RSS

Tag Archives: disease

Sickness and the Sin Package

As we continue to look at the life and ministry of Jesus through the Gospel of Mark, we get a lot of insight into divine healing.  In today’s post, we’ll see specifically where sickness comes from.  To get the whole story, you may want to first read Mark 2:1-12.

There are those who mistakenly believe that sickness was a part of the curse when Adam and Eve fell.  But a careful reading of that section of Genesis will show that no mention of sickness was ever a part of the curse.

By studying the Scripture, it’s clear that sin is a package deal.  It has a lot of parts to it.  It’s the grouping of everything that misses the mark of the glory God created us for.

Sickness misses the mark of the perfect health God created Adam to enjoy.  So sin is a part of the total sin package.  For a more detailed teaching on this, click here.

But I believe that the greatest testimony is from Jesus Christ Himself.

We’ll now look at Mark’s account of the paralyzed man who was lowered down to Jesus through the roof.  There was no room for his friends to take him through the front door, so they got creative and cut a hole in the roof.

When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, “Why does this fellow talk like that?  He’s blaspheming!  Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, “Why are you thinking these things?  Which is easier: to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’?  But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins . . . .”  He said to the paralytic, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”  He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all.  This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”
Mark 2:5-12

In looking at this event in the life of Jesus, it’s important to note that the Greek word that we translate as forgive literally means to remove.  Therefore, according to Jesus’ own testimony, in order to prove that He could remove sin – He removed sickness.

Jesus would not have made such an amazing statement unless it was true.

This is one of the most important concepts we need to hear.  When a person is healed, a manifestation of the sin nature is removed from their life.  I think that it’s beyond question the God hates sin.  If that’s true, then God views sickness the same way.

In God’s mind, sickness is a blight on His perfect creation.  It’s like the first scratch on a brand new car.  It’s utterly offensive to Him.  He hates sickness and disease more than we do.  Remember – it’s not the sick person that God hates, but rather the sickness that has taken hold of him or her.

But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
Isaiah 53:5

This verse tells us how Christ was going to pay for each specific form of sin that manifests itself in our lives.  Transgressions occur when I knowingly break God’s law.  Iniquities are sinful tendencies that are passed down parent to child through the generations.  Bringing peace speaks to the sins that we commit against one another.

This brings us to healing.  This verse shows that sickness is just one more manifestation of the sin nature that needs to be removed.  Christ suffered and died – then rose again – to totally break the effects of sin in all of its forms.

Question: How does healing the sick bring glory to God?

© 2017 Nick Zaccardi

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on December 20, 2017 in Healing, Ministry, Power of God

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Healing for All

I believe that Jesus Christ paid the price for our healing. Yet we don’t see the full manifestation of it in the church right now. Why is that? James gives us some clear keys about how this grace operates.

Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise. Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven.
James 5:13-15

James is very bold in his declaration of the place of healing in the church. He asks, “Is any one of you sick?” This is not only for those who are strong in faith. It’s not limited to those who have been “confessing their healing” for months. This is clearly written to anyone who’s sick.

James leaves no wiggle room for doubt in God’s purpose. There’s no mention of God wanting to heal some and leaving others sick in order to teach them something. He states this in no uncertain terms. Not “maybe, sometimes, or in most cases”. He says, The prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well. He even repeats himself for emphasis, The Lord will raise him up.

More than that, he goes on to use the exact same wording for the forgiveness of God. Would anyone ever doubt the Lord’s forgiveness? Would you ever add “if it’s God’s will” to a prayer for forgiveness? You’d never entertain the thought that if someone confessed their sin to God, they may or might not be forgiven, depending on God’s will for their life.

Yet, in context, these two prayers are portrayed in the same light. The answer to a prayer for healing is exactly the same as an answer to a prayer for forgiveness.

It sounds to me, from his writings, that James had a 100% success rate in the area of divine healing. Without a doubt the early church had a higher walk than we do. The miraculous was an everyday occurrence.

But, if you think about it, that’s to be expected. If we look at the life of Jesus, we see the exact same thing. He had a 100% healing rate as well. There’s no hint, in the Gospel record, of anyone coming to Him for healing and leaving disappointed. We’re the ones who make excuses for not being healed.

“Maybe this is the only way God could teach me a lesson.”

There’s no record of Jesus ever refusing to heal someone because He wanted them to “learn something” they couldn’t get any other way. Praise God that you got closer to the Lord during your illness. We can learn many things during times of affliction. But to think that the reason you’re not healed was for the purpose of teaching you something goes against the clear Word of God.

From the Scripture we know that the disciples had a front row seat in observing the life of Christ. It’s not surprising, then, that the apostles of Christ also had a 100% healing rate in the Scriptures.

The power of the Lord manifesting through His people didn’t even end there. The next generation of believers – those first saved under the apostles – had the same success. Men like Paul, Philip, James and Jude walked in the power of the Spirit to a degree we can’t even imagine. Were they any different from us? Was their God different from our God? No way!

It wasn’t until the next generation of believers that we start to see a change taking place. In talking to the Corinthian church, Paul makes note of the fact that they were acting in carnality – like a bunch of spiritual babies. He then makes the following indictment.

That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep.
1 Corinthians 11:30

In my next post, James will show us what was lost and how to correct it.

Question: How have you experienced God’s divine healing in your life?

© Nick Zaccardi 2017

 
3 Comments

Posted by on May 3, 2017 in Faith, Healing, Power of God, Revival

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Healing Principles – Intercession

HandsThis will be my last post on the principles that govern the healing that Christ provided for us on the cross. In my last article we saw how healing is based upon a Word from God. We need to really grasp this point.

Healing is not based upon my need. Neither is it based upon my love for the sick person or my desire to see them get well. Healing is initiated by a Word from God for me to take authority over that sickness.

That explains what James said in his letter.

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.
James 5:16

We see two important thoughts in this verse. First of all there’s confession of need. I already talked about this one in a former post in this series. If nobody knows about your sickness, how can they be in prayer for you?

The word confess literally means to speak out where you’ve missed the mark. This includes if you are missing the mark of God’s perfect health.

The second thought is just as important, yet highly overlooked in our generation. James says to pray for one another for healing. I believed that we’ve totally misunderstood what he’s saying here.

He’s not talking about laying hands on people to bring healing. This verse is speaking about our daily routines. We should be praying and interceding for our brothers and sisters in Christ. Then, from time to time we will receive a Word for someone’s healing…or other situations they may be going through.

The last line of this verse clinches that for me. It says that the energized prayer of the righteous is a mighty force.

Energized prayer – I believe he can only be talking about prayer in the spirit by using that term. Paul talks about it in that way as well.

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.
Romans 8:26

When I intercede in the spirit for my fellow believers, I’m praying beyond my limited knowledge. Then the Holy Spirit is free to give me a Word for their healing. That’s the precise way that the healing ministry of Jesus took place.

Jesus gave them this answer: “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.”
John 5:19

The whole ministry of Jesus was Word based. He heard from the Father, and then did what He saw. Of course, that meant spending a large amount of time in the spirit, listening to the Father’s voice. That’s the biggest hurdle for us. We need to take the time necessary to operate at this level.

I believe that the day is coming when the church will finally be so upset by our lack of power, that we’ll press in and learn to hear God clearly. That’s what will initiate the final harvest before the coming of the Lord.

We need to be a people of prayer. Prayer in the spirit and intercession for others should be a part of our daily walk. This will bring us to where we need to be as God’s people.

Question: What would the church look like if this was in place?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Healing Principles – Truth

MirrorFor the past couple of posts I’ve been talking about God’s divine healing that was provided by Christ on the cross. So far we’ve seen that sickness is a part of the sin nature and our healing is based in the authority of God.

Today I want to talk about a problem I see in the lives of some believers who erroneously believe that denial is the path to their healing. Nothing could be further from the truth.

But first, I need to make it clear that I wholeheartedly believe in the confession of the Word of God. We need to speak out our faith. The words of our mouth must line up with God’s view of life as found in the Scriptures.

That being said, there are those who take this too far. If the doctor gives them some bad news, especially when it’s something like cancer, they start to deny it. When they’re with other believers they’ll act as if there’s nothing wrong. You ask them how they’re doing and they say, “I’m healed and whole.”

It actually all comes down to fear. They’re afraid that if somehow they slip up in their “faith confession”, God will never heal them.

The fact is that because sickness is a part of the sin package, it’s to be treated the same way that any other kind of sin is taken care of.

If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.
I John 1:8

Because sickness is a part of this package, you can replace the word sin with sickness. The principle is that claiming you’re not sick, when you are, means that you’ve deceived yourself. We cannot sweep sickness under the carpet and expect to be healed. Denial is never God’s method for anything that needs to be removed from our lives.

God’s way is just the opposite.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
I John 1:9

Never deny your sickness. Denial is based in fear and it causes us to leave the path of truth. What we must do with sickness is to confess it so that He can remove it. We do this to let Christ purify us – body and soul.

This agrees with the Word in other parts of Scripture.

Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise. Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord.
James 5:13-14

This verse tells us some good advice. If you’re going through troubled times, then pray. If you’re cheerful, sing. If you’re sick in some way, call elders in Christ.

Please realize that depending on the church this may or may not be the official elder board. This verse is talking about those who know God’s Word concerning healing.

And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven.
James 5:15

This is God’s divine order for the sin package. Confession of the problem and removal by the prayer of authority based upon faith in God’s Word. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a physical sickness or a sinful activity.

Question: How have you experienced confession and removal in your Christian walk?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 28, 2015 in Faith, Healing, Power of God, Prayer

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Healing Principles – Authority

KeyI’m taking a few posts to talk about the guiding principles that surround God’s provision of healing for His people. In my last article I showed that sickness is a part of the sin nature. It misses the best that the Lord wants for us.

Now I want to talk about our authority in Christ Jesus. We’ve been given that name that’s above all other names.

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2:9-11

The Lord expects us to walk in and use His name in all of our activities. That means I need to strive to live the way He lived. That’s the only way I can adequately represent Christ to the world. It also means that I have a responsibility to seek the Lord’s way of ministry.

How did Jesus heal the sick? He’s our example for how it’s to be accomplished.

“What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him.
The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.”
“Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.
Mark 10:51-52

This is one of the many healings that are recorded in Scripture. One thing that strikes me right away is the boldness that Jesus had. We see the same thing in the ministry of the Apostles after the resurrection. Look at what happened in the Temple courts when Peter met a crippled man.

Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God.
Acts 3:6-8

In both cases Jesus and the Apostles were acting under the authority of God. What we need to understand is that the prayer for healing is a prayer of authority. That means that you don’t have to ask God to do it. It is a command that the healing be manifest.

It’s the same as when demons are cast out of an individual. I’ve had the privilege of delivering someone from the bondage of demonic possession. I didn’t ask God to do it. I took authority over the demon in the name of Jesus Christ.

I commanded it to leave based upon the clear teaching of Scripture that we’ve been given authority over all the power of the enemy. Sickness is the same way. The Word shows us that God hates sickness. It’s a blight on His perfect creation. We have His authority to command it to be healed.

The church needs to once again walk in the authority we’ve been given. Of course, as I’ve said before, this carries a responsibility to live as Christ lived. I think this might be the biggest hindrance to us living it out.

One more thing about our authority in Christ. Some people think that this is the only issue and run off to try it and fall on their face – spiritually speaking. In my next post I’m going to deal with another major principle that needs to be in place for us to see more healings taking place in the church.

Question: How have you used the authority of the name of Jesus recently?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 25, 2015 in Healing, Power of God, Spiritual Warfare

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Healing Principles – The Sin Nature

TargetI believe that Christ is the Healer. I believe that in His death, burial, and resurrection He paid the price for all sickness and disease to be healed. That being said, I also understand the reality that not everyone is healed at this point in church history.

Just like it’s God’s desire for all to be saved, I believe He wants us all healthy and whole. But please understand, I’m not one of those who lightly says, “You just didn’t have enough faith” when someone’s not healed.

There are certain kingdom principles that I think we’ve missed along the way. I want to take a few posts to talk about some of these as they relate to the healing that’s available to all believers.

The first is the principle of the sin nature. We need to understand how this relates to sickness. I covered this aspect in great detail in a series I posted called Healing 101. To read that series click here.

The bottom line of what Scripture teaches is that sickness is a part of the sin nature. Let me be clear – sickness is not always caused by a specific sin in our life, but it is a part of the total sin package that Adam embraced.

Sin means to miss the mark. Adam was created to never be sick. Sickness misses the mark of God’s desire for our health. Jesus Christ himself made reference to this fact during His ministry on earth. This took place when a group of men lowered their sick friend to Jesus through a hole they cut in the roof.

When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”
The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’?
But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins….” He said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.”
Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God.
Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”
Luke 5:20-26

In looking at this event in the life of Jesus, it’s important to note that the Greek word that we translate as forgive literally means to remove. Therefore, according to Jesus’ own testimony, in order to prove that He could remove sin – He removed sickness.

Jesus would not have made such an amazing statement unless it was true. This is one of the most important concepts we need to hear. When a person is healed, a manifestation of the sin nature is removed from their life.

In order to understand how healing works in the church, we must first come to grips with this truth. God feels the same way about sickness that he feels about any other sin – He wants it gone!

That’s good news. I don’t have to worry about whether or not it’s God’s will to heal me. It is. I just need to understand the guiding principles about how that healing is accomplished in me.

Hopefully, over the next few posts I can bring those across. My prayer is that as you read these, you can lay hold of it. If the result is that your healing manifests, please share it with us in the comments so that God can get the glory for His work in you.

Question: How has God healed you in the past?

© Nick Zaccardi 2015

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 23, 2015 in Healing, Ministry, Power of God

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Healing 101 – Sickness and God’s Will

PillsThroughout both the Bible, God equates sickness with the sin nature.  His treatment of sickness is the same as His treatment of sin – total removal.  In my last post we saw that Jesus taught that sickness was a manifestation of sin.  During His ministry He went about removing sickness.

This proves that sickness is never God’s will for your life.  In the Gospels, there’s no evidence that Jesus refused to heal anybody for any reason.

To prove that God wants you to remain sick, all you have to do is find a verse where Jesus said, “I’m sorry.  I would really like to heal you, but it’s the Father’s will that you bring glory to Him by remaining sick.”

There’s nowhere in the Bible where Jesus ever touched someone and said, “Be blind.  I need to teach you something that you can’t learn any other way.”

You will not find it.  It’s not there.  Jesus healed everyone who came to Him.

What about the apostles?

As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by.
Crowds gathered also from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by evil spirits, and all of them were healed.
Acts 5:15-16

When the apostles prayed – ALL WERE HEALED!  There are some who say that this was just the infancy of the church.  God wanted to start things off with a bang; a lot of healings right at the beginning to get people’s attention.

So really what these people are saying is that God thought, “I’ll get everybody healed now, to get them excited about the church.  Then, once they get going, I’ll show them what I’m really like.”

The God I serve does not change!  He’s the same yesterday, today and forever.  Look at the testimony from the end of the book of Acts when Paul was shipwrecked on the island of Malta.  During that time he met an official named Publius.

His father was sick in bed, suffering from fever and dysentery. Paul went in to see him and, after prayer, placed his hands on him and healed him.
When this had happened, the rest of the sick on the island came and were cured.
Acts 28:8-9

All were healed!  What about the next generation of believers?

Based upon my studies, I believe that the book of James was the first book of the New Testament to be written.  It’s our first glimpse into the teaching of the church.  What does Pastor James tell us about the ministry of healing that took place among his people?

Is any one of you sick? He should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord.  And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up.  If he has sinned, he will be forgiven.
James 5:14-15

According to James, all the sick, not just some, could go to the elders and expect to be healed.  Not maybe or most of the time.

We know that confessing sin brings forgiveness.  James only mentioned that once.  He declared the fact of healing twice.

Just because this isn’t our experience, doesn’t make it any less of God’s will.

We need to relearn our knowledge of God’s plan.  God is teaching this truth to the church right now.  We need to trust God for the total restoration of this gift to the church.

Question: Why is it easier to believe that God forgives sin than for Him to heal the sick?

© Nick Zaccardi 2014

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on January 24, 2014 in Healing

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,