There is a heresy that miracles and divine healing came to an end in the first century. It is as Paul prophesied: “Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing apirits, and doctrines of devils” (1 Timothy 4:1). Satan has bewitched entire denominations to believe healing is not part of the gospel for today. Teachings of these denominations so contrast with reality as to almost cause one to question the sanity of their advocates were it not scripture describes deception by Satan as a certainty. Satan was able to lead a third of angels in the presence of God to rebel, so how rather simple it is to seduce man to believe falsehoods about divine healing.
Jesus never suggested the sick should be resigned to illness. Doctrines have strayed from the fullness of the gospel, neglecting to appreciate that “the Son of God was manifested that He might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8). Even casual reading of the gospels should dispel false information about the charge to heal Jesus gave those He was leaving behind as well as deliverance from the demonic by the power of the Spirit: “Go you into all the world, and preach the gospel… and these signs shall follow them that believe: In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues…they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover” (Mark 16:15-18).
Prayerfully these lessons will dispel doubt as to God continuing to manifest gifts of healing as described by the apostle in 1 Corinthians 12. I exhort you to be Bereans and search the scriptures for yourself instead of reading commentaries written by those holding views that are unbiblical. As the apostle wrote to Galatians, “If any man preach any other gospel to you than that you have received, let him be accursed” (Galatians 1:9). The Greek word anathema translated accursed literally means to excommunicate. Paul is saying the gospel he preached is a gospel of the kingdom and includes spiritual gifts of healing and miracles, and should continue to be delivered in fullness. Those not teaching the same should truly be banned from the church, an act which might clear the air on this subject.
Jews of Jesus’ day understood sickness as bearing witness to sin (Deuteronomy 28) as a general rule. After healing an invalid at the pool of Bethesda, Jesus found him later in the temple and told him to stop sinning “lest a worse thing come to you” (John 5:14). There was an exception however in the case of a man blind from birth. In that instance, Jesus noted, “Neither has this man sinned, nor his parents, but that the works of God should be made manifest in him” (John 9:3). Taken in context, His words affirm that there is indeed a correlation between sin and sickness. But it can never be stated dogmatically that every sickness or affliction is caused by failure to obey God’s revealed will. We live in a fallen world where all fall short of the glory of God and will eventually die from some cause as a result of the Fall in the garden of Eden.
As the Church has become less committed to the truth of scripture, faith in divine healing has been on the decline as to nearly disappear from the experience of most who make up the body of Christ. Such is not the experience, however, where the church is forced to go underground because of persecution. In such countries, manifestations of the Spirit are continuing abundantly in some situations. Such is the experience of this author over the past twenty-five years as has been described in several books on this website (see Hooked on Hope and The Elementary Teachings of Christ).
As a dwelling place of Holy Spirit, our bodies do not bring praise to the glory of the Father when afflicted with sin or sickness. But if we look for healing only through natural means, attention is directed solely toward the body and symptoms of disease. When looking for divine healing, attention is directed toward the underlying roots of sin and yielding with a contrite and repentant heart to a loving Father. Should symptoms become more severe, we have the assurance “that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose” which is transformation into the image of His Son Jesus (Romans 8:28,29).
These lessons are intended as an introduction to the reality of spiritual healing as it takes place today, despite disclaimers of naysayers to the contrary. I remain deeply grateful for having been permitted to see the power of Holy Spirit at work, even to the raising of a dead man to life. It must be cause for grieving in heaven to witness what has taken place in America because of “doctrines of devils” entering bible schools and seminaries to the extent that falsehood is taught those being prepared as shepherds for sheep, and who are taught to deny continued operation of spiritual gifts in this age of the church. I pray these lessons will serve to convince many that dispensational teaching is an absolute heresy that finds its origin in the pit of hell.