Jehovah-Rapha

by Ted Pavloff  (Glory Ministries)

“I AM THE LORD WHO HEALS YOU.” 
(Exodus 15:23-26)

Everybody believes that God made our bodies, and if that be true, then He certainly has the ability to heal our bodies. And He has proven that He has the desire to heal us as well. The only thing required on our part is obedience to and adherence to certain conditions that He has set forth.

God clearly demonstrated this to the children of Israel as He led them out of Egypt. One of the big events of the first Passover was the greatest healing service this world has ever seen. God’s people, from one-day old to 100 years or more, numbering close to 3.5 million, all walked out of Egypt in perfect health. The Word says not one of them was even feeble.

It was some time after that, at the bitter waters of Marah, when God boldly proclaimed to his people, “I am Jehovah Rapha, the Lord that heals you.” (Exodus 15:26). In between those two occurrences the Israelites had forgotten about His deliverance of them out of slavery and did a lot of grumbling. But God forgave them, worked an amazing miracle for them, and followed with that dramatic declaration. 

However, God’s promises to the Israelites came with conditions they had to meet if He was to be their healer. His instructions to them were these: “If you will diligently hearken unto the voice of the Lord, your God, and will do that which is right in His sight, and give ear to His commandments ….”  Now, God has never changed. In fact He said, “I am the Lord your God, I change not.” That means He is still “the Lord that heals.” It also means He still requires us to meet His conditions — which are not burdensome, since His own Spirit now dwells in us to help us. And, of course, when we do fail to walk in obedience, if we will turn to Him in true repentance, He does for us what He did for the Israelites time and time again: He forgives us and restores us to righteousness in His sight.

One point that always comes up, especially with those who do not believe in healing, is “Why does it seem that some people are healed and some not?” There are multiple answers to the “whys,” but some or most of them will never be known in this life. So much of the time, it is not our business to know what the detailed reasons were in someone else’s experience with God. The important point here is that the reason is never because God chooses not to heal us. Jesus, as our example of the nature of God, healed every person who came to Him for healing. He never turned anyone away for any reason.  He’s the same — yesterday, today, and forever.

From the beginning, God intended all of His children to be healthy. Adam and Eve were created perfect; they couldn’t get sick. No such thing existed. But when sin entered, sickness came riding on its back. By their rebellion against God and His instructions to them, they literally rejected the health that God gave them in creation. Now though, by His grace through Jesus Christ, He gives us healing again. 

In spite of all the questions, the Scripture is firm in its repeated declaration that God wants His people to be healed and healthy. His overwhelming desire is to heal us of all our diseases that He may be glorified in our healed lives. Psalm 103:1-3 says it so clearly. He “forgives all our iniquities” and “heals all our diseases.”

In Numbers 21 is the story of how God was overly merciful in healing the Israelites. He had sent them manna in the desert, but they were unhappy with it — tired if this, tired of that — dissatisfied with everything — turning their backs on the God who had delivered them over and over. Their rebellion opened the door for fiery serpents to attack their camp. Hundreds were bitten and died. Finally the people realized their sin, and in repentance appealed to Moses to intercede. God told Moses to make a brass serpent and mount it on a pole. He then told him that when anyone who had been bitten would look upon this serpent on a pole, they would be healed. This brass serpent was a picture of Jesus. He even spoke of it as a symbol of His work on the Cross, as recorded in John 3:14-15: “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up.” We are to look upon Christ and receive our healing — all of our healing.

Healing virtue is only in Jesus Christ. He was the one who took our sins, and those stripes for our healing to the cross. There are those today that totally push aside the Word and refuse to believe that the gifts of the Holy Spirit, which include healing, still operate today. They even believe that God will lay sickness on us as a test or even a punishment. Not Scriptural. Some will testify of a tremendous healing God performed on them and then in the next breath will say, “I’ll probably come down with a cold like everybody else at work.”

If we are children of God, let’s not talk like the world. We are not of this world. Let’s not buy into the skepticism of some of those we come into contact with. We worship Jehovah-Rapha, the Lord who heals, so let’s buy into what He says — and let’s take Him at His Word.

I know it is not easy to stay positive when you are sick and in pain. It is depressing. But we have a choice, dear friends. We can choose to set our eyes on Jesus and His healing. And reading His Word is one of the best ways to do that. As we absorb His Word, it creates faith and expectation in us. As the Scripture teaches, healing will follow an earnest and faithful expectation to be healed. Kind of like salvation: people can choose to be saved from their sins and have eternal life — by following God’s instructions — but many do not choose to. We can be healed of our sicknesses — also by following the instructions God has given us for healing. Sadly, a great many people do not choose to do so, for whatever reason. 

We really need to make Jehovah-Rapha the total influence of our lives. We need to put Him in total control. You see, the truth is we are the ones who make that decision — not God. Let’s thank God continually for being Jehovah-Rapha. Thank Him for being the One who heals all of our diseases. Then openly claim the healing for yourself — now!!

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