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Principles of Healing

There are many within the Christian camp who do not believe that there is healing in the atonement of Christ, even though the scriptures tell us that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). If He healed then, He heals now.

I have experienced the Lord’s healing power on two occasions. For those of you who are in need of healing from the Lord, I would like to share what I have learned based on God’s word, my experiences, and people I have met.

The following is a list of things that we need in order to experience a healing and the things that can block us from receiving God’s healing touch on our lives.

1. Faith

The scriptures show us that faith is essential in receiving anything from the Lord, especially healing. When Jesus came to raise a little girl from the dead, He required that all the doubters be removed from the room (Mark 5:40). Likewise any doubt we have about God’s ability or willingness to heal us has to be removed.

We do not need massive amounts of faith. Even a small amount of faith is adequate to turn God’s attention to our petitions. Jesus said, “If you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you shall say to this mountain, ‘Remove from here to another place;’ and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible to you” (Matthew 17:20).

We are being shown here that our faith needs to be coupled with the knowledge of God’s power. In the example Jesus gives He is saying that we have to see that the impossible is possible because nothing is too hard for the Lord.

A woman came to an evangelist I met at a church service. She asked him if he would pray for her to have a baby. He had prayed many times in the past with successful results for miracles in the womb. He prayed for the woman. Over a year later he returned to the same church and the woman he had prayed for gave him her testimony. Even this man of faith was astonished when she said, “I had a baby. I just didn’t tell you that I’d had a hysterectomy.”

I met a couple whose car had broken down, stranding them in the desert. The transmission had gone out and the situation seemed hopeless. But the wife was a woman of faith and she prayed. Afterward she told her husband to start the car again. He knew it was pointless, but he did it anyway just to humor her; to his amazement, the car started. When they got home he took his car to a repair shop. He was astounded when he was told there was nothing wrong with his transmission it was brand new. God had miraculously installed a new transmission in their old car.

Again, faith must be coupled with an unwavering belief in God’s ability to do anything.

2. Self-examination

Whenever we are seeking healing from the Lord we must examine ourselves first in order to remove any spiritual blockages. We cannot harbor any bitterness, resentment, prejudice or unforgiveness against anyone, even our enemies. Jesus said unforgiveness will block our salvation (Matthew 6:15). We can be assured that it can also block any healing.

Sometimes the Lord will permit us to be afflicted because we need correction. An honest appraisal can reveal any areas in our lives that God wants to change. After Jesus healed the man who had languished in his infirmity for 38 years, the Lord found him in the temple where the man had been restored to a place of worship. Jesus told him, “Sin no more, lest a worse thing comes to you” (John 5:14). When we sin God can withdraw His protection and we become vulnerable to demonic attacks. Therefore it is important that we evaluate our walk with the Lord and come before Him in a spirit of humility and repentance. We can stand on the assurance we have been given in His word that “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (I John 1:9).

3. Seek the Kingdom First

Jesus said, “But you seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). “All these things” can also include healing.

God wants us to be zealous for Him and the gospel. Our focus should be putting the Lord first in our lives and doing His will; which includes putting others’ needs above our own. Praying for others can do much to precipitate our own healing. Job was restored when he obeyed the Lord’s commandment to pray for His friends (Job 42:10).

When I suffered an eyestroke, which is called CRVO, my prayer was that God would heal me so that it would glorify Him and be a testimony. My eye was photographed and I was scheduled to come back the next week to begin a series of monthly shots into my eyeball. I was not looking forward to the experience, but the Lord was keeping me remarkably calm through the entire time I was afflicted. I have learned through this and other experiences that indeed, “His strength is made perfect in weakness” (II Corinthians 12:9).

I returned to the eye doctor’s office a week later and my eye was photographed again. The retina specialist and his assistant studied the new photo and compared it with the one that had been taken the week before. Then the doctor turned to me and said, “This is a miracle.” He showed me the photos. The abnormality that required the injection had been completely normalized.
     The doctor said with a grin, “I am not going to give you the shot.” Then he shook my hand. I was exuberant, blessed and extremely grateful that God had answered my prayer to use my affliction for His glory and a testimony. I shouted “Jesus heals!” as I danced out into the parking lot.

I firmly believe that there is no point in a Christian being afflicted unless we can glorify God through it, whether we are healed, or just going through it with a good attitude. “Though He slay me, yet will I trust him” (Job 13:15 ).

Christians have been given a precious hope beyond this life. A strong faith in the assurance of our eternal existence, should fuel our souls with a positive energy that overrides our suffering and becomes a witness to others of the reality of our faith.

4. Break Curses

Some people who are in need of healing that has not come, have been accused of not having enough faith. As we mentioned previously, faith is important, but as the scriptures show us, we only need a mustard’s seeds worth and God can help us with our unbelief (Mark 9:24). I have learned that sometimes when a healing does not manifest, the cause could be demonic. If someone has been cursed by a witch, that curse can block the healing.

A woman pastor I had talked to shared with me how she had come down with a rare, toxic metal allergy. She could hardly leave the house and she was losing her job and her ministry. Then she attended a healing service. The man who was ministering said that he could pray for people and they would be healed, except his wife who was terminal. The he said someone taught him about breaking curses. He broke a curse on his wife and she was healed. When the lady pastor came forward for prayer, he broke a curse on her and she was healed. She told me that people in ministry should break curses daily because the witches are constantly making them. Some mistakenly think that just because they are Christians they are immune quoting ‘A curse causeless will not come’ (Proverbs 26:2). I have never met a perfect Christian, have you? Break curses daily.

A woman came up to me at a church service and asked me for prayer. She had been experiencing continual pain in her chest. The doctors did not know what was causing it. Many times when someone is experiencing an illness resulting from a demonic attack, there will be no medical explanation. She told me that nothing relieved the pain. I broke a curse on her in Jesus’ name and she told me the pain left instantly.

I had suffered for years with chronic neuralgia in my back which is an extremely painful cold in the nerves. Then I heard a woman testify in a church I was visiting. She said she had sciatica which is a similar and very painful nerve disorder. She was praying for healing and the Lord told her to make her pain an offering to Him. She did that and she was healed. After listening to her testimony I thought, “If the devil is afflicting you and you make your pain an offering to the Lord, you are turning your illness into praise. Demons can’t praise the Lord so they have to leave.” I made my pain an offering to the Lord and my neuralgia disappeared and never returned.

Demons can take a natural affliction, exuberate it and keep it hanging on. God has given us power in Jesus’ name over the devil’s power. While your affliction may not be the result of a curse or a demonic attack, it’s wise to cover all your bases, so to speak; and break any curses in Jesus’ mighty name and make your pain a praise. That returns us again to our previous advice about maintaining a positive attitude.
     The Apostle James says, “Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray. Is any merry? Let him sing Psalms” (James 5:13).

“A merry heart does good like a medicine” (Proverbs 17:22).

Pray and sing Psalms.

5. Seek Prayer from other Believers

James continues with these instructions. “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” (James 5:14).

Before I went to the eye doctor, the Lord had led me to a wonderful Spirit-filled church where I was bathed in prayer, along with the prayers of other friends. I know those prayers contributed much to the manifestation of my miracle. Don’t go it alone. Find a church that is firmly grounded in God’s pure word and believes that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever.

6. Be Persistent and Never Give Up

The man Jesus healed in John 5:5-9, had been in that condition for 38 years before he was healed. We tend to give up too soon if results are not immediate. That’s a mistake. Jesus tells a parable of a persistent widow who would not stop petitioning the judge until he relented and gave her the help she needed (Luke 18:8). This parable kept coming to me during my affliction and I continuously asked the Lord to heal me and He answered my prayers. He knew I would not give up no matter how long it took. “…The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man (Jesus makes us righteous) avails much (James 5:16).

7. Dietary Obedience

Some illnesses are caused by food choices and overeating (surfeiting KJV) which is a sin (Luke 21:34). Eating healthy can do much to prevent illness and contribute to healing. Years ago the Lord directed me to change my eating habits and He has rewarded that obedience over the years. It takes discipline and that is a characteristic that God seeks in His people. If your illness is the result of poor nutrition habits, repent, ask the Lord to forgive you and implement those dietary changes right away. Continuing to eat foods that are not good for you can only serve to block your recovery.


Remember that it is God’s will for you to be healthy, and that it is also His will to destroy the devil and his works (Hebrews 2:14). Remember also - “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). He can use sickness to strengthen our faith and trust in Him as He walks with us through the storm. He can use our infirmities to be a witness to others and glorify Him. He chose not to heal Paul of an eye affliction so that Paul could learn that “His strength is made perfect in weakness.”

Instead of being discouraged that his healing was denied, Paul rejoiced because he was promised he would receive more of the Lord. – “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, I am strong” (11 Corinthians 12:9,10).

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).

Through it all, the Apostle Paul kept his focus on his Lord and refused to surrender in defeat to his circumstances.

Others God may choose to take home as a way of protecting them, for only He knows what awaits them on the road ahead. “The righteous perish, and no man lays it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come” (Isaiah 57:1). We can rest in the will of God for our lives and use anything that comes our way as an opportunity to witness and glorify the Lord. Heal me, O LORD, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved: for You are my praise (Jeremiah 17:14).

Copyright 2024 by H.D. Shively

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