And He Healed them all: The Purchase Price of Healing I.mp3
2 Thess. 2:16
1 Peter 2:17-25
I began by asking some simple questions.
- What is sickness?
- What is disease?
While technically they are not the same thing, for our purposes we came to the conclusion that all sickness and disease are a corruption of God’s original design for our bodies. Whether it be an abnormality, infection, a parasite, a wound, a deficiency or a tumorous growth – they are all a corruption or a corrupting influence upon the original design of the body.
For the purposes of this writing, I will lump everything under the general term of sickness.
What is sickness and disease ultimately a result of? Sin
While all sickness in the body is NOT always the result of immediate sin of the one sick, we recognize that all sicknesses (distortions/corruptions of health) came into existence AFTER and as a RESULT OF the fall of man.
The wages or the payment due for sin is death and all sicknesses are an expression of death in the body in one form or another.
What is death? Separation from God for God is LIFE.
This is where we must begin to think differently…
There are two valid ways from which we can view and understand nearly everything.
- There is God’s perspective as Creator/Owner.
- Our perspective as created/owned.
Life for God is simply a reality of His person – it is WHO He is not something He experiences outside of Himself. God cannot be separated from Himself nor the other members of the Godhead so death is simply an external problem.
Life for us is to be in union with Him through the intimate revelations of His character and person which He deposits within us. Life is to know God!
“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” ~ John 17:3
SO, sickness & disease are the results of separation from God in one form or another. Now by separation we need to be specific. God is omnipresent, this we know. However, we are not referring here to external proximity, we are talking about inward intimacy.
To partake of healing is NOT to just have a remedy prepared for you and ingest it – it is to be placed within proper alignment to and with God the Father through submission to Christ’s Lordship in redemption.
“And may the Lord of peace Himself continually grant you peace in every sense. The Lord be with you all.” ~ 2 Thess. 3:16)
That Jesus took upon Himself all our sicknesses and disease is evidenced by these passages…
And Jesus said to the Captain, “Go, and just as you have believed, so be it for you.” And the servant recovered precisely at that time. After this Jesus went to the house of Peter, whose mother-in-law he found ill in bed with fever. He touched her hand and the fever left her: and then she rose and waited upon Him. In the evening many demoniacs were brought to Him, and with a word He expelled the demons; and He cured all the sick, in order that this prediction of the Prophet Isaiah might be fulfilled, “HE TOOK ON HIM OUR WEAKNESSES, AND BORE THE BURDEN OF OUR DISEASES.” ~ Mat 8:13-17
Some New Testament “scholars” and commentators like to play this off as though what Jesus had actually taken and bore were concerning the spirit and soul of a man, yet in this passage what Jesus was healing was PHYSICAL sicknesses and diseases.
The words Matthew chose to use here are very important – they are “weaknesses and diseases”. Let’s look at the meaning of those words.
In the NT, this word translated as weakness as well as other related Greek words such as, asthenḗs (G772), weak, sick, and asthenéō (G770), to be sick or weak, are the most common expressions for illness and are used in the comprehensive sense of the whole man. However, it can also refer to a special form of bodily weakness or sickness. Figuratively, asthéneia can mean general impotence, weakness (Rom_8:26). The noun occurs only seven times in the gospels. Here in Mat_8:17, is a quotation from Isa_53:4, “He (Christ on the cross) took our infirmities (astheneías)”, which means that, in His manhood, He took upon Himself the consequences of our sins without sinning Himself. He became mortal so that He could die for us. That is the first meaning.
There is, however, a second word in Mat_8:17, nósous disease (the pl. of nósos [G3554], the sicknesses themselves), which must be considered. Here asthéneia (weaknesses) may be said to be the result of illness since it indeed deprives us of the strength that we would enjoy if it were not for sickness. The Lord on the cross took upon Himself not only the consequences of sickness (astheneías), but the sicknesses (nósous or diseases) themselves, both being basically the result of man’s disobedience to God (Gen 2:17).
Peter also refers back to Isa. 53 while writing about what Jesus did for us on the cross…
“He Himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.” ~ 1 Peter 2:24,25)
Since both of the passages above mention Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross as the fulfillment to Isa. 53, let us look at that passage as well.
“Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted.
But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities;
The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
And by His stripes we are healed.
All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” ~ Isaiah 53:4-6
Here is where the link between sin and death and thus sickness and disease as their resulting consequence becomes more clear. On the cross, God the Father laid upon Jesus the guilt for all the iniquity and sin of mankind, but He went further than that – He actually made Christ to become sin for us and made Him sick and diseased with our sicknesses and diseases all IN HIS BODY while ON THE CROSS! – 2 Cor. 5:21.
Look at the claim of Matt. 8:17 in his deliberate usage of the words weaknesses and diseases as I showed you above. The Lord on the cross took upon Himself not only the consequences of sickness (astheneías), but the sicknesses (nósous or diseases) themselves, both being basically the result of man’s disobedience to God (Gen. 2:17).
So Jesus literally did it all! He paid for our sin by becoming the embodiment of sin and died separated from God – just as we would have, but He also took upon Himself the GUILT of our sin. In like manner, Christ not only paid for the consequences of our sicknesses and diseases, but He also became sick and diseased with our sicknesses and diseases and so died separated from God in that condition…just as we would have if He had not paid for them!
This is a great truth, one that has been under attack for many many years, but there it is in black and white. The difficulty is, that we as Christians actually honor our “feelings” and our physical pains more than we honor His sacrifice. Many Christians will freely admit that Christ paid for and forgave their sins, yet many will continue to walk as though that payment did not actually set them free from sinning. Furthermore, when they sin they carry about with them the constant awareness of their failures through guilt! THIS IS TO NEGLECT THE POWER OF THE GOSPEL!
Consider the promises from the following passages…
- You are free from sin – “But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.” ~ Rom 6:17-18
- Your are free from guilt – “Since the law has only a shadow of the good things to come, and not the actual form of those realities, it can never perfect the worshipers by the same sacrifices they continually offer year after year. Otherwise, wouldn’t they have stopped being offered, since the worshipers, once purified, would no longer have any consciousness of sins?” ~ Heb. 10:1-2
2Timothy 2:5 speaks of this generation,
“They will hold to an outward form of godliness but deny its power. Stay away from such people.”
The same is true concerning healing. It has been purchased for us and we must walk in the provision Christ made or we are again simply exercising an external form of godliness while all the time denying its power!
Sure there will be opposition against both our stance against sin and against our health. Paul even said to the Galatians,
“Ye know how through infirmity of the flesh I preached the gospel unto you at the first. And my temptation which was in my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as an angel of God, even as Christ Jesus.” ~ Gal. 4:13-14
The word INFIRMITY here is the exact same word Matthew used in Matt. 8:17 earlier and Paul calls it a temptation. Meaning, he could chose to give into it and thus, dishonor the sacrifice of Christ or he could resist it and honor Christ’s sacrifice. Paul chose the later!
How do I know?
Paul said it himself in these verses – “…the temptation which WAS in my flesh”.
There are those who claim that Christ’ redemption of the body is part of our future when we receive our new bodies, and in part I agree. However, they are referencing a partial quote from Romans 8 in this assumption.
Next week, we will address this and much more concerning our established link between sin – the thing which separated us from God and our sicknesses which are a result of that sin.