Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Does God Still Heal Today?

Let’s ask my friend, Randall.  Back in September 2010, he began displaying definitive symptoms that something was terribly wrong.  On February 8, 2011, he was officially diagnosed with having Glioblastoma Multiforme, an aggressive form of brain tumor.  Prognoses for this type of brain tumor are not good.  The median survival time is 14 months.  Even if treatment works well, 1-in-4 survives past a year.  When Randall was diagnosed, the medical doctors immediately set him up for surgery to attempt removal of the tumor.  When the surgeons went in, they found the tumor was larger than what they measured on the scan; it was the size of a softball; one doctor called it “a whopper.”  The tumor also crossed to the other side of the brain (called a midline shift), and he also had brain stem compression and hydrocephalus (water on the brain).  Because of the severity of the tumor, the surgeons could only remove half of the tumor, and gave him 12 months to live.

Tumor the size of a softball; photo used by permission.
So what do you do when medical experts give you only 12 months to live??  Like many people, Randall and his wife started praying.  The morning after the diagnosis, Randall had a dream that he was in Heaven with God.  God told him it was not yet his time, and that the tumor did not come from him.  The cancer is a work of the enemy trying to kill him off because of the calling God has for Randall’s life.  [We also have to remember that nothing happens on earth, good or bad, without God allowing it to happen.  It’s called sovereignty.]  Others started praying with him.  Eight pastors visited him in the hospital.  Many laid hands on him, anointed him with oil, and prayed for God to miraculously heal him.  When he came home from surgery, many from his local church brought meals for the family and prayed in their home.  The only thing that was prayed by all these people was healing “in the name of Jesus.”

Can healing occur outside the name of Jesus?  Perhaps, but on May 26, 2011, the brain scan reveled the “whopper” tumor was GONE!  There was no midline shift, no water on the brain, and NO TUMOR!  It IS a medical miracle.  Even the doctors called it a miracle short of giving God the glory.  Three months later, Randall had another scan.  The tumor is still gone, and his brain looked healthier than the previous scan!

Hole in the head remained, tumor is gone; photo used by permission.
Does God still heal today?  According to Randall, YES!  According to the Bible, let’s look into this a bit more.  Psalm 103:2-5 (NASB) says,
“Bless the LORD, O my soul,
And forget none of His benefits;
Who pardons all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases;
Who redeems your life from the pit,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion;
Who satisfies your years with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle.”

The same God who healed in the Bible is the same God who heals today.  No disease is too complicated for him to heal.  No sin is too great for him to forgive.  He expresses his deep love for humanity by physically, emotionally, and spiritually restoring them unto himself.  He shows no favoritism.  Anyone can call on his name, and seek his healing and deliverance.  Isaiah 53:5 (NIV) says, “But he [Jesus] was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are HEALED.”  The Hebrew word for healed in this verse is Rapa, which means “make fresh, complete, whole.”  When God heals, he goes all the way.  Another name for God is Jehovah Rapha, “the Lord who heals.”  So biblically speaking, we should believe in miraculous healing because God’s character includes "healer."

Also, we look at the life of Jesus.  Miraculous healing was a sign to everyone that the Kingdom of God was there.  Jesus even told his opponents in John 10:37-38 (NIV), “Do not believe me unless I do the works [miracles] of my Father. But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works [miracles], that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.”  Essentially, Jesus was saying that the miraculous healing they witnessed is a testimony that God and Jesus [Father and Son] are one.  What does that say about us?  If we heal the same as Jesus, is it a sign that we are also one with God the Father?  If so, does it fulfill Jesus' prayer in the Garden of Gethsemene that we would be one with him and the Father?  I say, YES!!!  Ask God to reveal his kingdom to us!  Ask him for his kingdom come and his will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.  When we do, we’ll see more signs and wonders than we would expect to count.  So ask!

Whenever I hear people say, “Well, if it’s God’s will, he will heal.”  All I want to say in response to that is, “God’s desire is the restore people to himself.  So, it IS his will to heal.  Ask away!!!”  We would not be asking God for any “special favors” when we ask for healing.  It’s his nature to heal, it’s his desire to heal, and it’s his passion to heal.  He does this everyday.  It should be a privilege to ask God for healing because we get to see his mighty works with our own eyes!  We would not be asking him to do something he’s never done before.  So ask!!!!

My friends, Randall and Michelle; photo used by permission
Randall is one of many testimonies to the goodness and loving nature of God the Father!  Does this mean we can stop praying for Randall?  By no means!  We continue to pray for more completeness in his healing.  Even though the tumor is gone, he still has difficulty in his mobility.  Plus, the doctors still maintain that the tumor may come back.  Every three months, Randall is required to have a brain scan to ensure the tumor does not return.  So, we continue to pray for Randall’s healing so “his youth is renewed like the eagle.”

If you know someone who needs miraculous healing, be free to ask the Lord who heals. He may surprise you with how he reveals his deep love for them.  Seek out those who have a strong faith in the healing nature of God, and surround yourself with those people.  They may surprise you with how much they love the Lord and how much they love people.

God still heals TODAY.  So, I’ll say it again.  ASK!

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