Healing Through Faith

HEALING THROUGH FAITH

A.     Introduction:  We are studying the subject of faith and healing.
     1.     If your only source of information about healing was the Bible, you could not
          come to any other conclusion than that it is always God's will to heal.
          a.     Jesus, who was the will of God in action on earth, healed all who came to
               Him. Heb 1:1-3
          b.     On the Cross, Jesus bore our sicknesses and our sins. Isa 53:4-6
          c.     Healing is included in redemption, proving that it is God's will to heal all
               just as it is His will to save all.
     2.     But, people struggle with this because they don't know what the Bible says or
          they put experience above the Bible.  We're studying God's word to sort it out.
     3.     Christians are sometimes confused in the area of healing because they don't
          understand that healing comes to us in one of two general ways.      People can
          be healed through gifts of healings, or through faith in God's word.
     4.     Last week, we focused on gifts of healings.  This week, we want to focus on
          receiving healing through faith in God's word.

B.     Gifts of healings are one of nine ways listed in I Cor 12 whereby the Holy Ghost
     manifests or demonstrates Himself through the church. I Cor 12:28
     1.     When gifts of healings are in operation, a person is empowered by the Holy
          Ghost to minister healing to others.
          a.     That person becomes a pipeline or channel of God's blessings to another.
          b.     When a person is used in ministering gifts of healings, we often say:  he has
               a healing anointing.
               1.     In other words, when he prays for, ministers to someone, tangible
                    healing power or anointing flows from that person to the sick.
               2.     The person who is used in this way cannot turn that power off and on
                    as he chooses.
          c.     The gifts or manifestations of the Holy Ghost operate as He wills for the
               good of all. I Cor 12:7;11
     2.     One way to receive healing is to be ministered to by someone with a gift of
          healing (healing anointing) when it is in manifestation or operation.  Two kinds
          of healings can happen in such a setting.
          a.     God sometimes sovereignly heals in the atmosphere where His anointing is
               present apart from faith.  No one has a promise this will happen.
          b.     Healing comes to those who are ministered to in connection with their
               faith -- they believe healing power is in operation and that when they are
               prayed for, it will go into them and heal them, and it does.
     3.     We can get insight into how this type of healing works by looking at the
          ministry of Jesus because He ministered with a healing anointing. Acts 10:38;
          Luke 6:17-19; Mark 5:24-34
     4.     Some additional facts about being healed by a manifestation of the Spirit:
          a.     No one is promised that a healing anointing will heal them without their
               faith being involved.
          b.     This is an easier way to receive healing.  It involves less faith because you
               can see and feel the one who is anointed with healing power.
          c.     It is easier to lose healing that comes through a gift of the Spirit if there is
               a counter attack.  If the one healed has not developed his faith, he may be
               moved by returning symptoms and say -- I guess I wasn't healed after all --
               and lose it.
     5.     People who are regularly used in this way have noticed that the gifts of healings
          work best on unbelievers and baby Christians.
          a.     Older Christians are often not healed by gifts of healings.
          b.     God expects us to grow after we are saved and develop our faith in His
               word so that we can receive healing through faith in His word.
     6.     Let's look at receiving healing through faith in God's word.
C.     In James 5:14,15 we are told that the prayer of faith shall save or heal the sick.
     (Save = SOZO = heal, preserve, save, do well, be (made) whole; Mark 5:23;34; Acts
     14:9.)      Every believer has this promise from God that if he prays the prayer of
     faith, he shall be healed.
     1.     The prayer of faith is not a prayer of asking, it is a prayer of releasing faith in
          God's word.
          a.     One of the things God has done for us in His book is tell us what He has
               provided for us through Jesus Christ.  Now, He asks us, expects us, to
               believe it before we see it -- that's faith.
          b.  When we believe it, He makes it happen or brings it to pass in our lives.     
     2.     In the prayer of faith, you don't ask God to give you anything, you take
          from God something He has already offered to you through Christ.
          a.     As far as He is concerned, He has already healed you.
          b.     You were healed 2,000 years ago when Jesus bore your sicknesses along
               with your sins. Isa 53:4-6; I Pet 2:24
     3.     Doesn't the Bible tell us we must ask God for things? James 4:2; Matt 7:7-11
          a.     Yes it does, but, as always, we must read in context.  James is talking
               about strife (3:16), and in 4:1-3 he lists causes of strife.
          b.     When we let selfish lusts dominate, we fight each other, trying to get things
               from each other, when we should be going to God.
          c.     Matt 7:7-11--One of the themes of the Sermon on the Mount is that we
               have a heavenly Father who loves us and to whom we can and should go
               for provision.
     4.     When you pray the prayer of faith, you don't pray:  Lord, if it be thy will...
          a.     The phrase "if it be thy will" is never used in connection with receiving
               healing in the Bible.
               1.     Jesus prayed "If it be thy will" once.  His purpose was not to change
                    anything, but rather to submit to the will of God for His life, His
                    mission to earth. Matt 26:39-42
               2.     A man came to Jesus for healing asking "If it be thy will".  Jesus
                    corrected the man's thinking before He healed him. Matt 8:1-3
          b.     God hears the prayers of people who are righteous and the prayers of
               those who are seeking something that is His will. I Pet 3:12; I John 5:14,15
               1.     If you don't know you are righteous in Christ, then you aren't ready
                    to pray the prayer of faith for healing.
               2.     If you aren't convinced healing is God's will for you, then you aren't
                    ready to pray the prayer of faith for healing yet.
     5.     You must understand, there is a sense in which God has already done
          everything for us He is going to do.
          a.     He's not going to heal you.  As far as God is concerned, He already has
               healed you through Jesus.
          b.     It isn't a question of God doing something for us, it is a question of us
               receiving what He has already provided.
          c.     How do we get or receive salvation from God for our sins?
               1.     Do we beg Him to save us if it is His will?  Do we ask and ask and ask
                    until we feel saved?
               2.     No, we find out that Jesus has already died to pay for our sins, we
                    believe it, and then express our belief by confessing Him as our Lord
                    and Savior. Rom 10:9,10
               3.     In other words, we take what He offers us by believing it, then God
                    does it.  He puts into effect in us what He has already provided on the
                    Cross.
          d.     It works just the same with healing because healing has been provided for
               us through the same historical act that paid for our sins -- the Cross.
          e.     You believe what God has done for you through Christ, you speak it out,
               and He brings it to pass in your body.

D.     Jesus taught about the prayer of faith in Mark 11:12-26
     1.     v14--Jesus spoke to a fig tree, and what He said came to pass.
          a.     He then explained to his disciples that if you believe something when you
               speak it, you will have it.
          b.     Therefore, when you pray (which involves speaking, not just asking),
               consider it done from that moment on and you will see it.
          c.     That is exactly what Jesus did to the fig tree and that is exactly what
               happened.
     2.     Jesus gives us two characteristics of the type of prayer which always gets results
          = the prayer of faith.  (Context of this passage is prayer and faith.)
          a.     v23--If you believe in your heart and say with your mouth what you
               believe, you will have what you say = what you say will come to pass.
          b.     v24--If you believe you have something before you see it, you will see it.
     3.     In other words, if you believe you receive healing when you pray, on the      
          authority of God who says you were healed, you will be healed = experience it.
     4.     There must come a point where you release your faith = demonstrate your faith
          in what God has said and provided. Acts 14:9
          a.     One reason for calling for the elders and being anointed with oil, or having
               hands laid on you, is to give you a point at which to release your faith.
          b.     There is no healing power in the oil or in the hands of the elders unless a
               gift of healing is in operation.
          c.     The oil and the elders are the point at which you say:  Father, I thank you
               for providing healing for me on the Cross.  As hands are laid on me, oil is
               put on me, I receive (take or acknowledge) the healing you provided for
               me.  Thank you so much that I am now healed.
     5.     From that point on, everything you do and say must be an expression of your
          faith in God's word that you are healed.
          a.     Heb 4:14; 10:23--tell us to hold fast to saying the same thing God says.
          b.     Thank you Lord Jesus for healing me.  Thank you, Jesus, for taking my
               sicknesses so that I don't have to carry them.  Thank you that I am free
               from pain and discomfort.
          c.     When thoughts come to you -- you're not going to get healed, you respond
               with:  I'm not trying to get healing.  Jesus got it for me.  I'm not trying to
               get healed.  I am healed!!

E.     Christians struggle with receiving healing through faith in God's word for a number
     of reasons.
     1.     People hear a message or two like this and then try it.  They don't get healed
          and they get discouraged or decide this doesn't work.
          a.     It takes time to become fully persuaded that what God promised He will
               do no matter how I feel or what I see. Rom 4:21
          b.     John 15:7--It takes time for God's word to dominate you to the point
               where you aren't moved by what you see or feel in your body.
          c.     Mark 11:23,24--How bad do you want it?  You have to desire it.
     2.     Josh 1:8--Success comes to those who meditate in God's word day and night.
          a.     For many people, their only exposure to God's invisible kingdom from
               which all our help comes, is once or twice a week -- three times tops --
               through pastor's sermon.
          b.     Yet, every moment of the day, we're taking in sense information which
               contradicts God's word.
          c.     Many don't even know we have to counteract all that, let alone do it.
     3.     It takes time to get control over our mouths to the point where we continually
          talk about ourselves and our lives the way God does. James 3:2
     4.     Many struggle with:  How can I say things like -- I'm more than a conqueror,
          everything I put my hand to prospers, I'm healed -- when I know it's not true.  
          I'd be lying.
          a.     When you say what God says before you see it, you're not lying.  That's
               what God does.  Rom 4:17
          b.     You need to understand the difference between true and truth.
               1.     True = what you see; subject to change. II Cor 4:18
               2.     Truth = God's word; forever settled. John 17:17; Matt 24:35
               3.     Truth can and will change true in your life -- including sickness in
                    your body.

F.     Conclusion:  The prayer of faith shall heal the sick.  All of us have that promise
     from God.
     1.     If you aren't to the place where you can pray the prayer of faith for yourself in
          connection with healing, don't be discouraged.  Faith grows. II Thess 1:3
     2.     Faith grows as you feed and exercise it.
          a.     Begin to obey Joshua 1:8 = feed and exercise your faith.
          b.     If you have been doing that, but aren't yet seeing the results you desire,
               just keep doing it!  Say it until you see it!

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