of the Sower (Mat 13:18). Jesus taught us that the seed sown was the Word of God (Mk 4:14) into the hearts of people. But then Jesus said the birds of the air came immediately to steal the word (seed) that was sown (Mat 13:4). The birds of the air were the symbolic demons (unclean spirits) that come bringing to you the symptoms. According to Jesus what was one of the key factors that keeps the spiritual seed from being stolen from us? It was the understanding (Mat 13:19) and the believing it that allowed the seed to remain and not to be stolen which produced the spiritual fruit that God desired. Producing spiritual fruit represents you obtaining the victory over your spiritual enemies in this spiritual battle for your faith beliefs. Jesus said this parable was the most important one for you to know and if you could understand this one you could understand them all (Mk 4:13). Take time to study the Parable of the Sower in the Gospels. It clearly reveals the spiritual battle that you are in now for the control of your belief in the Word of God. Satan is trying everything he can do to steal the Word from your heart and God is trying to help you to produce fruit. Let me show you some important faith scriptures on external symptoms and circumstances:
Rom 4:18 Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.
Rom 4:19 And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sara’s womb:
Rom 4:20 He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;
Rom 4:21 And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.
Read these verses very carefully. These verses are describing the God kind of faith that Abraham and Sarah possessed. God had spoken and given to them a promise concerning a coming son that would come from their bodies and yet at near the age of 99 and 90 years of age it looked so really bad that it was not going to happen. Anyone can easily get into discouragement looking at the circumstances. But this is not what Abraham ended up doing according to these verses. Verse 20 says Abraham staggered not at the promise of God meaning he did not waiver because of the external circumstances or the wait for the promise to be fulfilled. In verse 21 it goes on to say that Abraham was fully convinced that what God had declared was not impossible for God to perform. Wow, that was an awesome revelation of truth. No matter what the circumstances or the symptoms of the lady with cancer in this testimony God still came and said “I have healed you”. She took hold of that truth and staggered not at what her body looked like.
The Promised Land was not all taken by Israel in one day. Neither did this woman in the testimony possess her healing in one day. Sometimes taking back physical health is a series of smaller miracle victories and not one giant miraculous event. For example the woman in the testimony continued traveling on her pathway to victory, by simply fighting to wash her own hair. Perhaps you do not understand the significance in this simple action. According to the doctors and the nurses, she did what she was unable to do physically and thus she achieved a major victory without even knowing it was a victory. If you listen to what the doctors say you cannot do then you are defeated. Fortunately for her she had not been told that she could not move her arms this way and she did it without being discouraged by the doctors negative words. If the doctors would have been there first and told her this, she might have been defeated. But this simple effort on her part of doing something so basic was a very significant victory on the road to recovery. That was a classic type of faith without understanding what faith is. Doctors do the best that they know from a natural perspective. They do not mean to be faith killers but many times they are. If you listen to them and believe them they can and will many times cause you to remain as you are instead of trying to encourage you to fight to get better. Your will is a major factor in your ability to receive a miracle from God as I have already taught in this series. This lady ignored the pain and washed her hair anyway. She then spent time with her arms raised and fixing her hair. That represents faith whether you understand it or not. Begin to do what you can’t do. Begin to do what they said you could not do. Begin to fight and take back one inch of ground at a time. Don’t give up, don’t quit and do not get discouraged that you did not take a mile today. Every inch will matter over time.
Reread this testimony now and compare it to the Children of Israel’s experience with taking the Promised Land:
- Israel had just gotten delivered (saved) from Egypt by a great display of God’s power and things are looking really positive as they walk out. Everyone is well, strong and wealthy with the riches of Egypt being transferred to them as they left. Pharaoh has second thoughts after letting them go and decides to pursue them only to be destroyed in the sea. Wow, can it get any better for God’s people? I think they even have a scholarship to get into a really nice college promised land.
- They then go from what appears as God’s great blessings to a wilderness experience even asking God, why did you bring us out here to die? Were there not enough graves in Egypt? The family situation was certainly starting to look very bleak, negative and cursed in this wilderness and even divorce could be splitting the family up.
- Just when it couldn’t look any worse they send 12 spies into Canaan land and get a really bad doctor’s report back. The report says that there are cancer giants in the land? 10 spies say we can’t overcome these cancer giants so let’s just die and only 2 said “It’s not a problem”. This is when the patient people are faced with a decision. Whose report are we to believe? The 10 in the majority or the 2 men of God? Fortunately, one doctor shows the patient a vision of a survivor and she chooses to become a Joshua who is willing to fight for the victory.
- For forty years the Joshua patient endures a fight of faith in the wilderness while everyone else around her dies one by one. Time in the wilderness has to take a toll mentally, emotionally and physically, but Joshua holds on to what God says still believing that he can take the land and overcome the cancer giants.
- Finally, it’s time to enter into the Promises of God. I can’t stand my dirty hair anymore so I’m going to make it clean all by myself. It’s not easy to do, it might even hurt, and the nurse looks at her and says you can’t do that. But that didn’t stop the Joshua Christian from doing it anyway. You see the 10 spies said we can’t, but the 2 said we can. Doing what others say you can’t proves that you can do it in spite of their weak opinion.
- The battle was won and the hair was clean, now it needs to be put up on the top of her head again something that no one said she could do. People this is called faith, if you did not know it. Are you learning anything?
- Every little battle and every little victory matters. With each time of victory new confidence grows and faith increases. The next battle is easier to win because of the previous victory and the display of faithfulness from God.
That was my quick comparison of the parallels between two victorious accomplishments by faith. Did you learn anything from it? I know it helped me and I pray that you received from it also. Let me conclude with a list of things that I took away from the testimony and reading in the book of Joshua today.
- Go to a doctor and get natural help especially if you do not know what the Bible says. There is no lack of faith in fighting a physical battle using a doctor as long you do not neglect the spiritual enemy that has caused it. Do not fight a spiritual or physical battle without God on your side.
- Sometimes not knowing what is wrong with you is worse than knowing who your enemy is. Joshua saw the enemies the same as the 10 spies, but Joshua did not let the knowledge of the enemies deter him from defeating them. Joshua knew the names of the people and you need to find out what you are facing.
- When you have a medical diagnosis you now have a natural enemy with a name. We know that Satan also has a name. So both of these are the names of your enemy that you are facing.
- The Bible says that every knee must bow to the name of Jesus because the name of Jesus is above every other name (Php 2:9).
- Therefore, use the Name of Jesus to stand against your named disease and Satan and command them both to bow to the greater name of Jesus.
- Remain as positive and optimistic as you can be, despite the diagnosis, prognosis, symptoms or circumstances because your faith is in the Word of God and what He has said to you like the believing Joshua. Focus on who your God is and the promise not the giants in your body.
- Prepare for battle. Feed daily and even hourly speaking God’s Word to help build your faith and keep it ever before your eyes and ears again as God instructed Joshua to do (Joshua 1:8). Time spent in preparation for battle is more important than the battle itself.
- Get a hold of a fighting spirit and do not ever bend or waiver to become passive allowing your surroundings, feelings, emotions or symptoms to dominate you or your thoughts. Cast down every thought that exalts itself against the knowledge of God’s Word (2 Cor 10:5).
- One of the primary spiritual battles that will occur is ultimately in your mind for the control of your beliefs. As long as you believe God instead of your circumstances you will win!
- Fight the good fight of faith and take back small chunks of the Promised Land daily. Don’t attempt to win the entire war in one day. Look at the war as a series of smaller battles to overcome one enemy at a time.
- Let each small past victory help to build you up and raise you to a new faith level of greater confidence for the next victory (Rom 1:17). For the Bible says clearly that the JUST SHALL LIVE BY FAITH. Do you want to live? If yes, then you need to get FAITH and increase it (2 Cor 10:15).
- You never ignore the giants or pretend like they are not present; you look each giant in the face and defeat them with the Sword of the Spirit like David did to Goliath. Giant symptoms are very real. We do not deny the symptoms; we do however deny their right to exist in our land.
- Like I said, your faith fight is probably not going to be a one victory or one battle experience, just like the taking of the Promised Land was not one battle and one victory for Israel.
- Faith is more like a marathon race event and not a fast sprint type of race. The taking of the Promised Land took nearly 7 years to possess. Do not get discouraged how long it takes, just keep believing it is yours.
- Joshua and Caleb saw themselves as ultimate winners and victorious long before they ever achieved the final victory outcome. That is having great faith before you see the result. That is what I am trying to tell you to do right now. Get a vision of victory and then expect it to come to pass.
Do you see yourself as a winner? Can you see the vision of victory? Do you expect to win because of who your God is or are the giants bigger than your God? Begin to change to see yourself as God has said and this will make the difference for the outcome in your life. I hope and pray that this testimony that I gave to you provided some encouragement on how to fight your coming battles. In this world we will all be faced with the same enemies in some form. Your vision and your beliefs will determine God’s ability to fight these battles for you. I thank my Facebook friend for sharing her story with you. I thank you for taking the time to read it and for allowing God to speak to your heart. If you have a testimony that you would like to share with everyone I would be very happy to hear it. God Bless you as we all grow in the knowledge of Jesus Christ.
If you would like to continue reading in this series of Bible lessons please continue to “Part 18“.
Understanding Healing, Sickness and Disease! Was Divine Healing Always Instant in the Gospels? Part 7
(Ver 1.1) Today’s lesson is Part 7 in the Bible study series about “Understanding the Subjects of Healing, Sickness and Disease”. I have been led by God recently to teach on this subject of healing for someone and I do not always understand the reasons for doing everything that I do, so I just try to be obedient. I do know there are many people in the church in need of a divine touch from God so this subject is good for everyone to know even if you do not need the same today. I have already covered a lot of information in this Bible lesson series that will not all be repeated exactly as stated before, therefore if you have not read every lesson from the beginning, I would recommend that you start reading with “Part 1” before you read today’s lesson. Today’s lesson is a continuation of the last lesson to some extent about the question that I received “Is divine healing always instant”. I have been answering this question from a reader about why healing does not always appear to take place immediately after we pray and ask God to heal us. This is a very common modern problem found in the Body of Christ. Many are taught wrong and have based their beliefs on this wrong information resulting in failure to receive what God has already given to them. In the last lesson I taught on Daniel’s prayer and how that his answer sent from God was delayed for a period 3 weeks because of a spiritual conflict occurring in the unseen dimension between heaven and the earth. We discovered that God had heard Daniel’s prayer the very first day and sent the angel Gabriel to Daniel with the answer but yet the answer did not arrive for these 21 days. Obviously this is a pattern that we need to learn from to understand what is potentially occurring for us today.
The failure of humans to receive from God is often based upon their ignorance of not understanding that they also have an enemy that is purposely attempting to block their answer of God from coming. When this occurs they often fall into a vicious cycle of unbelief that God did not answer so I must go and ask God for the answer again. However, this new request usually just starts the same process over where we find that God hears and sends the answer but because it does not instantly occur again, the cycle repeats to almost a daily pray and ask God for an answer and if nothing happens tomorrow I just need to pray and ask God to send the answer again and again and again. I know people that have prayed for 10 years asking God for the same answer over and over; not realizing that He had tried to send it the first time they asked like we read in Daniel. I’ll probably shock some people today, but if you prayed about the same healing more than once you prayed the second time in unbelief that God did not hear you the first time. Unbelief is the opposite of faith and believing and Satan has just defeated you by the very simple tactic of causing a modest delay in time to occur. If you read the Gospels closely you will find that Jesus honored faith and nothing else. Those that demonstrated faith got healed and those that did not usually got nothing. God is still the same today.
Today I’m going to try to go through some Bible examples found in the Gospels where Jesus the Son of God in person could not or did not heal anyone instantly and discuss why not. These examples will help to bring clarity to why it might also take time for you to receive from God. In other words these new exceptions to the “instant miracle” belief will help us to understand that God does not always control what is happening to get someone healed. We can learn from these new profound examples some additional factors about divine healing that will be comforting and helpful if we can accept them for what they teach us.
IS DIVINE HEALING ALWAYS INSTANTLY MANIFESTED IN THE GOSPELS?
Truly while reading the Gospels we can see Jesus doing what appear to be many instant healings and miracles for many people. There are so many clear examples of instant healings and miracles found in the Gospels that they almost dominant the entire message causing many people to believe that this is God’s standard and only way of doing it. It also causes many modern people to wish they lived when Jesus was physically here on the face of the earth just so they could get healed that easily and quickly. For example, we can read about the lame man at the Pool of Bethesda that instantly rises and walks in John 5:2. There is another healing of two blind men that instantly receive their sight found in Matthew 20:34. Another blind man in Luke 18:43 also received his sight immediately. A leprous man was immediately healed by Jesus in Matthew 8:3 and Mark 1:42. There is more than enough evidence for instant types of divine healing to understand that this is a potential way for healing to occur but is it the only way that God’s power operated on the earth in people? I believe that it is a great mistake to think that this is the only way it can happen. Never lock God into your religious box of limited information and understanding. Never place any restrictions or limitations on divine methods and how they must operate to satisfy you or your fallible human requirements. You are a fool if you think that you control God, what He does and how He can do it. You are going to have to read and study the rest of the entire Bible to insure that God does nothing in a non-spectacular instant miraculous way in order to discount those types of alternate methods of gradual or progressive healings. So while I do not deny that instant miracles can occur even today, I also choose to see that there are some other very interesting recorded events in the Bible that need to be balanced with the knowledge of these instant types of miracles and that is my goal today in what I teach you.
Attempting to be balanced in all of God’s word will cause us to walk more down the center of the road keeping us far from falling into either side ditch of extremism on our left or on our right. For example, one ditch side of extremism on the subject of healing will try to say that God never heals anyone anymore while the other ditch side of extremism will scream God only heals instantly or it is not God. Both are just excessive positions that do not teach the actual balanced truth of God. Learn to avoid the ditches of extremism and that information will possibly help you more than anything else that I say today. Learn to base your beliefs upon sound doctrines using balanced principles and that will raise you above the level of deception that occurs in many man created teachings. But, before we go to these new Gospel examples let’s review a radical concept given to us in what God has created in this natural world about healing.
NATURAL HEALING, IS IT ALWAYS INSTANT?
Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
According to the Bible many of the invisible qualities of God can be seen in things that God has created in our world around us. We therefore need to analyze what did God create and does it relate to our subject today? Is there any healing in the human body that occurs naturally? I think that you can easily understand that the normal human body was designed to fight against sickness and injury and that this process was certainly designed by God.
Do you agree that God created natural healing? Doesn’t our natural physical healthy bodies have God’s divine healing systems normally pre-built in that are designed to repair themselves or to at the least help to fight off sickness or injury that have attacked us? Are any of these naturally designed divine processes instant? I believe that you can clearly see they are always consistently gradual and never an instant manifestation. Have you ever thought about that? The natural realm is a direct contrasting opposite to what seems to occur in the majority of the Gospel accounts. Could God have created an instant repair system in the body of man if He so desired? Obviously I believe that God is more than capable, intelligent and powerful enough to do that if that is what He wanted to do. However, our natural immune system was certainly a sovereignly designed feature that came from God and it is not an instant process. This immune system was given to every human being for the purpose of helping us obtain health. Naturally if we cut our external skin organ the process of self-repair normally takes over to correct the problem but again slowly over time. God created blood coagulation as a normal part of the initial process to stop the flow of blood in cuts. The scab will eventually form and the skin will eventually repair and heal. This is clearly a divinely designed healing process with multiple and progressive steps. It does not instantly happen and it requires time to be fully fulfilled. Therefore even in the created natural realm God designed non-instantaneous ways for divine healing to occur. So I have just given you two different example patterns for healing to occur by God’s design. Some of these Bible examples were patterns of instant divine corrections and others in the natural realm were not instant healings, yet still miraculous none-the-less over time. Using this information let us now go into some non-instant healings found in the Gospels.
JESUS HEALS A BLIND MAN IN BETHSAIDA
We are going to start our examination of a specific Gospel healing story that is often overlooked or ignored in the huge number of healing accounts recorded. This new additional example of divine healing in the Bible should further expand our knowledge that not every healing that Jesus performed was an instant miracle display of God’s extreme power. We will go to the book of Mark and begin to read in chapter 8 and verse 22:
Mar 8:22 And he cometh to Bethsaida; and they bring a blind man unto him, and besought him to touch him.
Mar 8:23 And he took the blind man by the hand, and led him out of the town; and when he had spit on his eyes, and put his hands upon him, he asked him if he saw ought.
These are really fascinating verses beginning to unfold. Jesus comes to a town where some people living there lead a blind man to Him and ask Jesus to touch him. Why were these people bringing this blind man to Jesus and what did they want or expect to occur? Obviously the intended purpose was for Jesus to heal him with His touch. Here is where we need to stop and figure out why then does the anointed Son of God take this blind man out of town where they are before He heals him? Why not just touch the blind man in the town and instantly heal him? Wow, those are very tough questions to answer so we normally ignore them and keep reading not understanding the importance of what is happening here. What does leaving town, have to do with the blind man getting healed? You really need to ask God some specific questions if you ever expect to hear specific answers when you read and study the Bible. If you do not observe what is being said in the Bible you will certainly miss at least 99% of the main message. Let me try to answer those questions by what happened in another location with Jesus. Do you remember when Jesus once went into His own hometown and what happened there when He tried to heal the people? In this story found in Mark 6:5 it says that Jesus could there in that city do NO mighty works (miracles) except to heal a few minor sicknesses. Evidently we learn from these two stories that in some physical locations it matters to Jesus and determines what He can or can’t do. This is actually very important because this information will still hold true for today and your physical location in the world. The location of where you are presently can and will affect if you are able to receive your healing. I have observed this before and perhaps you have also. In churches that do not teach about divine healing, rarely does any divine healing ever take place. In other churches that teach divine healing strongly there is an atmosphere of expectancy that permits God to heal.
Why are some cities open to receiving miracles from God while other cities like Jesus’ hometown of Nazareth and Bethsaida were not? Jesus teaches us in Mark 6:6 that it was their unbelief in Nazareth that limited what God could do there. Wow, religious people struggle with that statement tremendously. However, I did not say it God did in His Word. So if you reject His words do you not also reject Him? According to the Word of God, people have the power to limit what God’s power does on the earth and this human power was called unbelief. I know I’ll get some negative comments from certain kinds of carnal religious people for saying that, but I’m just reading the Bible. I hope you are doing the same. Notice by this defined truth that if unbelief has the negative power to cause us to not receive from God then by the law of antithesis your belief contains the positive power to receive from God. I hope you heard and understood what I said, it was very important. Check your surroundings and see if everyone around you believes with you or are against you. If they are against you then it could cause an atmosphere of unbelief that can hinder the flow of God’s power.
Apparently from this information we must conclude that the people in Bethsaida were also full of the same type of negativity called unbelief and this was the primary reason why Jesus took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the city. Notice that Jesus only laid His hands on the blind man once they were fully out of the city, but also notice that before He did this that He only did it after spitting on his eyes and that is another very interesting twist to observe. What does spitting on the blind man’s eyes have to do with his physical healing or the power of God’s ability to manifest? I probably will not be able to answer that question to the fullest satisfaction of many readers today. However, it is very noteworthy to search your Bible to see that at least 3 times in the Gospels Jesus used spit to heal someone and these 3 different people were only healed because Jesus first spit.
Why is it that some people in the Gospels got healed by a touch alone and others by spit, a touch and a longer process? We are forced to conclude that either God’s power alone was not effective in these specific cases or that there are other unknown factors that were involved that kept this blind man from seeing instantly. I vote for number 2; that there existed other unknown or unstated factors that existed and that God’s power did not fail them or treat them uniquely differently. I cannot believe God’s power or lack of power was the problem in this blind man’s case in Mark 8. What would happen if someone came and spat in your face? What would your reaction be if you did not see it coming? Shock, surprise, and even potentially anger could arise from someone doing this unexpectantly to you. I believe Jesus did this on purpose to get a reaction and to set the expectations for something new to happen. The blind man certainly felt the spit hit him and this was not what he was expecting so that changes his attitude to expect something different. This is actually a good lesson to learn from. Don’t expect how God will heal you just expect it to happen and it will.
I did not really emphasize this point but in verse 23 the last thing that Jesus does is to ask the blind man if he can see anything? That is an amazingly interesting question for the Son of God to ask. Does He not know that the man was healed after He has spit and touched his eyes? Do you think that after you pray and ask God for healing and He has sent the answer, is it possible that God is asking you are you healed? I believe He is, even if you cannot hear it. You need to figure out how to answer that question correctly before it is asked to you. Let’s continue to read the answered response given to us from the Mark 8 blind man:
Mar 8:24 And he looked up, and said, I see men as trees, walking.
The blind’s man’s first words to Jesus were “I see”. That is a positive faith statement whether you understand it or not. It indicates that there was at least some progress in his eyesight after being led out of the city, Jesus spitting on him and touching him. Previously the blind man could see nothing and now he says that he sees men that look like trees walking. You need to learn to speak positively no matter what is not working fully. This statement represents a progressive healing process occurring in steps. The message is clearly presented that something was different in this blind man based upon some unstated and unknown factor. Now, examine Jesus’ response to the man’s answered words of seeing partially but not clearly:
Mar 8:25 After that he put his hands again upon his eyes, and made him look up: and he was restored, and saw every man clearly.
Here we have an example for every minister to potentially follow. If you lay your hands on someone and they do not begin to recover fully we could learn that Jesus stopped and did it again. Why does the great God in the flesh need to do something twice? I personally believe it was for two factors for us to see. One is to teach us what to do as men and second is to show us how to increase the faith of the person that we are ministering to. Jesus never wavered in His belief that the man was healed. However Jesus’ faith and the anointed power of God were not the only factors involved in the blind man receiving his healing. If you do not understand how faith works, you will never understand what is happening in this story. Jesus took the blind from the city to eliminate him from the surrounding force of unbelief (lack of faith). Now alone together with Jesus the single isolated blind man’s lack of faith is the only factor that needs to be overcome. While the blind man was being led out of the city by Jesus, he could have stopped Jesus and said “I’m not going” and walked back into town at any time. The blind man exhibits a certain measure of faith simply by silently being a follower of Jesus without questioning or having any proof that anything positive will even happen to him. That reality exhibits very simple faith to be led without knowing the outcome. In fact it corresponds to a N.T. verse that says we walk by faith and not by sight (2 Cor 5:7). The blind man walking out of town took a level of belief in someone that the blind man could not see and thus he fulfilled this verse literally. Do you understand what I am trying to say and how it is an important part to my lesson?
After getting the man out of the town Jesus continues to work on increasing the man’s faith level to receive. Jesus does this by first spiting in his eyes. This spirt is a tangible physical feeling that the blind man could immediately feel and it was also something totally unexpected for him to experience. Therefore the blind man is now beginning to expect the unexpected to happen to him. What happens when you experience something that you did not expect? I believe it sets a pattern for you to begin to expect more of the unexpected. No doubt no one had ever done this to the blind man for this reason, so this causes the blind man to start expecting something new to happen. Jesus then lays His hands on the blind man’s eyes and the tangible anointing of God could now flow from Jesus’ body into the blind man’s body and no doubt he could feel this power also. Afterwards Jesus removed his hands and asked him a direct question. When the man opens his eyes and sees for the first time things were definitely better than before but yet still not perfect. So Jesus touches the man’s eyes again and the anointing again flows and this time he opens his eyes and sees every man clearly. This is pretty awesome stuff if you can see what is happening.
There are two main factors that must be present for the majority of divine healings that takes place in the Gospels. These two main factors that must be present are first the quantity of God’s power that is present and administered and second the quantity of the person’s faith to receive the power of God’s Grace given. Both must be present and working together in unison, agreement and harmony or the divine healing will not take place. Of course there are still exceptions to every rule. The fact that God can still give to anyone a gift of healing even to someone without faith has occurred in the Bible and still does occur in the world today occasionally. For example, the lame man at the pool of Bethesda was an example of a gift of divine healing without any mention of faith being present. However, do not count on God doing this for you. You don’t have any promise in the Bible that says He will do it this way. This is completely up to God and He will decide to do it and not you. Many times I have seen God do this in third world countries for people that have never heard about God or Jesus.
THE DIVINE ANOINTING PRESENT FACTOR
Let’s briefly talk about the variable of the anointing factor. God’s anointing can be given to every man in various measures of power and effectiveness. Practically no two men on the earth possess the same level of anointing from God. We can learn this fact in many verses but one of the clearest examples is found in the life of Elijah and Elisha. Both men were great prophets of God and both did extraordinary feats for God. However, Elisha asked for a double portion of the anointing that Elijah possessed. Let’s go back and review this quickly in the O.T.:
2Ki 2:9 And it came to pass, when they were gone over, that Elijah said unto Elisha, Ask what I shall do for thee, before I be taken away from thee. And Elisha said, I pray thee, let a double portion of thy spirit be upon me.
2Ki 2:10 And he said, Thou hast asked a hard thing: nevertheless, if thou see me when I am taken from thee, it shall be so unto thee; but if not, it shall not be so.
God is described to be omnipotent or “All Powerful” in the Bible. These descriptions of God provide us key qualities that we do not fully comprehend. God’s power is what I will call limitless or unlimited, yet God still places self-imposed limits on what He does by His own sovereign freewill and by His own Word. Levels of this power of God can be transferred as an anointing on spiritual beings like angels and on the people on the earth. Elijah was anointed by God and he called down fire from heaven that consumed all of the prophets of Baal. Elijah also stopped it from raining on the earth for a period of three and half years and then commanded it to rain and it did. Now, Elisha observes the great things that God has done through Elijah and only asks for something greater and if you read on in the Bible, you will find that it was granted to him. The number of great things that Elijah did, Elisha did twice as many. Go study it for yourself and see that God’s power was variably given to men. However, we can learn that no other man had as much of the power of God’s anointing as Jesus did. Acts 10:38 tells us that God anointed Jesus with this power to drive out and heal everyone oppressed by Satan. Satan as you may recall from reading in Ezekiel 28:14 was also anointed by God. Therefore Satan had power given to him by God also. We learn from Acts 10:38 that Satan used this power to oppress people with sickness and that God countered this oppression with Jesus bringing healing. However, let me show you a scripture that appears to claim that Jesus had the entire anointing power of God according to the Word of God whereas Satan and others did not:
Joh 3:34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him.
God tells us that the measure of the Spirit that was present upon Jesus had no limitations that were set. This is a very interesting statement that is full of implied truths. It indicates that every Christian today has the Spirit of God by limited measure. This simply means that we all have God’s power but not in the fullest measure like Jesus when we pray for someone else. However God’s power not in the fullest is still powerful enough to solve every human situation and problem. Do not discount God’s power to say I don’t have enough to get someone else healed today. Do you remember what Peter said to the lame man at the gate of Jerusalem? The lame man wanted silver and gold from the Peter but Peter said those I do not have, but such as I have, give I thee and commanded him to rise and walk. Peter was anointed to heal and he knew it. He offered this anointing to the lame man and he received it by his level of expecting and walked that day.
I probably need to do a separate series on just the anointing of God and how it works. What we need to know today for receiving healing is that when a man or woman of God comes and lays their hand upon you that their level of anointing power is a factor for the amount of power delivered. Still understand this if you are alone in your house with no one to pray for you, God is ever present and the power of God is always available. The difficulty in this approach is that many times there is no point of contact that is readily available to receive. You see when Jesus spit on the blind man and laid his hands upon his eyes this represented an observable, physical and tangible contact point that could be felt externally. This power transfer contact point greatly enhances a person’s faith in receiving the power of God. Jesus certainly understood this and this is why Jesus was led by the Spirit of God to do what he did in healing this blind man.
I really was planning on doing more than one healing in the Gospel today, but I have gone long enough in this lesson with presenting many new things to think about. I do not want to overwhelm you with too much new information or it will just go in one ear and probably exit the other. Let’s recap with a quick overview of what you should have taken away from today’s Bible lesson.
- The blind man’s healing in Bethsaida was not instantly manifested.
- In fact the unbelief of the city of Bethsaida causes Jesus to remove him from that place before ministering to him.
- Jesus spent personal time building the man’s faith so this faith was important to be present in the man in order for him to receive his healing. Therefore, spend time in building your faith.
- The blind man literally walked by faith out of the city of unbelief in order to receive and was healed.
- The blind man’s healing was a limited multi-step process and took time.
- Jesus had to lay hands on him twice for the healing to be fully received.
- The anointing factor of the power of God is variably given depending upon who is administering God’s power.
- Even a small amount of the Power of God is all that is needed to heal anyone.
I know I made a lot of other important points, but you can go back and reread them to get them all. I suggest that you reread these healing lesson over and over to help build up your understanding and your faith in God’s word. Thank you for taking the time to read and for your willingness to hear from God. God bless you as we continue in this series.
(Ver 1.1) Today’s lesson is Part 6 in the Bible study series about “Understanding the Subjects of Healing, Sickness and Disease”. This is a very important Bible subject to study because it eventually affects everyone and you will need to know about it someday even if you are perfectly healthy today. Without understanding this subject in detail, you will not be able to pray and ask God for healing with any confidence that He heard you and has answered. Therefore, in this series we have been exploring the Bible foundations to recognize God’s truth and perspective on the complex subject of where does physical healing, sickness and disease actually come from! What are the sources to each reality? I have already covered a lot of information in this Bible lesson series that will not all be repeated exactly as stated before, therefore if you have not read every lesson from the beginning, I would recommend that you start reading with “Part 1” before you read today’s lesson. Today’s lesson is an attempt to answer a question that I received from the last lesson on healing. The question came from a reader and asked “Is God’s healing always instantaneous?” You see there are some common Christian misconceptions that if I pray and ask God to heal me today and it does not immediately show up externally, then nothing happened, or God did not hear me, or God did not answer me, or God said no, or possibly I just failed to receive. There are actually so many possible outcomes and explanations of the outcomes for prayer that I cannot fully describe them all here. There are so many questions placed in the minds of people by Satan to get them to not believe in what God has said to them in His Word. If you allow these questions to remain unanswered you will be easily defeated.
WE WALK BY FAITH AND NOT BY SIGHT
I am going to start the answer to my reader’s question by teaching briefly on a related dependent subject called faith. Faith is a dominate theme subject found in every part of the Bible. The Old Testament references are largely hidden or not stated plainly, but they are there when you discover how to look for them. I have a whole series on the subject of Understanding Bible Faith so if you want to learn more about this subject you should go and read that because it is essential to receiving anything from God. Faith is a belief based system. Faith in God comes by hearing the Word of God (Rom 10:17). What we begin to see as we study the N.T. in detail is the failure of people to become a doer of the Word of God. The primary reason for not doing the Word of God is either ignorance or rebellion. Adam rebelled, but people today are mostly ignorant. God said in Hosea 4:6 that my people are destroyed for a lack of knowledge. Therefore what you do not know today will cause you to fail and to be destroyed tomorrow. You see God gives you a very important instruction in the New Testament and you can ignore it or you can choose to learn what He said and then implement it in your prayer and Christian life here on the earth and this will help you to succeed. Read this statement of God:
2Co 5:7 (For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
What does it mean to walk by faith and not by sight? Remember what I said earlier that faith is a belief based system based upon hearing God’s word. God is teaching you not to look on the outside in order to determine what exists on the inside of you. There are two distinct contrasting realities given in this one verse that are directly opposed to each other. These two conflicting things are your flesh and your spirit. Faith is an internal spiritual force and sight is an external physical reality. God is basically revealing your internal spiritual beliefs are by far more important than what you can see or feel on the outside in your body. I don’t know if you understand the point that I am trying to make to you yet. Where is your healing needed? Obviously the healing is ultimately needed in your external physical body. But where according to God does healing need to start or come from? Again, it is obvious to me that healing comes only from the Spirit of God by our internal faith. Therefore external healing must come from the Grace of the Spirit of God through your faith in an unseen internal God in order to be made manifest. What I am describing is an internal spiritual process that causes the external to be seen. Let’s verify the location for your faith as revealed to us by God in His Word and this might help you to understand what I am teaching:
Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Here in this verse God says that your spirit is capable of believing things that your physical eyes cannot see. Righteousness is another Grace of God given gift. Can you see your God given righteousness? Technically it is impossible to see your righteousness with your physical eyes. Therefore the only way we know we are righteous is by reading it or hearing from the Word of God and that is called faith if you believe it. Therefore, righteousness is a spiritual gift concept and not a physical entity. But, yet God says with your spirit you can still believe that you are “righteous” regardless of what you feel or see on the outside. That is what God describes as “Heart Faith”. In this verse there is a powerful combination being described. Your beliefs working in conjunction with your spoken words can produce your healing and health in your physical body. You probably don’t see it but I have looked up the words in the Greek and know that this is what they say. The word translated as “salvation” is the Greek word “soteria” and this is an all-inclusive work of God that means to “to deliver, give health, and to save”. This saving and delivering work of God is part of a revealed process. It requires what God gave us by His grace first and then what you believe with your heart called your faith second and then finally the corresponding works that causes you to confess with your mouth unto your final accomplished “salvation”. Remember that “salvation” can mean “health”. Are you getting what I’m saying yet? Also notice that this is a defined process of implied duration and not an instantaneous manifestation.
You are a spirit being that lives in a natural physical body. This human body is a five sense dominated machine; these five senses are sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. However, to walk by faith is an internal spiritual belief in something that you have no proof or evidence of possessing (righteousness, salvation, healing, etc.) which is supposed to be independent from what your senses are telling you. Uh oh? What did I just say? If I prayed to God and asked Him for divine external physical healing what exactly am I supposed to not be looking at according to 1 Corinthians 5:7? If you said what it looks like from the natural doctor’s perspective, you are correct. Do not however misunderstand what I just said. I did not say to stop taking your medicine or stop seeing a doctor. However do not let what they say to you rule what you believe and confess. God is a greater physician than your natural doctor and He does not care what a natural doctor said to you. Your natural doctor could have told you that you only have 6 months to live. That report really means nothing to God. It only means anything to you if you let what your natural doctor said take precedence over what the Great Physician God said in His Word. I’m beginning to allude to a spiritual battle for your internal beliefs that will occur in between the time of prayer and the time that you actually see the answer from God. But we’ll get to that more as we continue.
WHY A DELAY IN THE ANSWER IS NOT A NO FROM GOD!!!
Do the answers of God come instantly or is there sometimes a delay or time lapse? We are going to attack the wrong belief of this potential wait time as being a non-answer from God using the Bible today in order to learn how to receive from God His divine healing power and promises. There is a certain example given to us in the O.T. of God giving the Promise Land to Israel. This example shows us the existence of two reports being presented to the children of Israel. Ten spies claimed that the land was not theirs because they were unable to possess it and they died in the wilderness with all those that did not believe with them. Two spies claimed the land was theirs because God had given it to them and entered into the land eventually as victorious conquerors. Was the Promised Land instantly obtained by the believers Joshua and Caleb? Obviously not, so why then do you believe that God’s promised healing must be instantly manifested? Was not the faith of Joshua and Caleb the determining factor for them entering into the promise? Are they not your examples to follow? We need to put things together correctly and learn the simple process of how faith works. Simple childlike faith in your Father’s words is also what is required for your victory. Faith is the answer to receiving anything from God. What God has given to us by His Grace is yours but it is not guaranteed to happen instantly even if you believe it. Let’s go back to the N.T. and understand this very important concept that I am teaching you for it is the basis for your answer from God:
Heb 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
This is the third verse that I have given to you about faith and God has many others if you want to learn about them. I feel like faith is one of the 3 most important basic subjects found in the Bible to know intimately. God teaches us why the majority of the Christian people on the earth do not receive what God has given to them in this single verse. God declares that “faith” is more than a simple suggestion. God speaks directly to you and informs you that this is how you are required to please Him. If you have no faith, then you cannot please God, it is a clearly stated impossibility. God then informs you what faith is based upon, in the next statement. He that has come to God must first believe that God exists and that He is a God that rewards them for seeking Him. God gives you a prerequisite for two things to believe before you ever come and pray and ask Him for healing. This means that believing these two things about God is essential for receiving anything from the omnipotent Spirit Being that you have never seen and cannot prove exists. From this verse, there are two kinds of people that are implied to never receive anything from God. First, those who believe that God does not exist will never on this earth be bothered by God. Second, those that believe in a punishing judgmental God will never receive anything good from that God either.
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.
You can see that God informs us in this verse that the Prayer of Faith will save (heal) the sick. God is teaching you how to receive healing and declares that it is only by your faith and your prayer working together correctly that you will receive. The key word “save” is the Greek word “sozo”. This again is an all-inclusive work of God dealing with spiritual shortcomings, physical shortcomings, emotional shortcomings and mental shortcomings. What you were lacking in these areas has been given to you by the Grace of God. However, just because they are given does not mean that you possess them like the children of Israel in the O.T. Therefore, what you believe right now is the root for why you are either saved or not saved, or healed or not healed today.
What I am doing is establishing several perquisite factors before the prayer of faith can occur. You see if you believe wrong you will have no firm foundation for what you are praying and asking for. For example if you believe that God will heal you someday in the future then you are not in agreement with what God says in His Word. The Bible says “How can two talk together unless they agree?” (Amos 3:3) God is revealing that the His power works for those that are in agreement with Him. How do you get into agreement with God? You must first learn what He has declared or promised you in His word and then you must believe it with your whole heart and never doubt it again. This is called confidence that what God has said is true regardless of what you are feeling or seeing in your body. This principle is exactly what caused Joshua and Caleb to become winners and not dead men in the wilderness. They had confidence and were in agreement with what God’s Word had declared and they eventually possessed it. That is the spiritual battle that will occur in you today. Just understand that because there was a significant delay from when God told Israel the land was theirs to when they finally possessed it, did not mean that God was the reason for the delay. Delays do not come from God. God was not the reason for the delay. The people were directly responsible for their own outcomes and results.
WHY THINGS SENT FROM GOD SOMETIMES TAKE TIME TO SEE!
Does everything sent from God come instantly so that we can see them immediately? This is actually a very important concept to fully grasp and I think from my previous example of the Promised Land you can clearly see there was a major time delay that transpired. What we need to do today, is to determine from the Bible why delays occur and whose fault are they so that we can understand that it is not God’s fault for them not occurring. Let’s explore a N.T. verse very quickly to help establish the requirement of time in conjunction with our need for patience while continuing to have faith in what our God has said:
Heb 6:12 That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
If time was not a factor for possessing the promises of God then there would be no need for our patience. I only need patience when I am standing in a long line of people that are ahead of me in line. I only need patience when stuck in heavy rush hour traffic and not moving forward. When I do not possess patience then I usually fail to receive what everyone else was in line to get. This could be tickets to a movie or the line to be interviewed for a job. We only need to have patience when there is a time delay for receiving what we desire or believe that we will receive. You can get into a line and ask the last person standing there if it is the line for receiving bread. If they said yes and you wait then you are basing your faith in a person you do not know and trusting they are correct and you will only find out if it was true if you wait to get to the front of the line. If after 5 hours you find out this is the line for vaccination shots and not for bread then you just wasted a lot of time using wrong faith. That is exactly why I teach so much about faith. If you base your faith on God’s word you should have confidence in His ability to perform what He has said and this is why you need patience.
Here is the main factor for why people believe wrong. It is what I call the omnipotence of God factor. If God is omnipotent (meaning all powerful) then why if we pray today do things not instantly happen tomorrow? Have you ever noticed that? I mean is God listening? Does God even hear us? Does God not care that I’m hurting today? Some prayers that I have prayed took weeks or months to see in the natural realm. Honestly some prayers I have yet to see. However, just because some prayers have not happened yet does not mean or prove that they will never happen. So I must continue to believe regardless of what I can see externally like a Joshua and Caleb type of Christian. Let’s investigate a new and very important Bible story example given to us by God and find out what other factors are involved in getting our prayers answered from God. We are going to look at the story of a praying man named Daniel. Come and read in Daniel chapter 10 with me:
Dan 10:2 In those days I Daniel was mourning three full weeks.
Dan 10:3 I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled.
I want you to see the stated timeframe for this story first. God tells us that Daniel has been in prayer for 3 weeks of time. Do you ever pray for three weeks solid? Today that would be very tough to do with our busy lifestyles. I’m not teaching that this is what got the answer from God, I’m just saying there is a stated time lapse that has occurred for us to learn from. Don’t get all works based with me and think you have to do what Daniel did in order to get God to answer your prayer. That is a wrong motivational type of thinking and it should never be followed. We are led by the Spirit of God and not by what Daniel did. You are welcome to go and read all of these verses in Daniel 10 if you like but I’m going to skip down to verse 12 next:
Dan 10:12 Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words.
The speaker in this verse is the angel Gabriel and he declares that God sent him to Daniel because of Daniel’s words. Words of course are the important stated factor for any prayer request to God. If you have no spoken words present then you have no prayer. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that God will answer your silent prayer without words. Daniel had been praying and asking God for wisdom and understanding and the angel shows up with God’s answer around 21 days later after Daniel first started praying. However the angel of God clearly says that he was sent to go to Daniel on the very first day. Why then was there a major delay of 21 days for the angel of God to arrive and tell Daniel the words of God if God sent him on day 1? Is heaven just 21 days from earth and it takes that long to travel between the two? I do not think that is what is stated, do you? Why then did it take so long for the angel to arrive on the earth? I believe that is an excellent question and we will see the answer if we read the next verse:
Dan 10:13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.
Here we have a very important revelation given to us about why things from the Spirit of God often take time in the natural realm to manifest or appear. The angel of God with the message from God told us that he was sent the moment that Daniel prayed, but we are now informed that the “prince of Persia” withstood Gabriel for a period of 3 weeks. This “prince of Persia” is a code name for the angel Lucifer that also has great spiritual power and ability being an anointed cherub. It is stated fairly clearly that Gabriel and Lucifer fought for the duration of the three weeks until Michael another great angel came to help to get the message through to Daniel. What we see being revealed is a spiritual warfare that is unseen in the natural realm. Do you understand that this spiritual war occurs every time that you pray and ask God for anything in the natural realm? Satan is called the prince of the power of the air in Ephesians 2:2. What God is saying is the earth’s atmosphere is Satan realm of domain and rule. Every time an angel is sent to earth from heaven, they must enter this realm of air. Therefore, there is a continuing conflict between these two kingdoms fighting for control. This is the kingdom of light that God rules versus the kingdom of darkness which Satan rules. This is about the time where religious people try to tell me I’m a fool because God is in complete control since He is omnipotent. However, if it is true that God controls what happens on the earth, then why did God have to send the other angel Michael to help Gabriel? Does it make any sense to you? If you don’t believe me that is really not my problem. Just try to understand that like Daniel, this clearly means you have a spiritual enemy working against your prayers to God today. There is nothing new under the sun, everything will continue as it was in Daniel’s day until Satan is finally cast into the lake of fire.
What can we learn from this story of Daniel praying and God sending the answer? We can clearly see that God heard the spoken word prayer immediately the very first day and sent the answer directly without any delay. We can also clearly see that you and God have a spiritual enemy that is trying to stop the answer from appearing to you. Therefore, we can clearly see that God’s answers require time to come because of this spiritual battle that is taking place. What we cannot see clearly stated in this story is the faith of Daniel that was required to keep the answer coming no matter how long it took. Remember Hebrews 11:6? God said we must have faith in order to be pleasing to Him. Daniel was obviously pleasing to God in this story and he received the answer even though it took time to come. Therefore, Daniel possessed the God pleasing kind of faith even though it is not directly mentioned here in this story. We can observe Daniel’s possession of God pleasing faith being indirectly referenced in Hebrews 11:33 as he still possessed it when he shut the mouth of the lions. In the New Testament God tells us that we do not wrestle against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers and the rulers of the darkness of this world (Eph 6:12). God basically informed us in this verse that this spiritual war is still raging in the unseen realm after we pray today. Just try to accept the fact that Joshua had enemies possessing the Promised Land given by God. These enemies were shadows of the real enemies that you are facing today.
THE IMPORTANCE OF LEARNING FROM O.T. EXAMPLES!
There is a very popular Christian misconception (wrong belief) that divine healing is always consistently instantaneous and an immediate supernatural observable miracle or we must withdraw and believe that no one was healed based upon the observable circumstances. Uh Oh? That sounds a lot like someone is not going to enter into the Promised Land because they saw the giants again to me. That as I have stated is a contradiction to walking by faith believing in what God said instead of us walking by our sight. Many times this type of belief will cause certain people not to receive fully what God has clearly already given to them according to His Word. Go back and reread the Old Testament examples and understand how God gave the children of Israel the Promised Land back when He spoke to Abraham and yet they did not possess it physically for over 440 years. The first five books of the Bible were written by Moses and yet Israel did not fully enter into the Promised Land and take control of it until the book of Joshua. From this story I learned several things that I feel are very important for us as Christians to know.
- What the spiritual God had given to man from the spirit realm, man was still required to possess or take control of in the physical realm from the enemies that possessed it.
- Israel’s possession of the Promised Land was not an instant event, but was rather a process that took time to fully manifest?
- There were also very specific enemies that needed to be overcome and driven out of the land that were trying to keep the nation of Israel from God’s promise.
- What God said did eventually come to pass in spite of the stiff necked people that did not want to believe Him. However God did wait to get a new group of believing people that would have faith in His word first.
These are just four of the basic lessons that I learned from the children of Israel. Why is an Old Testament historical story so important for me to understand in the modern church? It is simply because God’s Word tells us that it is important. I am forming my beliefs based upon what God says and reveals in the N.T. and ignoring what people say. Let me show you something God says about Israel:
1Co 10:11 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.
Reading the context you should be able to recognize that God is saying that the stories written concerning the children of Israel were written as examples for all of us that live at the time of the end to learn from. Since we clearly live in the last of the last days on earth we are exactly those people and they are my examples to learn from. However, we can learn from two types of examples. One is a positive example that we should follow and the other is a negative example that we should not follow. Which one was Israel in this story example? I hope that you can see Israel was being a majority negative example not to follow in this story. The time of the church age is closing around us very fast and the final curtain is about to fall. Therefore, we are those people that need to learn from their negative examples before time closes on us.
What can we learn from the Old Testament accounts? I believe the Children of Israel were a type of the people in the church. Israel was in bondage in Egypt for 400 years as a type and a shadow of the people of the earth that were in bondage to Satan for 4000 years. Just as God sent Moses to deliver them from their bondage in Egypt so Jesus came to the earth to deliver us from our sins and the dominion of Satan. There are just too many revealed type examples of the children of Israel for me to teach them all in this lesson. Let’s skip down to the Promised Land and what it represents in Christian typology. Think of the Promised Land as being healing since that is one of my main subjects today that you may not yet possess. If God’s Word declares that He has already given to you your healing and yet you still do not possess it or live in it, then you are technically the one at fault, not God. I know people don’t like that statement, but that is what God teaches us in His Word using the type of Israel. Everyone likes to blame God for them not being healed and God says I have already given to you this spiritual land of health why do you not possess it yet?
Before there was an Israel, God looked at Abram one day and showed him the stars in the heaven and said to him to look because this was his seed in Genesis 15:5. However, Isaac the promised child was not born until Genesis 21:3 many years later. Was the miracle promised birth of Isaac instant or a slow process over time? Why didn’t the words of God suddenly appear so that Abram could instantly see them happen? I believe you can see from just the two initial examples of Abram and Israel that not everything that God declares is always manifested instantly manifested on the earth. In fact there appears to me to be some type of unstated factors for their fulfillment to even occur. You see we often set the wrong beliefs from reading only partial truths found in the Bible. For example, in Genesis 1:3 God looked out over the darkness and says “Light Be” and suddenly and apparently instantly light was present and thus many try to take that isolated truth and exalt it to a universal truth to apply it to everything that God says. This is jumping to the wrong conclusions based upon limited information and Christians do it all the time. If that was how everything that God said works then there would be no other verses found in the Bible that would display anything differently. Since I just showed you that what God said to Israel and Abram did not work that way we have to now adjust our beliefs to include some new additional information, balancing both realities. There are so many examples in the Bible of God prophesying something hundreds or even thousands of years before it actually occurs and then suddenly it happens and is fulfilled. How then do we resolve this new variable time conflict in the factor of our beliefs? Do you understand what I am asking you? Why are God’s words not always immediately seen as fulfilled if God is omnipotent and all powerful and capable of doing anything? Let me try to tie my question to the mainline subject of healing today. When were, God’s Words of healing spoken and when will they be fulfilled or are they already fulfilled now in relation to the factor of time that we live within. For example, read this next verse about healing very carefully:
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.
Here we have another prime example of God saying to the church that we were already healed and yet many of the people in the church today are clearly not healed. Our hospitals are full of Christian people that are physically hurting and dying daily. This verse in 1 Peter 2:24 is a partial quote from a verse in Isaiah 53:5. The verse as written in Isaiah is translated as future tense as a porphecy that we will be healed by Christ’s work to come. However clearly in 1st Peter after Christ has died and was raised from the dead the work has been accomplished and it is referenced as a past tense done and completed work of God. Are there any direct connections of commonality found in this pattern with the observed statement spoken by God to Israel that “I have given you the Promised Land” past tense and yet they still did not have it physically in their possession? If you examine the phrasing here in 1 Peter 2:24 and look up the words in the Greek dictionary, everything stated is in the past-tense phrasing, like it has already occurred in the eyes of God. How can God possibly say we are healed when we are not? What we begin to observe is a major stated difference between two opposing points of view again. Two reports are being stated. You can believe the ten spies or you can be a Joshua and Caleb type of Christian and believe God. One statement is from God’s perspective looking at us spiritually saying we are healed and one statement is from our human perspective looking only naturally at the circumstances of things saying it is not yet fulfilled. How do we resolve this? I don’t have the time to teach you everything here in one lesson. This is where you must believe when you cannot see. I just want you to try to begin to see things differently from God’s perspective and that will start the change process on the outside to see it in the natural. Become a Joshua and Caleb type of Christian believing in what God has said while overcoming the natural observations that are conflicting with His word. Notice I did not say ignore them, I said to overcome them and that is totally different.
I think I will continue this lesson in another follow-up one to come. I have many more things to say on this subject but I have really gone long enough in this one. I so appreciate your faithfulness to study the Bible with me. I value your time and God sees our hearts and knows our motives for what we do. I think you can see that I spend a lot of time in writing these serious important Bible lessons. I do this for two main reasons. First I believe that God told me to do them so I am being led by the Spirit of God to teach. Second, studying the Bible helps me to learn from God and if it helps me to learn then I can certainly help someone else to also learn. God bless you tremendously and if you have any questions or comments on this or any subject please feel free to share them with me. God Bless you!
If you would like to continue reading in this series you may continue with “Part 7“.
(Ver 1.3) Today’s lesson is Part 5 in the Bible study series about “Understanding the Subjects of Healing, Sickness and Disease”. In this series we have been exploring the Bible foundations to recognize God’s truth and perspective on the subject of where does physical healing, sickness and disease actually come from? I have already introduced you to a lot of information in this Bible lesson series that will not all be repeated exactly as stated before, therefore if you have not read every lesson from the beginning, I would strongly suggest that you go and start your reading with “Part 1”. I usually do not focus on the erroneous teachings of other men, but I think this is a valid approach to take since there are so many erroneous things about healing being taught by many churches. What I will attempt to do today is not to teach you the foundational basis for the error, but rather to teach you to see the counter truth to the inaccuracy using God’s Word. One of my chief goals in all of my Bible lessons is not to give you a fish but rather to teach you how to fish from God’s word for yourself. This concept of learning to see the truth for yourself will help you not to be deceived by anyone that will try to come to you and present something new that contradicts with what God wanted you to know. Therefore, we must counter the error with only the truth of God to help other people from falling into Satan’s traps of deception. So today will be a Bible lesson about many of the wrong teachings found in churches about healing, sickness and disease to help you. Obviously this will not cover every false teaching in the world on the subjects and it will not be a comprehensive level of detail on any one subject that could have been accomplished. It will however give you an overview of the vast problems associated with a few teachings that I know are in error.
BRIEF REVIEW OF WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED SO FAR
Since it has been a long time since I posted on this subject, I think it would be good to briefly mention a few of the things that we have learned in the series. We know from reading the Bible that when our world and the first man Adam were created by God, He looked at it all and said it was “Very Good” (Gen 1:31). Therefore according to God, no evil, like sickness existed prior to sin. If Adam was not created sick, where then did sickness come from? The first mention of the healing of human sickness actually occurs many years after creation in Genesis 20:17. From God’s timeline this has to be nearly two thousand years after Adam. I will also say that the book of Job is reported to be the oldest book in the Bible and it has mention of sickness and healing. However the exact timeframe of the book of Job is not known. The book of Job probably occurs sometimes after Noah and before Abraham. We may talk about Job in future lessons since this book is widely misapplied to accuse God with causing sickness by Satan to occur on Job. For now let’s concentrate on Genesis 20. In this verse Abraham prays to God for Abimelech and his wife and it is stated that God healed them because of the prayer. This is actually very important to note that the first recorded healing in Genesis is stated to have come from God through the vehicle of human prayer. I believe that is important to know.
We also know from Bible study that Adam’s sin was the main factor for man knowing evil according to Genesis 3:22. In this verse God states that evil entered into the world and man has now come to know something besides knowing only God’s goodness. Therefore I have concluded that sin was the root cause for all evil including sickness to enter into the world. However do not misunderstand what I said. Just because sin was the root cause for all sickness, this does not mean that it was necessarily your sin that caused your sickness. You see there was a transfer of death upon all men from the original sin of the one man Adam. Since sickness is nothing but a minor precursor to death we should know that Adam’s sin has now passed this curse to everyone else that has descended from him according to 1 Corinthians 15:22. There are such things as generational curses that are handed down from parent to child and from generation to generation. This is why doctors ask about family history of certain diseases. If your parent had it then you are more likely to also have it. Perhaps in a future lesson we will talk more about this generational curse factor revealed in the Bible.
I further showed you in lesson one that sickness was the curse for disobeying God’s law revealed to us in Deuteronomy 28. Any disobedience is called a sin of commission or omission and we are all guilty of this according to Romans 5:12. You may recall that I gave you one example of Jesus healing a paralytic man that couldn’t walk. In this story Jesus said to him first “Your sins are forgiven” and all of the Jews drew up in arms that Jesus could forgive sin. In this story found in Matthew 9 you will see that Jesus attributes a direct link between sickness and sin. Jesus was basically teaching us that the cause of sin resulted in the effect of sickness. When Jesus told the man his sins were forgiven Jesus was saying son you are healed. Are your sins forgiven by the shed blood of Jesus today? Well according to Jesus you should be healed also. The Greek word translated as “saved” is the word “sozo” and it means to be made whole. This was an all-inclusive work of God. God gave to men salvation which included spiritual health, mental health, physical health and financial health. In other words God relieved us from the curse and you can read that by finding it in Galatians 3:13.
I hope you also understood the concept that I presented about a house being divided will not stand. If God makes you sick and also heals you then His house is divided and by His own admission of law will not stand. Jesus revealed a basic truth that states any house or kingdom can be easily defeated if it is not strongly unified in a singleness of purpose. Therefore, evil and sickness must only come from the house of Satan that is evil and healing which is good can only come from the house of God that is consistently good! Finally I taught you one lesson on the Father’s heart revealed to us in the parable of the Prodigal Son. The father was not out to inflict the child for being stupid, the father’s heart was directed at only re-establishing the son to his place in the family because of his great love for his son. This is clearly a picture of God and His desire to bless you today. These were all just some of the basic important concepts already discussed. I pray that you took hold of them and accepted them as the truth. Now let’s explore some error.
THE ERROR OF AN OLD TESTAMENT DOMINATED THEOLOGY
There are literally too many unfounded erroneous teachings about healing, sickness and disease found in the modern church today. I will start this lesson with one that is very popular. I find this error in more of my comments on this website than almost any other mistake that people make. Reading the Old Testament in isolation is one of the most prevalent problems with modern theological teachings. There are literally many mistranslated verses found in the Old Testament that people use to establish their wrong beliefs. Because people do not know or understand how God wrote the Bible, they can easily be misguided by what they read in the Old Testament. We must begin by first asking “Is the truth plainly presented in the Old Testament”? If you feel like it is, then you are already deceived and lack understanding that is required by God. There is nothing of any spiritual value in the Old Testament that is clearly presented. I probably just lost a bunch of readers with that statement. However consider what Jesus said about the Old Testament before you turn me completely off:
Joh 5:39 Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.
This is one of the most important statements that Jesus taught us about all of the words written in the Old Testament. Jesus said that nothing you could read was self-evident concerning the truth about Him. In fact Jesus just literally said you must “search” to even find Him. That means He is not easily found. To search the Old Testament implies the hidden meaning that the words about Jesus were not placed upon the surface text for us to easily locate. Have you ever lost your car keys? Have you ever had to do a house room to room search to find them? That is exactly what Jesus is teaching you about you finding Him anywhere in the Old Testament. Jesus claimed it was going to take great effort of you looking for you to find Him on the pages. That is a very important concept for you to learn.
One of the most important things that you can learn from me today is for you to never read the Old Testament without first reading the New Testament very closely and understanding it as completely as possible. Begin your every Bible Study by understanding this very basic Bible interpretation law. The Old Testament is the New Testament in a concealed format. The New Testament is the Old Testament hidden concepts being revealed to the church. Therefore we must use all of the New Testament revelations to understand anything that was written in the Old Testament. If you fail to do this you are in error. If your pastor is teaching you mostly from the Old Testament without using any of the New Testament to explain it, you need to find a new church very fast. We in the church are not under the law of the Old Covenant (Rom 6:15). Therefore we are not under that covenant. There is a major division within the Bible that occurs between Malachi and Matthew. The words written prior to Matthew are primarily directed to a natural people and the words written after Matthew are primarily written to a spiritual people. Of course this is much more complicated than I just stated.
Rom 16:25 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,
This is another very important scripture to understand. Do you know what “revelation” is? God defines the word “revelation” as “a disclosure”. This Greek word translated as “revelation” literally comes from a root word that means to “take the cover off”. Revelation is the act of revealing what was once hidden from plain view. Therefore we must understand that the words written on the pages did not change but only the meaning they convey were adjusted so that we could see them like God could see them. As you can read in this verse, God revealed to us mysteries that were kept secret from the foundation of the world. How did God do this? God does this by writing in plain text code. I do not mean that He encrypted the text and made it unreadable; I just mean that He hid the spiritual meanings of the words being encapsulated within the natural word text making them easily overlooked by the carnal dominated mind of the reader. This is still what occurs today for most people reading the Old Testament and thinking they understand it without checking out what God explains and reveals about the subjects in the New Testament. Because people do not understand these concepts they are vastly confused about many subjects in the Bible. You cannot understand anything in the Old Testament without first finding God’s definitions, explanations and revelations in the New Testament. That could have been the most important thing that I teach you all day.
Here is an interesting fact about the New Testament. God quotes the Old Testament nearly 300 times in the New Testament. This fact means that every 1 in 22 N.T. verses is an Old Testament quoted verse. If you have a NASB translation of the Bible you will easily find the quotes since they are presented in ALL CAPS. This will greatly help you in your search for them. If one in every 22 verses is quoting the Old Testament then the other 22 verses are potential explanations of the revelation about what the O.T. verse meant. This means that you must read and study these N.T. verses to even come close to begin to know what the Old Testament verses were saying originally. Paul taught us plainly that what he taught the early church came as a direct revelation from Jesus (Gal 1:12). If Paul required extensive revelation to understand the Old Testament scriptures, then you also need the same kind of revelation to understand God’s O.T. words. However it is noteworthy that what they taught in the New Covenant was completely verifiable from what was written in the Old Testament:
Act 17:11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
We can clearly see from this verse that the early noble church at Berea used the O.T. to verify everything that Paul was teaching to them. Notice however, that this was the exact same book that the Jews had read for 1500 years and they could not see what they were now seeing being revealed by Jesus. There were no new words added to the O.T. text. The only event that had occurred was that God had finally revealed what the words on the old scrolls meant and that changed everything. So what am I saying to you today? Are you learning anything? Do not read the Old Testament in isolation thinking that you understand what it means about any subject. Your carnal mind and human reasoning is too small to comprehend God’s vast hidden meanings and there is literally no way that you will understand them correctly without first learning to view them through the New Testament.
OLD TESTAMENT CONFLICTS WITH NEW TESTAMENT REVELATION
Because this is such an important topic to understanding the differences between New Testament revelations and Old Testament mysteries, I’m going to reemphasize it with some direct Bible examples about what I just taught in the last section. Let’s begin by defining the word “sick” from the Bible. This Hebrew word that is often translated as sick literally means to be rubbed or worn. It is the opposite term of being new or being without imperfections, faults or failures. Healthy is of course the opposite of being sick from our modern vocabulary. Therefore, God is basically saying to be sick is to be like a pair of jeans with worn holes in them. Sickness is a condition that demonstrates your human weakness and it shous us a condition that we were not in when originally designed and created by God. Therefore according to God to be sick is like having worn holes in you pants. I know many ignorant people today like their jeans with holes in them, but I’m not that stupid to pay extra money for a garment that is distressed and imperfect. Therefore, human sickness is a weakness to the fabric of life and health and a precursor to death which is the complete failure of the life and health fabric.
What is the definition of the Hebrew word that was translated as “heal”? To heal according to God is to repair or mend that which was broken or in need of fixing. Healing is defined to be a cure or a reversal for whatever made you sick. Therefore we must use these new definitions to figure out if our God broke us just so that He could come to the earth personally to fix us? That obviously does not make any logical sense to me but that is what many are teaching us today. I do not intentionally break my car just so I can fix it. I never break a china plate to try to glue it back together. That would be insanity and not creativity and the revealed nature of our God. Let’s go back to the Old Testament and see a verse:
Deu 7:15 And the LORD will take away from thee all sickness, and will put none of the evil diseases of Egypt, which thou knowest, upon thee; but will lay them upon all them that hate thee.
Here is a classic Old Testament verse about sickness being attributed to God’s purpose. We have a direct stated conflict in this verse that violates many of the New Testament scriptures that are impossible to believe while believing what this verse says as translated. If we take this verse literally as stated it means God is either good or evil depending upon some unknown or unstated factor. If God takes away sickness from Israel but also puts the same sicknesses on Egypt then that is an inconsistent God of indeterminate uncertainty. Clearly His house is divided if we take this verse literally and we do not know if we should pray and ask God for healing or stop and be humble and thank God for sending us the sickness to enjoy. That is an idiotic type of Christian thinking to interpret the Bible this way. You see you cannot find God making anyone sick in the Gospels. Jesus never walked up to anyone and said “I will bless you to be ill today”. Jesus consistently healed everyone and that was the revealed nature of my God. Therefore we cannot interpret anything differently from the Old Testament if it violates the revelation given to us from the New Testament.
Many people just do not understand that every English Bible translations contain flaws of human error and wrong human interpretation embedded in them; they will read these Old Testament verses and think that God has caused sickness to occur while ignoring the revealed God in the flesh in the New Testament. I can literally find many verses translated like this in the O.T. Bible. But that does not mean I must believe them over what God says to me in the Gospels and the letters written directly to the church. Whatever was written by God in the New Testament, now take precedence over everything that was written in the O.T. What is precedence? Precedence is technically a legal term that means those words have priority over the other stated words. This could be present for many reasons, but just remember that these New Testament words do not replace the Old Testament words, but that they certainly do explain them. The church should realize what covenant they are joined to and then make that one their priority as I was trying to teach you in the last section. Make this determination right now; if you are under the law of the O.T. then you should never attempt to read the N.T. However, if you are under the grace of the New Covenant then you should never read the O.T. without using the revealed light of God found in N.T. to understand what was written in the Old. This is just very basic spiritual reasoning that God taught me.
This is one of the most significant reasons why people believe things in error today about healing. They will read an Old Testament verse about God making someone sick believing they understand it but when they finally explore the entire subject using the New Testament God has changed the definition of what they thought He said in the O.T. to reveal a new understanding of the subject for the saints. This is why in an earlier lesson that I mentioned that Acts 10:38 was a critical verse on the subject of healing, sickness and disease. You should recall that this verse attributed all healing to Jesus and all sickness to satanic oppression. This new information changes our old interpretations of every other verse in the Old Testament about sickness. Many times human translators would accuse God of doing something when it really should have been translated using the permissive verbiage. There is a major difference between a causative God of sickness and a permissive God of sickness. If God causes sickness in the O.T. this would directly conflict with Acts 10:38 and all of the Gospels where Jesus is only revealed to have healed and never made anyone sick. If you learn nothing else from me today you need to learn how to interpret the Bible using the New Testament explanations, definitions and revealed information and I know that is probably the third time that I said that. But you really need to get that into your study habits because there are things explained in the New Testament that you will never see directly mentioned anywhere in the Old Testament.
GOD USES SICKNESS TO CORRECT OR TEACH HIS PEOPLE
Heb 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.
Here is a very popular modern belief taught by many seminary graduates. Some in the modern church teach that our God the creator of heaven and earth sent us sickness as punishment, or correction, or as a teaching tool. Many have come to me and asked me how God corrects His children like Hebrews 12:6 says if not with sickness like my pastor says this means. What you need to do is to read and study your Bible and then just ignore everything that your pastor says that does not match with what you see that the Bible actually says. People can try to make the Bible say whatever they like, but that does not change what it actually says. You have eyes and a brain and the Spirit of God in you if you are saved. Ask God to show you what the Word says and then believe what He says. Here in this verse in Hebrews, it does not mention sickness not once and still people have tried to claim this is how God affects His children with correction. Just read the Bible and believe what it says and do not add to it what it does not say. That is one of the main rules of correct Bible interpretation. God tells us that no scripture of prophecy is of any private interpretation (2 Peter 1:20). God is basically saying I will tell you what it means, therefore, don’t invent your own meaning because it will be wrong.
So why is the belief that God afflicts Christians with sickness for correction a bad belief to believe in? First it will keep you from seeking divine healing that clearly comes from God (Exo 15:26, Psa 103:3). Second, it violates the laws of singleness of purpose given to us by Jesus in an undivided kingdom (Mat 12:25). Third, it would violate God’s word that says God does not ever change (Mal 3:6). Fourth, it would violate the character of God revealed in the Son of God Jesus in the Gospels. You cannot ever find Jesus making someone sick for any reason. Jesus was unified in the sole purpose of healing only and thus His kingdom will stand forever and not be divided. I just gave you four great reasons why God will not correct you using sickness. I hope and pray that you got them!
GOD’S SOVEREIGN CONTROL OF THE UNIVERSE
There is another very popular belief being taught that because God is sovereign that He controls whatever happens to us good, bad or neutral. This is just another example of extremism; people taking one truth and trying to apply it as the only truth that is necessary for what we believe. This is a huge mistake in wrong Bible interpretation. I think I have shown you in this series that this was not what the Bible says and that sickness came as a result of man’s disobedience, his sinful choices and his independent actions that were implemented by his own freewill. Extremism on any subject is an unbalanced approach at understanding God and the Bible. It promotes an isolationism theology that ignores every other revealed truth on opposing subjects. Certainly I believe that God is sovereign and I do not disqualify His ability as the Omnipotent Being to control everything if He so desired. However for me to believe that He does this violates the definition of a God described to be Love (Agape) in 1 John 4:16. Then there is this verse; God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him would not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). This verse in John describes a major conflict with God sovereignly placing sickness on people. Why would the sovereign God come to save me and then tell me that I could be saved, if I only I believe? Did you see what I just asked you? Does that make any sense to you? Whose choice is it to believe mine or God’s? Obviously it is my sovereign choice to believe that causes me to begin to be saved. You didn’t know you were a sovereign being did you? A sovereign being is anyone that has the ability to make an independent decision without external control or influence. Did you decide to get out of bed this morning? If you did then you made a sovereign choice. Of course if you decided to stay in bed this morning you would have still made a sovereign choice in what you did. Nothing you do today can be placed upon anyone but you. You have been given responsibility and control of your destiny. Actually technically speaking you are not a completely independent agent as a human. After Satan entered the world and Adam lost his sovereignty over the earth, Satan became the god of this world (2 Cor 4:4). Before Satan entered into the world Adam was a completely independent sovereign being. We learned from Jesus’ law of singleness in purpose again that Satan has a kingdom (Mat 12:26). Therefore, we are either in the kingdom of light (Jesus) or the kingdom of darkness (Satan) (1 Th 5:5) and we will all choose which eternal kingdom to reside in by whether we believe and are saved or do not believe and are damned (Mk 16:16). Having the ability to choose what we believe in is a direct design feature of every man and woman. The pure ability of man to believe and choose makes God’s sovereign control inconceivable.
Let’s expand and continue to explore the notion that our loving Heavenly Father is still the author of all of the sickness today because of His sovereign control of the planet. This extreme sovereign control theology has great potential for harm because it relieves man of any human responsibility and future accountability. If God is in complete sovereign control then I have nothing to do today to be saved or lost. Is that what the Bible says? What about future accountability? Accountability is simply the responsibility to do something that you should have done. Is there coming a judgment upon every man? If God is in sovereign control of what happens to every man, what then is there to judge? Do you see any problem with that? You cannot ever judge what you caused to happen or you will be forced to judge yourself. Judgment is simply the responsibility of only the Judge to pass sentence for an independent violation for someone that is held accountable for doing something or not doing something. If I stole something from you then I could be found guilty of violating the laws against theft. If you caused me to steal something from you then you are now guilty for what I did and I am not responsibile for my actions. Therefore, I can only be judged fairly by a judge that was not involved in what I did and I must be held accountable and made responsible for not doing it right. Who is this Supreme independent fair Judge and who will He judge?
Act 10:42 And he commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is he which was ordained of God to be the Judge of quick and dead.
According to the Bible God is the judge of the living and the dead. The living and the dead are two separate opposite categories of people. You cannot be the living dead nor can you be the dead living. You are either dead today or you are alive inside. Of course these are figurative language definitions for the status of salvation. Those that are alive are those spirits that are in the Kingdom of Light and have believed. Those that are dead spirits are those that have not believed and are in the kingdom of darkness. Both are eternal spirits, but classified in two individual sub-sets. This is really not rocket science but it proves God is not in sovereign control of what you or I do or what we decide to believe in. God is the supreme judge and the only ability for any fair judgment to occur in the future is for the Judge to be independent of the crime being judged. If God caused you to believe what you believe or not to believe then He should be judged by all of us for making us this way. Clearly that is a major problem with that line of thought.
Extreme sovereign God philosophy teachers clearly do not understand the concept or the definition of what love is and that God is defined to be only love in 1 John 4:16 as I stated earlier. Does God love His spiritual children differently than I love my natural children? If you think so, then you do not know God. If I loved my natural child here on the earth, I would not want them to be sick no matter what they did and if I chose to make them sick on purpose after they have disobeyed me then I would now be guilty of being a child abuser in need of prison. Sovereign control is a modern philosophy taught in some churches that tries to convince people that no matter what we do as humans that we cannot change what God has given to us to endure or suffer through. People who believe this clearly have not read the Bible. This type of belief disqualifies prayer and the power of God to heal. I could probably say a lot more about this subject, but I’m just hitting some high points on every subject and not trying to do an in-depth teaching on every issue.
DID DIVINE HEALING CEASE WITH THE DEATH OF THE APOSTLES?
Still many others in the church teach that God did heal people in the Gospels and through the early church, but all of that ceased when the last apostles died. This teaching is very popular because it relieves them of accountability and responsibility. It is another twisted example of the extreme God Control Theology. This erroneous teaching denies that the apostles were in the same church as we are today. This teaching contradicts the verse that says Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today and forever (Heb 13:8). You see everyone in the church is clearly defined to be the complete one body of Christ (Rom 12:5). In other words there are not two bodies, three bodies or more bodies of Christ; there is just one unified body that exists. Since Peter, James and John were in the same body of Christ as us, then what they could do we can also potentially do because we are still the same body. Christ does not ever change according to Hebrews 13:8 and therefore if Christ healed anyone in Acts, Christ still heals today. Don’t make yourself independent from Christ or you are none of His.
What else is wrong with this teaching of treating apostles differently than disciples? Are you a disciple? Jesus said in John 13:35 that they will know that you are my disciples if you have love one for another. Who was Jesus talking to? I believe that He was talking to me and you. Therefore everyone is a disciple even if you are not an apostle a prophet, an evangelist, pastor or a teacher. To attribute that only the apostles healed anyone is a clear misunderstanding of God and the scripture. For example, in Luke 10:1-18 Jesus sends out 70 disciples and not 12 apostles. How many more is 70 than 12? Even if the 70 included the 12 that leaves 58 that were not apostles of the Lamb. Why is this important? This is only important to see because Jesus told them all to heal the sick in verse 9. Clearly we can see in verse 18 that all of the 70 returned to tell Jesus that even the demons were subject to them. Uh oh, that means they healed the sick that were oppressed with devils (Acts 10:38). It is very obvious to me that healing was a disciple gift and instruction and not just an apostle gift and instruction. Don’t put God into your box to define what He can do or not do with His disciples in His Church. He is the Head of the Church and you are not.
Let’s talk about another scriptural conflict with why healing did not stop with the apostles. Is God a respecter of persons and does He show any favoritism to anyone? Can you find anyone getting healed in the Old Testament? I can find several. Can you find anyone getting healed in the Gospels? Again I can find many. Why then do you think that healing has ceased for today? This alone violates Hebrews 13:8 that says God never changes. Believing that only certain apostles can heal denies God to be the healer. This belief conflicts with verses like Acts 10:34 and 1 Peter 1:17 that proclaims God is no respecter of persons. If God only gave the healing power to the early disciples then that would be a denial of the power to me as a disciple of Christ. This would first mean that God has changed. Then it would mean that what He did for Peter, James, and John, He will not do for me and I believe that is a major problem to your theology based upon God being no respecter of person. That type of belief would mean that they were special, but I am not simply because I was born in another generation to come. That is clearly a false belief and the violation of the Word of God. We cannot allow scriptural conflicts to stand. We must use the Bible to understand the Bible. If healing ceased then the Word of God has ceased. My Bible says in the Old Testament that “He sent His word and healed them” (Ps 107:20). We know from New Testament revelation that Jesus is the Word of God incarnate (John 1:1-14) that came and healed us (1 Peter 2:24). So Jesus is the healer and not any apostle. Therefore, if Jesus is alive today and He is, healing has not ceased. Nowhere in the Bible can you find an apostle claiming to be the healer. Therefore do not allow men to teach you otherwise.
SHOULD WE SEEK GOD OR SHOULD WE SEEK DOCTORS TO GET HEALED?
There are also a few ignorant teachers who claim the healing power of God ceased with the death of the apostles that have justified in their minds that this is the reason why we have modern medicine, doctors and hospitals in existence today. This teaching is just another example or a variation of the extremism philosophy of the Divine Sovereign Control Theology. In other words, they believe that what God had done previously though His Spirit and His word has now shifted to a physical pill or the hand of a surgeon type of man called a doctor. They have in effect exalted a man into the previous position of God and that sounds like an anti-Christ type of teaching to me. This is one of the most ignorant backwards types of reasoning that I have ever heard conceived up. I would find it humorous if it were not so dangerous. These teachers claim in error that God has changed His healing methods and approach and that only a natural doctor is now God’s healing agents for all of humanity.
Therefore this teaching immediately violates Hebrews 13:8 and Malachi 3:6 that teach us that God never changes. Why is this false teaching so dangerous? This teaching shifts the focus off of God onto a man that we can see and that makes it a treacherous error. If your eyes are on a man then you are missing the God who is the healer. This teaching denies the need for a Christian to even pray to God and ask for healing or guidance. In fact it denies the human responsibility of being led by the Spirit of God to know what to do in the case of sickness. Being led by the Spirit of God is a requirement according to Romans 8:14 therefore to be led by a doctor to get healed you are not being led by the perfect God but by imperfect human doctors. According to them we should all just go to the doctor and they will handle it all now for God and what will occur will occur as the will of God. Clearly this is a very bad teaching that causes many people to die today since no doctor is God and knows everything. Let’s take a look at what the Bible actually says about doctors:
2Ch 16:12 And Asa in the thirty and ninth year of his reign was diseased in his feet, until his disease was exceeding great: yet in his disease he sought not to the LORD, but to the physicians.
I do not think that it is entirely bad to seek a doctor’s advice, but what I do find troubling is not first seeking God’s advice. Clearly God speaks about the king in negative terms for his ignorance of only seeking for doctors to help him. Doctors being fellow ignorant humans are technically incapable of healing anyone. Most of the time doctors treat the symptoms but rarely do they fully implement cures of complete wholeness. If you read the very next verse you will see what occurred by only seeking doctors. The Bible says that Asa died and was buried with his fathers. Clearly this is a major conflict with the seek doctor only modern teaching and it ignores God. There is another greater example of seeking physicians found in Mark 5:26. In this story of the woman with the issue of blood she had sought a cure for her problem for 12 years with doctors and finally turned and sought to touch Jesus after hearing about Him. Clearly the doctors could not help her and only seeking God brought the answer. I learn several things from this example. First, seeking the doctor’s help did not keep her from being cured and made whole by God. But, I also learned that her answer came by her only seeking Jesus. Therefore I have concluded if you need a doctor’s help seek one. But in your seeking do not neglect the real healer and seek Him more diligently.
IS IT THE WILL OF GOD TO HEAL TODAY?
Here is another major problem taught in many churches today by words and actions. Certain preachers do not know if it is the will of God for healing to occur so they do not understand how to pray and ask God for healing or they fail to do it completely. Many times these preachers will constantly pray and ask for healing “If it by thy will”. There is a major lesson taught to all lawyers and attorneys. You never ask a question to anyone on the witness stand that you already do not know the answer they will give to you. This same principle works for healing and all Christian prayer. If you do not already know that God’s answer is yes for what you are asking then you are asking in error and praying in the dark. That is a major revelation to understanding why many are not healed today. Do you remember the story of the leprous man that comes to Jesus for healing?
Mat 8:2 And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.
Here is a man that desperately needs help and divine healing but he does not know if it is Jesus’ will to help him. Any time there is a question mark present there is a hindrance to receiving healing from God. The man clearly knows that Jesus has the ability and the power to heal him but does not know if it is the will of God to heal him personally. He must have learned about the power by the observation of what happened to others touched by Jesus. But what happens to others is no guarantee for what might happen to you. You can never base your faith upon what others possess or fail to possess. You must answer all of the questions in your own mind and then you will have the ability to receive for your situation.
Mat 8:3 And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
Here was Jesus’ response to the leprous man. Jesus told him “I will” and that is a universal statement of truth for you also. This statement reveals God will for all healing. It is God’s will for you to be saved, healed and delivered from everything that the enemy had you trapped under. We know since we have read repeatedly in the Bible that Jesus is never changing as revealed in Hebrews 13:8, that Jesus will still say “I will” today. Therefore God’s will was to heal in Matthew 8:3 and God’s will is still to heal in today’s modern time. Knowing this information now you do not have to pray to ask God if it be your will and you can just ask and receive knowing it was His will to begin with.
I think I have covered enough for one lesson. I know there are many other false teachings that promote coonfusion and division in the church. If you know of other false teachings surrounding the subject of healing I would be glad to learn about them from you. If you are not sure what your preacher is teaching is right or worong, then you may also ask me that if you desire. Hopefully you will have learned that you can find the answers also if you search your Bible for them. Finally always remember my main point about reading the Old Testament. If you are not looking at the Old Testament through eyes corrected with the New Testament glasses, then you are blindly reading a hidden message from God. Thanks for reading and we will do another lesson in this series later. God Bless.
(Ver 1.1) This is now Part 4 in a series of advanced Bible lessons about where Sickness and Disease Came From. If you have not read this series of lessons from the beginning, then I would suggest that you go back to Part 1 and start there. In today’s lesson I want to directly focus in on a false teaching that is found in many churches that causes many people to remain in sickness. Many confused and ignorant ministers want to claim that Paul had a physical sickness, disease or disability from God and since he endured this with such great patience and humility we should also submit to the will of God and endure it the same way. I have actually heard people teach this as if it was a message from God or a Bible verse. They have theorized that since the Bible says that Paul was struck down blind on the road to Damascus by the brign light coming from Jesus that he had continuing and ongoing eyesight problems that followed him into his maturing years caused by God. They even use a verse found in Galatians 6:1 where Paul makes a statement “You see what a large letter that I have written unto you”, to say Paul was using Greek letters that were written extra-large to allow him to see them. Wow, you can really make the Bible say whatever you want it to say, can’t you? I personally believe that in Galatians 6:1 Paul was referring that the amount of information covered in his letter to the Galatians was what was a great size and I believe that he was not talking about the size of his handwriting. But, you can believe whatever you like and be wrong. So let’s look at the controversial verse written in 2 Corinthians and see exactly what it says about Paul’s thorn in the flesh:
2Co 12:7 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
I want to start this lesson with the emphasized point given to us of why Paul had this thorn. Rather than determining what the thorn is or who gave it to him, let us focus only on the why it was there factor. I actually believe that this reason of why it was present is more important than Paul having a thorn. You can clearly read in 2 Corinthians 12:7 the fact that Paul said this thorn was present because of the abundance of the revelations that were given to him. Uh oh? You can begin today by asking yourself this question, are you a Paul? How many revelations have you been given in the past 10 to 20 years? Could you write 2/3 of the New Testament? If you have not been given the same number of revelations as Paul, then you are not a Paul and you do not qualify to have a thorn. I really do not care what the thorn is right now, if it is a sickness or a disease, you must ask yourself why you are sick and if you can say it is because of the abundant revelations that you have been given by Jesus then you are potentially the same as Paul. Otherwise if you have not been given abundant revelations from God then you do not qualify for a thorn. This is very simple logic based upon the words in the scripture. This further makes it just so simple to determine now if you even qualify to have a thorn. God was intelligent enough to write you and tell you why there was a thorn and then you must be intelligent enough to figure out if you are eligible for the thorn. Based upon this information the vast majority of people teaching, preaching and hearing this verse do not qualify for it. Later we will examine what a thorn is using the Bible, but for now I want you to judge yourself and make a count of how many revelations you have been given. If there are so many that you can’t count them all, then you are qualified. Maybe I should stop and define what a revelation is so that you can understand that concept first.
A revelation is a New Testament concept. The word “revelation” only occurs 10 times in the New Testament. Of course there is a book of the Bible called “Revelation” and this is the final book of the Bible that describes the time of the end. There are no direct revelations given in the Old Testament that I know of. But, do not misunderstand what I am saying. God did have prophets in the Old Testament that were given words to speak from God, but if the prophets understood the Words it would shock me tremendously. Let me give you the definition of the Greek word from the Strong’s that is translated as “revelation” so that you see what it means:
From G601; disclosure: – appearing, coming, lighten, manifestation, be revealed, revelation.
The Greek word translated as “revelation” is from another Greek word that means “to take off the cover”. There is a clear implication given to us that the Word of God had a cover on it. So a revelation is a revealing of the Word of God. This of course further implies that the Word of God was a vastly hidden complex spiritual set of information that needs to be uncovered for us to understand it. It would be like when a waiter in a restaurant brings out a covered dish to your table and you do not know what it is until they take off the lid and reveal it. This was how the Old Testament was written. It had a covering over it that did not permit any man to understand the true meanings that it contained. This is a concept that I call “Hiding the Truth in Plain Sight” and I write about this a lot. These are techniques that God implemented in His Word using His extreme intelligence that allowed Him to use words that we can clearly read, but yet the way they were presented to us, it is almost impossible to understand them correctly until the Spirit of God reveals them to us. Let me give you some more scriptures from Galatians about this subject to teach you more about the concepts of revelations. Let me show you where Paul said he got what he taught from the Bible:
Gal 1:11 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man.
Paul is talking about the Gospel that he was preaching to the people on the earth and he tells you that these words did not come from a man. This is just another way of telling you he didn’t learn it from a church denomination, a Sunday school, a seminary or even a preacher. These are usually the institutions which teach the doctrines of men. You see many churches in the world today only know how to teach lessons that they learned from other men and they have no spiritual substance or value to them. These types of men are not led by the Spirit of God, they are usually led by books, calendars, denomination plans and lessons and other doctrines of men. Paul tells you exactly where he got his message and it is not from any of these usual places:
Gal 1:12 For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.
If Jesus Christ came to you one day and taught you something awesome in the Bible, what would have been Jesus’ purpose for doing this? Is it just for you alone? Why do you think that Jesus gave Paul such great revelations of the Word of God, was it for Paul personally to grow up spiritually and no one else? Of course it was not, Paul was called by God to be a teacher of the Word of God, and so Jesus came and taught him what to teach. Can Jesus still do this today? I know for a fact that He can and has. Did you know it makes all the difference in the world where your preacher got his message that he teaches you on Sunday morning? If it comes from a book other than the Bible, it is worthless no matter how entertaining it might be. We can clearly see that Paul claims to have been taught by Jesus Christ and the message that he taught was the words of Jesus and not the words of Paul or any other man. We are definitely starting to understand why Paul had a thorn in his flesh, even though we still do not yet have a clue what this was. Before I move on in this subject let me teach more about what a revelation is:
Eph 3:3 How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words,
As you can read a revelation is the implied understanding of a hidden mystery. A mystery is always something that is not clearly made known until the ending. If you have ever read a mystery novel then that is what I am talking about. The ending of the book almost always reveals the surprise. You can try to read it and you can think on it and you can attempt to figure it out, but until it is revealed it rarely is the right conclusion in your mind to what really happens in any really good mystery story. If you can read a book and figure out the ending before it happens then it is not a good mystery story. God’s Old Testament was the greatest mystery story of all time. It had complex twists and turns and unexpected things happened like God comes to the earth in the flesh when no expected Him to show up this way. Jesus instead of fighting with a sword and conquering the world’s kingdoms has come to the earth to die and no one expected that. Jesus at his trial does not even defend himself in court and He is convicted of no crimes and yet sentenced to die on a cross like a criminal. These are some of the greatest mysteries of God and why Satan did not know what to do with Him. While Jesus walked the earth in the flesh He starts speaking to the people in parables that told of hidden spiritual things that had been kept secret since the foundation of the world and this was clearly the start of the unveiling of the mystery of God. Jesus started revealing these mysteries to His disciples when He walked among us and then Jesus later appeared to Paul and taught him some more of the mysteries of the Old Testament.
Eph 3:4 Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)
This book about Christ is the greatest Mystery book that you will ever attempt to understand. The complex hidden spiritual things in this book will cause you to scratch your head and wonder how did I not see that or say what did that say? Saul, who became Paul was a serious Bible student before he ever understood what he was reading. Saul was a devoted religious man of the order of the Pharisees (Php 3:5). It was only after Saul was struck down blind on the road to Damascus and the man of God came to him and restored his eyesight and filled him with the Spirit of God (Acts 9:17) that Paul ever began to understand the mysteries of the Bible to teach them. This could be my story also but, that is not my subject today so I will not go there.
Eph 3:5 Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
As you can see the mystery was not made known to men before in the Old Testament. But, God has revealed them to us through His apostles and prophets by His Spirit. This is a foundational key to understanding if you qualify to have a thorn like Paul. I gave you a lot of the background information that is very relevant to making this determination. If you determine you are a Paul and can have a thorn like him, then let’s stop and figure out what this thorn was next. Let us reread a our foundational verse for today’s lesson:
2Co 12:7 And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
I only underlined the part that I wanted you to focus in on. Paul describes this “thorn” as a messenger of Satan that was sent to “buffet” him. It is first important to note that whatever this thorn was, it came from Satan and not from God. The term “messenger” in the Greek can mean an angel or a preacher. It is someone who carries a message. The Fedex Company is a messenger business that delivers messages. Angels or messengers can be sent by God, or in this case they can also be sent by Satan. An angel is of course a spiritual being. You must realize that Satan has angels under his control in order to understand the spiritual kingdoms that exist. God has a spiritual kingdom and Satan has a spiritual kingdom and both of these kingdoms have angels. You can read about these angels in a spiritual war with each other in Revelation 12 and Daniel 10. However, I am not convinced that Paul’s thorn was an angel of Satan. I am more inclined to believe that Paul who knew the Old Testament was speaking in Bible figurative terms much like we do today in our modern language when he was describing a thorn in his flesh. Here is an Old Testament verse that Paul no doubt knew and it contains a definition of what a thorn in the flesh meant:
Num 33:55 But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you; then it shall come to pass, that those which ye let remain of them shall be pricks in your eyes, and thorns in your sides, and shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell.
God is using figurative language to describe a people. The children of Israel were instructed by God to drive out the inhabitants of the land and God says if you do not do this those that you allow to stay will become major stumbling blocks to you. God uses a term “a prick in your eye” or “a thorn in your side” and both of these are a way to describe someone who is causing you either emotional pain or spiritual pain but never a physical pain. In this case God is warning the children of Israel that these people would cause them to sin against God. They would introduce them to idol worship and other godless religions. God figuratively calls this a “pain in their flesh”. In our world we use this technique of speaking still today to describe people who are causing us emotional distress. We say “she is a real pain in my….” and you pick the body part that applies. Let me give you a possible example of this type of person in the Bible that Paul could have been speaking of:
Act 16:16 And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying:
Here in Acts 16:16 Paul and others are going to pray and a certain demon possessed woman starts following them around. This certainly qualifies to be a “messenger of Satan”. A spirit of divination is basically a “fortune teller” who uses evil spirits to try to tell people the future. We have these confused types of people still in the world today.
Act 16:17 The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God, which shew unto us the way of salvation.
Do you see that this woman starts following Paul around and begins to yell to people “These are the servants of God who show you the way to salvation”. You cannot read these words in a book and clearly understand the tone that they were spoken in. I can only assume that these words were spoken as “mocking words of sarcasm and cynicism”. You see what else would a demon possessed woman be saying? Satan does not promote a real man of God and tell people how to get saved; Satan is not working to help you out of his kingdom into the kingdom of God. It is very clear to me that Paul was a great man of God who Satan wanted to cause others not to believe his words from God. No, you see in these verses an example of how Satan can use a person in the world to be a thorn in your side as we just read about in 2 Corinthians 12:7. Paul when he describes a “thorn in his flesh” is using figurative language to describe someone who was trying to distract him from the assignment that God had given to him to cause him not to teach the revelations of God. Satan was clearly not interested in these revelations getting out. Satan was attempting to thwart them before they were spread around the world.
I am convinced that Paul’s thorn in the flesh was not a physical weakness, a sickness, disability or a disease. I believe it was Satan’s attempt to keep the revelations of God from being proclaimed. Regardless of what the thorn was, it was given to Paul by Satan because of the revelations from Jesus. This means I do not know of anyone in the world today that qualifies to have the same “thorn” that Paul did. If you think you have been given a thorn in your flesh and that this is a sickness to keep you humble, you better tell me what revelations you are teaching that will make you a Paul. I want to hear about these revelations very soon, they must be really good for Satan to want to stop them from coming out. This was a strange Bible lesson on healing, sickness and disease I know, but you have to counter the false teachings with the truth in order to get people to understand that they are not a Paul and they do not have to endure a thorn like Paul did. Please do not allow the teachings of some men on the earth to allow Satan to keep you in the bondage of sickness. If you have been taught that Paul endured physical sickness and prayed to God for Him to take it away from him and God did not, therefore you must also endure sickness in your body with the same level of humility, say sorry Satan that will not work on me again.
If you would like to continue reading on the subject of healing in the Bible you can continue to “Part 5“.
(Ver 1.2) This is now Part 3 in a series of advanced Bible lessons about Where Sickness and Disease Came From. If you have not read this series of lessons from the beginning, then I would suggest that you go back to Part 1 and start there. I have already revealed a lot of information in this series, so today I will try not to repeat those statements that I have already uncovered. What I want to do is to give you a different perspective on this subject of healing, sickness and disease using some scriptures that you possibly did not understand how they even applied to the subject. So today I want to talk about a story that Jesus taught us in Luke and in this story He reveals a great number of spiritual truths about some things that you should be aware of. This story is popularly called the parable of the “Prodigal Son” and I want to shift the focus off of the son and reveal what else this story teaches us. First off, many people call this lesson a parable and I am not totally convinced that this is actually accurate. You see in most of the parables that Jesus taught, He would almost always say “the kingdom of heaven is like…” and then reveal what it is like. He does not say that in this story. Regardless of if this is a parable or not, the truths given are still present and relative to my subject. However, I still believe that this story is a literal account of a hidden spiritual truth and if this is true, then it has more direct meanings than that which can be observed from the normal surface reading of the text. Almost everyone who teaches on this subject of the “Prodigal Son” teaches the story from the perspective of the son. They focus only on his arrogant attitude, the bad choices that he selfishly chooses and his coming into poverty and despair and finally his humility to return back home. This is a classic sinner story and people teach it this way predominantly. However, I believe that this story is more about the Father of the son than it is the son and people generally ignore this information. You might question in your mind what does the “Prodigal Son” have to do with sickness and disease? Here is a story that has nothing to do with healing directly, but in understanding this story you will soon learn that it has everything to do with healing. We are going to go through most of the story verse by verse for your benefit to see what we can learn from it and I want to start with Luke 15:11:
Luk 15:11 And he said, A certain man had two sons:
This is the beginning of why I said this is not a parable. Nowhere does Jesus say Heaven is like a man with two sons. There is no direct comparison statement of anything being like anything else, but instead Jesus says there is a “certain man”. When you understand how the Bible was written, you begin to see how God leaves it open to many possible interpretations of who Jesus is speaking of. You can think completely naturally and think Jesus is speaking of just an anonymous man on the earth that he knew, but wouldn’t want to tell us who it was. You could also think that Jesus is just speaking in parables of no one in particular and only trying to teach some life lessons in this story. Or you could think like me and try to see that God is describing His family in the terms that we could relate to. I want to stop here and review what the term “certain” means or at the least implies. To me the word “certain” means it is this way and not any other way. It is a very specific and unique adjective that implies Jesus knew exactly who he was speaking about. This means Jesus is not speaking of an anonymous man just to tell a natural story that has a spiritual lesson, but Jesus has someone in mind who He is talking about and this man with the two sons is actually the primary subject that we need to focus on in this lesson. It is true that Jesus never names the individuals or tells us directly who or what it is that He is speaking of. However, this is a common way that God spoke of Himself using an anonymous third party type of reference. In fact if you read my last Bible lesson that I posted, you will know that Jesus often times called Himself a man without saying He was this man. For example, there is the time in Matthew 19:4 where Jesus makes this statement:
Mat 19:4 And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female,
Who is “He” that made them in the beginning? You can clearly see that God is speaking and He is saying that some anonymous male created them in the beginning and whoever this was made them male and female and God the creator was the one that was personally speaking these words. So God was telling a true factual story without claiming to be the creator even though that is clearly who He was. So this is the way the Bible is written many times. Jesus will tell you a story of a “certain man” and this is actually a story about Himself, but He could not say that or He would have been stoned on the spot by the religious zealots who did not understand who they were listening to. Let me give you another example of this technique used by God:
Mat 25:14 For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.
You really need to learn this technique of Hiding the Truth in Plain Sight that God uses very often. The translators actually messed this verse up with the words “the kingdom of heaven is as”, this verse actually says “for a certain man traveling into a far country…” in the original Greek language. Again Jesus is speaking of an unnamed man who travels into a “far country” that is actually referring to God in the terms of a man. You see God was this man who had left heaven to come to the earth in person. God had previously given this world into the hands of the man Adam to tend and work His garden and Adam sells out the garden to Satan and allows God’s enemy to take control of it and this is more than I should have said on that. I am going to try not to get off of my mainline subject too much, but I want you to understand that if this is God being described to be this certain man in Luke 15, then God has more than one son. You see the NIV translators have made a huge blunder in scriptures like John 3:16 when they say Jesus is the “One and Only Son” of God. Christians are called the sons of god in several places in the New Testament and even angels are called the sons of God a few times in the Old Testament. So it is clear to me that God has more than one son. I do not have time to explain any of this here so either accept it or ignore it and let’s move on.
Luk 15:12 And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.
The younger son, or you could call him the second born comes to his father and asks for his inheritance before his father has died. So this is an impatient obnoxious son who thinks he deserves his wealth right now. It sounds like a lot of children in the world today. This is a difficult subject to actually understand if you think it is God who is the Father in this story. Because you cannot read the descriptions of either son mentioned and easily apply them to Jesus the normal Son of God that we all think of. However, the translators obviously thought this was a story of God since they capitalized the title “Father”. Anyway let’s continue on in the story:
Luk 15:13 And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living.
So the younger son takes his money and goes to a far country where he squanders all of his fortune. Did you notice that the son is leaving his father’s house and going into a far country? Didn’t that sound similar to the story that Jesus told in Matthew 25:14? There are some pretty amazing little details found when you start comparing stories that Jesus used to teach with. This verse in Luke in the modern world would be like a son taking all of his dad’s money and moving to Las Vegas and then gambling, drinking and partying until he is broke. I see people like this on TV all the time.
Luk 15:14 And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.
So the son’s timing was not so good for him. Either he made the wrong choices to begin with or his short sighted thought process did not plan for any future. This is often the attitude of people in the world. He has spent all that he had and now a famine strikes the land. Doesn’t it seem like when things can’t get any worse, they suddenly do. Of course a famine is a symbolic reference to not having any spiritual food. God actually calls His Word the Manna from Heaven and this is spiritual food, but I guess I won’t go there either today. You see even though I do not believe that this story is a parable, I do believe that it has vast amounts of symbolic language imbedded in it. I guess in a way that means it could be viewed as a parable. I am not opposed to calling it a parable if that is what you would like. Regardless of what you want to call it, every noun still has a symbolic representation of a spiritual reality.
Luk 15:15 And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine.
I wish I could tell you more about what the implied symbolic references in these verses mean, but that would just confuse you since I am mainly talking about healing, sickness and disease. Just take note that when you join yourself to someone, that is a covenant relationship. A covenant is a marriage type of relationship between two individuals who are joined to become one flesh. That means what one of them has is what the other one has and vice versa. If you do not understand Bible covenants then you should go and read my lessons on “Understanding Bible Covenants”. I will also mention that feeding swine is a Jewish Law and a traditional no, no for any covenant man of God. The Old Covenant people of God were steered far away from pork and even today in kosher meals this is strictly forbidden. But, here this younger son was found working with that which was forbidden.
Luk 15:16 And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him.
As you can continue to read in Luke, the son is becoming fairly desperate so that he begins to eat the pig food to stay alive. There is no man that will help him. It is a classic example of how popular you are when you are rich with money and how much you are a nobody when you are at the bottom as a homeless man. This is true today in our world also. This is why this story is taught so much from the sinner perspective. It is actually a perfect example of many people in the world that each of us know.
Luk 15:17 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
So the young son finally has a G.E. light bulb brilliant idea and remembered where he came from. In his father’s house the servants ate better than he was eating. He decides that it would be better to be a servant of his old family than to die lonely in a foreign country. How can you not see what this story is saying? Is the son afraid of his father? Does the son think that his Father will hurt or harm him? The son has no one that cares, but has decided to take a chance and go back home to the last person that cared for him. I think that more Christians today need to have the same light bulb moment about their Father.
Luk 15:18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,
Luk 15:19 And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.
Here is where it is really starting to get very relevant to sickness and disease. You see in the last lesson I taught on this subject I talked about sin was one of the primary causes for sickness. Jesus taught us this in at least two great examples. When He saw a crippled man that was healed, Jesus told him “sin no more least a worst thing come unto you”. So Jesus taught us sin was a cause and sickness was an effect of the sin. Here in verse 18 of Luke, the son clearly admits to the fact that he has sinned against his Father. So this young man has determined that he will repent and tell his Father that he has sinned and ask his Father to make him His servant. As you can see, this son has had a major change of heart from the beginning of the story. He has become humble, repentant and he clearly regrets his choices that he has made. All of this actually sounds a lot like me and if you are a real Christian it probably sounds like you also. I can easily put myself in the shoes of the young man, but that is not my message today either.
Luk 15:20 And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.
So the son is going back home to his Father’s house. That is actually a great example for us. This is actually why I said this story is about the Father more than it is about the son. You can clearly see that the Father was looking for his son’s return daily. The Father was in faith, expecting his son to return home and this is based upon the extreme Divine Love of the Father for His son. Before the son could get home, the Father runs out to meet him so that He can beat him, curse him down and bring him to the pit of despair for wasting his money and all of the sinning that he has done against Him. This is the attitude of many very confused Christians in the world today. They believe that God is out to curse them, punish them, judge them, teach them a lesson, make them sick with cancer or wipe them out with a giant tsunami or some other natural disaster because of their sins. Is that what this Father does to his lost son? Did this Father ever send out one of his servants to hurt his child? Did the Father ever go out and try to find His son to hurt him? It appears to me that the Father really just wanted to love His son back into His house with open arms.
Luk 15:22 But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:
Here is God the Father’s heart being revealed to us from His own mouth. God says bring out the best for my son who has returned home. Of course this son was foolish and of course this son sinned and of course he deserved to be beaten or punished, but this was not the heart of the Father. Do you understand how crazy it is to say that God puts sickness and disease upon people just because they make a mistakes and sin? It makes me want to cry when I read this story and think of the people accusing God as being the one who is teaching, judging or correcting, them with sickness and disease. This prodigal son did not get what he deserved; he got what the Father’s heart wanted to give him. This was based upon mercy and compassion and the deep love of the Father for His child. Do not ever entertain a place anywhere in your mind that your sickness is from God. If you do this you are foolishly misdirecting the consequences of your own actions. You see the Father had nothing to do with the seeds that the prodigal son had sown and reaped. The prodigal son was getting exactly what he had planted until he turned his mind back unto his father who loved him. There are many “Predestination Theologians” who will try to tell you the “Prodigal” was predestined to fail, but you see God in His love allowed the son to make his own freewill mistakes and learn from them and that is what a loving Father does. I mean a loving father will always try to teach the child the way to go, but if the child wants to go his own way then that is their choice. I know I have been there. I guess I could go on in the story to show you how the older son gets angry with the father for not passing judgment on the mistakes of the younger brother. You can see this spirit and attitude still exists in the church today when I try to write about a loving father’s heart and they want a God who kills people with cancer.
Get to know your Father God and learn to see His heart for you. When you do this you will see that God wants to bless you with the fatted calf and a feast of great proportions. God wants to cloth you with the robe of righteousness and put the ring on your finger. God desires to have you come and sit and take your place at the table like you never left or did anything wrong. This is the forgiveness of the Father’s heart and all it takes is for you to start back towards His house and He will see you a far off and run to meet you. There are still consequences for the son’s actions but, the Father’s heart is consistently dedicated to bless the son the best that He can. You have to just ignore verses and stories like these in the Bible or explain them away if you want to teach a Gospel that brings sickness from God to judge, correct and teach His people for their sins. There are just too many conflicts in the New Testament for me to believe that God ever puts sickness on people, but yet I get comments about this way too often from people who want to focus in on the Old Testament verses that they quote to me over and over like I never read them. I only wish they knew the same Father that I knew. Maybe when they finally come to themselves and turn back to the Father’s house they will also see Him running towards them also. I guess right now they are still living in Vegas and thinking everything is under control. Oh well? I hope that you enjoyed my Bible lesson and learned something that will give you hope to know your Father’s heart. God Bless!
If you would like to continue reading in this series, you can go to “Part 4“.
(Ver 1.3) This is Part 2 in a series of Bible lessons about where Sickness and Disease Came From. If you have not read this series of lessons from the beginning, then I would suggest that you go back to Part 1 and start there. In the first lesson I taught that God did not create the world originally with sickness or disease present therefore, I concluded you can see these did not originate with God and they were not a part of the original plan of God at any time. There are many Christians who would certainly disagree with me based upon a narrow minded interpretation of some Old Testament scriptures that conflict with a New Testament revelation that sickness comes from Satan. I showed you one of these Old Testament verse in the first lesson and how it was poorly translated to accuse God of putting sickness on the Egyptians. However, I also showed you two prominent witnesses found in the New Testament that said sickness came from the devil (Acts 10:38) and Jesus even called it satanic bondage (Luke 13:16). So we have a major conflict between opposing scriptures brewing. You have Old Testament verses that seem to say that God caused people to be sick and you have New Testament verses that clearly say Satan causes people to be sick. Since the Bible does not ever contradict itself in the true interpretation of the text, we must resolve the question of the cause of the sickness found in people in order to correctly determine who causes people to be healed. There are only a limited number of technical possibilities to answer these questions and they are quite complex in their relationships of responsibilities. Here is the list of possible solutions for where sickness comes from and I’ll talk about each of these in the following paragraphs:
- God causes sickness and God heals sickness
- Satan causes sickness and Satan heals sickness
- God causes sickness and Satan heals sickness
- Satan causes sickness and God heals sickness
- Some other possible cause and effect?
First we could say God controls everything and causes all people to be sick sometimes and then God heals people sometimes and that would be what many ignorant sovereign God theologians would want you to believe. This interpretation conflicts with several scriptures like “God does not change” (Mal 3:6), with God there is no variableness nor shadow of turning (Jas 1:17) and when Jesus said “When you have seen me you have seen the Father” (John 14:9). Since Jesus never made anyone sick while he was here physically on the earth we can clearly understand Jesus was the revealed will of God in full manifestation. We must therefore conclude that God while in heaven never made anyone sick either. You of course can disagree if you would like to.
Mat 4:23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.
However, when you read the gospels closely you will never see Jesus doing anything, but healing the people. Jesus would heal every type of sickness and every type of disease this verse says. You can clearly see that this was the will of God being revealed to men first hand. Here is God in the flesh walking among us and doing what He could only do in person. If God wanted to teach men that sickness came from Him, He missed a golden opportunity to teach us this in person to dismiss the controversy. When you see God healing people and never making them sick you finally begin to understand the character of God, the goodness of God, the love of God, the mercy of God and the compassion of God. You finally begin to understand how much God wants you to be well and whole.
Mat 9:36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.
You can find that when Jesus walked among us, He exhibited divine compassion. He demonstrated Godly mercy and He did not come to judge anyone. Were people in those days just better sinners then they are now? Too many Christians in the world think that people have gotten to be worse sinners today so they accuse God of sending judgment upon the earth in the form of earthquakes and plagues of sicknesses and diseases. Some have accused God of killing sinners and Christians in massive Tsunamis and natural disasters. One group of highly confused Christians held up signs at a recent funeral of a woman who died with cancer thanking God for her cancer. I do not understand how you can follow a God who would do such a thing. I guess it is purely out of fear and self-righteousness that these people do such things. Because they feel like they are not sinners they accuse God of killing people who they claim are sinners. How ignorant is that? In my opinion if you are afraid of God, it is only because you do not know God and if you are not afraid of God it is only because you do not know Him either. It is a paradox of a spiritual nature that is supremely complex. The Bible says “The fear of the Lord is beginning of wisdom” (Prov 9:10). However, this is the respect of God’s power and not the terror that God is going to hurt you. I am not afraid of God, because I have the love of God shed abroad in my heart and I know Him (Rom 5:5). You see my Bible says “Where sin abounds, grace does much more abound” (Rom 5:20). That verse does not say anything about the judgment of God, it says God’s grace is what dominates Him to do good to sinners and the Bible says it is “The goodness of God that leads men to repentance” (Rom 2:4). Don’t get me wrong, there is a coming judgment of God and it is coming soon. But, this is not what is happening right now in the world. When you finally see the judgment of God you will know the difference between what is happening now and it will be nothing compared to the real judgments of God. People today, who have accused God of making people sick, have done so out of ignorance. They clearly do not know the love of God and they ignore Bible verses about God’s love. A loving God does not make His children sick because they made a mistake. Therefore, I have ruled out God as both causing sickness and healing people in order to harmonize scriptures of God’s love, mercy, compassion and grace.
You could also theorize that Satan causes people to be sick and Satan heals people and again this is a very wrong teaching based upon scriptures taught directly by Jesus. When Jesus would heal people, many times Jesus would cast out the evil spirits that were causing the sickness (Mark 1:23-26, Mark 5:2-8, Mark 7:25, Luke 9:42). Jesus was even accused of casting devils out by the power of Satan (Mat 9:34). But, Jesus said in Matthew 12:26 “How can Satan cast out Satan, his house would be divided and his kingdom would not stand”? This is actually a very important verse to understand and it contains a lot of spiritual information that you better know. Jesus was clearly saying no kingdom working against itself will prevail. Therefore, God will never make people sick and then change to make them well again or His kingdom would be divided. Jesus tells you very clearly that Satan also has a kingdom. This is not the kingdom of God and this is not the kingdom of Heaven. So this is a separate spiritual kingdom that Christians must come to understand that it exists. This spiritual kingdom is called the kingdom of darkness. In Colossians 1:13 it says “Christ has delivered us from the power of darkness…”. To be delivered is a salvation from a place we did not even realize that we were in. If you are not a Christian today, you are in this kingdom of darkness. If you are a Christian then you have been set free from the kingdom of darkness by the power found in Jesus. These are all Bible truths that are essential to understand. If you do not understand this then you can easily stray into false teachings that claims God is in control of everything. Jesus clearly taught us that there is an opposing spiritual kingdom in existence and it is not the Kingdom of God. Based upon this information and the words of Jesus it is impossible for Satan to make people sick and to heal them simultaneously. This information also transfers to God’s kingdom and it says that it is impossible for God to make people sick and then to heal them, or His kingdom would be divided. God is saying you cannot have it both ways. Jesus is teaching you that one kingdom makes you sick and one kingdom heals exclusively and that is the only definition of an undivided Kingdom that fits.
Next we could say God makes people sick and Satan heals them, but this is clearly shot down by many of the scriptures that I have given you already. Acts 10:38 said Jesus healed those that were oppressed by the devil. So sickness can never be attributed to God and healing can never be attributed to Satan. This is just basic Bible interpretations of the Gospels and the New Testament that makes it very clear. I have by direct scripture references ruled this possibility out completely. There are just no supporting scriptures for this possibility that exists. I mean you can find scriptures in the Old Testament that imply that God causes sickness, but I have never seen a scripture that implies Satan heals people.
Next, you could say that Satan causes people to be sick and God heals them and this theory is more scripturally accurate based upon the verses that I have shown you today already, but, it cannot be the complete and total truth since there is not any mention of the involvement or the contribution of the human factor. If you believe that man has no choices to make or no ability to exercise their freewill, then you believe in a theory based upon God’s sovereignty and a false teaching called “Predestination”. This teaching claims God has caused everything in the world to happen with a preset outcome. This teaching claims that some people were created to go to hell and some people were created to go to heaven. You could further claim that some people were designed to be sick and some people were designed to be well. There are many problems with this erroneous teaching and you have to ignore vast numbers of scriptures that teach against it in order to believe in it. If you have read my series of lessons on Understanding Bible Faith you should understand that Jesus always claimed it was the person’s faith that caused them to receive healing. Jesus would never point us to any other factor as being the cause for their healing. This did not mean that this person healed themself; it only means that it was their faith that allowed the power of God to flow into them to resolve their situation. In the Gospels, there was always a direct partnership between a man’s faith and God’s divine power and grace that resulted in any person receiving their healing, salvation or deliverance. Therefore, we can very easily conclude that if human faith was a necessary determining factor for a person’s healing to be made manifest, we must also conclude by reverse applied logic or implied antithesis truth that it must have been another human factor like something that the person believed, said or did to allow sickness to come into their bodies in the first place.
Think with me again about the factor of faith allowing God’s power to heal them in the Gospels. Then take this knowledge and look back into time to see how a sickness might be allowed into a human condition. Take for instance the factor of fear. If fear is one opposite of faith, then it might have been possible for someone’s fear to allow Satan to put the sickness on them. In other words I believe that it is almost always the choice of the person on the earth to determine what happens to them. This belief is based upon what God said to people in Deuteronomy 30 that we read earlier. God said very clearly I set before you life and death, therefore choose life that you and your seed may live. Whose choice was it for you to live, God’s or yours? I think you can see this makes it our choice.
However, it is certainly more complex than that simple statement. For example, a person is not all knowing and can be deceived into allowing things to happen and not realize the consequences to what they have done until it is too late. Someone might have gotten hot and sweaty playing a sport in the middle of winter and then walked outside without a jacket and they will probably regret that choice before they make it home. It could also be that someone has a casual one night stand with someone that they just met in a bar and a few weeks later they find out they got a sexually transmitted disease and they only have themselves to blame. It is mostly out of ignorance that people do things that they are extremely sorry for doing after they see the consequences. God says “My people are destroyed (made sick, weak, killed, hurt) for a lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6). So making ignorant decisions can result in some catastrophic circumstances. Another known factor that is thrown into the mix is the presence of evil in the world. Sometimes things happen to you just because people are bad and want to do what they want to do regardless of what you want them to do. When a woman is raped, that is not what she had in mind for a good time like the man was thinking. Therefore, she could get a sickness passed upon her by something that was not her choice. You soon begin to see that life is very complex and there are many possible factors that can contribute to anyone being sick. So regardless of what I teach you today, there are other factors that could be involved in the things that you are experiencing. So having said all of that there is a spiritual law that is very applicable to our subject today and I will introduce you to it now:
Gal 6:7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.
You see God says that people will always reap what they have sown in life. So we need to figure out if sickness is a fruit of a seed that we have sown. You might recall in the last lesson I showed you in Deuteronomy 30 where God said “I have set before you a choice, life or death, blessing or cursing, therefore choose life…”. God appears to place the responsibility for sickness on man as well as for healing, so we must learn how to choose wisely. Could it be that we just need to learn to plant the right seeds for healing? This is a very tough lesson to teach, because there are so many factors and even unknowns that you can never say that everybody’s sickness was caused by only one specific thing. In fact many times sickness is caused by a combination of things and I may have time to talk about that later. Sowing and reaping is a cause and effect reality. You plant seeds and you get crops to harvest. So this truth is certainly heavily involved in the rest of this lesson. What I want to do is to explore what Jesus emphasized in the Gospels as being a potential cause or we could say the seed for the sickness of certain people. Jesus did teach us that there were some special contributing key factors to at least some sicknesses and I will attempt to talk about these today and you can make up your own mind to what the truth is.
If Satan causes sickness to come on people we must determine what permitted or allowed this to occur or can Satan just make anyone sick that he wants to at any time? If you read the book of Job many have concluded that Satan must ask God for permission and then when God says OK, it is Satan’s responsibility to go and carry out the sickness. However, this is a very bad interpretation of the truth and a clearly ignorant man can easily jump to this conclusion on a surface only reading of the text, but the truth of God is almost always deeper than that found normally on the surface. You can see this is a tough subject to teach, but I believe it is one that is certainly important for you to understand, so keep reading. We know from Acts 10:38 and Luke 13:6 that Satan causes sickness, so I will not debate that fact anymore. I have accepted this as the truth of the Bible and I will move on with determining why this occurs.
Mat 9:2 And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.
Here is a sick lame man being brought to Jesus for healing and Jesus says something that is very profound and difficult to accept for many Christians. Jesus looks at the lame man and tells him “your sins are forgiven”. Why does Jesus say this and what do we need to understand about this statement? Were this man’s sins a contributing factor for his sickness? This man is asking for physical healing and Jesus is speaking to him about his sins. Do you understand the difference between spiritual things and natural physical things? There are many people who do not. People look at the external actions of a man and focus only on what people have done and God looks at the internal and focuses on why people do what they do. The lame man was interested only in a natural thing that he thought would solve his problems, and Jesus was focused on the spiritual root cause of the problem. It is also interesting to note that Jesus does not cast out an evil spirit or even blame the sickness on a spirit as the cause. Now we know from Acts 10:38 that whoever Jesus healed was called someone who was oppressed of the devil, but this is not where Jesus is focused in on in today’s lesson. You see there is more than one truth in the Bible and this is some people’s greatest problem with understanding the Bible; they only want to learn one thing and ignore the rest. That would be way too simple if that is all that is required. I have no doubt that this man’s infirmity was caused by Satan, but that does not mean that this is the entire story. Jesus is pointing us to a sin factor that allowed Satan to come in and bring the sickness on the man. This is actually the same conclusion that I came to when I studied the book of Genesis and the creation account. God created everything and called it all “very good” and therefore there was no sickness or disease in the earth before Adam sinned. However, after Adam sinned things started to change in the world and therefore we can conclude it was sin that allowed sickness and disease to enter into the world. I cannot come up with any other basic event in Genesis other than man’s sin that would have caused this evil to occur. Maybe you can go through the Bible and find something else and I would be happy to hear about. Here is God’s commentary on the cause of sin, sickness and death in our world:
Rom 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:
You can clearly read that it was the actions of one man that caused sin and death to pass to every man on the planet. If you are smart enough you understand that sickness and disease is just a form of diminished life before death occurs. Therefore, it was Adam who allowed sickness to enter into the world by his sin. So that is another interesting contributing factor. Your current sickness could have been caused by your ancestor’s sin. You see God speaks of a generational cursed upon families in scriptures found in Exodus 20:5, Exodus 34:7, Numbers 14:18, and Deuteronomy 5:9 that speaks of the sins of the fathers being passed down three or four generations. I will not teach on this directly today, but I do want you to be aware of it as a factor. You see it does not have to be your sin that causes you to have a sickness. In fact in John 9 the disciples asked Jesus “Who sinned, this man or his parents that he was born blind”. You can see by the question that the disciples were looking at the effect and trying to determine the cause. They also said it could have been caused by the sin of the parents and Jesus did not dispute or contradict them, he just didn’t answer their question. If you do not understand this story of the blind man in John 9, please take the time and read my lesson on this healing called “Who Sinned”.
Let’s get back to Matthew 9 and to what Jesus was telling the lame man. Go and read Matthew 9:2 and the surrounding context verses. Jesus continues to say “which is easier to say rise take up your bed and walk or to say your sins are forgiven”? Jesus then looks at the religious leaders and says “So that you will know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins, rise, take up your bed and walk”. In other words Jesus was teaching a fact that these are interchangeable events or words. If you are forgiven you ought to be healed. If you are healed then you are forgiven. Wow, that is probably one of the most important things that I have said so far today, but you need to hear again. If you have been forgiven of your sins, then you ought to be healed. Are you forgiven by God? Let’s move on to another story found in the Gospels:
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.
Here is another major story of healing that has some very profound spiritual truths associated with it. Jesus has just healed another paralyzed cripple man and He tells him something that is very important to note. Jesus basically says “Stop sinning or something else worse could come on you”. Do you understand the connection being tied in here between sickness and sin? Jesus is teaching the direct cause and effect of a spiritual reality. It would appear that sin is an opening of the door for sickness to come in. This of course is very tricky since the Bible says that we are all sinners (Rom 3:23) and we can see that not everyone is sick in the world. Nevertheless we can still learn a potential cause and effect law being demonstrated to us. Do you understand the laws of Physics? An object in motion tends to remain in motion and an object at rest tends to stay at rest. Then there is the law that states for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. There are just too many natural laws that demonstrate to us the cause and the resulting effect of a natural force, for me to talk about them all. According to laws never is there an effect without a cause. Never is there a cause without a resulting effect. Never is the resulting effect greater than the cause. It would be like getting a crop without planting the seeds, it just doesn’t happen that way. These are just a few of the basics surrounding physical laws.
Rom 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.
We can see two spiritual realities being outlined and compared in this verse. These are two spiritual laws of opposing force being revealed. In the natural realm it is kind of like the Law of Aerodynamics has set me free from the Law of Gravity reality. However, Romans 8:2 is the spiritual law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set us free from the law of sin and death. You can clearly see that sin is the cause and death is the effect. What is the definition of death? In the natural realm it is a secession or termination of life. Then what is the definition of sickness? To be sick is a state of un-wholeness, incompleteness, or even just a state of physical weakness. Jesus when healing people in the Gospels would tell them “your faith has made you whole”. So being whole is a state of health where no sickness exists and being un-whole a state of sickness. Therefore I have concluded that sickness is just a lesser stage of death in operation but not in full conclusion. So when God told Adam don’t eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for in the day that you do, you shall surely die, I believe God was warning of the coming of sickness into the world but this does not mean that God sent it. Here is a simple verse that is basically saying what I am trying to teach you about sickness:
Mat 9:12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
Jesus is saying there are two different states of the human condition; this is either wholeness or incompleteness. Jesus is calling the state of not being whole a sickness. This Greek word translated as whole has a meaning to be healthy, well, sound, and even true. I can clearly understand based upon this definition that there are direct opposite truths to each of these statements. Sick, infirmed, weak, and even false are all words that demonstrate the state of sickness. The Bible calls sickness the opposite of good which is healing and health.
I have given you around three examples in the Bible of people that Jesus encountered and Jesus attributed a sin cause to the effect of their sickness. I also showed you that it does not necessarily have to be your sin that is the cause, but it could have been one of your ancestors. However, there are more complex factors than that found in the Bible, but I have gone long enough in this lesson for today. I will wrap this up by reemphasizing that Jesus basically taught that if you are forgiven you ought to be healed. If you need forgiveness, then repent and ask for it and do it fast to begin to receive healing. Do not over simplify anything that I have taught today and say I said it is only sin that causes sickness because that is NOT what I said. In fact I gave you several other potential reasons for the existence of sickness, one was ignorance, another was the presence of evil, another is sowing wrong seeds, then I could go on and on with other factors that I have not mentioned. In order for us not to be destroyed by Satan in the world we need to achieve to a higher level of knowledge of the truth. So we still have a lot to learn, including me! I hope you come back and read the next lesson about Where Sickness Comes From. God Bless!
If you would like to continue reading in this series of lessons you can go to “Part 3“.
(Ver 1.5) Today is the beginning of another in-depth spiritual study about “Understanding where sickness and disease came from”. I have been teaching a lot on the subject of Bible Faith and I got a comment that caused me to back up and think that I was teaching potentially in reverse order. You see there has been a long theological debate in many churches about the origin of sickness and disease. I have even heard preachers teach that sickness is a punishment or a correction sent from God. Of course this is based upon the erroneous assumption that just because God is sovereign that He always gets His will done no matter what. Also, there has long been a teaching in the some churches that since Paul had a thorn in his flesh that we must endure sickness the same way with great humility. These people have concluded again in error that Paul’s thorn was a sickness and thus they are wrong without reading what the Bible actually said. There are really too many false teachings for me to tell you about them all. What is important for us all to know and learn, is did sickness come from God? If it is something sent by God, then we should not be trying to get healed and this causes many people to stay sick. When I taught on faith I said one of the enemies to faith was doubt. Doubt represents a mental question in an area that you have insufficient knowledge or incorrect knowledge. For example, Jesus actually taught us in the Bible that healing does not occur as long as there are questions in our mind to whether healing is the will of God. Here is the lesson Jesus taught us:
Mat 8:2 And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.
Here is a man that was fully diseased with leprosy. He believes that Jesus is fully able and powerful enough to heal him, but he does not know if it is the will of God to accomplish this request. This is a common point of failure to correct Bible faith even today. We have countless Christians in churches today that are taught the same things. It is not God’s will to heal today! God healed through the apostles, but that passed away when they died. I have heard many ignorant men making excuses for why they have no faith, blaming it either on others or God. They act like it was the apostles that were healing the people, when it was only God using the apostles to heal the people. Has God changed since the apostles died or is He still the same today? No God is the same today as He was yesterday! Then there are ministers who are like this leprous man, they believe that God is powerful enough to heal people so they pray “Lord if it be your will, heal this man”. What kind of prayer is that? It is a questioning or questionable faith full of doubts. These men who pray that way do not have the question in their mind answered to whether or not we can know the will of God about anything. But, if that was true then God would not have given us His Word in written form. We have the basis of proof of the will of God by examining the Word of God. As soon as God wrote down His spoken words in a book form, He has committed Himself to do what He has said or He will become a liar. Notice how Jesus answered this question given to Him by the leprous man and see if God is telling you right now what His will is for your healing.
Mat 8:3 And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
You can clearly see the will of God for healing being revealed by the Words of the Most High God. Jesus when He was physically walking the planet, taught us when you have seen me you have seen the Father (John 14:7). Jesus further went on to say “I do nothing of my own, but the will of the Father, I do” (John 5:30). If Jesus Christ is the revealed will of God from heaven, did Jesus ever make anyone sick? Take the time and go back and reread the Gospels and notice everything that Jesus does. Write them in a list on a piece of paper if you like, and then know this is the will of God for you. If you cannot ever find Jesus making anyone sick, then you cannot ever say God made anyone sick even if you have mistranslations in the Old Testament that say otherwise. I searched the Bible and I found Jesus only healing people after he would preach and teach. Healing must be the will of God then. Don’t take my word for it, you go and reread and search for yourself. It doesn’t take that long to learn the truth if you look for it. And if you cannot find it in the Gospels where Jesus ever made anyone sick, then this was God’s will for everyone in personal manifestation. So Jesus by His words and His actions has revealed the will of God is to heal ONLY! Please be smart enough to see this truth.
One religious man who graduated from a theological cemetery told me his wife had cancer that came from God. This man had a zeal for God but, no knowledge of God. If this was true, I will tell you right now that I would not want to follow that kind of God or that kind of religion. How do you tell people in the world come and get saved so God might give you cancer? Does that motivate you to want to get close to this God? Or is this a fear based religion like Islam, where you obey the law or we will cut off your hands. If God gives people cancer because they sinned, then here in the United States God would be easily convicted in any court of law as being a child abuser. Yet religious people think that God answers to a different law than man does. That is a very foolish presumptive thinking. If cancer is what a loving God does to His children, then what would an evil God do to his children? You see when the Bible says God is Love, how do you justify that He gave you cancer? You would have to redefine what Love is and that is a scary way to interpret the Bible. If I loved my wife so much and then I beat her because she did something wrong, I would be thrown in jail. Yet this reasoning is OK for a God you cannot see and throw in jail. It was also very hilarious to me that this man’s wife with cancer from God went to the doctor and received treatment to get out of the will of God for her life on the earth. Why go to a doctor to cure cancer if God gave you the caner? In this situation according to this man who was smarter God or the doctor? Why couldn’t this man go to God for healing instead of the doctor? It is simply because he thought that it was God that gave his wife the cancer so why pray for healing, just go to the doctor. It would appear that the doctor was smarter than God according to this man, if the doctor wants to cure people and God does not that is a major problem. People can truly be blinded by religion and not even know they are wrong. Let’s go back to the beginning of our world and see what God says to us about the things that He created:
Gen 1:31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
Here is God’s opinion of all of the things that He created. God looks at everything from the six days of creation and says it is all very good. What does “very good” mean to you? Did God create Adam or Eve as a weak or sick man or woman? Did God create them with cancer and call it good? I think you can easily conclude that after creation, there was no sickness or disease present in the world. If nothing else you can see that Adam lived over 900 years on the earth and that does not sound like a sick man at any time. In fact you cannot even find the words sickness or disease in this book of the bible until near the end of the book and into the next books of the Bible. The book of Genesis encompasses the first 2000 years of human history and there is barely any mention of sickness or disease in this time period. It is very clear to me that sickness and disease did not come from God and was not a designed plan of God by what He created in the beginning. But, you can believe whatever you want. If you look up the Hebrew word translated as “good” it comes from another word that can also mean “well”. If you are well, then you are not sick. If you are well then it is good! So obviously God thinks being well is good and being sick is bad or evil. This is not rocket science; surely you can see the truth of God’s word today.
Jas 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
You see if you believe your sickness is God teaching you, correcting you or testing you; then you must conclude that it is something good based upon James 1:17! Is sickness ever good? Is wife beating ever good? Is child abuse ever good? If you think these are all good things then you are clearly confused and vastly deceived. I do not know of anything good about sickness. But, my opinion is the same as your opinion, worthless! Show me a Bible verse that says sickness is a blessing from God and I will believe it. It would have to be a blessing in order to qualify for it being good! Sickness steals your time, it takes your strength, it removes your ability to be a blessing to others, it causes your life to be shortened, it sucks away slowly your ability to do anything positive and your money is wasted in great quantities to get rid of it. Sickness and disease is a thief and a robber of your well-being, strength, your life and substance; I do not know what else to call it but an impressive evil. I have only shown you a few Bible verses and I can tell from this information that God did not send you sickness. If Jesus came to the earth to heal and cure people from sicknesses that God had sent on them, then that would be a house divided (Mat 12:25). God would have had to have been divided against Himself. Jesus would have been working against God and not for God. That would mean that God is schizophrenic, double minded and confused? God makes them sick and Jesus heals them. Too many Christians want to believe in a Dr. Jekyll and Mister Hyde type of God. Sure God will make you sick so that He can prove His power by healing you. That is a crazy mixed up Theology! Why heal them if you were the one that made them sick by your will. Do you understand the problem with many people’s confusing beliefs? God cannot be the same one that heals people that causes them to be sick or God would not be consistent and never changing (Mal 3:6), He would instead be the ever changing God. This is not what the Bible says to us, is it?
Act 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
You can clearly read from the Bible where sickness comes from, if you want to know the truth. Here is a verse that I use all of the time because it contains a lot of great spiritual information about good and evil. This verse is a self-evident claim that doing good is healing and this always comes from God. Think about it! How was the human body designed by God? It was designed with a built in immune system that fights against sickness and disease. If you get cut or scrapped, you do not have an eternal sore, your body has a built in self-healing machine mechanism. This was God’s designed plan in action. So when you read the Gospels did you ever see Jesus making anyone sick, lame, blind, crippled or diseased? Do you ever see anyone that Jesus said it is not my will to heal you? If you cannot find Jesus who was God in the flesh doing these things while He was personally here on the earth, then why would think that the same God in heaven does them to people now? Jesus clearly taught us, “When you have seen me, you have seen the Father”, so whatever we saw Jesus doing is what God does all of the time and Jesus only went about doing GOOD and healing. Do not make your God an Evil God who goes about doing EVIL and making people sick unless you can find where Jesus did it.
Here is where more people are confused. They allow Satan to blind their minds to the truth so that he can continue to cause sickness and disease to abide in them. A man recently told me that Satan is only allowed by God to do what God wants. So if Satan makes people sick, then it was God’s will for them to be sick. Again this is just more C.R.A.P. (Christian Rhetoric Applied Poorly)! I’m sorry I can be very blunt sometimes and I do not mean it to be hurtful, I only mean it to shock people into seeing the truth.
Where did God say sickness came from in Acts 10:38? God clearly called sickness satanic oppression in Acts 10:38. The devil is clearly Satan and sickness is from him and Satan is not God’s policeman sent by God to make people sick. Therefore sickness and disease is satanic oppression and the direct opposite of God’s definition of good. Go back and read the Gospels again and see who got healed. You have blind people seeing (Mat 15:31, Mat 21:14, Mar 10:51, John 9); you have leprous people’ made whole again (Luke 17:17), a woman with the issue of blood (Mat 9:20), a man with the withered hand (Mat 12:13), the dumb to speak (Mat 15:31), the lame to walk (Mat 15:31, Mat 21:14, John 5:9). These are just a few verses to show you who Jesus healed. There are many others that I did not mention. There are even several verses that teach us that Jesus healed every type of disease and infirmity (Mat 9:35) and everyone present (Mat 12:15) so if you did not see your problem being healed it is included in the other all-inclusive category of the type of people and sickneeses that Jesus healed. What I want you to notice is that God calls all of this satanic oppression. If it was sent by God then it would be Godly oppression and that is not what the Bible said. Neither would God have been there to heal them if He had been the one to make them sick.
Luk 13:16 And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day?
Here is another verifiable witness to the fact of the origin of sickness is from Satan. Jesus is asking a direct question that is still relevant and applicable to you today. He says that this woman is a daughter of Abraham; therefore she should be freed from this bondage of Satan. Think with me again and ask yourself this question; are you a son or a daughter of Abraham? If you are then you should also be freed from the bondage of Satan. Bondage is being held against your will as a prisoner. Did you know that was what sickness was? You could call sickness a spiritual jail cell that has kept you physically locked up from your freedom. It is clear to me that Jesus is saying you ought to be free today and this is why I say that.
Rom 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
According to God we in the church are called Abraham’s spiritual children today by our faith in Jesus Christ. Therefore what did Jesus say? Didn’t Jesus just say “ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham be freed from this bondage of Satan?” When you begin to see who you are in Christ, it should begin to change your perspective on if you should be healed. According to Jesus, you should be healed even on the Sabbath. Let’s back up and look at an Old Testament verse to change our perspective. Many times people look at scriptures in error found in the Old Testament to justify their erroneous beliefs that God makes people sick, so I’ll talk about one of these to potentially help someone:
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.
You can see a clear conflict in the English translation of this verse. This is why so many people are confused today. They do not research the words or study the definitions and they conclude things based upon Old Testament verses that you cannot find repeated in the New Covenant teachings. Yet, these are tough words to read. It would appear that God is inconsistent and that God shows favoritism and that God treats one nation differently than the other nation. If God heals Israelites and makes Egyptians sick then God is not the same to everyone. That is a major problem to me. It means that you cannot count on what God said and you cannot trust in God doing anything good for you or to you. It tells me that the definitions of God and Good are inconsistent and unreliable. It means the sun might come up in the west tomorrow because we just never know about how God does anything. Why would God give us a huge book of information about Himself if God did not want us to know who He really was? It does not make any sense to me. Let’s get back to the Hebrew words in this verse found in Exodus and become extremely picky to see exactly what God is saying to us. I want to make one extremely important point up front. First it does not say that God put the disease on Egypt. It was the translators that said that. Look at the Hebrew words translated as “I” will and see that in that statement within the context of Egypt there is no Hebrew word in the verse that can be translated directly as “I”. Do you understand this? It is an assumed reference and inserted because the translators thought that God was the one that made people sick. Now look at the end of verse and see the difference in the last part of that statement. “I am the Lord that heals you”. Now God uses a direct Hebrew word that can only be a personal pronoun of who God is and what God does. If God wanted you to believe that He is the one that puts sickness on people He would have used the same personal pronoun in the other parts of the verse so that you can associate it with Him. No, sickness does not come from God it only originates there by the minds of men who credit God with everything good or evil. Here is the same verse with the removal of the words “I” that do not occur in the Hebrew:
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, will put none of these diseases upon thee, which have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee.
No you can see that someone still put sicknesses on the Egyptians, but we learned from the New Testament that this was not God, but Satan. It does not say God put the sicknesses on them. I am attempting to use the Bible to understand the Bible and to get you to see the subtle differences a few mistranslated words in the Old Testament can make. This verse still says “I am the LORD that HEALS” very plainly. So God is attributing healing to His work and not sickness. You of course can remain in darkness and still believe otherwise.
The major difficulty that people are facing today is the fact that the Bible contains two separate covenants. The Old Covenant was with a natural nation of people and the New Covenant is with a spiritual nation of people. In the Old Covenant, God hid the existence of Satan largely in symbolic references, unnamed references and in ways that allowed you to know something was there but not always understand what it was. In the New Covenant, Satan is revealed for who he is directly. Yet the majority of people today, who are confused, are those that are focused in only on the law of God and the prophecies of God without interpreting them using the revelations of God in the New Covenant given to the church. That is a huge mistake, it is no wonder we have so many different opinions in the world.
Let’s ask ourselves some really basic theology questions:
- Which Covenant are we in today?
- Which Bible pages and verses should hold more importance to us as Christians? Genesis or Revelation? Deuteronomy or Galatians?
- Are we under the Law or are we now under Grace?
Too many times Christians want to emphasize the Old Covenant and ignore the New Covenant reality. They only read things in the Old Testament that are important to them thinking that they apply to them. I can go through your Bible and look at what verses you underline to see what you choose to believe is important. If you spend more time in the Old Testament than you do reading the letters written to the church directly, then you are living under the Law of Moses and you ignore God’s Grace. I would strongly recommend that you take the time to go and read Deuteronomy chapter 28 and see what God says about blessing and cursing under the law. But before you do this go and read what God says about it in chapter 30 first:
Deu 30:15 See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;
God clearly says Life is GOOD and death is EVIL! These are two different perspectives of contrasting opposite events. Births are good and deaths are evil. You could also say healing is good and sickness is evil. You can go down the list of opposites and clearly see God is teaching you something you should understand clearly. Then God says this to you:
Deu 30:19 I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:
It appears the choice to live or die has been placed upon humans. This goes against a Sovereign Predestination theology that is clearly wrong. Now go back and read chapter 28 about the blessing and the cursing of the Law of Moses. If you go and read down the whole chapter you will see many diseases being named by name. Then in verse 61 you will find this statement:
Deu 28:61 Also every sickness, and every plague, which is not written in the book of this law, them will the LORD bring upon thee, until thou be destroyed.
So the curse of the Law includes “every sickness and every disease” that is not named in this book as well as those that are named. Do you understand this so far? What we conclude from this chapter is sickness is a curse and healing and health is a blessing. What did God tell us to choose? Was it not life to live? These are very simple truths found in the Bible yet many people just ignore them. Here is a New Testament reality that will help you if you can see it:
Gal 3:13 Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree:
According to God, what were you redeemed from? You soon learn the difficulty in the teachings of confused people who do not know the truth. We can very clearly see that if Christ has redeemed us (PAST TENSE) we have been freed from all sicknesses and all diseases that were listed in that chapter 28 of Deuteronomy and even those that were not named directly. According to God He did not leave out any sicknesses or diseases in that chapter so that means all of them! If Jesus Christ came to redeem you from sickness and disease then there is NO WAY that God is sending you sickness or disease to kill you. This would again be God working against Himself and a clear Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde type of theology.
I am attempting to alleviate the questions in your mind that God sent you sickness. It is a difficult subject for some people to accept because of the things that they have been deceived into believing about God. I hope if nothing else you will start to go through your Bible and see the Jesus who revealed the true nature of God in the Gospels. Then go and read the Letters written to the church about how God is Love, the Grace of God, the Goodness of God and the mercy of God. Learn to see the real God and who He is today in the New Covenant. If you want to, you can also go through the names of God given to you in the Bible. The names of God in the Bible always reveal the character of God! You will see God called “Jehovah Raffa” which means “I am God Your Healer”! You will never see the name of God called Jehovah Makes You Sick! Yes there is coming a judgment of God and this will occur during the tribulation and the time shortly thereafter. But, do not confuse the Judge God with your Father God. Perhaps I will have time to discuss a balanced approach to understanding the character of God. Ok, I have a lot more to teach on, but I have gone too long today. If you want to learn more about where sickness came from in the Bible, please come back and read with me again. God Bless!
If you want to continue reading in this series about the origin of sickness and disease, please continue with “Part 2“.
(Ver 1.3) Today is Part 11 in a series of advanced lessons on Understanding Bible faith. If you have not been reading this series from the beginning I would recommend that you go and start with “Part 1”. I think I shocked people with my last Bible lesson on faith and sex. It is amazing how many people read it but did not comment. What do you think when God said you can clearly see the invisible qualities of me in the things that I have made (Romans 1:20)? When I read that verse it made me start looking around at the things that God has made and then I would attempt to learn about God from them, but I guess many people close their eyes and ignore the fact that God made things like sex and marriage and they pretend they don’t exist. As a result they miss the obvious spiritual things in the Bible that God is trying to teach them. You need to start becoming a Sherlock Holmes type of Christian detective and start looking for God in the clues that He has created all around you, for you to find. These are the invisible things of God hidden in plain sight. If you like this series of lessons and have learned something, be brave and leave me a comment.
Faith is a complex subject found in the Bible. God teaches us something about faith in practically every book of the Bible. Faith is a predominate theme of the Bible. Yet so many people do not understand it or they would understand that God says that without it you will never please Him (Heb 11:6). This subject of Bible faith is complex because it involves many other dependent factors and subjects that are also taught in the Bible. In previous lessons, I taught you that everyone in the world has faith in one thing or the other. But, few people have faith in God and His Word. If you believe that Buddha is your way to the state of eternal happiness, then you will soon be very disappointed, but you at least do have faith in Buddha. Jesus the God of the Bible taught us that there is a very narrow way to God that few find and He taught us to search for this path (Mat 7:14). Since we know that Jesus is this path (John 14:6) and that He was the only way to the Father we can have confidence in His words as being faithful and true, if we have believed in Him. Today I heard the national news report on an upcoming book written by a self-proclaimed man of God. You must realize that just because a man says he is a Christian and writes a book, does not mean what is written is based upon the truth. This preacher is teaching people in error and has written a book that claims there is no hell. What an ignorant deceived blind man. Here is what God says about this man’s opinion:
2Ti 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
We are living in the last days as this scripture is being fulfilled right now. The sinners of the world are departing rapidly from sound doctrine and they want to exalt men who will teach only what they want to hear. A spirit of tolerance and acceptance is what they are after and they will flock to a deceiver whose lies scratch their itchy ears. Beware when a man ignores a large part of the Bible to teach you another part while misapplying it. The word “hell” occurs over 50 times in the KJV Bible. It is also referred to many other times in other scriptures while not being directly named. For example, Jesus spoke frequently about it, telling you there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth there (Mat 8:12, Mat 13:42, 13:50, Mat 22:13, Mat 24:51, Mat 25:30 to show you 6 references found in only 1 book of the Bible). This blind man is teaching that a loving God would not send people to hell. We obviously understand from scripture that God is love and I do not deny this fact. However, this man has exalted one truth in the Bible and has made it the entire truth and this is a very dangerous type of man to follow. You see he is ignoring the Holiness of God, the Wrath of God, the Power of God, and the Judgments of God in favor of only the Love of God. If you do not balance your theology and teaching with every truth in the Bible you are falling into error and deception. You see, I do not deny the fact that God so loved the world that He gave Himself as a sacrifice for us. What I am teaching you today, is that there is more in the Bible than Love. I’ve already written other Bible lessons on this subject of “Why Do People Go to Hell”, and “The Biblical Evidence for the Existence of Hell”. So if you want to know the truth go and read about it, otherwise I’ll miss you in heaven.
I’m sorry I got off the subject of faith, but liars and deceivers cause me to get into righteous anger. I do not appreciate people who are leading others down a path of destruction simply to sell a book and to make some money. Somebody needs to stand up and tell the truth regardless of what it costs them. I have determined to try to do this. Today’s lesson is about “How to have great faith”. If you have read this series you know that your faith is measureable. You also know that your faith level can vary from none to overflowing. Jesus only looked at two people in the Gospels and told them they had great faith. This was not a derogatory put down; rather it was a praise of the highest magnitude from the Supreme Spiritual Power of the Universe. Jesus tells us very clearly in the Gospels that He was looking for people with faith while He was here on the earth. It further goes on to say that He will be looking for people with faith when He returns for us (Luke 18:8). So it must still be important to learn how to have great faith today. When Jesus ran across individuals who possessed a level of faith that exceeded His expectations, Jesus would stop and marvel saying “I have not found so great of faith in all of Israel”. Therefore, we are going to examine these people that marveled Jesus to find out, why they had such great faith and see if we can become a God marvel also. We will begin with this verse about a woman that caught God’s attention:
Mat 15:28 Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.
I want you to notice in this verse that the Bible says because of this woman’s great faith, her daughter was made whole again. The Greek word translated as “made whole” means to cure or heal. We can therefore conclude the daughter was sick or diseased. The majority of the time when people came to Jesus asking for help it was because they needed physical healing. So today’s lesson is about how to receive healing from God and you might need to know this also, because He is still the same today as He was back then (Heb 13:8). This is actually a very good faith lesson found in the Bible to learn from. We will back up in the chapter and go verse by verse through the information to learn from the context of how this woman possessed such great faith.
Mat 15:21 Then Jesus went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon.
Here is Jesus going into the outer fringes of Canaan into the Gentile population. In these days the Jews mostly settled in and around Jerusalem, but the cities outside of this realm were heavily populated with the Gentile nations. I want to point out that Tyre and Sidon are not even close to Jerusalem. The cities were on the Mediterranean coast nearly 30 miles from the Sea of Galilee through mountainous terrain. Jesus was obviously getting far away from the Jews to be in such a place. It also had to take Jesus significant time to travel to reach this area. You might recall that I have said before that God will move heaven and earth to get to someone with faith and I believe that Jesus is not in this area by chance or accident. Keep this in mind as we continue through the lesson.
Mat 15:22 And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou Son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil.
Now we are told about the woman for the first time. She is being described to us as a person that is from the coast. She is also described to be a Canaanite which is the greater region’s name sake. Canaan consists of a broad stretch of land and is often called Palestine by many non-Jewish people. This is a wide land area that encompasses land from south of Jerusalem all the way to the north where Tyre and Sidon are located. We know from Genesis 9:18 that Canaan was a son of Ham, one of the three sons of Noah saved in the ark by God. So the Canaanites were descendants from this branch of the family of Noah. It is also interesting to note that in Genesis 9 that Canaan is cursed to be a servant of his brothers by Noah. These are just interesting Bible background facts that are good to note. When I read this story of the Canaanite woman in Matthew, I wondered how the description and message of Jesus had reached a woman all the way on the coast. It is obvious that news traveled in this land even without cell phones. Also note that she is not a Jew, but she calls Jesus the Son of David a covenant title of respect and honor. It also implies that she understood what God had said to David in the O.T. that David’s Son would sit on his throne forever. God had told David that his son would build God a house for His name and He would sit upon your throne. I also wondered how she knew it was Jesus. Was it the presence of the disciples with Jesus or was it what He was wearing, or how He was acting or speaking? Jesus obviously did not walk around with a giant name tag hanging around his neck saying “I’m the Son of David Your Messiah”. Neither was Jesus identifiable by a halo around His head. The angels of the Lord did not surround Him with a visible wall of protection and His appearance had to resemble every other man. It does not say that Jesus has spoken or taught anyone directly in this area. I could only find the following scripture about Tyre and Sidon in Mark:
Mar 3:8 And from Jerusalem, and from Idumaea, and from beyond Jordan; and they about Tyre and Sidon, a great multitude, when they had heard what great things he did, came unto him.
It would appear that information about Jesus spread by word of mouth. I could not find a direct reference where Jesus ever taught in these cities, yet it clearly says the people there heard of Him and came looking for Him. So when a stranger comes to your town, do you automatically assume it is Jesus the Messiah? I honestly do not know how to answer that question. There was something that this woman must have heard about Him to cause her to know it was Him. We have learned that the Bible says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. So we can easily assume that since Jesus said this woman had faith, she must have heard the Word of God at some time in her recent past. We are told that she comes to Jesus and asks Him to deliver her daughter from a devil. What was Jesus’ reaction to the words of this woman? This is where the story starts to really get good to me.
Mat 15:23 But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us.
Silence was the answer from the Master. That is not what she was after, was it? The disciples who were with Jesus asked Him to send her away. They think that they are the reason for her presence, but they are clearly confused. She had not said anything to them at all. I want to introduce you to a new factor for having great faith and a new partner to receiving anything from God. What does it take to come and ask anyone for help? In the world we live in there are homeless people everywhere you turn. What does it take for them to ask for help? Wow, that is a tough question for people with pride to answer. You can clearly understand that it takes humility to come to ask anyone for help. Of course if you are desperate then you might say people act out of desperation. But, even desperate people can die with pride and not ask for help. No, you have to humble yourself to ask anyone who is capable of helping to help. There is no room for having pride if you need something from God. If you are too proud to ask God to help you, then you are truly in trouble. The Bible says that God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6). So if you are need of anything that God can do for you, please learn to come to Him in reverent humility. Watch the actions and words of this woman and see what you can learn about what your ways should be.
Mat 15:24 But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
Jesus finally speaks and says something very strange. He tells the woman that He was only sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. That is a very revealing insightful statement about many things, especially since we see the fact that Jesus purposely left the lost sheep of Israel to get to where this woman was. What is a lost sheep of Israel? First, the name implies that they are no longer in the house of Israel, because they have wandered away and become lost. Do you understand the conflict that is arising in what Jesus has said? Where is Jesus right now? Who is Jesus speaking to? Jesus is in a Gentile costal village of people who He just said He was not sent to. Wow, is God confused? I don’t think so! What we understand from this lesson is that faith will cause God to go out of His way to help someone no matter who it is or how far He has to go. Next notice this, what was the woman’s reaction to the words of Jesus? Jesus had basically told her I was not sent to help you.
Mat 15:25 Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me.
Here is where her humility begins to kick in and to shine. Notice how she remained focused, persistent and confident that she was in the right place at the right time. This woman did not give up, nor did she throw away what she had heard because of what she is experiencing right now. You should learn from this woman all that you can to duplicate her efforts. Also notice she is worshipping God. If you want to receive from God, learn to worship Him. If it could not get worse for this woman, it suddenly does:
Mat 15:26 But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs.
Jesus calls this woman a dog and that would cause most religious people to get angry and start yelling about “Who do you think you are?” “Who do you think you are calling a dog?” If Jesus called you a dog, what would have been your reaction? Here is a golden opportunity to get offended at the word of God. Do you know that people getting easily offended is one of the greatest enemies to why they do not possess the Promises of God? I guess I didn’t teach on this enemy before. Offense is a powerful weapon of Satan. Take and learn from this woman, she is not angry, upset, offended nor does she get up to walk away from her answer. This woman was too smart and wise to allow the words of God to offend her and she says this:
Mat 15:27 And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.
This woman simply agrees with God and said you are right I am a dog, but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from the masters’ table. WOW! Was that a great reaction or what? You see if you have ever had a dog in the house while you are eating supper you know exactly what she is saying. Children and people accidently drop things off of the table and before you can bend over and pick it up they are gone. A crumb falling from the table is not there long enough to be a problem. Learn what she is saying today. The dog is so focused on getting anything dropped, they do not care what it is and it can be a very small crumb and they are all over it. Do you see why this woman is about to receive from God? She is the dog looking for the crumb. Always agree with God and always stay on God’s side. If He calls you a dog, you just smile and agree. Of course if you are His child now, He is not going to call you a dog, just learn what is happening here and do not get easily side tracked.
What is Jesus teaching us in this faith lesson? Do you remember what the woman came for? Her daughter was being grievously vexed by a devil. What does that mean? By looking up the words “grievously vexed by a devil” in the Strong’s we learn that the child was possessed by an evil spirit that caused her to be greatly sick or diseased. We understand one of the reasons that Jesus came to the earth was to do the following:
Act 10:38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
The Bible tells us very clearly that Jesus was anointed by God to heal those oppressed of the devil. So when a woman comes to Jesus because her daughter is possessed by a devil that makes her sick, this is one of the reasons we are told that Jesus was here. However, notice again what Jesus said in Matthew 15:26. He said “I have the children’s bread and it is not for dogs”. Remember she is asking for Jesus to heal her daughter and Jesus says this “bread” is only for the “children”. Do you understand what Jesus is saying? Jesus is saying healing is the children’s bread. This of course is a hard saying of Jesus to fully comprehend. The woman is talking about healing and Jesus is talking about bread. How did He make that transition? It is clear to me that Jesus is not speaking of physical bread, butHe is speaking symbolically of something spiritual. Therefore we must determine what this spiritual bread is? This is why you have to use the Bible to interpret the Bible or you will be totally confused.
Mat 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.
Here is Jesus teaching us using another radical shift with the transition of words. Here we have God in the flesh beginning to talk about natural bread and then moving into the spiritual realm and telling you that the Word of God is this true bread from heaven that will cause you to live. Jesus is basically revealing the definition of spiritual bread in this verse. God’s word is proclaimed to be this spiritual food. Of course Jesus is simply quoting this information from an Old Testament prophet Moses found in Deuteronomy 8:3. If you read this verse you will know that the bread from heaven was a type of food given to the children of Israel called manna. This was equivalent to a spiritual food source and Jesus teaches us that this bread comes from the mouth of God when He speaks.
Joh 6:32 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.
If you read the context of this verse you can clearly see that Jesus is comparing two things. Natural things are being compared to spiritual things. Jesus is calling natural things false and spiritual things to be the true. I hope you can see this. Here is God telling you something very significant about spiritual things. Jesus is saying I have come to bring you the words of life. Jesus is inferring His words have life in them that causes people to live and even to get healed. Here is an Old Testament scripture that will fit in very nicely with our study today:
Psa 107:20 He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.
As you can again see from this verse, God says “I sent my Bread and the bread Healed them”. So when Jesus is telling the Gentile woman that healing is the children’s bread, He is referring to His words as being the bread of life that brings healing. Jesus then told the woman these words are only for the children at the table. But, the woman makes a statement that truly astounds God. She said it won’t take but a crumb from the table to heal my daughter. This is so powerful if you can see it. The woman did not ask for any of the bread, she only needed a crumb and God called this having great faith. The woman recognized that the Power of God was in His Word and that it did not take great power to heal even a significant disease. Change your perspective today to see your disease as insignificant compared to the power of God which is far superior. Many times people are so consumed by their circumstances they lose sight of the power of God’s Word. Shift your focus so that you understand that it does not take very much power to heal any disease. You only need a crumb like this woman needed to fix her problem. God called this great faith. If you noticed this story of the woman, she went away to her home and her daughter was healed already when she got there. Here is a review of the key factors we learned in this faith lesson today:
- Humility, Stay Humble to Receive God’s Grace.
- Persistence, don’t give up even if it looks worse.
- Not being offended when you are called a dog.
- Worship the God who can solve your problem.
- See your problem as being small and insignificant.
- See the Word of God as Powerful and capable of solving any problem.
- Expect a Crumb to solve Your Problem.
Today’s study was another very different faith lesson found in the Bible about the faith of dogs eating crumbs from the table of the Master. Remember what Jesus said? Jesus told us that “Healing was the children’s bread”. Are you one of His children? I know that I am. The Bible calls us His children in several places for example: Romans 8:16-21, 9:26, Galatians 3:26, Ephesians 5:8, 1 Thessalonians 5:5 and 1 John 3:10. If God calls us children and God says “healing is our bread” now, then why don’t we have it? You better learn to partake of the true bread from heaven. I hope and pray that you learned something from this lesson today and that you can apply it to your situation. If the Word of God is not relevant to you today then it will never be relevant to you at any time. You may not need healing, but there is always something that can be challenging you. The Bible faith concepts work for whatever the situation when applied correctly with the right attitude. God Bless!
If you would like to continue reading in this series of lesson on understanding Bible faith you may go to “Part 12“.