Robert D. Pace

A Study of Divine Healing

The following study is an outline that provides Biblical evidence for divine healing as revealed throughout the Bible.

I. Biblical Proofs for Divine Healing

1. The Old Testament Contains a Covenant of Healing.

“If you will diligently listen to the voice of the Lord your God, and do that which is right in his eyes, and give ear to his commandments and keep all his statutes, I will put none of the h diseases on you that I put on the Egyptians, for I am the Lord, i your healer” (Exodus 15:26).

2. Christ’s Suffering at Calvary Provides for Man’s Healing

“Surely he has borne our grief and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken,
smitten by God, and afflicted” (Isaiah 53:4)

“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed” (1 Peter 2:24).

3. The Earthly Ministry of Christ Included Healing.

“So his fame spread throughout all Syria, and they brought him all the sick, those afflicted with various diseases and pains, those oppressed by demons, epileptics, and paralytics, and he healed them” (Matthew 4:24).

“Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was r to destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8).

“God anointed Jesus of Nazareth p with the Holy Spirit and with q power. He went about doing good and healing all r who were oppressed by the devil, s for God was with him” (Acts 10:38).

4. Christ Commissioned Believers to Heal the Sick.

“And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands f on the sick, and they will recover” (Mark 16:15-18).

5. The Ministry of the Early Church Demonstrates the Continuance of Divine Healing.

Throughout the book of Acts the Holy Spirit worked through the disciples and Apostles to heal the sick (Acts 4, 5, 6, 9, 14, 16, 19, 20, 28).

6. The Unchanging Nature of Jesus Christ Teaches Healing is for Today.

“God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him” (Hebrews 13:8).

7. God’s Goodness Testifies to His Willingness to Heal.

“He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things” (Romans 8:32).

The evidence of Scripture is clear: God attests to His willingness to heal throughout the Bible!

II. Biblical Patterns of Divine Healing

God releases His healing power to men in numerous ways. Although this discloses 14 Biblical patterns of divine healing, it is also important to remember that healing can never be reduced into a formula. The Activator for all divine healing is the Holy Spirit and without Him no divine healing occurs. Notice the 14 Biblical patterns for healing:

1. Speaking the Name of Jesus (Acts 3:1-4).

2. Healing comes through prayer and fasting (Acts 4:23-31).

3. The hearing of God’s Word brings healing (Romans 10:17).

4. A faith-filled confession of the Word brings healing (Psalm 107:20).

5. Because some sicknesses originate from Satan, believers must command/adjure evil spirits to depart from people (Matthew 18).

6. Anointing of oil by elders of Church (James 5:14).

7. Obeying a prophetic word (2 Kings 5; Genesis 20:1-18).

8. The Gifts of healings (1 Corinthians 12).

9. The gift of miracles (1 Corinthians 12).

10. The gift of faith (1 Corinthians 12).

11. Healing occurs through the practice of “laying-on of hands” (Mark 16:18).

12. Confession of sins and prayer (James 5:16).

13. Speaking God’s Word in faith (Acts 9:32-35).

14. Healing occurs through the “prayer of faith” (James 5:15).

15. “Prayer of agreement” between believers (Matthew 18:19).

16. Suffering of Christ (stripes and wounds) at Calvary (Isaiah 53).

17. Prayer cloths (Acts 19:11-12).

18. Love of God (Psalm 91).

19. Works of “signs and wonders” (Acts 5:14-15).

20. Walking in the “fear of God” (Proverbs 3:7-8; 14:27; 28:58-61).

21. Walking in humility (2 Chronicles 7:14; James 4:6-10).

22. Healing occurs at God’s sovereign discretion.

(God’s mercy, grace, and wisdom always accompany His healing power.)

III. Why Some People Aren’t Healed

The Prophet Isaiah notes that “God’s ways are past finding out” and this certainly applies to divine healing. Why some people are healed and others are not is often wrapped in enigmatic mystery. While we must never become judgmental about analyzing one’s failure to receive divine healing, neither must we ignore the Bible’s insight regarding this issue. Thus, let us humbly proceed to investigate why healing fails to manifest for some seekers of Christ’s healing:

1. When the supplicant refuses to confess known sin.

Solomon said, “He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).”

David said, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me” (Psalm 66:18).

2. When the supplicant is unforgiving.

“Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. (Mark 11:24-25).

“For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, 15 but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses” (Matthew 6:14,15). (See also Matthew 18:23-35).

3. When unbelief is present.

“And He [Jesus] did not do many miracles there because of their lack of faith” (Matthew 13:58).

4. Carnal lifestyle and mistreating others.

“What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? (2) You want something but don’t get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God” (James 4:1-2).

5. Lack of prayer.

In Scripture, Prayer seems to be associated with the minister that was used to enact healing. Jesus constantly prayed, as did Paul and Peter. Prayer is needed at least before ministering to those in need.

6. Lack of perseverance for healing.

All healings aren’t instantaneous. God rewards those that “diligently seek Him.” The writer of Hebrews said that it is “through faith and patience [that] we inherit the promises” (6:12).

7. Lack of love toward God.

“Because He has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver Him” (Psalm 91).

8. When faith is not accompanied by action.

Faith without corresponding actions is dead (James 2:17).

(Illustration) Once Jesus ministered to a blind man he instructed the blind man to wash in Pool of Siloam. Then, as Christ brought healing to a man with a withered hand Christ commanded him to stretch forth his hand. Thus, the Lord was requiring these men to couple their faith with corresponding action.)

9. Making confessions of doubt.

“Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45).

“You are snared by the words of your mouth” (Proverbs 6:2).

“Death and life is in the power of the tongue” (Proverbs 18:21).

10. Harboring wrong attitudes

“What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? 2 You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. 3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. 4 You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” (James 4:1-3). (Wrong attitudes include: self-pity, selfishness, pride, a critical spirit, desire for attention, unforgiveness, and resentment toward others.)

11. Trusting “works” to earn God’s favor

Man’s righteousness is as “filthy rags” in God’s sight. While God appreciates man’s acts of goodness and benevolence, human works cannot produce God’s healing power. God’s blessings issue forth from the “throne of grace” and the mercy of the Lord. It is God’s “unmerited favor” alone that elicits divine healing toward man.

12. Rejecting God’s message or messenger

In the Old Testament, the Syrian leper, Namaan, remained unhealed until he submitted to Elijah’s command to dip in the Jordan River seven times (2 Kings 5).

13. Employing the wrong approach to enact healing

Scripture infers that sickness arises from three sources: (1) God, (2) Satan, and (3) natural causes. Some occasions require only a simple prayer to be offered for healing; at other times it involves rebuking an evil spirit, exorcising a demon, commanding healing to come, etc. Therefore, discernment on the part of those attempting to minister healing is needed.

14. When men do not walk in fellowship with God

Gahazi, Elisha’s covetous servant, could not resurrect the dead boy because he was not in relationship with God (1 Kings 4).