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These lessons looks at how it is a part of God's nature and character to heal the sick. It begins by establishing a biblical precedence from both the Old and New Testaments. It explores the healing ministry of Jesus and of His disciples, laying a foundation for present day healing. Then it examines subjects like "letting Jesus heal" and the role of faith and confession in healing. Then it gives some practical hints and guidelines for the everyday believer to minister healing today, and it closes with testimonies and examples from a real life modern day healing ministry.
The Healing Presence Of The Lord
By Fred Kelly
The Old Testament
The healing ministry foundation
To commence these lessons we will look at some scriptures in the New Testament.
How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how he went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with him. NIV
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the broken hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of the Lord. KJV
One of the most noticeable ways Jesus serves the people is by healing them. In Matthew, it states that He healed all.
When the even was come, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick KJV
One thing we see is that the power of the Lord was present to heal in Jesus life here on earth. He the Son of the living God filled with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit empowers Jesus for His ministry, for the Spirit descended on Him at His baptism, Mark 1:10. It says in Luke, "the power of the Lord was present when Jesus was ministering."
Jesus had introduced Himself to Israel
as the one who came to heal for the Father had sent him. Anointed by the Father to carry on in a greater way the ministry the Father had brought to Israel in the Old Testament. In Exodus 15:26
is where the Father declares that He is Jehovah-Rapha "the Lord who heals you". All the way through the Bible Father God and the Son of God's ministry are based upon these parallel heavenly disclosures that healing is fundamental to the ministry and character of God.
The Old Testament brings out the character and ministry of the Father God as one who is concerned about His people in all the every day health aspects of life for their Spirit, soul, and body. When we read the Old Testament, we see this in many scriptures. Such as these: Exodus 15:26; Leviticus 7:22-27; 11:1-15:33; 17:1-16: Psalms 147:3, and Isaiah 61:1-2.
This shows us that the ministry Jesus did was an expansion of Father God's healing ministry in the Old Testament. Jesus would also go on to expand this ministry through those disciples that followed Him even unto this day. It would be a development of the healing ministry in the power of Holy Spirit. The healing presence of the Lord is more evident that one might think. In the Old Testament, there are many examples of healing and the promise of health. For instance, in Exodus chapter 15; God gave His first promise to heal. This promise is for all; even unto this day. Father God names the conditions for them, the conditions were met, and we read in Psalm 105:37 "He brought them forth also with silver and gold: and there was not one feeble person among their tribes." KJV
The complete condition of health in the population of Israel continued as long as they met the Father's conditions.
Then we see in Numbers 16:41-50 that sin was found in them. The presence of God was not in their life for the sons of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron. 14,700 die from the plague. When they met the conditions the plague was stopped, and God "Jehovah-Rapha" healed all. Again, in chapter 21 they allow the presence of God to lift from them by allowing sin to take over. See verses 4 and 5. Their condition of health had remained good for 19 years, but they began to speak against God and Moses. In verses 6-9 we read: Num 21:6-9
And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of
Israel died. Therefore the people came to Moses, and said, "We have sinned, for we have spoken against the LORD, and against thee; pray unto the LORD, that he take away the serpents from us. And Moses prayed for the people.
And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live. And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived. KJV
Note the phrase from verse 8, "It shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looks upon it, shall live." (The brass serpent being lifted up on a pole was a type of Jesus' sacrificial death on the cross). When they look, they were healed. This was because they allowed the presence of God to come and take control by looking to the Lord, by performing an act of obedience.
Health is a blessing, promised in the Old Testament to those who are obedient; it comes both to the nation and to the individual. God has also given us healing through the natural process of the body. He created our physical bodies with the ability to heal and regenerate themselves, with globulin to close up bleeding wounds, with antibodies to fight germs, etc. God "built" our bodies with the ability to heal naturally. We also see many promises of supernatural healing take place in the Old Testament. God already worked out His plan of salvation when Adam and Eve first sinned. The Old Testament is full of many "fore-types" of what Jesus would do on Calvary.
This pertained to our salvation and restoration with God, and it pertained to our physical healing. Jesus took all our sickness upon Himself at the cross. Here are some scriptures that talk about healing as a part of Christ's atonement: Isaiah 53:4-5; Matthew 8:16-17; 1 Peter 2:24; Galatians 3:13.
According to Deuteronomy 28:15-22, 27-29, 35-61 all sickness is a curse of the law. However, God the Father according to Galatians 3:13said Christ Jesus has redeemed us from the curse of the law. Now we have better covenant (Hebrews 8:6) and the healing found in the Old Testament must come to us because of what Jesus accomplished for us on the cross.
The Old Testament has many examples of healing. These examples in the Bible give us a foundation that points to the healing ministry that Jesus fulfilled, developed, and pasted on to believers today.
Let me share one of the Old Testament examples with you. Genesis 20:1-18 documents the healing of Abimelech. God had struck Abimelech with with sickness for taking Sarah as one of his wives, even though Abraham had sinned by misleading Abimelech to believe that Sarah was his sister instead of his wife. Yet God struck Abimelech for Abraham's sake because Abraham was His prophet and His servant. We also see that God sent a sickness of sorts the household of Abimelech (see Gen 20:18 ).
God had closed up the wombs of the household of Abimelech. As soon as Abimelech found out that Sarah was already married, he returned her "untouched" to Abraham. Then God instructed Abraham to pray for him and to minister healing to him. Note that Abimelech was a heathen. Old Testament story demonstrates that, even from the earliest of times, God's plan was for His servants to minister physical healing to the unsaved.
Abraham walked in faith and we must walk in faith, it is a very fundamental to the healing ministry.
[While ministering in India my wife Alice and myself have ministered healing in the meetings for all kinds of sickness. We have prayed for many who were barren, they had no child and could not have one. We have seen many healed from this condition. I have been in India five different trips and know of the healing results. Of course, there are many we do not know about, for some types of healing takes time to show the healing. I will share more of the different healing in lessons to come.]
Please read these scriptures in the Old Testament and see how Jehovah-Rapha "the Lord who heals you" is at work. Write down what you find. Allow Holy Spirit to help you understand, also to give you insight. Pray before you read these.
The Old Testament underlines the dominion and power of God, but we also see the healing ministry coming to light, which was to go on to burn brighter and more powerfully developed through the ministry of the Son of God, then to be passed on to the believers to minister to those around them.
The New Testament
The healing ministry of Jesus
Jesus is the Word of God, and we see both Old and New Testament tie healing to the Word:
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. NASU
He sent His word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions. NASU
And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. NASU
The "Word" in these verses refers to Jesus, the Son of God. He was in the beginning and has existed for all eternity. This same Jesus came and dwelt here on earth. Even though He was God almighty, only a few people suspected His deity until after His water baptism. This is when Jesus was anointed with Holy Spirit. When Jesus was water baptized, Father God openly anointed Him with His Spirit. He did this to equip and commission Jesus for the mission that the Father sent Jesus to do here on earth. We see that Jesus, who is our role model, was filled with the Spirit. Therefore, we also need to be filled with the Spirit. Luke 4:1 says, "Then Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness" (NKJV).
Jesus was sent the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. Jesus used the Word of God to over come the devil's temptations. And each time that He used the word, God's presence became stronger. Jesus did all of this to obey Father God, and His obedience was pleasing to Him. This gives us an important principle: the more we please God, the stronger His presence is within us.
Luke 4:14 says "Then Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee , and news of Him went out through all the surrounding region" (NKJV). In other words, Jesus' ministry was launched. This is what Jesus proclaimed about Himself and His ministry:
"The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD."
Then He (Jesus) closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. And He began to say to them, "Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing" (NKJV).
In Luke 4:22-30, we see that Jesus identified Himself as a prophet and He linked His ministry with the Old Testament prophets' healing ministry. Jesus would minister to all "walks of life," but He directed the ministry mostly to the poor also to the ordinary people. By contrast, the Old Testament prophets ministered mostly to those in authority.
Jesus walked in a healing authority because He carried God's presence. Luke 5:17 states: "And it came to pass on a certain day, as He [Jesus] was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was present to heal them" (KJV). Jesus was in the presence of the Lord. The power to heal was there, God's presence.
One might ask, how does He get "the presence" to come? As we read the Gospels, we see that Jesus was always talking or praying to Father God. He stayed in close contact with Him. He only did the will of the Father. Jesus knew the word of God; He never stepped out side of the boundaries of God's Word. His obedience pleased the Father. God said this in Mark 1:11, "And there came a voice from heaven, saying, 'Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased'" (KJV).
I believe that this behavior, designed to please and honor God the Father, was what ushered in God's presence.
We must walk in the Spirit doing the Fathers will, just like Jesus did. We must do only what the Father is doing, just like Jesus did only what the Father told Him. Romans 8:8 tell us "those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God" (NIV). I want to please God don't you? Therefore, we must be controlled by God's Spirit instead of by our sinful nature. We must have faith and we must praise and thank God in all.
"And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him" (Heb 11:6). "I will praise God's name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving. This will please the LORD more than an ox, more than a bull with its horns and hoofs" Ps 69:30-31.
As we walk in this, drawing near to God, His presence becomes stronger and the glory of God comes, this brings the healing power just as it was said in Luke 5:17, "And the power of the Lord was present to heal them." We must have compassion for those who have a need, just as Jesus did. "When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick" (Matt 14:13 ).
Let us look at some scriptures that show Jesus ministering healing.
Healing a royal official's son
The lame man at the pool of
The man born blind
The centurion's servant
Two blind men
The blind men of
The women with the issue of blood
Paralyzed man let down through the roof
Man with a wither hand
Deaf and dumb man
Blind man in
Widow of Nain's son
Women bent double
Man with dropsy
High priest's servant
Jesus sets the example for us, how to minister healing. Read all the gospels and see how He ministered. Take a high lighter (say light blue) and mark all the healing scriptures in your Bible. His presence in our day to day lives increases when we have God's Word in our heart and not just in our mind. Jesus knew that the Father was willing to heal. Jesus healed those who came to Him asking to be healed, and those who the Spirit sent Him to.
I am going to share with you one of our adventures in God. We minister healing in our meetings; people come and ask to be healed. We speak to the need and believe God to heal. At times, Holy Spirit tells us to go and pray to minister healing. One example of this was when we were in India.
We see many healings and salvations on these trips. Each mission trip is a month long, so there are many opportunities for ministry. One evening we planned to hold a meeting in a believer's home in the slum area out side of Coimbatore, India.
It was dark by the time we arrive in the area. The streets were too narrow for us to drive our car on. So we had to walk to the house. There were many people walking along that same street. A number of the men were drunk and shouting. On both sides of the narrow street, there are open sewer ditches. It was very dark, so we tried to stay to the center of the street to avoid those open sewers. We also needed to keep our mind stayed on the Lord and not on the difficulty. It was getting late so we were walking fast so we would arrive on time. As we were walking a Hindu women called out from the gate to her home. She asked us to come in to her home and pray for her son. I asked the pastor we were with if he knew her, but he said that he had never even seen her before. So we asked the Holy Spirit if this was of Him, should we go in to this home? If we went, we knew that would make us late for the meeting. In addition, we were aware that it could be a trap to keep us from having a meeting. However, the Holy Spirit told us to go in, so we did. We found that the woman's son, (and adult man), had been in an auto accident six months back. He had not spoken since, and he had to be fed through a tube. My wife and I and the other pastor prayed and commanded healing come to this man. He began to speak God healed him, praise God! We left and walked to the meeting. Many people are followed us. God began to move mightily in this Gospel meeting, which was held in someone's private house. The house, and the yard and street in front of the house, were full of people. Those close to the open windows had their heads poked through wanting to see and hear all they could. All want to hear about the God that had just healed that man down the street. As a result, many were saved, many were baptized in the Spirit and many were healed that night. I believe that the key to this completely miraculous situation was that we stopped and asked the Holy Spirit if He wanted us to go into that house. Our natural thought told us we should not go, so we would have missed this divine appointment if we did not seek God for His will.
Letting Jesus Heal
There are many different reasons why people might not get healed. We may not ever understand why this is. However, we must consider some things because they will bring results and let Jesus heal. The key issue can be summed up in this question... "What are you putting your focus and attention on?" Some people continually look at the problem instead of looking to Jesus, our Savior and Healer.
Numbers 21:6-9 tells the story of when God sent fiery serpents among the people because of their sin, and many died. They came to Moses acknowledging their sin and repenting, so Moses interceded for them. God's response was to have Moses make a bronze serpent and lift it up where the people can see it. Then if anyone is bitten by the fiery snakes and chooses to look at the statue of the snake, they will live. This is a type of looking to Jesus, who is lifted up to draw all men unto Himself (John 12:32 ).
In fact, Jesus spoke of this in John 3:14-15, "As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life" (NASU).
Remember that our goal is to to see healing. It is not to understand the sickness or focus on the symptoms. Rather, our goal is to get rid of the sickness and related symptoms.. to get the person healed. In order to get that, we must look to the one who is the healer, Jesus. Unfortunately, it is so easy for many of us to focus on the problem, or to put our attention on the sickness. When we do this, we are NOT focusing on Jesus, the solution. So, we need to learn to transfer our focus from the sickness to Jesus, who is the solution to that problem. In fact, Heb 12:1-3 admonishes us to do precisely that. It says, "... let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you may not grow weary and lose heart" (NAS).
We must fix our eyes on Jesus, just as the children of Israellooked to the bronze serpentthat was lifted up on a pole. They had to look to it in faith to receive their healing. Jesus referred to this in John 3:14-15. He drew a parallel between the bronze serpent being lifted up for healing and His being raised up on the cross. The healing, both physical and spiritual, came from looking to and identifying with Jesus Christ crucified. His death, burial, and resurrection bring life to those who look to Him and believe He is the Son of God.
I Peter 2:24 describes it this way, "and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed" (NAS). In addition, Isaiah 53:4-5 puts it this way, "Surely He took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered Him stricken by God, smitten by Him, and afflicted. But He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed" (NIV).
We must look to Jesus in faith in order to let Him heal us. When we do that, the presence of the Lord comes in power. There is healing in the atonement that Jesus made for us. When Jesus is present, His healing power is also present. It is the Father's will that healing come to those who look to Jesus in this manner. Most sick people want to be healed. But not all of them look to Jesus with such a desire to see Him; instead they look at the thing (or sickness) that has come upon them. Some ask why God allowed the sicknesses come to them, blaming God for it. This is not a good way to react, because it keeps the person from seeing Jesus as the healer that He is, and they end up keeping Jesus at a distance.
We need to invite Jesus to come close to us in faith. The woman who suffered from a hemorrhage for twelve years was healed because she knew that she would be healed if she could only touch the fringe of His cloak (Matthew 9:20-22). Likewise, we must touch Jesus and we will only know how to touch if we look at Him. The woman saw Jesus in the multitude of people and she went after Him. Go after Jesus, fix your eyes on Him for He is the author and perfecter of our faith. Our faith brings healing.
"Letting Jesus heal" also means we must be willing to let Him do it His way, not as we think He should. As you read the Gospels, you read about how Jesus ministered healing. He minister in different ways, but central to all is looking to him in faith. We worship Him, bow down to Him giving Him the glory and honor due Him.
Here are the steps I advise you to follow:
Letting Jesus heal comes more readily when we draw near to God. James 4:7-8 says, "Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you" NASU. When we draw near to God, this ushers in the healing presence of God; the power to heal will be there.
Let me share an example. One time I was ministering in Guyana, South America.
I preached on healing in the evening meeting, and the power of God to heal was present. The worship was powerful; the presence of the Lord was there among us. We had been worshiping for over an hour then I gave the message. The power of the Lord was there; prophetic words were spoken about healing to come. I had a word of knowledge about someone that had AIDS. A young woman came forward. I walked toward her to lay hand on her and speak healing in the name of Jesus. I was just about three feet from her when the healing power of God hit her. She went flying back three or four feet and landed on her back -- no one caught her. I had not touched her, Jesus did. She was out under the Spirit God for quite a while. God had healed her. She was set free.
We have to let the word of God take mastery over our minds. Until God's Word gains mastery over your mind, your mind will be swayed by feelings and by things you see or hear, rather than the Word of God. Jesus is the Word. John chapter one tells us this: John 1:1,14
1. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
14. And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth" NASU.
It is by being filled with Him, His Word and Spirit, His own life, that Jesus Himself becomes our life. Then His presence and power surrounds us and the power of the Lord to heal delivers from the infirmities and pains. Proverbs 4:20-23 gives the most comprehensive directions on how to be healed.
My son, give attention to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your sight; keep them in the midst of your heart. For they are life to those who find them and health to all their body. Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life. NASU
Do you want to receive life and healing from God? Then take time to find the words of scripture that promise these results -- let Jesus heal you.
The Healing Ministry Of The Disciples
Jesus' ministry included training His disciples so they could continue His ministry after He went to the Father, e.g., after His ascension. First Jesus taught them by the words He spoke. Then He showed them how and when He healed the sick. Jesus showed them many ways to do this. And I believe (from Luke 5:17b) that He never did any ministry until the presence of the Lord was there in power. Jesus spent many months training the disciples before He releases them to do the work of the ministry. And doing the healing was an activation of what they learned from the hearing Jesus teach and seeing Him minister to people. (Remember that at that time, the disciples had not yet been baptized in the Holy Spirit because Jesus had not left to go to the Father so that Holy Spirit would come to be with us.) Jesus trained them. Then He sent the twelve on their first mission. In addition, He sent them out two by two.
We see the instructions He gave them in Luke 9:1-6:
He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all the demons and to heal diseases. And He sent them out to proclaim the
kingdom of God and to perform healing. And He said to them, "Take nothing for your journey, neither a staff, nor a bag, nor bread, nor money; and do not even have two tunics apiece.
Whatever house you enter, stay there until you leave that city. And as for those who do not receive you, as you go out from that city, shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them."
After they returned to Jesus to tell of the mission trip he took them to Bethsaida to have a time of rest, prayer and assessment of the mission (Luke 9:10).The disciples ministered with delegated authority (Luke 9:1) from Jesus. This delegated authority had its limits. For instance there was a time when they could not cast out a demon that was making a child sick (Luke 9:37-43).
At Pentecost, they were baptized in the Holy Spirit; then they got an anointing to minister in Jesus' authority and power. Jesus, after His resurrection, instructed the disciples in what to do; we read his instructions in Luke 24:49 "Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high." And Acts 1:4-5 says, "And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, 'which," He said, 'you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now." And with that came a promise of power - Acts 1:8 says, "But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in allJudea and Samaria , and to the end of the earth." After Pentecost, they had a new power to do the works of God because of the Holy Spirit at work in and through them. There were amazing changes in the ministry of the disciples after the day of Pentecost. Before we look at some of the ministry of the disciples after Pentecost let us look at some observations from the Gospels:
Now let us look at the ministry after Pentecost. First, Jesus gave a commission to preach the good news, heal the sick and cast out demons before He left to go to the Father (Mark 16:17-20).
Matthew 28:18, Jesus told them to go to all nations. In Acts 1:8 He said promised His power would be within them as they go.
They began to walking a powerful anointing after their baptism in the Holy Spirit. The disciples began to see a ministry of healing unfold in a great way. Here are some examples:
The disciples closely followed the general guideline that Jesus taught them and those of the Old Testament prophets. We need to look at whom, what and where.
Whom did they serve? The disciples ministered to beggars, social outsider, friends, and adversaries of the gospel.
What conditions did they minister to? They ministered to people with social and disabling illnesses such as: blindness, dysentery, paralysis, all kinds of sicknesses, and even death.
Where did they minister? They ministered at the gate of the temple, homes, outside meetings, in a field, at church. Ministry was initiated by the leading of Holy Spirit. His leading may come as the voice of the Spirit speaks within them, or a vision given by God. The disciples ministered in this manner; they laid hands on them Acts 9:17 ; commanded healing Acts 3:6. They spoke to the condition and the person they ministered to. They asked what do you want just as Jesus did (Matthew 20:32 ).
They ministered healing evangelism, and in most cases the church experienced growth as a result. There were a few cases where the church did not grow, but over all, healing evangelism brought people in to the church as new babes in Christ. For instance, when Peter healed the lame man at the temple gate in Acts 3:6-7, the church grew by 5,000 new converts in one day (Acts 4:4). When Ananias healed blind Saul, Paul the great minister of the Gospel came in to being. When Peter healed Aeneas "all who dwelt at Lydda and Sharon saw him and turn to the Lord." All of Joppa heard about Dorcas being restored to life "and many believed on the Lord." Praise God for the healing power that brings many to see Jesus as savior. In some cases, people were greatly encouraged but the word does not tell us of people getting saved.
Let me close this lesson with an incident from one time when I ministered in
, after I preached, we prayed for the sick and many people were being healed. The presence of the Lord was there in power to heal. During the meeting, two drunks made a lot of noise, calling and making fun of what we Christians believe. The devil was using them to try to disrupt the meeting. I bound the spirits that were using the drunks, and then I called one of them to come up to the front. I commanded him to be sober and the effects of the alcohol to be gone. He became instantly sober, and then I told him that he needed Jesus. He said, "I do I want Him." He was saved. Then I laid hands on him to pray for him, he went flying backwards, landing on the ground under the power of the Spirit of God. I called out to the other drunk who had just watched all this. I asked him to come up for prayer, but he called out "no!" So I said "I will come to you." He was in the back by the door. I talked to him for a moment about his need for Jesus. Fear came on him, the demon in him said, "you're not going to knock me down," and he took of running and he did not come back. The demons cannot stand to be in presence of the Lord. Many people came to the Lord that night because the presence of the Lord was there in power to heal and save.
FAITH AND CONFESSION
Faith is the title deed to what you have not seen. We must believe we have what we ask for according to Gods word and will. The Hebrews 11:1 says, "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" (NKJV). The Moffat's translation of the NT reads like this: "Faith means we are convinced that we have what we do not see." Jesus said, in Mark 11:24, "Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them" (NKJV).
Faith for healing is the same as faith for salvation. In other words, you must believe on the authority of God's Word. When you ask for forgiveness, you receive it. You may not have "felt" it right away, but you were forgiven. Salvation was there -- you had it by the grace of God. Faith is the evidence of things not seen. It is not faith any more when we actually receive it, it is faith while we are looking forward to God keeping His promise to us. As soon as we receive the blessing that was manifested; faith for that blessing is not needed any more because we already have it.
Again, faith for healing is like faith for salvation. Once the healing has come, the body is restored. We need to continue to thank God for the healing and give Him all the glory. We must believe have faith that we received when we pray. Just as we receive salvation, we prayed we believed we had salvation. Do not throw away your confidence;
Hebrews 10:35 -36 says, "Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise" (NKJV).
The bible assures us that we can have confidence and endurance; confidence that we are going to see the manifestation of the healing, faith in God that He is doing it. 1 John 5:14-15 says, "Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him" (NKJV).
I looked up the word study notes from my Spirit Filled Life Bible, page 1884. Here is what it said:
"Endurance, hupomone (hoop-om-on-ay); Strong's #5281: Constancy, perseverance, continuance, bearing up, steadfastness, holding out, patient endurance. The word combines hupo, "under," and mone "to remain." It describes the capacity to continue to bear up under difficult circumstances, not with a passive complacency, but with a hopeful fortitude that actively resist weariness and defeat."
We must have endurance until God brings forth the manifested appearance of the thing hope for. 2 Corinthians 5:7 said this; "for we walk by faith, not by sight" NASU. The TLB translation phrases it this way: "We know these things are true by believing, not by seeing."
Our walk in this life must be a faith walk; it is how we live our life. Are you walking in faith? Only you can answer that question. We as Christians need to search our hearts and ask Holy Spirit to reveal where we are in our walk of faith.
Jesus when He spoke to the fig tree spoke in faith. Let us look at this scripture. We find the story in Mark 11:13-15, 19-24 (NKJV):
And seeing from afar a fig tree having leaves, He went to see if perhaps He would find something on it. And when He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. In response Jesus said to it, "Let no one eat fruit from you ever again." And His disciples heard it. So they came to Jerusalem. When evening had come, He went out of the city. Now in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. And Peter, remembering, said to Him, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree which You cursed has withered away." So Jesus answered and said to them, "Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea,' and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will come to pass, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.
You see, the fig tree Jesus cursed dried up not from the leaves down, which they could of seen before they went into the city, but from the roots up which were out of sight. The death of the tree could not be detected right away by look at the leaves. As verse 22 said, have faith in God. In other words, through the faith of God, speak to the problem and don't doubt in your heart believe what you say and God will bring it to pass in due time.
Jesus was teaching his disciples that they need faith to believe even if they did not see it right a way. We walk by faith not by sight. Our faith needs to be tenacious; this is a faith that is single-minded one that is holding fast characterized by a firm grip. Don't let go of it. Hebrews 11:6 said: "And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him" (NASU).
I want to please God. Do you? We walk in and by faith so our confession must be one of faith also. "Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit" (Prov 18:21 ).
Speak life and live, eat the fruit of life. There are people that fail to receive what they pray for because they lack to comprehend confession. Confession is affirmation of scriptural truth that we have embraced, taken to heart. It is down in our spirit and repeat it with our mouth, God's own declaration.
1 Peter 2:24 says that Jesus "bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed" (NASU). We are to believe and speak the same word. Say it aloud.
Some wonder if God will really back up our confession of faith. The bible tells us that He will, if we are confessing things God has promised in His word, the Bible. Jeremiah 1:12 says, "I am watching over My word to perform it" NASU. Who watches? Jesus! Let us look at another scripture. Hebrews 3:1 says, "Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus" (NKJV).
Jesus Christ, as our High Priest, acts in our behalf by that which we confess when it is in agreement with God's Word. Romans 10:8-10 says, "But what does it say? 'THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, in your mouth and in your heart' -- that is, the word of faith which we are preaching. That if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation" NASU.
So let us talk about confession. Confession is saying something by faith. It is believing and confessing something before we experience the result. So how does this fit together? Let's look at the example of Salvation.
What about healing? That works the same way. We confess our healing while we are still waiting for the magnification of it. We are confessing God's Word. God has promised both Salvation and Healing. The word salvation (so-tay-ree'-ah) has this meaning: deliver, health, save, safety, help, victory. The Lord is our strength and our life and He will up hold His Word and bring it to pass because:
We are to not to say our healing is fully manifested when it is not. The Lord is not asking us to do that. If anyone ask you, just say, "I am standing on God's Word." This is biblical; we see it in Rev 12:11
In this passage, they over came the devil by:
Put God first speak the word with faith knowing that He will do it. Many hear the good news of the saving, healing, and delivering message of God. He wants all to receive it. Unfortunately, some do not (Heb 4:2).
Faith and confession go hand in hand. We walk by faith with a confession on our lips and our eyes fixed on Jesus. We move forward in the power of Holy Spirit knowing in our hearts that the answer is forth coming. The testimony we give to the world around us is one of victory because Jesus has taken the keys of death and of Hades, He has over come the devil, the victory is His and He gives it to us who walk in faith and not by sight and mix it with the Word of God.
Let your testimony be one of faith and confession of the Word, and then the healing presence of the Lord will come in power. Let me share an example of faith and confession in my own experience. The devil tried to bring arthritis in to my hands. I had pain and stiffness in the fingers. I quoted the Word of God and I commanded the spirit of arthritis to bound and cast out, and I commanded all pain to go in the name of Jesus. I keep saying "I will not receive this arthritis pain; I will not have it." I have believed in my heart and confessed it with my mouth. I keep saying it, I will not have it, and you have no right here be gone. By the healing power of the Lord it goes. I moved my fingers and hands to check them out. Then I thanked Jesus for the healing. The devil may try to come back and attack again, but if He does, I will just stand in faith and confesses and speak I am healed in Jesus name, and he will be forced to leave. I praise God and give Him all the glory.
How To Minister Healing
Luke 5:17 says, "One day He [Jesus] was teaching; and there were some Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem; and the power of the Lord was present for Him to perform healing" (NASU).
After the day of Pentecost when Holy Spirit came, the power of Lord came upon those who ask to be baptize in Holy Spirit. Jesus had said to receive Him -- and those who did would receive power (Acts 1:8). Jesus is the one who baptizes believers unto the Spirit (John 1:33).
I believe that a believer must be baptized in the Holy Spirit to move in a powerful healing ministry. Jesus spoke of signs following those who believe, and healing is one of them. The Apostle Paul spoke of the "gifts of healing" as one of the gifts of Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit who enables us to carry the Lord's presence and anointing to heal.
The Old Testament prophets ministered in healing. However, Jesus brings a greater depth and more direction to the ministry of healing. (Of course, He also taught on all aspects of ministry and Christian life.) Not only did He teach He showed them ministry in action. Then Jesus had the disciples do it themselves. But there was one thing the believers needed to bring them in to the fullest of what God wanted for His people -- this was Holy Spirit in them and working through them. In the book of Acts describes the ministry and activity of the apostles and disciples. This book does not have a closing at the end of it. That is because the Acts of the Apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, teachers, all the disciples continues on today. See Ephesians 4:7-16.
Jesus gave us the great commission in Matthew 28:18, 19, and 20. It tells us that we must go to all nations to teach all that Jesus instructed, and we must continue doing so until the end of time. Jesus' command still applies to ministry today. Therefore, ministry must allow all spirit filled believers to move in the healing power. We must be careful NOT to give the impression that only a few special people can minister healing. The spiritual gift that we have becomes stronger and of greater value when we use it as often as we can. For example, in Romans 12:6, Paul suggests that we should use the gift of prophecy in proportion to our faith. We see here that the gift can strongly developed in some people.
Those that have less faith not as strongly developed. Using what we have will cause it to be come strong and more developed. That is why Paul told Timothy to sir up the gift that was in him (2 Timothy 1:6). We need experience, we need do what God has said, to use the gift with in us.
Remember Jesus said these signs would follow those who believe. Now there will be some that move in a special healing ministry for God has ordained it. But that does not negate the truth that healing can come at the hands of all believers. This ministry of healing can take place anywhere that we go; this is not something just to be used in the Church building. I have seen the healing power of the Lord at work in many places, not just in the Church.
So how do we prepare to minister healing? First, we must we must be sensitive to the prompting of the voice of Holy Spirit. We must pray regularly, talking to God and letting Him speak to us. The voice of Holy Spirit comes only because we have been in prayer. Thus, one of the key reasons that some are ineffective in healing ministry (or in any ministry) is because they do not spend enough time in preparatory prayer. Next, we must understand that it is God's will to heal. In addition, we must be ever ready to minister to others as the Holy Spirit leads us. We must do whatever the Spirit of God directs, and we should not do things that He is not directing. In addition, Jesus sent the disciples out two by two in Luke 10:1. Therefore, when possible, it is better to minister with another person as your partner. Of course, there will be times when this is not possible, but when it is possible, it is a good idea to minister in teams. Most of the ministry in the book of Acts was done in teams.
You must realize that not all healing is instant, so develop and cultivate the "patience" fruit of the spirit. Take a look at your motivation to minister healing. Some are attracted to the healing ministry for the wrong reasons. Our motivations should be compassion and obeying God's word and to glorify God. We need to be humble but strong. In addition, we must be ready to do with God what he is doing, even if it is a bit different than we are used to. There are times when the Holy Spirit will give us other gifts to enhance the healing ministry, such as word of knowledge, word of wisdom, discerning of spirits, gift of miracles. When He does this, we must be ready to do it with Him.
Now, on to some of the practical steps of ministering healing, do not be afraid to ask questions of the one, which needs healing, Jesus that with some blind men. Read Matthew 20:32-34. Feel free to ask questions like:
Along with that, check and see if something has happened after you pray. For example, if you are praying for a deaf person, ask, "Can you hear?" We need to keep our eyes open when we pray. We can gain helpful information by watching the person's reactions. And if we suspect a healing, we want to send them back to their doctor. If the person is under a doctor's care or on prescription drugs, send them back to their doctor instead of telling them to discontinue their medication or treatments. Let the doctor be the one to take them off the prescription. Urge them to get a medical confirmation of their healing.
In addition, it is important to have people who have been healed share their testimony publicly. This builds the faith of others and it strengthens the one who was healed. Have the one who has been healed give a testimony of their healing. If they do not know the Lord as Savior ask them if they want to receive Him as Savior and to be baptize in the Spirit. We will look more at the power of testimonies in our next lesson.
HEALING IN TODAYS MINISTRY
We have spent the past 6 lessons looking at the healing presence of the Lord. We started by looking at the Old Testament foundation for healing ministry. Then we looked at Jesus and how He constantly healed the sick. Then we discussed the concept of letting Jesus heal (by putting our focus on God, our solution, instead of on the sickness or problem). We looked at the healing ministry of the disciples. We saw that Jesus did not just heal the sick when He walked on the earth, He granted His authority to His followers to keep healing the sick until He returns.
Then we switched gears and looked at faith and confessing our faith. We discussed how all believers can minister healing and we looked at some practical steps in how to do this. In all of this, the message is very clear: God heals the sick, and He has given his disciples (e.g., all believers) the authority of Jesus to heal the sick. This was not something only for Bible times that went away when the bible was completed. God's healing power and authority are just as real today as they were when the book of Acts was written. Believers today can (and should) minister healing through the authority of Jesus that was given to them when they were filled by the Holy Spirit.
There are many healing ministries in this day and age. God is on the move, He never stopped healing, it is just that we as believers stopped believing that it could happen. We come into reliance on medical doctors more than God's healing power. The medical field has a place and if needed to be used, but we need to pray and trust in God first. God will use doctors, he has given them wisdom and knowledge, but it is still God who heals.
All that has been said so far in this teaching series can happen anywhere you may be. I praise God for every miracle we see, whether it is accomplished in a grocery store, factory, office, or a church. I love to tell of the miracle healings that take place, because when others hear their faith is ignited for miracle healings to happen to them! God not only wants us to be healed but He also wants to be the one ministering healing.
I would like to share a testimony of God at work. This occurred when Pastor Mike Lyon and I were ministering in Dnipropetrovsk
in June of 2001. We went there to share the glory of God with the people. We spoke and taught on the prophetic, healing, and on hearing God's voice. We taught in the
in the daytime, and held meetings in the evenings in in a pavilion in a park. These nightly meetings lasted about two weeks, and they were open to all. We wanted to see the glory of God to come into these meetings. We wanted to see the power of the Lord to heal. We prayed daily, we had been praying for months before we went. Our expectances were high because we knew God would move, and He did! The Lord had given us a scripture for this trip, 1 Chronicles 16:23-24. It said, "Sing to the Lord, all the earth! Tell of his salvation from day to day. Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples!" RSV.
We ministered healing in different ways, such as laying on of hands and just speaking a word of healing to those who need healing. This is how my meetings would go; we had a prayer time before going to the meeting. We would start the meeting with at least an hour of praise and worship. Then we would have one or two share a short testimony of their healing. We did this because it builds faith in those present at the meeting. Then we would take an offering followed by a bit more praise. Then I would preach for about an hour. After that, we would have a ministry time. Each night Holy Spirit would lead me in this manner. I would say "Jesus is walking among us; He is here to heal sickness of all kinds. If you need to be healed just raise your hand up to reach out to touch Jesus. He will heal you when you do. Now if you know that God has healed you -- and only those who know you are healed -- stand up." People were stand up all over the pavilion.
Then I would ask them to come to the platform to give testimony of what God had done. Many would literally run to get up here. Many who were healed were not Christian, but they wanted to be saved when we asked them. Many were born again in these meetings.
The testimonies of the healed people ignited faith in others who had not yet been healed. They began to get healed because God was still at work. We had to use an interpreter because the people in the
speak Russian. We asked those who wanted to share their testimony to write it down. The testimonies were in Russian, so we had our interpreter rewrite them in English. I am going to share some of these testimonies with you, so that you can see how God glorifies His name by healing the sick. Some of what you are about to read may not be in proper English because they were translated for us:
Those are just a few healing testimonies of how God worked. There are many more. I would like to share just one more from the Ukraine, which happened at the home that we were staying at. One morning a man brought his young son to us at the home to be healed. The following is his testimony:
"My son had testicles dropsy from the very birth. When he was five, he was operated on but without success. Now he is seven. The day we supposed to go to hospital for the second operation, God healed him by the prayer of Michael and Fred" Polyanskies family.
They went to the doctor after we prayed; we had spoken that this condition ceases to exist. When the doctor at the hospital checked the boy, he said that the child was healed an no longer need an operation.
My wife, Alice, and I were ministering in India on a one month trip. When we were in Coimbatore, India
we got a call from a medical doctor who was a Christian. He had a heart attack and was in the hospital. He was told that he needed a triple bypass operation. The next morning I stopped by to pray for him. The chief of staff came and told me all that was wrong and what had to be done. I asked the chief of staff if we could go into the sick doctor's room and pray for him. He said yes. The doctor was scheduled to have his operation the next day. We prayed, I spoke to his heart and commanded it to become as one of a health twenty five year old. I commanded the heart to be made totally new and spoke a complete healing to all arteries that they be open and that the blood could flow freely. We thanked Jesus for the healing and left.
Two days later, I asked a local Indian pastor if he had heard what happened to the doctor. He said that the doctor had just telephoned him because the hospital doctors had sent him home. He had been totally healed. Later on, I received a letter from him. The doctor wrote, "I went back to the hospital and there I gave my testimony of how God had healed me. Five nurses and three doctors who were Hindus turned to Jesus and received Him as Lord and Savior."
Honest testimonies from those who are healed are very powerful. God uses them to build faith in others and to cause people to receive Jesus.
I hope these lessons have inspired you to step out and let the Lord use you in the healing ministry. People are hurting and need a touch from God. Will you be the one to touch them with the healing power of God? If God can use me He can use you.
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