Tuesday, April 7, 2020

by Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.
     Dedicating the Temple, King Solomon prayed: “If there be pestilencewhatsoever sore or sickness there be: Then what prayer or supplication shall be made of any man… when every one shall know his own sore and his own grief, and shall spread forth his hands in this house:
     “Then hear Thou from Heaven Thy dwelling place and Forgive, and render unto every man according unto all his ways, whose heart Thou knowest…” (2 Chron. 6: 28-30)
     The Lord appeared to him, saying, “If My people, which are called by My Name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from Heaven, and will forgive  their sin, and will heal their land,” (2 Chron. 7:14)
                       IS THERE NOT A CAUSE?
    If ever God’s people need to spend time in urgent prayer to the Lord in Jesus’ name, to rend the heavens and come down among us and heal our land, it is now!
    This is our opportunity to make  a difference in this critical time as the coronavirus ravishes the world. This can be the Church’s finest hour, to rise up in earnest prayer for forgiveness and healing!
       Smith Wiggelsworth was asked “Can you recommend a good book on divine healing”? The not-too-educated and rather crude British “plumber-turned-preacher” - who was mightily used of God in the healing ministry - replied, “Yes, I can recommend four:  Matthew, Mark, Luke and John”!
          The big problem, however, is that not many people read the gospels as often and diligently as they ought, in order to receive divine healing from Jesus Christ!
          That is why Wigglesworth’s booklet ‘Ever Increasing Faith’ has brought spiritual help to many since being made available to the public.
          You may ask, “Is this another book on ‘Divine Healing’?  Is there a need for more textbooks on divine healing?”
          The answer to both queries is “Yes”.  So long as there are sinners on earth, we must preach and publish that Jesus Christ is the Saviour of the world!
          “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16)
      And by the same token, so long as there are sick and suffering people among us, we must address the subject of God’s healing power through Jesus Christ our Lord, to bring healing and deliverance to hurting people!
    The Bible states: “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities:  the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed”. (Isaiah 53:5)
          “When the even was come, they brought unto Him many that were possessed with devils:  and He cast out the spirits with His word, and healed all that were sick:  That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.” (Matt. 8:16-17)
          “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: And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up, and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him. ” (James 5:14, 15)
    In the literal Greek, the same word “SOZO” is used for save, heal, protect, make well and deliver! And so long as people are bound and tormented by evil spirits, it is my duty as an “ambassador of Christ” to proclaim the Word of God that brings liberty to their tormented spirits and minds.
     And to command those evil spirits to lose their hold and depart from their victims!  Do people still get healed by faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ on Calvary’s cross? “Very definitely, Yes.”     
     Is it possible to be healed divinely while reading this book? “Again, Yes.”  Is it God’s will to heal the sick today? An emphatic, Yes.” Is Divine Healing a “gift of the Spirit? And are the ‘gifts of the Holy Spirit available for the Church today? The answer is a resounding, “Yes”. 
      Is God still interested in the spiritual and physical welfare of humanity today as He was when Jesus walked upon the earth? “Yes, possibly even more, for two reasons:
1) The redemptive work of Jesus - which provides total healing for the total person - exacted a tremendous cost, the awful sufferings and death of Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten SON whom He gave as His great Pascal Lamb to atone for the sins of the entire world, past, present and future!
 2)The Blessed Holy Spirit is still in the earth - convicting, leading, teaching, counselling and healing sinners as well as Christians! Jesus called it the Promise of the Father. He wanted us to get to know His Father, so He sent the Holy Spirit to draw us to Him. He is the Divine Paraclete, ‘the One sent alongside to help.’ He leads, teaches us and guides us into all truth. He glorifies Christ, the Head of the Church!
                       JESUS OUR REDEEMER!
    The purpose of Jesus Christ’s coming to earth was to redeem a lost world unto Himself. Satan the cruel, wicked, fallen archangel had set a course of rebellion against Almighty God, to steal, kill and to destroy God’s greatest creation man!
    Sin, sickness, disease, murder, fear and insanity had taken over the beautiful creation that God had made. The Devil thought he had won in his evil charade against his Creator Almighty God, but he was wrong in that assumption!
     Had he forgotten the prophetic judgment that the Judge of the entire world had leveled against him in the Garden of Eden? I don’t think so, but hatred, greed, and pride usually deceive. And his rebellion against our Heavenly Father clearly proves his insanity!
    God told the Evil One: “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed: It shall bruise (crush) thy head, and thou shalt bruise His heel.” (Gen.3: 15).
     God placed enmity between snakes and humans, and between Satan’s seed and the seed of the woman. Almighty God stated that a Deliverer would be born to a virgin woman who would destroy him by bruising (crushing) his head, but he would bruise the Deliverer’s heel. When Christ was crucified, that was the bruising of His heel, which was healed when He arose from the dead!
     And that is exactly what happened. Christ’s Victory on the Cross and resurrection from the dead, destroyed Satan’s power over mankind! Christ’s Victory was Satan’s Defeat and our Liberty!
     The shed blood of Jesus Christ ransomed us all by meeting the righteous demands of Divine Justice, through His vicarious death for us and His resurrection from the dead three days later!
     It is impossible for a human being to understand the enormous cost of Christ’s Redemption to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, His Son to save us from eternal death!
     “And there appeared an angel unto Him from Heaven, strengthening Him. And being in an agony He prayed more earnestly: and His sweat was as it were great drops of blood.” (Luke 22: 43,44)
    The word agony comes from a Greek word agonidzo meaning ‘struggle’, a fight, great exertion or effort. This causes anguish, pain, distress and conflict. The word agonidzo comes from the word ‘agon’ which is the word that depicts athletic conflicts and competition.
     Jesus was thrown into a great struggle and fight that night. Knowing He was facing the Cross and the grave, He cried, “Father, if Thou be willing, remove this cup from Me: nevertheless, not My will but Thine, be done.” (Luke 22: 42)
     The word earnestly is the Greek word ‘eklenes’ meaning ‘extended’ or to ‘be stretched out.”  A person in this agony might drop to the ground writhing in pain and rolling this way and that way.  
    Jesus was pushed to the limit, unable to be stretched much more. He was on the brink of all that He could possibly endure.
      “The word ‘sweat’ in the Greek is ‘idros’ and the ‘drops’ is from the Greek word ‘thrombos’, a medical word that points to blood that is ‘unusually thickly clotted.’ When these two words are joined, they depict a medical condition called ‘hemotridosis’, a condition that occurs only in individuals who are in a ‘highly emotional state’.
     Because the mind is under such great mental and emotional pressure, it sends signals of stress throughout the human body. These signals became so strong that the body reacts as if it were under actual physical pressure. As a result, the first and second layers of skin separate, causing a vacuum, oozing through the pores of the skin.
     “Once the blood seeps through, it mingles with the sufferer’s sweat that pours from his skin as a result of his intense inner struggle. In the end, the blood and sweat mix together and flow down the victim’s face like droplets to the ground.
     His closest disciples were no help. They were sleeping, but God sent an angel to strengthen Him!   - Anon.
                      BY HIS STRIPES WE ARE HEALED!     
     Jesus took our place on the cross. He paid for our sins and our diseases. He is our Substitute. When the hammer of God’s judgment fell, He took the blow! He is our Healer, Deliverer and Emancipator! All praise and honour to God our  Saviour, Lord and God!
    “Surely He hath borne our sicknesses (heb.makob), and carried our pains (heb.nasa): yet we did esteem Him stricken smitten of God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities, the chastisement of our peace was upon Him and by His stripes we are healed.” (Isaiah 53: 4, 5)
     “When even was come, they brought unto Him many that were possessed with devils; and He cast out the spirits with His Word, and healed all that were sick: That it might be fulfilled which was spoke by Esaias the prophet, saying Himself took our infirmities and bare our sicknesses.” (Matt. 8: 16,17)
     Jesus paid for our sins on Golgotha’s Hill, outside the walls of Jerusalem. Before He died, He cried out the word “tetelestai, taken from the Greek verb ‘teleo’ meaning, “It is finished. It is fulfilled. It is paid.”  
        St. Peter verified St. Mathew’s account as well as the Prophet Isaiah 53: 4,5: “Who His own self bare our Sins in His own body on the tree, that we , being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes we are Healed.”  (1 Peter 2: 24)
     “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through him might be saved.” (John 3:16, 17)
    He still heals every sore and sickness because He carried our sins, sicknesses and our pains in His body on Calvary’s Cross and was judged in our place. By His substitutionary (vicarious) death, He destroyed the enemy and his ability to harm God’s people!
      The Bible states: “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through Death He might Destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the Devil: And Deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” (Heb. 2:14,15)
     “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to His cross: And having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” (Col. 2: 14,15)
     The picture St. Paul gave us is that of a king returning after a great victory. The streets are lined with multitudes of jubilant people. In his chariot lies the armour of the defeated king whose hands are tied to a leach and is running behind the Victor’s chariot.
    After His great victory over Satan, Jesus was praised and worshipped in Heaven and on earth. And the word of Christ’s victory spread to Satan and to the place of the doomed and the damned!
    Again, God invites us: “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18).
    Jesus still calls us unto Himself: “Come unto Me all ye who labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest.” (Matt. 1:28); “Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him and will sup with him, and he with Me.” (Rev. 3:20). May God bless you!  Amen.