The Cry For Health and Healing - A Christian Point of View
A Warrior's Cry (Prayer) for Healing
War cry for health and healing
“Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician? Why then has the health of the daughter of my people not been restored?” (Jeremiah 8:22, ESV)
Many Christian sermons, books, CDs and DVDs address health and healing. They surpass any other subject matter and material in the church today. In fact, Strong indicates that the Bible contains almost 200 healing scriptures compared to about 77 for prosperity, and approximately 120 about forgiveness. Why would God need to address healing more than other spiritual issues? Is healing a greater challenge for Christians, or do we focus on healing more because it such a basic need?
About 50 years ago, a Russian Jewish psychologist named Abraham Maslow was studying human motivation. He developed a hierarchy of needs that he theorized all people have. The hierarchy was like a pyramid, with a wide base and narrow top. The idea was that certain needs must be fulfilled at the bottom of the pyramid before we can or want to move to the next higher level of need fulfillment. The most basic needs are also greater in number, thus the wide base. The most basic needs are physiological (air, water, food, sleep, and sex). The next level of need is security (body, health, family, morality, employment, and resources). The next highest need is love and belonging: family, friendship, and intimacy. At the next highest level are the esteem needs of self-fulfillment, accomplishment, respect of others, and respect by others. Those needs at the top are less numerous, but more concentrated. At the very top of the pyramid is a need called self-actualization. It is the place where you feel whole and complete and can operate in morality, creativeness, lack of prejudice, and acceptance.
Notice that health is close the bottom of the pyramid. It is a human need that must be met before we can enjoy life and accomplish our goals. There are some unique individuals for whom this is not true, but for most of us, when we are sick, it is much harder to raise a family or function on a job, particularly people who are chronically ill; either physically, psychologically, or emotionally.
The Bible records more healing miracles by Jesus than any other type of miracle. He wasn’t giving the people financial advice or training them to cast out demons as often as he was healing them. He knew that people have to fulfill their most basic needs such as water, food, and good health to be able to function at a higher level.
The Healing Right
The healing dilemma
Healing is certainly sought after since it is a relief from suffering. What are some of the reasons that people either don’t seem to get healed, or lose their healing? Numerous theories have been proposed: 1) healing is blocked by sin, 2) healing is blocked by unbelief, 3) healing is blocked by unforgiveness, 4) feeling unworthy to be healed, 5) believing it is God’s will for you to be sick, 6) not realizing you have the God-given right to seek and lay hold of your healing.
First, healing may be blocked by sin in the believer’s life. Sickness did not come until the fall of man. Sickness and disease are a direct result of sin entering the world through Adam and Eve. Are there scriptures that support this idea?
Many Old Testament scriptures indicate that living a sinless life was a precursor to obtaining God’s healing. “…saying, ‘If you will diligently listen to the voice of the Lord your God, and do that which is right in his eyes, and give ear to his commandments and keep all his statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you that I put on the Egyptians, for I am the Lord, your healer’” (Exodus 15:26). “You shall serve the Lord your God, and He will bless your bread and your water, and I will take sickness away from among you” (Exodus 23:25). “See now that I, even I am he, and there is not god beside me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand” (Deuteronomy 32:39).
In the last verse, God is indicating that he is the one who has the greatest power of all. The antagonist in the above examples, though, is not God. It is man’s disobedience to God’s commandments or not serving the Lord that brings sickness. That is why he created laws for us to live by. His laws are for our protection, and not obeying them brings suffering into our lives physically, mentally, and emotionally. They are for our benefit, so that we do not reap the earthly consequences of our sin. God set them in motion, and to maintain his holiness, he must uphold those laws. That is why he sent Jesus. God knew that we would not be able to obey his perfect laws, and he atoned for our sins. That does not mean that if you engage in sinful activity, you won’t receive the consequences of that sin in your body. He does promise to heal us if we come to him in repentance. “If we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (I John 1:9).
Second, healing may be blocked by unbelief. Even Jesus’ ability to heal some people during his ministry was blocked by their unbelief. Mark 6:1-5 says, “He went away from there and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. And on the Sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astonished, saying, ‘Where did this man get these things? What is the wisdom given to him? How are such mighty works done by his hands? Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses, and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?’ Andy they took offense at him. And Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.’ And he could do no mighty works there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and healed them. And he marveled because of their unbelief.”
There are organized sects within Christianity that do not believe the gift of healing is functioning any longer. There are also individual Christians who do not believe in healing miracles or progressive healing. Obviously, Jesus was amazed at that mindset, but he did not fight against it, either. It is your choice to seek healing, or not. If being sick is somehow working for you, you will remain as you are until something motivates you to want to change.
Third, healing may be blocked by unforgiveness. You may be holding a grudge against someone else, or you may be holding unforgiveness against yourself. Matthew 6:14 states, “…but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Further, if you hold unforgiveness against someone, you are holding it against God. Matthew 25:40 states, “Whatever you do to the least of these, you do it unto me also.” That verse is saying that unforgiveness is ultimately toward God as though he owes us a debt. Further, some people are directly angry and unforgiving toward God. Can you admit that you have unforgiveness toward God? The scriptures are saying exactly that! Perish the thought that we would ever be so arrogant that we believe God owes us restitution. He is not blocking our healing then. We are blocking it by putting a wall of unforgiveness between ourselves and Almighty God. He does not owe us anything because he already gave us everything that was precious to him.
God does not want to punish us. He wants us to follow his example of forgiveness toward others and ourselves. He gave the greatest sacrifice when his only Son died on the cross for our sins. So, how can we hold unforgiveness against anyone? Yes, we are fallible human beings, but God wants us to overcome that with his power, and let go of the debts owed to us by others. He cancelled our debts, and we do not have the right, no matter how severe the offense, to keep track of the offenses against us. “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence” (2 Peter 1:3).
Remember that forgiveness is not for the offender, but for you. It is a gift to you. There is a saying that goes something like this, “Forgiveness is setting a prisoner free, and then realizing that prisoner was you.” Another ancient Chinese proverb states, “The man who seeks revenge should dig two graves.” God is not withholding healing from us. He is waiting for us to remove all the barriers in our lives between us and our healing.
Fourth, healing may be blocked if you feel unworthy of being healed. Guilt and shame are barriers to healing and continuous health. There are individuals who believe that they are so evil that God cannot heal them. Yet, he is longing to love them and help them, but they have effectively closed the door to him. Overcoming that belief in their inherent worthlessness may require a change in faulty thinking patterns discussed previously (the Holy Spirit’s psychotherapy!).
The scriptures tell us that we do not deserve anything from God, but that he freely extends salvation, healing, and abundant prosperity to us because he loves us. He freely gave us his son as an atonement for our sins (John 3:16). He freely offers us healing and health as well. It is our job to lay hold of the healing scriptures and remind God and ourselves how much he loves us, and that he wants us well to carry out his work.
Fifth, healing may not occur if you believe that God uses sickness for your benefit. Some people believe that God punishes, corrects, or causes illness so that he can be glorified. There are no scriptures that indicate God makes us sick to make an example of us or to punish us. If that was true, then why would he tell us to pray for our healing through Jesus Christ?
What I can find are hundreds of scriptures about how much God loves us, and that he wants to heal us. Jesus never made anyone sick while he was on earth, but he did heal all who came to him, and desired to be healed. That is why he gave the gifts of healing, and there is no place in the scriptures where it is stated that the healing gift is no longer operational, unless taken out of context.
Sixth, healing may not occur if you do not understand that you have a God-given right to be healed. God loves you. He does not want any harm to come to you. “God says, “I am the Lord your healer” (Exodus 15:26), and “…by whose stripes you were healed” (I Peter 2: 24). This is the essence of this chapter, and healing verses will follow. They will help you understand that you are a precious child of God, and that he wants you to be well, and to function at optimum levels so that you can do his work.
It is noteworthy to add two more points. First, there are people who have underlying motives for remaining sick. There is difficulty receiving healing when an individual has a lifestyle of illness. It might include monthly, weekly, or daily trips to the doctor or lab for tests. The person may be so fragile emotionally and mentally, that reassurance from the doctor or nurse is the only acceptable alternative to healing through faith. Or, the person may be manipulated by negative medical reports.
Second, some individuals knowingly or unknowingly enjoy the attention from being ill, and use illness as a means of controlling and manipulating others. That may not be true illness, but demonic forces and mindsets at work, and those spirits need to be prayed off the person before the underlying health issues can be resolved.
That is the reason Jesus asked the paralytic in John 5:6 if he wanted to be healed. That man’s life was going to change forever, and he was accustomed to blaming others for his condition. His response to the Lord was, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me.” In his mind, he was disabled more than others because of his condition. That was not necessarily true. How would a blind person get to the pool without assistance, for instance?
So, Jesus wanted to know if the man really and truly wanted to be well, and have an entirely different lifestyle. Jesus then instructed him to “take up his bed, and walk.” Jesus required that the man immediately do something he was unable to do previously. That required faith and action on the man’s part. He was to stand up, roll up his bed, and then take steps he had not taken in years. That may be what we need to do to “step into” our healing. Perhaps we need to try something we could not do previously, even if the change is not instantaneous. We need to move out of the mindset of being disabled, and get to the place where we start moving on God’s word by faith.
Living and walking in divine health are not the health obtained in the natural realm through diet and exercise. If health in the natural was obtainable, we would not need to ask God for health and healing. It is always good to eat as healthy a diet as possible and to get daily exercise, but true health comes from God. When you learn to walk in his promises and eat his word, then sickness cannot live on your mind or your body. Jehovah Rophe means “the Lord who heals”. He would not call himself that unless he was willing and able to heal you. The following verses are only a few of those you can claim for your healing and continued health.
Prayer for healing
Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing; heal me, O Lord, for my bones are troubled (Psalm 6:2). If there is anything in me that is blocking my total healing, I confess it and break it right now. If there is a sin standing between me and my healing, reveal it to me so that I can confess it and turn back to you (2 Chronicles 7:14). “Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved; for you are my praise” (Jeremiah 17:14).
I declare Job 22:28 which states, “You will decide on a matter, and it will be established for you, and light will shine on your ways.” I declare that I am healed and whole. Both God and I agree on that. I know that God wants me to be healthy and whole in my mind, soul, and spirit. “When the crowds learned it, they followed him, and he welcomed them and spoke to them of the kingdom of God and cured those who had need of healing” (Luke 9:11). In all respects I prosper and am in good health even as my soul prospers (3 John 1:2).
My body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who dwells in me (1 Corinthians 6:19). I confess that I am healed and whole (Isaiah 53:5). “For I will restore health to you, and your wounds I will heal, declares the Lord…” (Jeremiah 30:17). “Behold, I will bring to it health and healing, and I will heal them and reveal to them abundance of prosperity and security” (Jeremiah 33:6). You have seen my tears, you have heard my cry, and you have healed me (2 Kings 20:5). All diseases and lying symptoms are cursed off of me. They include… (name them here one at a time). I flourish, am healthy, long-lived, youthful, stable, durable, incorruptible, fruitful, virtuous, and full of forgiveness, peace, patience, and love.
Since I am seated at the right hand of God with Jesus Christ, I know that no sickness can live on me. There is no sickness in heaven, and there is no sickness on earth. As I am in heaven, so I am on earth. I will not accept any diagnosis of disease from any physician, nurse, psychologist, lab technician, paramedic, pharmacist, counselor, physical therapist, occupational therapist, rehabilitation therapist, dentist, chiropractor, kinesiologist, acupuncturist, coach, or any other medical or alternative health care provider. I may accept their help for a time, but I believe that God alone is my healer through Christ.
“And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, healing, administrating, and various kinds of tongues.” (1 Corinthians 12:28). I can pray in power and authority through Jesus Christ for others and I can pray for my own healing. “And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction” (Matthew 10:1). You instructed your disciples to “Heal the sick raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying, give without paying” (Matthew 10:8; Mark 3:15). “…while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus” (Acts 4:30).
“The spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor” (Luke 4:18-19). “For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory” (2 Corinthians 1:20). Thank You for my miraculous and progressive healing in my life, Jehovah Rophe. Thank you that I live in health and wholeness. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.