In John 10:10, Jesus said, "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." The thief's purpose is to steal, kill, and destroy. Jesus came that you may have abundant life.
The devil is a thief. His purpose is to steal, kill, and destroy you. One way is through sickness. Therefore, sickness is also a thief. It steals, kills, and destroys. But one thing that needs to be acknowledged is a method in which the devil will establish the curse of sickness in a person's life - false teaching.
A Stronghold of Sickness
False teaching is very dangerous. The books you read, the church you attend, even commercials that you open your mind and heart to on television can mean the difference between life and death.
There are those in the church who teach that miracles passed away with the 'last apostle'. Therefore, they say that God does not heal today, except through the God-given wisdom of doctors and medicine. But then they stoop even lower by also teaching the falsehood that God will make you sick in order to work out his mysterious, good plan. Think about it. They teach God does not heal today, but He will make you sick! Wow. How contrary to the theme of the New Testament!
People in America have heard this so much in one way or the other that, without realizing it, there is a stronghold in their minds that prevents them from receiving God's best for them - health and healing. (See 2 Cor. 10:3-5).
The Emphasis of the New Testament
Here are a few highlights from the New Testament concerning healing:
1. The Scripture teaches that the devil is the one who oppresses with sickness. "...God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him" (Acts10:38).
2. Jesus healed all who came to Him in faith. "...And great multitudes followed [Jesus], and He healed them all." (Mt. 12:15).
3. During His earthly ministry, Jesus commissioned the twelve, and then an additional seventy men - 41 teams of 2 - to go, preach the kingdom of God, and "heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, and cast out demons...." (Mt. 10:8; Lk. 10:1).
4. On the cross Jesus became our sacrifice, bearing our sins, sickness and diseases. What He bore on the cross as our substitute, in our place, we do not have to bear. We are free. “...He Himself took our infirmities and bore our sicknesses.” (Mt. 8:17). "...by whose stripes you were healed." (1 Pet. 2:24).
5. In His great commission to the church, Jesus emphatically said that healing would accompany those who believe the gospel and minister in His name. "And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons;...they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” (Mk. 16:17-18).
6. The healing power of God accompanied the church all the way through Acts 28 (which has no definite ending) because "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." (Heb.13:8).
7. God tells the disciple of Christ what to do if they are oppressed with a persistent sickness. "Is anyone among you sick? 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 will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven." (James 5:14-15).
8. At the Coming of the Lord, the nations are judged, Satan is locked away for a full thousand years, and King Jesus establishes His earthly rule. During this time, health and longevity will be universal (Rev. 20:1-3; Is. 65:20-25). Notice that sickness did not afflict humanity until after Adam sinned and Satan became the god of this age; and health universally abounds once Satan is locked away.
Although there are those who for various reasons fail to receive healing, even as recorded in the New Testament (see 2 Tim. 4:20), the dominant theme of the New Testament is that of healing and victory, not sickness and defeat. Therefore, healing should be our emphasis. Beware of any kind of teaching that would discourage you, take something out of you, or put you under the curse of sickness in the name of a 'mysterious good God'. Beware of the thief!
May you experience God's richest and best!