August 2005 Newsletter and Article Are Online
Commentary for August 1, 2005 — Healing in the Bible
Healing is the subject of this month’s “August 2005 Newsletter ,” and the Article for August “Healing and New Testament Teaching” that can be accessed from the Newsletter.
As Dr. Ernest L. Martin relates in this article, thoughts of illness, healing, and death occur to every person with the slightest sign of a sniffle or a pain. Those who live with chronic pain or illness are constantly reminded of their physical limitations as they rightly and properly groan along with God’s creation for the revealing of the sons of God.
It would be my wish that every one of you along with every one of your relatives and friends would be healed and made whole. However, while this is not God’s purpose at present, we should nonetheless pray that God’s mercy may work with ourselves and our loved ones. By praying for God’s mercy toward others, we exhibit mercy as we have had mercy given to us, and as God shall exhibit His mercy to every human being (Romans 11:30–32).
At the same time we should always be ready to accept, as humble and mature children of God, His decision to allow our illness, our pain, and our approach to death. We should do so with resolve and love that He has given us. Our suffering and pain is only temporary and necessary and educative to fulfill His purpose (1 Peter 1:3–7). It will all work out. It will all be explained and made understandable. It will all be made right on the day of our resurrection (Romans 8:28–29).
All of creation groans in anticipation for God’s children to be revealed (Romans 8:20–22). As part of creation “We ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body” (Romans 8:23).
At present the heavens (as well as all creation) declare the glory of God (Psalm 19:1). Occasionally God chooses to show His glory through healing particular individuals, not because they are themselves special (although they are blessed), but solely for God’s own glory (John 11:4). Likewise, the glory of God is the reason He occasionally resurrects people to physical life as in the case of Lazarus (John 11:40).
We should do everything — even suffer — to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31). This is not easy; in fact God recognizes it is impossible for us to do on our own. This is why God gives us His Spirit to help us as we groan in our travail, day by day, moment by moment until we die, until the resurrection. His Spirit within us opens direct communication so that God the Father knows — from His own Spirit within us — exactly what we feel, how we suffer, and how He can best help us to endure. This is what Paul meant when he wrote:
“Likewise the Spirit also helps our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself makes intercession [is pleading] for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searches the hearts [of you and me] knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession [is pleading] for the saints according to the will of God.”
• Romans 8:26–27
We will have total healing at our resurrection (Romans 8:21, 23–24, 30). Eventually every conscious being shall willingly and joyously proclaim that Jesus is Lord to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:10). All of creation will be healed.
It is my hope that Dr. Martin’s article will give comfort to many that are suffering so that they might endure, understand what the Scriptures say on these matters, and ask God for His mercy. If your healing does not occur at present you can be assured that it will occur someday — in the resurrection. That reality will happen.
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