I’ve noticed that in the church world, people tend to treat important subjects like faith and prayer in a very general way. I think the same thing has happened with the subject of healing. Many times people just put all the scriptures on healing in the same sack, shake it up, and pour them all out together. It’s no wonder that folks have become confused.
We need to learn to rightly divide the Word of God on every subject. For example, when we look at prayer, it’s important to recognize there are different kinds of prayers. One kind of praying won’t work where another kind of praying should, so it’s necessary to find out what kind of prayer will work in each situation.
Well, when you study the subject of healing, you’ll begin to see that there are two streams or methods of healing found in the Scripture.
14 Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:
15 And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.
16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
25 And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,
26 And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,
27 When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.
28 For she said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.
29 And straightway the fountain of her blood was dried up; and she felt in her body that she was healed of that plague.
30 And Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that virtue [power, anointing] had gone out of him, turned him about in the press. . . .
34 And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.
In these scriptures we see these two streams of healing: one is prayer, and the other is being ministered to under the anointing. Both will bring you the same results, but you need to understand that there’s a difference between the two.
The Stream of Prayer
We know it’s thoroughly scriptural to pray for the sick. Mark 11:24 says, “. . . What things soever ye desire, when ye PRAY, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.” That would include healing, wouldn’t it? Otherwise the scripture would have said, “What things soever you desire except healing. . . .” No, Mark 11:23 and 24 includes all things—whatsoever you desire when you pray—as long as they’re in line with God’s Word!
These same two verses of Scripture brought me off the bed of sickness as a teenage boy. I had been bedfast for sixteen months with a deformed heart and an incurable blood disease. Five different medical doctors said I had to die because medical science couldn’t do anything for me.
But something inside of me, the inward witness, said, “You don’t have to die at this early age. You can be healed.”
I began to meditate on Mark 11:23 and 24, because something inside of me told me I would find the answer for my healing there.
Now God may use some other passage of Scripture to lead you. You can’t just lay some pattern down and say that’s the way it’s going to work with everybody. But with me, He used Mark 11:23 and 24. When I acted upon those verses, believing I received my healing when I prayed, I was healed!
The Prayer of Faith
You can be healed through prayer. In my case, I prayed the prayer of faith for myself. And you can do the same thing, because prayer is one stream of healing that’s available to all of us!
On the other hand, you may not be in a position to pray. Your faith may not be at that level, or perhaps you haven’t been taught along those lines. Then the Scripture also says, “Is any sick among you? let him CALL FOR THE ELDERS of the church; and LET THEM PRAY over him. . . . And THE PRAYER OF FAITH SHALL SAVE THE SICK, and the Lord shall raise him up . . .” (James
I want to point out three things here that will be a blessing to you. First, the very fact that James asks the question, “Is any sick among you?” implies that there should not have been any sick among them.
Second, it proves that healing is for everyone. He didn’t say, “Let them call for the elders of the church, and those whom it’s God’s will to heal will be
healed, and those whom it’s not God’s will to be healed won’t be healed.” No, he said, “Is any sick among you?” So then, healing must be for “any” who are sick among us.
Then we also see that it’s the prayer of faith that saves the sick. The same Greek word “sozo” translated save here is also translated heal. In other words, you could read it: “The prayer of faith shall heal the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up.”
A person can pray in faith and receive healing for himself—the same way I
did as a young boy when I was raised up from the bed of
sickness by faith in Mark 11:23 and 24. A person can also call for the elders of the church and let them pray over him—and the prayer of faith shall save the sick (James 5:14,15)!
James 5:16 goes on to say that believers can pray for one another that they might be healed, because “. . . The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic in its working]” (Amp.)!
As Christians, we need to get this revelation down on the inside of us. The Bible says our effectual, fervent prayers can cause God’s healing power to be manifested!
The Stream of the Anointing
The other method or stream of healing mentioned is being ministered to with a tangible anointing (Mark 5:30). In other words, you don’t have to pray for God’s healing power because it’s already present to minister to people.
This is the stream of healing power that Jesus flowed in here on earth. Jesus never had to specifically pray for the sick because He was already anointed to minister healing to them (Acts 10:38).
Don’t misunderstand me. It’s thoroughly scriptural to pray for the sick, and the Scriptures instruct you to do so. But, you see, there was no need for Jesus to pray for something He already had—the healing anointing!
Jesus said in John 14:12: “. . . He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do. . . .”
Well, if we’re going to do the works of Jesus in any measure, then it has to be with the same anointing. Therefore, we should learn something about how the anointing works.
Jesus used many methods of ministering healing, but the most prominent one
seems to be the laying on of hands. You might say it was a point of contact through which the anointing could be transferred.
Also in connection with the laying on of hands, the Bible mentions two different times when people touched Jesus’ clothes and they were healed (Matt.
14:35,36; Mark 5:30).
As we saw earlier in Mark 5:30, when the woman with the issue of blood touched Jesus’ garment, “. . . Jesus, immediately knowing in himself that VIRTUE had gone out of him, turned him about in the press, and said, Who touched my clothes?”
The Greek word translated “virtue” throughout the King James Version means power. What was the power that went out of Jesus? It was healing power. It was the power with which He was anointed.
38 How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with POWER: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
We know that Jesus works the same today because Hebrews 13:8 says that Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever. So if in His physical body Jesus was anointed with the Holy Ghost to heal and do good yesterday, then He’s doing the same thing today through His Body, the Church. Therefore, He is still healing people by the anointing or power of the Holy Spirit!
Where did Jesus’ power come from? God anointed Him with it!
Someone said, “But Jesus is the Son of God. He was God manifested in the flesh!” Yes, but the Word of God tells us that when Jesus came into this world, He laid aside the use of His mighty power and glory (Phil. 2:6-8). The Amplified Bible says that He “. . . stripped Himself [of all privileges and rightful dignity], so as to assume the guise of a servant (slave), in that He became like men and was born a human being” (v. 7).
Think about that for a moment. At age twenty-one, Jesus didn’t heal anybody or work any miracles, yet He was just as much the Son of God then as He was when He was thirty years old. But the Word tells us that the Son of God laid aside the use of His mighty power and glory.
It was only after the Holy Ghost descended upon Jesus and He was anointed that He began to minister in the power of the Spirit (Luke 4:1-14). No miracles of healing took place until He was anointed.
So you see, it’s the anointing of the Holy Spirit that brings the power! And this stream or method of healing—healing ministered by the anointing or power
of the Holy Spirit—is still available today.
Faith Gives Action to the Power
Now there’s something you need to understand about this stream through which the healing anointing is ministered: There is a role that you play as a receiver!
You see, even though God has anointed people to minister healing to the sick, folks must understand that healing is by degree. Therefore, it is based upon two conditions: the degree of healing power administered and the degree of a person’s faith to receive.
When healing is ministered with a tangible anointing, the power of God is present to heal, but the person has a part to play too. It’s the person’s faith that gives action to the healing power of God that’s transmitted to him.
Remember Jesus said to the woman with the issue of blood: “. . . Daughter, THY FAITH hath made thee whole . . .” (Mark 5:34)! Someone might say, “I thought it was the anointing that healed her.” Well, yes, it was, but it was the woman’s faith that gave the healing anointing action.
Thank God, there are several methods of healing available to us because God desires for us to be whole and well. Prayer and the ministering of the tangible healing anointing are two of them. And with proper understanding, we can learn to flow with the Spirit of God in these two streams. Then we can use our faith to give action to God’s healing power in our lives. But the main thing God wants us to know is that He wants us well and free!