Healing the Sick Today – Part #2:
Some of you might be asking the question: How did Peter get what he had? How did he have the boldness to grab this sick man by the hand and lift him up, confident that he would be totally and completely healed? The answer is found a little later in this story: “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.” (Acts 4:13).
Peter and John were ordinary, uneducated men. They hadn’t been to Bible College, and they didn’t know the Bible backwards and forwards. However, these two men had been with Jesus. Their power and boldness came from being with Jesus. If we would just spend more time abiding in Jesus, we would see more fruit in our lives. The message is so simple we’ve almost missed it: read your Bible and pray. Not out of religious duty, but out of the place of prayer where we abide in Jesus and abide in His Word. The place of power is the place of prayer. In the Upper Room, the disciples prayed. Because they prayed, they got the power. Look what happened next in this story:
“And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them–walking, leaping, and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God. Then they knew that it was he who sat begging alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.” (Acts 3:7-10).
What would have happened if that man hadn’t been healed? That would have been a little embarrassing and awkward for Peter. If this man hadn’t been instantly healed, he would have fallen down when Peter picked him up, and been worse off than before. But that didn’t happen. The Bible says that this man immediately received strength and healing. What a miracle! Peter knew what he had. The church today needs to be abiding in Jesus so that we know what we have in Him, so we can be the church, and so we can see lives transformed. That is what the Lord has called us to do.
God is Glorified Through Signs and Wonders:
What happened after the man was healed? This man who had been sitting by this temple gate begging for forty years, now started leaping and praising God. Surely everyone in the community knew this man – they walked by him every day on their way to church. Here was the man that they had seen crippled for forty years, and now he entered the temple arm in arm with Peter and John, jumping and praising the Lord. When the people saw him, they were filled with wonder and amazement over the miracle. The result of this man getting healed was that people gave glory to God. God is glorified through signs and wonders! This is one of the reasons why we want to contend for signs and wonders to be restored to the church today.
“Now as the lame man who was healed held on to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch which is called Solomon’s, greatly amazed. So when Peter saw it, he responded to the people: “Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?” (Acts 3:11-12).
After this miracle took place, the people jumped to the conclusion that Peter and John were the ones who had healed this man. The people started praising them. But immediately, Peter said, “No, it wasn’t us. Don’t look at us. We’re not the ones who did this.” If we want to see God use us in the supernatural realm, if we want to see signs and wonders and healings and miracles, then we need to follow the example of Peter and be careful that we give all the honor and glory to Jesus. How did Peter respond to the people? He said:
“And His name, through faith in His name, has made this man strong, whom you see and know. Yes, the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.” (Acts 3:16).
What did Peter say? He said, “It wasn’t us. There’s only one reason this man is healed and whole. It was faith in the mighty, powerful, glorious, majestic name of Jesus. Jesus Christ, the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords, the Almighty God who is the Creator of the Universe. It is only because of faith in Jesus that this man is here perfectly healed and whole.” Peter said, “We’re going to give all of the glory to Jesus.” If you are sick and you get healed, don’t walk away and say, “The Pastor prayed for me,” or “The prayer team prayed for me.” Say, “Jesus healed me.” Let that be your testimony. Give God all of the glory.
I once heard a preacher say, “Preaching is easy – it’s just bragging on Jesus until He shows up!” As we proclaim the Word of God, telling people about a loving, living, saving, healing and delivering Jesus, He shows up. Peter preached, “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that He may send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before.” (Acts 3:19-20). Isn’t that good? Peter said the goal of that miracle was not just the healing of this crippled man, it was to let people know that Jesus wanted to come to them, and refresh them in the presence of the Lord.
What was the ultimate result of this miracle? Not only was that one man healed, but two thousand people gave their hearts to Jesus (Acts 4:4). When we start seeing more of the miraculous, supernatural power of God in our midst, people will come to faith in Jesus. Maybe they’ll come at first because they’re curious, but ultimately they’ll say, “I want to know this Jesus.”
The Bible tells us that Jesus healed all who were oppressed of the devil. There is not one instance in the Gospels where people came to Jesus for healing and He turned them away. Matthew tells us that “great multitudes followed Jesus, and He healed them all.” (12:15). God is no respecter of persons. He didn’t only heal those who agreed to turn their lives over to Him and promise to never sin again. Jesus healed them all. He heals the sinner just as He heals the saint. It’s not about how worthy you are – it’s about how gracious and compassionate He is.
The ABC’s of Praying for Healing:
A. Ask in the Name of Jesus:
“And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” (John 14:13). When ministering healing to someone, ask in the name of Jesus. The Bible says, “You do not have, because you do not ask.” (James 4:2).
There are many times Christians pray and don’t see their circumstances change because they’re not really asking for anything. You can pray and say, “Oh, Lord Jesus, Aunt Gertrude is so sick, it’s so sad, it’s really bad!” You’re telling God the problem, but not asking Him to do anything. Instead, you should pray, “Lord, please heal Aunt Gertrude, in Jesus’ mighty name, amen!” When you ask, you will receive.
B. Believe that you will Receive:
“Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” (Mark 11:24). We must believe that we will receive what we’re asking for. “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.” (James 5:15).
Faith is one of the important elements in receiving anything from the Lord in prayer. It is so important to know what the Bible says about healing, because our faith in healing comes by hearing what God’s Word says about healing. There are many examples of this in the life of Jesus. “And when He had come into the house, the blind men came to Him. And Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” Then He touched their eyes, saying, According to your faith let it be to you.” (Matthew 9:28-29). On another occasion, Jesus said to a Samaritan leper, “Arise, go your way. Your faith has made you well.” (Luke 17:19).
If you want to build and strengthen your faith to be able to receive your healing from the Lord, I encourage you to take the time to meditate on all of the Scriptures that talk about healing. Read through all of the Bible verses in this section on healing, and commit some of them to memory. Get a preaching CD and listen to it over and over, and get God’s Word on healing planted deep in your heart. Abraham “did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.” (Romans 4:20-21). I preached a message called “Healing School” that is available to download free of charge from our website, www.beausejourchurch.ca, which will help to build your faith in God’s promises of healing.
C. Continue Asking Until You Receive!
“One day Jesus told his disciples a story to illustrate their need for constant prayer and to show them that they must never give up.” (Luke 18:1, NLT). After you ask in the name of Jesus, and believe that you will receive, you must continue asking until you receive. It is through faith and patience that we receive God’s promises (Hebrews 6:12).
Look at this example from the life of Jesus: “Then He came toBethsaida; and they brought a blind man to Him, and begged Him to touch him. So He took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the town. And when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands on him, He asked him if he saw anything. And he looked up and said, “I see men like trees, walking.” Then He put His hands on his eyes again and made him look up. And he was restored and saw everyone clearly.” (Mark 8:22-25).
If Jesus, the perfect, sinless Son of God, had to pray for someone twice before they received a complete manifestation of their healing, then how much more do we need to be constant in prayer? If you pray for someone once and they don’t get healed, keep praying. P.U.S.H. in your prayers – Pray Until Something Happens.
This doesn’t mean that we are begging and trying to twist God’s arm to get what we want from Him. As the old reformer Martin Luther said once, “Prayer is not conquering God’s reluctance, but rather laying a hold of His willingness.” Once we have prayed, we believe by faith that God has heard us, and we turn from asking to praising. Our prayer becomes, “Lord, I thank You that You have heard me, and because You have heard me, I believe to receive the things I’ve asked of you. Therefore, I praise You in advance for what I know you’re going to do!” Continue praising and thanking Him for the answer until you see it fully manifested. Remember, our God is a faithful, prayer-answering God.
Pastor Chris Jordan