5. The Gospel promise of Healing : God’s covenant blessing to Abraham.

The first reference to healing in the Bible is in Gen 20 : 17 where we read : ‘Then Abraham prayed to God and God healed Abimelech, his wife and slave girls …’
Healing is a covenant blessing and it was through Abraham, that this Gentile received his healing. But prior to God’s covenant with Abram in Gen 12 : 17 – 20, we read that ‘the Lord inflicted serious diseases on Pharaoh and his household because of Abram’s wife Sarai’ but they were not healed though Pharaoh returned Sarai to Abram because the covenant was not cut yet.

However, under the Mosaic covenant that was cut with the Israelites, healing was conditional. “If you listen carefully to the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, (then) I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought upon the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you.” ( Ex 15 : 26 ) But while the old covenant was still in effect, Isaiah prophesied about the Messiah and the unconditional ( by which I mean unmerited favour or grace ) healing for all, through his sufferings : ‘He was pierced for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him and by his wounds we are healed.’ ( Isa 53 : 5 )

Therefore, it is through us, the Church, with whom he has cut a covenant, that God intends to impart this healing to the world. Jesus sent the twelve with these instructions: “As you go, preach this message: ‘The Kingdom of God is near’. Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely give !” ( Mt 10 : 8 )
No wonder Scripture says about all believers, “they will place their hands on the sick and they will recover.” ( Mk 16 : 18 ) KJV
If healing through Christ has been received by Gentiles, how much more should those who are of the household of God ? The Centurion and the Canaanite woman received the healing they sought, though they were not under the old covenant, because by faith they accessed the new covenant blessing in the Messiah, even before the covenant was cut in his blood! Unconditional ( by which I mean unmerited favour or grace ) healing is a covenant blessing and let us receive it by faith. Amen.

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