If It Is Your Will

“I am Yahweh Rophek, The-Lord-Who-Heals-You.”  (Exodus 15:26)
 
“The Lord forgives all your iniquities and heals all your diseases.”  (Psalm 103:3)
 
“He sent forth His Word and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.”  (Psalm 107:20)
 
“A leper came to him, beseeching him and falling to his knees he said to him, ‘If you are willing, you can make me clean.’ Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him and said to him, ‘I am willing, be clean.’”  (Mark 1:40-41)
 
“Most assuredly I say to you, he who believes in me will also do the works that I do; and he will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. And whatever you ask in my name, I will do it, in order that the Father may be glorified in the Son.”  (John 14:12-14)
 
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”  (Hebrews 13:8)
 
“Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will heal the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed.”  (James 5:14-16)
The God who created our bodies also loves to heal our bodies. That much is obvious from the Old Testament alone. The Lord declares to the Israelites in Exodus 15, as soon as he has brought them out of slavery in Egypt, that his name is Yahweh Rophek, The-Lord-Who-Heals-You. Divine healing isn’t a mystery. It is in his very name. The Psalmists encourage us to praise the Lord that healing is part of his glorious divine character.

When Jesus came into the world, people were a little bit unsure about this. A leper comes to Jesus to seek healing, but isn’t certain that it will be God’s will to heal him. Similarly, most of us have got used to caveating our own prayers for healing with the words ‘Lord, if it is your will’ – so listen to how Jesus responds to the leper here. When the leper cries out to Jesus, “If you are willing, you can make me clean”, Jesus recognises that the man’s theology is as rotten as his body. Jesus needs to deal with his understanding of God so that he can minister healing to him. This is one of only a handful of occasions in the Bible where somebody comes to God with a prayer, ‘Lord, if it is your will’, and note how strongly Jesus corrects the leper’s thinking. “Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him and said to him, ‘I am willing, be clean.’”
 
Our problem is rarely that we doubt that it is God’s will for Jesus to heal people in the pages of the gospels. Our problem tends to be that we doubt that it is still God’s will for Jesus to heal people through us, his people, today. We therefore need to read the words of John 14 slowly. Jesus promises us that he will continue his works through us – and will do even greater works through us! Hebrews 13 encourages us that this promise will never change. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever, so healing is still “what we have” through faith in his name.

When did you last put into practice the exhortation in James 5 for us to “pray for one another, that you may be healed”? Could it be that we are missing out on much of what God wants to do amongst us as a church because we have become infected with a leprous theology of “if it is your will”?    
1)   Do you believe that what these Scriptures say is true?

2)   We all know that some of the people that we pray for are not healed. So how would you explain that in the light of today’s verses? How do those verses fit together with our experience today?

3)   What would you ask Jesus, if he were right in front of you right now? What questions do you have about “what we have” through faith in his name? Well, Jesus is right in front of you through his Holy Spirit! Talk to him honestly about how you feel about supernatural healing. Open up to him and ask him to open this up to you.
Lord Jesus, I love to read about your earthly ministry in the gospels and to see how generously and powerfully you ministered healing to people. At the same time, I feel confused about why I don’t see such healing all around me today. Please help me to do what I must do in obedience to you, and then please do what you have promised to do in response to my obedience. Please, Lord Jesus, let’s partner together in this ministry of healing today. Amen.
Today’s Everyday Devotions were brought to you by Phil Moore, who leads our team of whole-church elders.

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