Power Over Sickness

 Power over
Sickness and Disease

Excerpts from
God’s Plan for Man
By Finis Dake

Power from God to overcome sickness is on the same basis as power from God to overcome sin. Jesus taught that God has power to do both and that one power is just as easy to receive from God as another: “For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise and walk?” (Mt. 9:5). He further taught that conversion and bodily healing go hand in hand: “lest at any time they should . . . understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them” (Mt. 13:15). Paul and others taught the same truth (Acts 28:25-31; Jas. 5:14-16; Ps. 103:1-3; 2 Chron. 7:14; Exod. 15:26).

Every believer can get power from God over diseases. God gives every one of His children power when he receives the true Spirit baptism (Lk. 24:49; Acts 1:8; 2 Tim. 1:7-8; Jn. 14:12). Apart from receiving this baptism, faith is open to every child of God to get exactly what he wants, as we can see from all the promises. Faith is power, and the man that has faith has power. To the extent which a man has faith, he has power. That is, faith is the key that sets in motion the power of God.

There are degrees or measures of power, and it is equally true that God gives to every child of God a measure of faith and power which he can use to get what he needs in life. If one does not have delegated power to exercise at will, he can still have faith in God, which will set in motion all of Heaven to move on his behalf so that he can get exactly what he has faith for. As long as we limit God and His promises we shall be limited in results. If we will have unlimited and unqualified faith, we shall have unlimited and unqualified answers to prayer. That means we shall have power over sin and sicknesses of all kinds.

The early disciples were given power over all demons and diseases and they exercised this power before they were permanently endowed with power at Pentecost (Mt. 10:1-8; Mk. 3:15; 6:7-13; Lk. 9:1; 10:1-20). They were given power over all the power of the devil. God's kingdom is always in power, not in word only (1 Cor. 4:20). Is God's kingdom still in existence? Has it lost its power? If it has not, then everyone in the kingdom has access to the power that belongs to that kingdom. Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God to all who believe (1 Cor. 1:18-24). It is impossible to have Christ in the life without having access to power, because He is the power of God to the believer. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believes (Rom. 1:16). Salvation includes healing as well as forgiveness. If this be true, then the Gospel is the power of God to heal, and no man can truly believe the Gospel without believing in power to heal by the Gospel.

The way to get power to heal self and others is by believing in Christ according to the Gospel. This means that by faith in the promises each child of God can appropriate what he needs according to those promises. He can get healing by prayer and faith as simply and as quickly as he got forgiveness of sins or any other thing he ever received from God. Healing will come on the same basis as any other answer to prayer, so why not accept this truth and ask God in faith for the power of healing to be manifest in our bodies? If such is provided in the Gospel we might as well have it. Why be satisfied with anything less? Is it possible that we don't want to be healed? Is it possible that we would rather be sick and helpless? Certainly not! Then accept truth, which will make us free.

To be healthy, then, is within our grasp. It is in our power. God wants His saving health to be made known among all nations (Ps. 67:2). He has told us exactly how to have health. If we will practice literally the instructions of the following passages we shall have health: “Forget not my laws; but let thine heart [not mind only] keep my commandments: for length of days, and long life, and peace, shall they add to thee. Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart: so shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man. Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones. Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the first fruits of all thine increase: so shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine” (Prov. 3:1-10); “Attend to my words . . . For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh” (Prov. 4:20-27; 16:24).

You are told in Ps. 91 that if you will “dwell in the secret place of the most High . . . and abide under the shadow of the Almighty . . . There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.” In Isa. 58 you are promised that if you will practice twenty principles of righteousness, “Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily . . . Then shalt thou call, and the Lord shall answer.” It is God's highest will that His children be in health (3 Jn. 2).
—God's Plan for Man

What Divine Healing and Health Is

Divine healing and health is a definite act of God through faith in Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, and the precious blood of Christ, whereby the human body is cured, healed, repaired, delivered from sickness and its power, and made as whole, sound, and healthy as it was before the attack.

The Greek sodzo means “to save,” “deliver,” “protect,” “heal,” “preserve,” and “make whole.” It is used 86 times in reference to saving the soul, but in the following passages it refers to saving the body and healing it of sickness (Mt. 9:21-22; Mk. 5:29, 34; 6:56; 10:52; Lk. 8:36, 48; 8:50; 17:19; Acts 4:9; 14:9).—God's Plan for Man

Causes of Sickness and Disease

The general causes of sickness and disease are the fall of man, sin, the work of Satan and demons, and the execution of the law of sowing and reaping.

1. GOD THE LAW-MAKER. God is not the direct cause of either sin or sickness. He never wills any man to have sin or sickness in his life. He has made abundant provision through the Gospel to cleanse from all sin and to heal all diseases. He did make it a law in the beginning that whatever a man sows, that shall he also reap, but He never causes free moral agents to break the law. He cannot be just and keep them from reaping what they sow if they are determined to disobey Him.

In Isa 45:7 we read, “I create evil.” The Hebrew word for “evil” is ra, meaning “adversity,” “affliction,” “calamity,” “grief,” “misery,” “sorrow,” “wretchedness,” “trouble,” “harm,” “distress,” “ill,” and “mischief.” These things are the harvest of sowing and breaking the laws of God. This is a law fixed by God, and it cannot be altered or changed. If any free moral agent chooses to break laws, contrary to his creative makeup and the highest good of his being and of the universe, he must pay the penalty of reaping what he has sown.

When the Bible says that God puts physical sickness and disease upon men, as in the following Scriptures, it simply means that His law of sowing and reaping is being executed by the proper agencies to enforce this law (Exod. 15:26; Deut. 7:15; 28:1-68). In these passages it is stated that sickness is the result of sowing sin. If there had been no sin there would have been no disease. In many places where it speaks of God taking a certain action, in reality He used proper agents actually to bring it to pass. It is said that God sent Joseph into Egypt, but in reality his brethren were the ones who sold him to the Ishmaelites (Gen. 45:4-8). It is said that God would visit Israel and lead them out of Egypt, but in reality God used Moses and Aaron as his agents to do this (Gen. 50:24; Ps. 77:20). It is said on numerous occasions that God subdued Israel's enemies, but in reality He used human agency to do it (Judg. 4:14-23). The same is true of the law of sickness and disease. He has given the actual power of this law into the hands of demon powers.

2. SATAN THE LAW-EXECUTOR. In many Scriptures we have the fact stated that Satan is the direct power in executing the law of sin, sickness, and death. Sickness is the result of sin and one of the effects of the Fall. The many passages prove this fact. (See also Mt. 12:22-28; Lk. 13:14; Jn. 10:10; Acts 10:38; Rom. 8:2; Eph. 2:1-3; Heb. 2:14-15; 1 Jn. 3:8.)

3. MAN THE LAW-BREAKER. Man is the great law-breaker, and he must reap what he sows. Man is responsible in the first place for yielding to sin and Satan and submitting to demon powers who take advantage of his sinful state and cause all kinds of failures and sufferings in his life. He is responsible for breaking God's laws; for living in lusts and uncleanness, which breeds sickness and disease; for accidents due to careless living; for lack of power from God to defeat Satan; for lack of proper exercise; for failure to keep the body in a clean, healthy state; for overwork and intemperance in eating, in drinking, and in proper care of the body; for the wrong use of his faculties, which cause worry and fear that tear down natural and spiritual resistance to sickness; for certain conditions that pass on from one generation to another; and for failure to appropriate the benefits for which Jesus died so that he can be healed and delivered from satanic powers.
Sins of all kinds, rebellion, misuse of the tongue, hardness of heart, fleshly lusts, pride, unbelief, and many other personal acts on the part of men have caused them to break the laws of God and give the agents of sin, sickness, and death the opportunity to bring about sickness in their lives. This vulnerability does not mean that demons always take advantage at once, for sometimes it is to their advantage not to use their powers to bring sickness upon the law-breakers. But eventually those who sow will have to reap.

We do not mean to say that every person's sickness is a direct result of some personal sin, for this is not true. This is true of many cases of sickness, but of some it is not (Jn. 9:1-4; 11:4). Christ and the apostles dealt with sickness as they would deal with sin (Mt. 9:1-12; Mk. 2:1-11; Jn. 5:14; Jas. 5:14-16). They dealt with sickness by casting out demons who cause it (Mt. 10:1-8; Mk. 6:7-13; 16:17-20; Acts 10:38).

Disease germs, which are so closely allied to the work of demons, are living forms of corruption which have come into the bodies of men bringing them to death. Just as refuse breeds maggots, so man in his fallen unclean state of sin breeds germs through unclean living and by contact with contagion in the fallen world. They are really material agents of Satan corrupting the bodies of his victims. No remedy has ever been found that can cure diseases outside of the blood of Jesus Christ. No drug can cure a single disease. Any honest physician will admit that there is no healing power in medicines.

Mr. S. Weir Mitchell, one of the greatest physicians that has ever lived, said, “Back of each disease there is a cause that no drug can reach.” Drugs may deaden pain, kill germs, and counteract certain poisons in the body, but they cannot heal. Many times they harm the body worse than the germs. All healing is done by nature and by God. Drugs may be used as antidotes, but this is the extent of their power. Christ atoned on the cross for sin and for sickness, and God is as willing to heal as He is to forgive of sins. If Christ came to take away sin, He certainly came to take away sickness, the fruit of sin. The only hindrance in getting the full benefits of Calvary is unbelief and lack of appropriation of the blessings which Christ died to give to all men (Isa. 53:4-5; Mt. 8:16-17; 1 Pet. 2:24; Jas. 5:14-16). God's method is to get rid of the cause of disease, sin, while man's method is to cover up sin and deal with the outgrowth of it. If man would obey God and correct the source, there would be no outgrowth of sin.
—God's Plan for Man

God is Not Glorified by Sickness

Some preachers contend that God gets glory from sickness and even death and they give as proof the case of Lazarus of whom it was said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby” (Jn. 11:4). They contend that many souls have been saved through sick Christians. Be that as it may, it cannot be said that sickness ever saved anyone. People are not saved through sickness, but through faith and repentance to God through Christ (Eph. 2:8-9; Rom. 10:9-10). Sickness might have caused some to turn to God just like other calamities that have come to people.

To use Lazarus as an example that God gets glory through sickness and thus encourage men to accept diseases as the means of glorifying God is foolish in the extreme. The truth is that God never would have received glory from Lazarus if He had not healed him. If Lazarus had remained dead, God would not have been glorified. So it is with others, God cannot get glory as long as men are sick or dead. If they want God to get glory, then they should permit God to heal them, so He can get glory by manifesting His power over the power of the devil. But men use Lazarus as an excuse for their unbelief and to teach that God gets glory while men are sick.

If men who are Christians want to remain sick and thereby glorify Satan that is their business, but it should be clearly understood by them that they are voluntarily yielding to the devil and permitting his work in them and that they are robbing God of the glory that is due Him. If Christians would only acknowledge the truth concerning the true source of their sickness as being of the devil and that God longs to heal them so that He can get glory, many of them would be stirred up to active cooperation with God to get healed.
—God's Plan for Man

Sickness and Hindrances to Prayer the Work of Satan

Satan is declared to be the source of sin, sickness, and oppression in the human race (Acts 10:38; Lk. 13:16; Jn. 10:10; 1 Jn. 3:8). It is the work of the devil to cause men to sin and to make them sick. It is the work of Jesus to give life and give it more abundantly (Jn. 10:10). It is His work to save from sin (Mt. 1:21; Rom. 1:16; 8:1-13). It is the work of the devil to hinder prayer, thus preventing men from getting what they want in life. His work is not only to make men sin and be sick, but to cause them to fail in business and in everything they undertake. That men's prayers and the success of their work can be hindered by Satan is clearly stated in 1 Chron. 21:1; Zech. 3:1; Rom. 15:22; Eph. 4:27; 6:10-18; 2 Cor. 10:4-7; 1 Thess. 2:18; 1 Pet. 3:7).

When men get sick and are hindered in doing any good thing, it can be relied upon in every case that Satan is at the root of the trouble. If men would only realize this and immediately go to God for help and power to overcome these attacks, they would not go through long sieges of defeat. When resistance to these powers is delayed, this gives them time and opportunity to gain a strong foothold and they will be more difficult to dislodge. In sickness, demons should be rebuked at once and healing will come. In hindrances to prayer, they should be resisted from the first sign of any hindrance and prayers will soon be answered. In case of any sign of business failure, one should go to God in earnest prayer, commit the matter to Him and ask for help and guidance. God can and will undertake and correct the trouble. He can and will work out problems that never could be worked out by man in himself.

It is a recognized fact that whatever the unseen force is that hinders the progress of any good thing, it is the work of demon powers who seek to destroy the good that is being done. If they cannot stop one's good work altogether, they will seek to hinder it as much as possible and discourage men in further attempts to do good along that line.
—God's Plan for Man

Christ Has Redeemed Us From the Curse of the Law

Paul teaches that “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith” (Gal. 3:13-14). The blessing of Abraham was that of being justified by faith, of having God as a friend to the extent that a whole nation was healed by prayer (Gen. 20), and of having all the good things of this life that could come to a human being through the Gospel (Gal. 3:6-9).

Did not the curse of the law include sickness and disease as the result of sin? This is certainly clear from Exod. 15:26; Lev. 26; Deut. 28, and many other Scriptures. If Christ died to redeem us from the curse of the law, then did He not redeem us from all sin and sickness? This means that no man should be sinful or sick if he has faith in the redemption of Jesus Christ.
—God's Plan for Man

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