Over the past couple of nights we have talked what it means to trust God. We have discovered that it doesn’t necessarily take a consistent, strong faith on our part because God is always faithful and never changes in character. We have discovered that God has power and authority to heal every ailment, whether physical, mental, emotional or spiritual. We have discovered that having courage means stepping out even when we might not have enough faith and taking a chance with God’s faithfulness. We have learned that God will honor that courage and will deliver us and prove Himself to us! We have discovered that all people are held captive by something and allow themselves to stay in captivity because it feels safe. We have discovered that in order to fulfill a very real and very worthwhile purpose God designed for us, we must stare that captivity in the face and resolve to step beyond it and into the prosperity and plan that God has for us. As long as we are captive, we cannot live according to the pan God has for us.
The truth about healing and the truth about freedom from captivity is this: that God heals individuals and delivers individuals from captivity even when they do not know Him and many people choose still not to worship the only God who offers healing and freedom.
“While traveling to Jerusalem, He passed between Samaria and Galilee. As He entered a village, 10 men with serious skin diseases met Him. They stood at a distance and raised their voices, saying, ‘Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!’ When He saw them, He told them, ‘Go and show yourselves to the priests.’ And while they were going, they were healed. But one of them, seeing that he was healed, returned and, with a loud voice, gave glory to God. He fell facedown at His feet, thanking Him. And he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus said, ‘Were not 10 cleansed? Where are the nine? Didn’t any return to give glory to God except this foreigner?’ And He told him, ‘Get up and go on your way. Your faith has made you well.’”
Nature of God’s healing power and authority
In Genesis one and two we read of a God whose nature is Creator of all. After man accepted sin and imperfection, this Creator God began recreating humanity in His own image and in His own likeness. God desires for all men to be returned to that likeness and is working to encourage such a concept among men. In this story, we see such an instance where Jesus heals ten men with a serious skin disease. One man returned to give thanks and the others simply went on with their lives. The nature of God’s healing power, then, is that He does desire to heal and to work even in a world that does not know Him and is not familiar with His power and authority.
Since God’s nature as the Creator and the Reviver of perfection and goodness, this means that all healing and all deliverance is the work of God. In Jesus’ day, mud was considered to have medicinal properties and we see Jesus using mud to perform healings. Today we use medicine, therapy and surgery to perform healings. Listen, no matter how a healing is performed, the healing power always comes from God. Even if a healing is performed by some other name, healing power comes from God because God is the only one with the power and authority to renew His own fallen creation.
The reaction of the nine
Nine out of the ten people who experienced healing went on their way. They failed to return and give thanks to God for the healing that took place. The healing power came from God and praise was not returned to God for the healing that took place. For a great majority of time, praise is still not returned to God for the healing that takes place in the lives of people, whether it be physical, emotion, mental or spiritual. People today are content with simply going on with their lives. There is no passion. There is no fulfillment. There is no acknowledgement of God’s power and no satisfaction or joy in the lives of individuals. Many times we do not even realize that all healing, no matter the mode, comes from God’s power unleashed on this earth.
The reaction of the one
One person, a dirty Samaritan, returned to give thanks to God. As he returned, Christ asked where the other nine, who had also been healed, had gone. This one Samaritan returned and fell facedown at Jesus’ feet, recognizing where the healing power originated and proceeded to give the glory for the miraculous event directly to God. In doing so, he acknowledged the power of God and felt the satisfaction and joy that came along with the healing. My question to you as it relates to the Christian faith and to your relationship with God is this: have you received the physical, mental, emotional and/or spiritual healing that God has offered? If not, God wants to make you clean this evening. In fact, with Christ’s sacrifice and according to Mark chapter 3, God has already made you clean and the only thing standing between you and the Father is yourself.
For those who have been made clean, my question to you deals with the passion that you could have in giving thanks to God. He has made us clean! The natural result is praise because God has done a good thing. I have heard it said that mankind longs for so little when God has already given the greatest thing that He can possibly give; that is Himself. If He gave nothing else, that alone would be more than sufficient to earn Him all praise from all the earth! When we deny this, we deny all satisfaction and joy that God has to offer and we inwardly declare that God’s healing power is meaningless. In not giving praise we commit an act of blasphemy and smear God’s glorious name across the dirt. It is no wonder so many Christians grow burnt out in the faith or fail to practice the faith at all. It is our thankfulness to God that enables us to persist and keeps us passionate about the things that are actually important.
Our faith as it relates to God’s power
Jesus told the Samaritan man who returned that his faith had made him well. Keep in mind that there were nine more individuals who experienced the healing power and authority of God who did not return and to whom Jesus did not say, “Your faith has made you well.” There is one very important concept we must grasp and it is that our faith does not provide healing power by any degree and that the physical healing was a direct act of the Father, having nothing to do with the faith of the man. The man gained faith after he experienced the healing and returned to give God glory. In this action the healing power of God was carried on to fruition and he received the joy and the satisfaction that God offers above and beyond simply physical healing. It is in our faith, which is received as God reveals Himself to us, that we receive the passion that God desires us to have!
Have you experienced God’s healing? Have you met the God of the universe? Have you trusted Him to give you faith? Have you thanked Him and do you continue to thank Him? Have you resolved not to forsake the assembly of believers who get together and thank God for all He has done? Have you resolved to thank God daily for the life that He has provided for you?