Two years ago I was rebuked by a friend (a believer) for saying that God always heals. So I went to God and asked Him: “Do You always heal everybody?” I didn’t want to be proven right so much as I just honestly wanted to know. My friend told me that believing that God heals everyone takes away God’s sovereignty. I understand what she was saying, but it’s clearly not what the Bible teaches. Never, not once, did Jesus send anyone away unhealed, no matter how undeserving they were (let’s face it, we’re all undeserving!). Again and again, the Bible says “He healed them all,” (Matthew 4:24, 8:16, 9:35, 12:15, 14:36, 15:30; Mark 6:56; Luke 4:40, and 6:19). And in the Old Testament, God healed everyone who asked Him for healing, including Naaman, the Syrian general. In fact, Psalm 103:3 says: “[God] who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases,” (emphasis mine).
And if you think this is audacious of me, remember the question that Felicity put to me recently: “What do you want from God?” My equally audacious (some might call it faith-filled!) answer is found in the post of the same name: What do you Want from God?: I want it ALL!
And thinking about the issue of healing led me to also ask God: “Is the Health and Wealth doctrine wrong?” Many preach against it and against the preachers who preach both this and Grace (what they have named Hyper-Grace). I know that those (anti-H & W) preachers sincerely believe what they preach, and I believe that they truly want to teach God’s people, trying to “rightly divide the Word.” But here’s the thing: if anybody preaches that God wants to make them rich, obviously, that’s wrong. And I know that some people who hear that God wants to prosper them will misunderstand it and hear it that way. But does that make the message wrong? Maybe I haven’t heard the same message that these anti-H & W preachers have heard. Because I have never heard it preached that God wants to make you rich.
But here’s an observation: whenever someone stops preaching the Word of God in order to preach against other preachers, who do you think is behind that? Hmm . . .
The enemy wants to rob us of our blessing and to make our testimony unattractive. How can he best do that? By keeping us in poverty, working like slaves just to stay alive, and in a sickly mindset, believing that we please God more, somehow, by our suffering. The lost people of the world are not going to come flocking to Jesus in order to become poor and sickly. Interestingly, I have only heard the sovereignty/refused healings argument from former Catholics. Perhaps they still believe the Catholic doctrine of the blessedness of suffering for our faith. And when the enemy can get preachers to stop preaching the Gospel and to preach against other preachers, can’t you just see him laughing at us all!
And then God answered me through a young man from the Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry (Bethel Church in Redding, California, see Hunted by Treasure!). He said that God is always willing to heal everybody. And again, last night as I listened to a sermon by John Paul Jackson, the message came through loud and clear: God has healing and prosperity for us. He said:
In our attempt to be rational and logical, we have inadvertently secularized health to a scientific and medical perspective. As a result, any experience with the unseen spirit world is perceived as a non-reality. We have bitten from Aristotle’s apple, “If it is not logical and tangible, it is irrelevant to our life.” Meanwhile, so many perish around us and we give a cursory “how sad.”
That statement hit me right between the eyes. The disconnect is always on our part.
God wants to heal. What is healing? Healing is freedom from illness and the results of injury. Healing is a divine restoration of our original design.
God wants to prosper us. What is prosperity? Prosperity is to flourish and enjoy plenty. Sure, rich people have plenty, but have you ever noticed that riches become a drug? They are never satisfied. They have way more than enough, but they are not enjoying. Instead, they are always guarding their money and investing to get more and more. That is not prosperity, that’s bondage. Prosperity is not only about money, it’s also about flourishing and enjoying plenty in every area of life: family and relationships, peace of mind and body, freedom and a flourishing relationship with God. Again, prosperity is a divine restoration of our original design.
God wants to show signs and wonders and miracles—and most of all, healing. So why don’t we see people healed? I have some ideas why:
- Lack of faith – My friend who I mentioned at the beginning of this post is no longer a friend because I said this. But it is true. People confuse hope with faith. I want to cry whenever I finish praying for someone and they tell me, “Well, I hope I’m healed!” Jesus didn’t perform great signs and wonders in His hometown because of their unbelief. If lack of faith stopped Jesus, of course it’s going to stop us. We need to be really careful, too, not to undo our healing with our words.
- We don’t ask God – We, particularly Americans, have the idea that it’s better to be independent and self-sufficient, so we don’t ask God. “You do not have because you do not ask God,” James 4:2. This again is lack of faith. Independence and self-sufficiency are not godly traits. What is precious to God is a broken and contrite spirit—someone who comes to Him, saying, “I need You!”
- We ask with wrong motives – “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures,” (James 4:3). This relates to the next point: we want God to payoff for us like a great, cosmic slot machine.
- We ask for the wrong thing – Sometimes what we need isn’t healing, but deliverance or forgiveness or confession and repentance. There are several things that can open a door to enemy interference, and often things that we think of as illnesses are actually the result of demonic interference. And there is a difference between invited and uninvited demonic interference. All sorts of things that can open a door to the enemy, even things a parent or grandparent did. It takes discernment to know if the enemy has been invited or not. Either way, by repenting or by asking God for justice, curses can be broken.
So again, two years later, God’s answer to my question remains the same:
Yes, He always heals everybody!
God is good!