I am presenting a collection of sermons and series focused on Rediscovering God as a healer of our bodies.
These sermons have two goals:
- My first goal is for you to see God as someone who heals readily and not reluctantly.
- My second goal is for you to receive healing from God readily and not reluctantly.
The Truth about God’s Treaty with Israel
- Israel agreed to the arrangement.
- Their agreement was standard for the ancient world.
- The punishment fit the crime.
- The emphasis of the arrangement was protection and provision—not punishment.
- God was merciful.
How Health and Sickness Were Governed in the Old Testament
Deuteronomy 28:2 (ESV): 2 And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, if you obey the voice of the Lord your God.
- Deuteronomy 7:15 (ESV) – 15 And the Lord will take away from you all sickness, and none of the evil diseases of Egypt, which you knew, will he inflict on you, but he will lay them on all who hate you.
Deuteronomy 28:15 (ESV): 15 “But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord your God or be careful to do all his commandments and his statutes that I command you today, then all these curses shall come upon you and overtake you.
The treaty listed sickness and disease as curses that are to be avoided, not as tools for instruction and personal growth:
- Infectious disease
- Wasting disease
- Heat stroke
- Mold infections
- Sickness from the top of your head to the soles of your feet
The treaty lists God as the agent of punishment (Deuteronomy 28:21-35)
- “The Lord will make the pestilence stick to you. . .”
- “The Lord will strike you with wasting disease. . .”
- “The Lord will strike you with boils. . .”
- “The Lord will strike you on the knees. . .”
Old Ways of Thinking, New Ways of Healing
- Luke 18:35–38 (ESV) – 35 As he drew near to Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 36 And hearing a crowd going by, he inquired what this meant. 37 They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” 38 And he cried out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”
- Matthew 8:1–3 (ESV) – 1 When he came down from the mountain, great crowds followed him. 2 And behold, a leper came to him and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” 3 And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
- John 9:1–3 (ESV) – 1 As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. 2 And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” 3 Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him.
Jesus is the Upgrade
- Hebrews 10:1–4 (ESV) – 1 For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near. 2 Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have any consciousness of sins? 3 But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. 4 For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.
- Hebrews 10:11–14 (ESV) – 11 And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12 But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, 13 waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet. 14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.
Justice and the Principle of Substitution
Romans 5:18–19 (ESV) – 18 Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. 19 For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.
Romans 5:8–9 (ESV) – 8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.
Salvation (Sōzō) is Healing
σῴζω (sōzō). vb. to save, make well. To save or deliver someone from harm or illness.
How Luke Uses Sōzō
- Saved from Sin (Regarding the forgiveness of Mary Magdalene while she was washing Jesus’ feet): Luke 7:49–50 (ESV) – 49 Then those who were at table with him began to say among themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?” 50 And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
- Saved from Demons (Regarding the man that Jesus delivered from a legion of demons): Luke 8:36 (ESV) – 36 And those who had seen it told them how the demon-possessed man had been healed.
- Saved from Sickness (Regarding the woman with the issues of blood): Luke 8:48 (ESV) – 48 And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.”
- Saved from Death (Regarding the raising of Jairus’s daughter from the dead): Luke 8:50 (ESV) – 50 But Jesus on hearing this answered him, “Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.”
- Using “Saved” in Evangelistic Preaching (Regarding the Philippian jailer who Paul led to Christ): Acts 16:31 (ESV) – 31 And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
Will you receive freedom from sickness as easily as you receive freedom from sin?
© Joshua D. Smith, Ph.D., 2023