Monday, April 11, 2011

Christians and Our Attitude to Physical Healing . . .

I believe many Christians struggle with the issue of "healing".  Why do some get healed and others do not?  Why am I sick and he is not?  Or vice-versa.  Why do some get better and no one seems to have prayed for them while another person dies after a whole church prayed for them?  And the list of questions can go on.

I had occasion recently to reread the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego in Daniel 3 and I came upon these words in verses 17 and 18 that the three young Hebrew men uttered to king Nebuchadnezzar.  They said them just before he cast them into the midst of a furnace of blazing fire as he had promised he would do to any who were caught not worshiping a golden image:
"If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire; and He will deliver us out of your hand, O king.
"But even if He does not, let it be known to you, O king, that we are not going to serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up."
As I read these words, I thought -- isn't this exactly how God wants us to react to the matter of physical healing?  I believe it is.  Take a look at what advice we can apply to physical healing from Daniel's writing:
  1. A belief that God can heal.  "Our God . . . IS ABLE to deliver us from the furnace of blazing fire," or the infirmity we are praying about.
  2. A requirement that our faith be in "Our God, whom WE SERVE. . . "  The delivery, or in our case, the response to a request for physical healing of our own or on behalf of someone else seems to come best when the request is made by one who 'serves' God and knows God intimately.
  3. Although God is able, He may choose not to deliver us from this condition, but in any case, He definitely "WILL deliver us out of your hand, O king" or out of the hand of the Enemy in our case -- or maybe, out of the hand of spiritual death.  God may not heal, although He is able to heal, but He will deliver us from the Enemy -- whether it be that He will be with us through the rest of our lives with this infirmity or whether He takes us home to be free of it.
  4. "BUT even if He does not (deliver us from the fire or heal us in our case)," we will continue to serve Him and not give in to atheism or idolatry.  We will accept what He chooses to do as being best for us.
As I have struggled with the questions that I raised above, I see that only by this approach as practiced by Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego with respect to being thrown into the fiery furnace, can we deal with them.  I have that kind of confidence in my God -- He will deliver me out of the hands of the Enemy.  I pray you do as well.  But I'd like to hear of your experiences and thoughts on this topic.  Just go to the comments section at the bottom of this blog and share them with us.


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