Friday, 5 September 2014

Healing: nurturing faith ... or unbelief

I recently recalled an encounter with someone who was quite upset being told that if the person he prayed for wasn't healed, the problem was with him praying. 

He was to be blamed for harboring unbelief while the afflicted person had nothing to do with the healing not manifesting. Well, as you can see there is quite a bit of self-condemnation going on for the person who really prayed from a compassionate heart. 

Doctrine, oh doctrine of man ...

All that remained was for this prayer warrior to throw in the towel ...

Healing does not always manifest straight away

I personally have prayed for many people who did not receive instant healing, but the Holy Spirit taught me that this should not discourage me or serve as a reason to stop spreading the Good News, laying hands on the sick, casting out the demon or walking in authority obtained through the victory of Jesus.

The coin has another side


On the flip side I have prayed for many who indeed received healing, some instantly and others soon afterwards, and this encourages me to keep on walking in the divine authority given to us by Christ Jesus. Also when not seeing healing immediately, it encourages me to endure - pray again and rebuke the affliction until it is removed.

Healing IS already there

The fact of the matter is that we are already healed and as a result we should just talk hold of our inheritance, walking in that faith. This does not mean that we should be denying our physical circumstances, but rather submitting our circumstances to the finished work of Christ on the cross. 

So, what then could the reason be for someone not receiving healing?

Being involved in a hospital ministry for several years, the Holy Spirit has shown me and taught me of many of these reasons. Not one of these reasons were ever was intended as condemnation either to myself or the afflicted person. Rather, it  always resulted in the edification of all parties involved. It can best be explained by the examples that Jesus Himself laid out ...

The reasons always revolves around FREE CHOICE

Just the same as our salvation, God will never force or pressurize you to receive healing. He will not impute His healing upon you! It is a gift to receive ... or deny.

Enters the Wolf in sheep fleece

There is a way (by choice) that we are able to make the good work of Jesus to no effect in our lives. 

Our age-old draw-back comes from religion, the man-made traditions and rules and needless works we bind ourselves to without even considering it's true origin - just like the pharisees and scribes. 

Jesus said in Mark 7:13 Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye. 

Much of our traditions are derived from some pagan on man-made ritual or rule or custom. Some are laws, interpretations, deceptions and lies straight from the devil himself. For more than 2000 years religion (the devil) has taught, misled, confused, twisted and brain-washed us into unbelief that:
  • Healing was not part of the atoning sacrifice of the Messiah 
  • Healing was for the time of the Apostles so that they could come to believe 
  • Healing comes only from the doctors that God predestined 
  • We should not discern the Body of Jesus for physical healing when taking holy communion 
  • Our affliction is God's will because He, in His sovereignty, allows it 
  • God is teaching him or her a lesson and they will emerge a better christian once it passes 
  • God has a plan with afflicting us and making us suffer 
  • We should abide because of God's plan with affliction 
  • It is a necessary thorn in our flesh the same as what Paul had and God is not prepared to take it away (they do not comprehend) 
  • and on and on ... 
... all these are unbelief and demonic lies!

Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye. Mar 7:13

We forget our position

To our own benefit and/or determent we have this extreme power of choice uniquely attributed to mankind ... and even God honors our choices. This is what makes you man created by God, in His very image. 

Even when God gave the law, the rules that His chosen people asked for, He lovingly guided them in making the right choice saying as He did in Deuteronomy 30:15 See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil

and in Deuteronomy 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 

But what did Jesus say concerning our faith?

Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted [strephō - reverse your thinking to think as God thinks], and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven Mat 18:3

A child comes as it is, not with all the baggage and traditions washed into their minds as some adults do. If i give my child a gift what she do? She opens the gift unreserved and without guilt, condemnation, reasoning, attributing consequences, looking for reasons not to open it or prerequisite whatsoever. That's exactly how we should receive our Gift - Grace! (which includes healing)

Even our own troubles

Our own afflictions can be all-consuming at times. This is exactly the reason why in James, God provides for the afflicted when He says: Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord Jas 5:14 

... so that when we are sick ourselves and feeling hopeless, we will call on the elders and draw on their faith. Yet, not at the expense of those elders and definitely not by them condemning themselves should we not be healed.

While it may be true that afflicted people draw on the faith of other believers when they are ill, it should never be taught that you are the ones responsible for someone not receiving healing.

Whatsoever things

Jesus said:Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. Mar 11:24 

There is a place where Jesus helps our own unbelief.

The Greek word used here for believe is pisteuō meaning - to have faith (in, upon, or with respect to, a person or thing), that is, credit; by implication to entrust (especially one’s spiritual well being to Christ): - believe (-r), commit (to trust), put in trust with. 

And when should we believe? 

When we pray.

Jesus showed us what happened to Him in his home town of Nazareth (word meaning guarded one or set apart one).

And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them. 

And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round about the villages, teachingMar 6:5-6

Remember our post on why Jesus marvelled? (click here)

They knew Him only as the carpenter's son

The people in His hometown were astonished over the wisdom of Jesus and the mighty works He did when they saw Him in their synagogue. They talked about Him among themselves and then, in an amazing turn of events, they derived at the conclusion that Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him. Mar 6:3

Offended!

When we say that Jesus is not able to heal, to set free, to deliver to provide, to secure, ... we are offended of Him and our unbelief gets the better of us.

It's what we nurture

You see, it all depends on what we nurture and account as true in our lives. 

We think of someone as just someone and not as the beloved of God - the one God has anointed and the one filled with the indwelling Spirit of God Himself. 

Also, we are constantly filling our heads and hearts with nonsense like, hate, adultery, violence, death, deception, lies, the dark-side, demonic stuff seen and heard, etc. both on television, theater, radio, news papers, magazines, and even the religious 'church' we give inroad to these (demonic) things into our lives - contrary to the Great Good and Perfect News, the One Offer that made all things new - Jesus. 

We nurture our own unbelief. Then, when we suddenly need healing, we turn to God and the Word (Jesus), as if the cross never happened.

Garbage in ... garbage out ...

We spend 99% of our time basking and fellow-shipping in unbelief and then when the setbacks and afflictions come we expect to take full authority over the things of the devil.

... distracted by the devil

Jesus sent out the seventy And they went out, and preached that men should repent. And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed them. Mar 6:12-13

Notice that when Jesus sends you out the first thing He requires you to do is to preach the Gospel, to sow the Good News of His salvation and healing and then to physically cast out and heal. This is the good story and stands in stark contrast to the things we watch, listen to and read on a daily basis, even in church.

Easily impressed by signs and wonders

A soon as the disciples returned they testified how the devils flee from them and Jesus rejoiced over this, that God gave these things (authority based on faith - Jesus) unto babes (children without baggage). Yet, shortly afterwards the disciples tried to heal a man's son. The man distressful stated Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick [epileptic], and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him. Mat 17:15-16 

But Jesus is not distracted

He heals the Boy.

What Jesus then explains to His disciples after rebuking the devil, is important.

Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Mat 17:19-20

... distracted by the devil

They were overwhelmed and distracted by what they saw and this was responsible for their unbelief.

... but Jesus doesn't leave it at that because He came to restore our authority. 

He provides the answer to our unbelief: Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting. Mat 17:21

What kind?

I've heard people saying that it refers to this kind of big bad demon.

What Nonsense!

Jesus is saying this kind of unbelief (of the 'believer') is overcome by prayer and fasting. By crucifying our flesh and own unbelief we are submitting to God and when we resist the devil, he shall flee! 

It is not to twist the Arm of God by fasting, but to fast-away and overcome our own fleshy, worldly desires and traditions and like things such as hunger and sleep and relief and worldly comforts ... unbelief in His supernatural provision for us. 

HalelluYAH!

Where do we start?

Notice once again, that whenever Jesus sends us out He starts of with preaching (teaching) the Gospel. Then He says heal, cast out, etc. 

Why?

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth. Rom 1:16

And what is this about repentance?

Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? Rom 2:4 

It is the goodness, the Gospel of Jesus, that leads to repentance.

Pleeeease see our post on Paranoia ... or metanoia.

Thayer defines metanoia as: a change of mind, as it appears to one who repents, of a purpose he has formed or of something he has done. Not listing your sins! Not by trying to pay for it yourself. But rather a change of mind to think the way God thinks about you - that by the blood of the Lamb you have been made completely whole, free, without spot, without blemish, holy before Him!

Nurturing Faith now?

Yeah! 

Now our faith is quickened! 

Now we are walking in belief of the completed work of Jesus on the cross!

Belief comes not from the religious but the pure heart

Notice that Jesus marveled [to stand in wonder and admiration] over the belief even of those who were gentiles at the time.

When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. Mat 8:10 

Again ...



Once again ...

Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. Mat 17:19-20 

Knowing that Jesus is your Healer and Saviour and Provider and not denying Him is about all the faith that you need to move that mountain!

What a wonderful promise!

What a Faith!

You are so utterly blessed!
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