by Ted Pavloff, Glory Ministries
“And He Himself bore our sins in His own body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.” 1 Peter 2:24 (NAS)
The ministry of healing of the physical body did not have its beginning with Jesus Christ while He was here on earth in what is known as the New Testament period. The history of divine healing dates back to the Book of Genesis and is as old as the Biblical record of man. In Genesis 20 Abraham prayed for the wives of a heathen king, and in answer to that prayer of faith, God healed them of barrenness.
During the Mosaic dispensation, God met the children of Israel at Marah just as they crossed the Red Sea on dry ground. After He had satisfied their thirst by telling Moses to take specific action to sweeten the bitter waters, Jehovah God established a Covenant of Healing with His people Israel. “If you will diligently listen to the voice of the Lord your God and will do what is right in His sight, and will listen to and obey Him, and keep His statutes, I will not permit to be put upon you any of the diseases which I have permitted to be brought upon the Egyptians; for I am the Lord your Healer.” Exodus 15:26 (Direct Hebrew Translation.)
This was a Covenant, and unlike a contract or gentlemen’s agreement, it was an unbreakable commitment of Almighty God. Israel lived under that Covenant of Healing for 450 years. In that day the heathen population around them had their medical rituals and cult practitioners, but the covenant nation of Israel trusted in their God — Jehovah Rapha, “The God That Healeth Thee.”
It should be noted that the heathen medical practices of that day were somewhat different from the medical profession of today. Today, for example, countless physicians and medical specialists freely acknowledge that only Almighty God can heal, and through His gifts of wisdom and ability, they believe they are instruments He uses to help bring about healing to His people. So while they are definitely not a substitute for what Jesus offers, many of them do consider themselves partners with the Lord in the work of healing.
In the decades following God’s original healing covenant with His people, wherever the faithful remnant could be found, Jehovah Rapha did not fail them. You see the Covenant remained intact and effective to those who believed. When Jesus came into the world, He took man’s position, and with stripes from the Roman whips across His back to pay for our sickness and infirmities, he went to the Cross and forever sealed the Covenant of Healing. Consequently, every born again child of God today can be firmly established in that kind of faith and put the Covenant of Healing to work for themselves and their loved ones.
However, it’s much easier to receive that healing when your house of faith is built on the solid rock of God’s Word, and a good knowledge of the teaching in that Word about our God who heals and wants you well. That knowledge alone will excite your faith into action. David reports in the 105th Psalm that when the Israelites crossed the Red Sea to freedom, there was not one feeble or sick one among them. God had healed them for their journey.
Just to compare, that is tantamount to the Medical Director of Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis calling a press conference and announcing, “There is not one single sick person in all of St. Louis or St. Louis County .” Do you get the force of that? God healed and kept His people by His mighty power if they would just hold on to their part of the Covenant by faith. Those blessed people rested in such trust and confidence in God and His promise, that, not only were they healed, but they lived in that wonderful state of continuing health as long as they obeyed and remained faithful to their part of the covenant.
When Jesus walked out from the waters of baptism, full of the anointing of the Holy Spirit He immediately set about under the mantle of God’s Covenant to make it “a better Covenant” in this new Age of Grace. Acts 10:38 says, “You know of Jesus of Nazareth how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good, and healing all who were oppressed by the devil; for God was with Him.”(NAS) Jesus told the people that God’s time was then — just like today; it is right now! The Covenant of Healing was not only still in effect, with Jesus at the helm, it was moving with tremendous impact. All the boundaries were now down, and just before His ascension, Jesus gave specific instructions recorded by the Apostle Mark in the 16th chapter of his Gospel: “And He (Jesus) said unto them, go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation … and these signs will accompany those who have believed … they will lay hands on the sick and they will recover.”(NAS)
And just who did God intend to pursue this Covenant ministry of healing? You … and you … and you … and me … and everyone else who hears these words, is born again, and believes Him.
For almost 400 years after Jesus ascended back to the Father, the faithful church remained strong in Jesus and the Covenant reality that those stripes He bore were for our healing. And they trusted Him for the healing of their bodies. Down through the centuries, and even in current history, great men of God preached this truth without compromise, and only heaven has record of the multiplied testimonies that prove God’s faithfulness to His Covenant of Healing.
The blessings of God are for every believer, and among those blessings is healing for the body. Remember, faith is not manifested in just shouts or yelling or dancing or other physical actions. Those things are wonderful, but there is something stronger. It is that set faith that takes hold and refuses to let go of God in the Name of Jesus Christ, who paid the full price to bring us physical healing. When you operate in that kind of faith, you will see the power of God begin to move, not only in you, but through you to others in need; and all to the Glory of God.
Does God heal today? Absolutely! The Covenant is still in force, and God speaks to us in 3 John 2: “Beloved I wish above all things that you may prosper and be in health, even as your soul prospers.”(NAS) .
God has healing for you today! Receive it!
(Find more of Ted’s teaching at his WordPress site: A Walk In The Word.)