The ability to reclaim something carries with it an acute awareness that something has been lost that once belonged to the person or group searching for it. If we don’t realize or recognize something is missing we will most certainly never reclaim it. Tragically this is the case for healing in the New Testament Church. Though it was demonstrated and authorized by Jesus, given as a gift of the Holy Spirit, and practiced by the early church, biblical healing has been lost for the most part, buried in the soil of neglect and unbelief.
For the first four hundred years of the church healing was a normal part of the ministry of the body of Christ. It was one of the signs that accompanied the early believers according to both the Scriptures (“…They will lay hands of the sick and they will recover” Mark 16:18c) and the testimony of church history. Contrary to what some systems of theology or certain denominations teach, the miraculous gifts of the Spirit did not cease with the death of the last apostle or with the canonization of the Holy Scriptures. These gifts, including healing, were given to empower the church in her commission to make fully-formed disciples in the likeness of Jesus Christ, while continuing his destruction of the devil’s works.
Somewhere along the way the healing ministry of the church was fumbled and lost. And today, most believers see little or no use for it. In fact, those who do contend and search it out are often ridiculed as uneducated, ignorant, or biblically illiterate. The devil has done a jam-up job in confusing the issue and creating chaos whenever this subject arises.
Many Christians believe that God can heal if he wants to—that he has the power, but that it might or might not be his will in any given situation. Others believe that sickness comes from God and by enduring its suffering he will make you a better Christian. Some believe sickness is the result of the ravages of sin. Still others see the body as a disposable item cursed by sin they soon will throw off in their quest for heaven’s pearly gates. None of these options are fully biblical nor are they evidenced in the teaching or actions of Jesus.
Perhaps the time has come to reclaim what Jesus proclaimed and demonstrated during his ministry instead of the powerless and poison garbage the enemy has infected and introduced into the dogma and doctrines of the modern church. Perhaps the time has come to reclaim biblical healing as our heritage and our destiny. Perhaps the time has come to recapture the purity of that first generation of believers and minister from the source of power they tapped into—that power source generated by love, faith and the Holy Spirit that turned the world upside down in less than three hundred years.
God has called his body to be a house of healing where people experience the fullness of Jesus Christ and the fullness of what he purchase through the passion of his crucifixion. The time has come for Jesus to get the full return on what he paid for in his atonement. This means we must reclaim biblical healing as a part of the total salvation Jesus purchased at Calvary.
Over the next several weeks, I will be blogging on reclaiming biblical healing by digging into the Old and New Testaments, the Gospel accounts of Jesus, and the history of the church. Join me as we make this journey and blow the dust off a vital ministry of the church.