#1: Did Christ Link all Healing to Faith?

Word-of-faith teachings are not Scriptural. This article reveals the contradictions and misunderstandings associated with the false doctrine that anyone with faith will be healed. #healing #Bible

God can and does heal, but how? who? when? why?

The most popular misunderstandings about healing come from the Word of faith movement which promotes confusion and guilt by teaching that all Christians can be healed if they have enough faith.

Let's look at the basic premises of this doctrine and compare them with the actual teachings of Scripture. 

Did Christ teach that faith heals and lack of faith prevents healing?

Jesus sometimes healed people according to their faith.

There were times when Jesus healed someone and told them their faith healed them or their lack of faith prevented their healing. For example Matthew 13:58, Mark 5:34, and Mark 10:52

Jesus sometimes healed people who showed no faith.

Because Jesus healed so many, the majority probably fell into this category. Some probably came to faith because healing was a sign that Jesus was the Messiah, but others continued in their unbelief. 

The Ten Lepers
We have a specific example of Jesus healing people with no faith. There were ten lepers healed (Luke 17:11-19), but only one understood that God was the source of His healing:

Luke 17:17-19: "Jesus asked, 'Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?' Then he said to him, 'Rise and go; your faith has made you well.'"

Jesus sometimes healed simply to show His compassion.

There were probably many who fell into this category as well. Scripture gives the example of the widow's dead son. Nothing in the text indicates that anyone had faith. In fact, no one even asked Christ to heal this woman's son (Luke 7:11-17). 

Jesus also healed people based on the faith of their friends or relatives. 

Word-of-faith teachings are not Scriptural. This article reveals the contradictions and misunderstandings associated with the false doctrine that anyone with faith will be healed. #healing #Bible
For example, the Centurion (Matthew 8:5-10), the mother (Matthew 15:21-18), the father (Matthew 5:21-43), and friends (Luke 5:17-26) all had faith for another person's healing.

If word of faith people are basing their doctrine on the examples of Christ’s earthly ministry, then every person they pray for should be healed based on their faith. Since Jesus healed non-believers, the faith or lack of faith of the sick person shouldn't matter.

✅ Jesus healed as a sign of His heavenly authority.

The overall purpose of Christ's healing ministry (and all examples mentioned above) was to prove He was the Messiah. And he didn't limit these signs to healing. He performed a variety of miracles (Hebrews 2:4). 

Signs weren't permanent promises, nor were they always linked to faith. In fact, Jesus rebuked those who followed Him simply for the personal benefit of these signs:

For example, Jesus performed the sign of feeding the 5000 (John 6), and many followed him. But Jesus knew the people's hearts and said: “Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs I performed but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.” John 6:26-27

They were not following Jesus because the signs had convinced them He was Lord. They were following Him for the earthly benefits He could give them. If we follow Christ only when He gives us health or wealth, we are no different than those he rebuked.

Christ promises eternal food, eternal healing, eternal freedom from sin, eternal joy, etc. And He reminds us in John 16:33: in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” 

Please note that Christ said He had overcome the world (past tense), yet He assured His disciples they would still have tribulation in their present lives.

Christ accomplished complete legal victories over sickness, sin, Satan, and death when He died for our sins, but we won't experience the fullness of that victory until heaven. The next part of this series fully explains that truth: #2: Is Healing an Earthly Promise? 

For the full series as well as other 1-minute devotions about healing, see the Healing Archive.

4 comments:

  1. Gail, Yes, I believe Jesus heals; however we do not understand why some people do get healed & others do not.. I went through the horrible cancer nightmare & finally after a long time was healed; but others were not.Jesus knows "why" for all questions.

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  2. This is a good bible study. At the end of our prayers, including those for healing, we should close with "Not my will but your will be done".

    This also acknowledges that our faith is not the sole determining factor but rather His will is.

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  3. What I see is, if we are "healed" by Christ we are eternally healed. I had a good friend that had a terrible cancer that did take her earthly life, and I know for a fact that she was eternally healed. She lived for Jesus and not for herself. What a testimony she showed us all. That is the focus.
    Thank you Gail

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    1. I just wanted to say thank you for the crystal clear teachings from the Bible in context! It's really a great help in these days of so many false teachers, that distribute confusion regarding the Word of God among Christians. It's like discovering pure water in n desert of lies. Thank you

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