If Jesus paid for it, it’s yours now. If it’s a promise that is included in Christ’s atoning work, it’s yours now. If it’s a promise that Jesus solidified at the time of his death, burial, resurrection and ascension, it’s yours now, 100% of the time.
For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ. And so through him the "Amen" is spoken by us to the glory of God. 2 Corinthians 1:20
Here are 4 questions we can ask to help us determine if a promise is part of Christ’s atoning work, therefore available all the time…
Is the promise consistent with God’s revealed character and attributes?
Did Jesus display his will for the promise in his earthly ministry?
Is it evidenced in the definition of salvation?
Is it scriptural?
Is Healing Always God’s Will?
God’s promises that are available in Christ are various and plentiful, touching on just about every aspect of life. He makes promises for salvation, provision, guidance, peace, health, and much more, I am going to use the example of health and healing in this article. The availability and application of the promises in Christ are universal. As I discuss health and healing, think about which promise relates to you and your current situation.
All believers believe that God can heal. All Jesus followers agree that Jesus healed people. But we disagree on whether God always wants everyone fully healed.
Have you prayed for multiple people and seen some healed but others not, why does that happen? There are only two stories in the New Testament that address the “why.”
When Jesus Could Not Heal People
There was a time when Jesus went to his hometown and he could not heal people like he did in other towns. Some theologians say he refused to heal people due to their lack of honor, but he did heal some people , so that theory falls flat. The truth is more offensive. Let’s look at this story in Mark and Matthew.
Mark 6:1 Jesus went on from there and came to His hometown, accompanied by His disciples. 2 When the Sabbath came, He began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard Him were astonished. “Where did this man get these ideas?” they asked. “What is this wisdom He has been given? And how can He perform such miracles? 3 Isn’t this the carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon? Aren’t His sisters here with us as well?” And they took offense at Him. 4 Then Jesus told them, “A prophet is without honor only in his hometown, among his relatives, and in his own household.” 5 So He could not perform any miracles there, except to lay His hands on a few of the sick and heal them. 6 And He was amazed at their unbelief. And He went around from village to village, teaching the people.
Now the same story from Matthew’s perspective…
Matthew 13:54 Coming to His hometown, He taught the people in their synagogue, and they were astonished. “Where did this man get such wisdom and miraculous powers?” they asked. 55 “Isn’t this the carpenter’s son? Isn’t His mother’s name Mary, and aren’t His brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas? 56 Aren’t all His sisters with us as well? Where then did this man get all these things?” 57 And they took offense at Him. But Jesus said to them, “Only in his hometown and in his own household is a prophet without honor.” 58 And He did not do many miracles there, because of their unbelief.
Because they were familiar with Jesus, their carnal thinking led them to be offended at Jesus and limit his power in their lives. Carnal thinking isn’t necessarily sinful or evil thinking, it’s just limited thinking. Carnal thinking only looks at what it can observe physically. Carnal thinking is only open to what logically makes sense to the physical mind. They limited the power of Jesus by limiting his identity in their hearts and minds. The healing power Jesus normally displayed was limited in the lives of the people that did not accept him for who he was.
Because they didn’t accept him for who he was, (God in human form, a prophet of God) they were not able to receive healing from him. Their carnal thinking led to offense, which led to unbelief, which limited his power.
Unbelief in the heart of a human can limit God’s power.
God is certainly more powerful than anyone or anything, but he chose to give mankind dominion over the earth and sovereignty over their own lives, therefore limiting himself to our faith. We have the responsibility to believe and trust God. When we don’t, we will not allow his power to work in and through us.
To sum up this story, it is possible for God to want to do something for and through you but you don’t allow it because of your unbelief. Your unbelief is not stronger than God, he just created you in a way where you must come into agreement with him and allow him to work in and through you. God will not violate your will and the beliefs of your heart.
When the Disciples Could Not Heal People
Have you ever asked, “why didn’t they get healed after prayer?” or “why did one person get healed but the other person didn’t?” Let’s look at the second place in scripture where those very questions are answered…by Jesus.
Matthew 17:14 When they came to the crowd, a man came up to Jesus and knelt before Him. 15 “Lord, have mercy on my son,” he said. “He has seizures and is suffering terribly. He often falls into the fire or into the water. 16 I brought him to Your disciples, but they could not heal him.” 17 “O unbelieving and perverse generation!” Jesus replied. “How long must I remain with you? How long must I put up with you? Bring the boy here to Me.” 18 Then Jesus rebuked the demon, and it came out of the boy, and he was healed from that moment. 19 Afterward the disciples came to Jesus privately and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” 20 “Because you have so little faith,” He answered. “For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Now from Mark’s perspective…
Mark 9:17 Someone in the crowd replied, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a spirit that makes him mute. 18 Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth, and becomes rigid. I asked Your disciples to drive it out, but they were unable.” SKIP TO VERSE 28 After Jesus had gone into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” 29 Jesus answered, “This kind cannot come out, except by prayer.”
Side note, most original manuscripts leave out “and fasting.” But that’s beside the point of this article.
Let me sum up this story. A man had a son who had seizures, he took his son to Jesus’ disciples but they couldn’t heal him. When the disciples asked Jesus why they couldn’t heal the boy, he told them it was because of their unbelief. That’s the end of the story, they couldn’t heal the boy because they had little faith.
WOW!! Are you offended yet?
Unbelief Limits the Power of God
When the folks in Jesus’ hometown could not receive healing from him he said it was because of their unbelief. When the disciples could not heal a believing boy, Jesus said it was because of the disciples unbelief.
We should be able to just stop there and take Jesus at his word, but we don’t. We feel the need to add more to his explanation. We add more because it’s hard to accept that we aren’t healed because of our unbelief. It may be even harder to accept that someone you love that died couldn’t receive healing from Jesus because of their unbelief. But that’s exactly the answer that Jesus gives.
He does go on to say that “this kind” comes out by prayer (and fasting). But “this kind” of what? Some folks say he’s talking about “this kind” of demon. But the context is unbelief, not demons. What he’s saying is this, the kind of unbelief that limits healing only comes out through prayer (and fasting).
You don’t gain power over higher classes of demons because you fast, that’s charismatic mumbo jumbo, that’s just made up. When you fast and pray, you might walk in more confidence, which looks like more power, but that’s a deception. Jesus stripped all entities of authority and he shares his authority with you, you don’t need to fast for more power, but you might need to pray and fast to become more confidence. God doesn’t give you more faith for praying, your heart just becomes more confident in him when you take time to persuade your heart of his identity.
Do You Need More Faith?
When you tell someone they aren’t healed because of their little faith, or their loved one wasn’t healed because of their little faith, you’re probably going to offend them, even though it’s true.
Let me clarify, the difference between great faith and little faith is confidence in Jesus. Faith is not a commodity, it’s not a thing you can get more of, it’s a depth of confidence in the heart of the receiver. Some folks are just more convinced of the healing power of Jesus than others.
I’ve told people this and they responded by telling me how much their loved one prayed, how spiritual they were, how much they went to church and how godly of a person they were. I’m sorry to say none of those things determine the depth of confidence in their heart toward God.
If you want great faith, become more convinced that God is who he says he is. God is not withholding healing from some folks and freely giving it to others. God doesn’t regulate what Jesus paid for to timing. You’ve heard it said that “it may not be God’s timing yet” as an explanation for why someone isn’t healed. The truth is this, if Jesus paid for it, it’s yours now. Healing is a promise Jesus paid for in his exchange on the cross.
We must allow ourselves to let the Word of God speak for itself without adding to it or becoming offended by it.
Consider these points…
God defines himself as a healer (Jehovah Rophe).
In the beginning, God placed mankind in a perfect garden with perfect health.
God will restore all things and place us in an eternal place of perfection with no sickness or disease.
Jesus came to earth between Eden and Heaven and healed people.
Jesus was the exact representation of the invisible God.
Healing is what God wants for you, it’s clear through his sovereign acts of creation, eternity and his time as a human.
The reason we are not walking in health and healing has alot to do with the fallen world but Jesus very clearly tells us that we are not healed, and are not healing other people, because of our unbelief.
Yes, I do realize how offensive that is. I do realize that seems black and white, but if you’ll go back and read this article again, you’ll not find my opinions, you’ll find my commentary on the words and explanations of Jesus on the subject of healing and when it doesn’t happen.
That leaves us with this, we need to pray in such a way that builds faith. Our prayer life should remove doubt and unbelief from our hearts. When we believe and doubt not, all things are possible, especially if Jesus paid for it on the cross.
Here’s an example prayer that can remove doubt and build trust toward God…
Father, I thank you that you love me. I acknowledge that you are a healer. You showed me through the life of Jesus that you are willing to heal those who believe. I am willing to believe you. I believe you want me healed. I yield my heart to you. I may not understand why I’m not healed, but it doesn’t matter, because I believe you are a healer. I believe Jesus paid for my spiritual, emotional AND physical healing, my healing is in the spilled blood of Jesus and the stripes on his back. Father, I trust you, I thank you that your spirit is in me, bringing life to my physical body. No matter what I feel or see in my body, I believe you want me healed and your spirit is helping my body become whole and healed. Thank you for loving me, I trust you…I pray this in the power and authority of Jesus.