Many Christians today believe in the doctrine of healing by faith in God. But some wonder: How can a person who fully believes in this doctrine actually receive the blessing and appropriate healing?
I suggest seven steps.
First, be fully persuaded of the Word of God in this matter. The Word is the only sure foundation of rational and scriptural faith. Your faith must rest on the great principles and promises of the Bible, or it can never stand the testings that are sure to come. You must be so sure that this is part of the gospel and the redemption of Christ that all the reasonings of the best men and women cannot shake you.
Most of the practical failures of faith in this matter result from defective or doubtful convictions concerning the divine Word. A woman who had fully embraced this truth and accepted Christ as her Healer was immediately strengthened very much both in spirit and body. Her overflowing heart was only too glad to tell the good news to all her friends. Among others, she met her pastor and told him of her faith and blessing.
To her surprise, he immediately objected to any such views. He warned her against this new fanaticism and told her that these promises on which she was resting were not for us but were only for the apostles and the apostolic age. She listened, questioned, yielded and abandoned her confidence. In less than one month, when I saw her again, she had sunk to such depression that she scarcely knew whether she even believed the Bible.
If those promises were for the apostles, she argued, why might not all the other promises of the Bible also be for them only? I invited her to spend time examining the teaching of the Word of God.
We carefully compared the promises of healing from Exodus to James. Every question we calmly weighed until the truth became so manifest and its evidence so overwhelming that she could only say, “I know it is here, and I know it is true, even if all the world should deny it!”
Then she knelt and asked the Lord’s forgiveness for her weakness and unbelief. She renewed her solemn profession of faith and consecration and claimed again the promise of healing and the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
From that day she has been restored and blessed with all spiritual blessings. The very pastor who caused her to stumble has been forced to own that this is the finger of God. But the starting point of all her blessing was the moment when she fully accepted and rested in the living Word.
Second, be fully assured of the will of God to heal you. Most persons are ready enough to admit the power of Christ to heal. But true faith implies equal confidence in the willingness of God to answer the prayer of faith. Any doubt on this point will surely paralyze your prayer for definite healing. If there is any question of God’s will to heal you, there can be no certainty in your expectation.
A mere vague trust in the possible acceptance of your prayer is not faith definite enough to grapple with the forces of disease and death. The prayer for healing, “if it be Thy will,” carries with it no claim for which Satan will quit his hold. This is a matter about which you ought to know His will before you ask, and then you must will and claim it because it is His will.
Has God given you any means by which you may know His will? Most assuredly. If the Lord Jesus has purchased healing for you in His redemption, it must be God’s will for you to have it, for Christ’s whole redeeming work was simply the executing of the Father’s will. If Jesus has promised it to you, it must be His will that you receive it, for how can you know His will but by His Word?
The Word of God is forever the standard of His will, and that Word has declared immutably that it is God’s greatest desire and unalterable principle of action to give to every person according as he or she will believe. Especially has He promised to save all who will receive Christ by faith and to heal all who will receive healing by similar faith.
No one thinks of asking for forgiveness “if it be Thy will.” Nor should you throw any stronger doubt on His promise of physical redemption. Both are freely offered to every trusting person who will accept them.
Third, be careful that you are right with God. If your sickness has come to you on account of any sinful cause, be sure that you thoroughly repent of and confess your sins and make all restitution as far as it is in your power. If sickness has been a discipline designed to separate you from some evil, at once present yourself to God in frank self-judgment and consecration and claim from Him the grace to sanctify you and keep you holy.
An impure heart is a constant fountain of disease. A sanctified spirit is in itself as wholesome as it is holy. At the same time, do not let Satan paralyze your faith by throwing you back on your unworthiness, telling you that you are not good enough to claim healing.
You never can deserve any of God’s mercies. The only plea is the name, the merits and the righteousness of Christ.