10 March 2024: Prayer for healing (part 2)

Bethel Baptist Church
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10 March 2024


“The Lord always healed from a compassionate heart for those who were ill and as a result crowds followed Him because of His mercy and love. He is still healing today, both spiritually and physically. Let us surrender to Him and trust Him, Amen.”




Prayer for Healing

Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and illness among the people. News about Him spread all over Syria, and people brought to Him all who were ill with various diseases, those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralysed; and He healed them. Large crowds from Galilee, the Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea and the region across the Jordan followed Him.

Mat. 4:23-25

I once read that “more people get healed when more people pray for healing”. This reminded me of one of Archbishop Temple’s replies to his critics who attributed answered prayer to mere coincidence, “Okay, when I pray, coincidences happen; when I don’t’ they don’t”.

A large part of Jesus’ ministry was healing the sick, How large? How many? It’s difficult to say in the light of such verses as above where we read:

  • “healing every disease and illness among the people”
  • all who were ill with various diseases”
  • those suffering severe pain, the demon-possessed, those having seizures, and the paralysed, and He healed them.”
  • Large crowds from Galilee, the Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea and the region across the Jordan followed Him.”

How many is that? We don’t know but it was many. Some, such as Philip Yancey, argue that Jesus only healed a “few dozen”. How does he arrive at that in the light of the above and many other verses such as, e.g.,

That evening after sunset the people brought to Jesus all who were ill and demon-possessed. The whole town gathered at the door, and Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons, but He would not let the demons speak because they knew who He was.

Mark 1:30-34

If there was only a few dozen that would have been easy to count but “many” indicates they had to give up counting, there were too many! And what about this verse,

Great crowds came to Him, bringing the lame, the blind, the crippled, the mute and many others, and laid them at His feet; and He healed them. The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel.

Matt. 15:30-31

Immediately after this Jesus fed this crowd by multiplying loaves and a few fish. We are told:

The number of those who ate was four thousand men, besides women and children.

Matt. 15:38

So that gives us a clue as to how large the “Great crowds” (mentioned in Matt. 15:30) were from whom He healed many who had various diseases. Now with Him for those 3 years or so were, as we know, His disciples who watched and learnt from the Master, and then went on to do similar works of healing the sick. (e.g., Acts 3:1-4:22). This was in keeping with the Great Commission,

… go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you

Matt. 28:18-20

One thing that Jesus taught them was to heal the sick. When he commissioned the Twelve He told them to heal the sick, e.g.,

Jesus .. called the Twelve … He gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, He sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal those who were ill … So they set out and went from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing people everywhere.

Luke 9:1-6

The question to answer,, which we will look at over the next few weeks is “Why don’t we see much more of this in the Church today?”.

Quote of the week

“Give God your weakness and He will give you His strength”


Verse of the week

The Lord sustains them on their sick-bed and restores them from their bed of illness. 

Ps. 41:3

Let’s Pray

Lord restore Your gift of healing to Your Church, today, in Jesus Christ, Amen.