James 5:15 – And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up.
A great portion of Christ’s time was dedicated to healing the sick. He healed all kinds of people: the blind, the paralyzed, the lame, the deaf, lepers, those who had fevers, and many with chronic illnesses (Matthew 4:23-24).
We believe and teach that Christ’s healing ministry continues to us and through us even today. By the power of the Lord Jesus, who is the same yesterday, today, and forever, He continues to heal the sick and the afflicted in answer to believing prayer. Healing of the body, soul, and spirit is not only a “paid in full” benefit for every believer to access, but also a responsibility for every believer to freely give away (Matthew 8:16-17; Mark 16:17-18).
Where does healing come from?
Scripture is clear that divine healing is not simply a compassionate gesture of a loving God, but in fact, part of what was provided by the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross (Isaiah 53:4-5; 1 Peter 2:24).
When Jesus went to the cross, He took with Him the full weight of the curse. Christ died to reverse the curse resulting from our sin, and redeemed us from the curse of the Law (Galatians 3:13). The curse was death — spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically – including anything that contributes to the deterioration of one’s vitality. He died for the whole man, not only for man’s soul.
If one acknowledges that Isaiah 53:4-5 declares that Jesus died to redeem us from “all our sin,” then they must also acknowledge that this same Scripture says His redemptive work includes healing for “all other” aspects of man’s being.
For a more comprehensive look at Healing and Atonement, click HERE.
Does that mean Jesus still heals today?
Yes! Since forgiveness of sin is still available today, then divine healing is also available today! We find no record in the gospels of Jesus turning away anyone who came to Him for healing, nor do we find any disease that was too difficult for Him to heal (Matthew 9:35). He even raised the dead (John 11:38-44).
Likewise, we also find no Biblical evidence to indicate healing is no longer available to us today. As a matter of fact, it’s quite the contrary. Scripture is consistent and clear that miraculous healings still occur today — evidence that Christ is still our healer (Hebrews 13:8).
How can I be healed?
Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
This passage is viewed as the New Testament Diving Healing covenant that continues to be practiced today. Those practices are as follows:
- The sick are to exercise faith by asking for the pastors, spiritual leaders or fellow believers to pray for them (vs. 14, 16)
- The acknowledgement of sin and heart preparation are important, as our physical well being is intricately connected to our spiritual health (vs. 15-16)
- The person can be anointed with oil. There is nothing superstitious about the oil itself, but it is a prophetic action that declares one’s dependence on the “Anointed One – Jesus Christ,” and the presence of the Holy Spirit at work in our midst (1 Corinthians 12:9; Exodus 15:26)
Why doesn’t everyone get healed?
Although the Bible is clear concerning Divine Healing, many people struggle to embrace its reality because they’ve not personally experienced healing, or know someone who has not been healed. Understanding this seeming discrepancy requires deeper study, but here are several obvious hindrances to healing that are often overlooked.
- A lack of faith in the finished work of the cross and the Lord’s willingness to heal today can hinder God’s ability to move in our life. Although healing comes from God alone, and not from our faith, our faith is the conduit through which God works. (Isaiah 53:4-5; I Peter 2:24; Mark 1:40-45; Mark 16:17-18; Ephesians 2:8-9)
- An unyielded heart and/or unrepented sin, including unforgiveness, can block healing. (Mark 11:25; Isaiah 59:2; Proverbs 3:1; Exodus 15:26; James 5:15-16)
- Believing that divine healing must happen immediately and miraculously, or not at all, hinders faith. While we do believe that Jesus supernaturally heals people with immediate and miraculous results, we also see in scripture examples where healing happens progressively (Luke 17:12-19; Acts 5:16 – Greek word used communicates progressive, not immediate healing).
- Finally, ultimate healing is promised to every believer in eternity (Revelation 21:4).