Divine Healing and the Church of the Nazarene

Report
Divine Healing
and
the Church of the Nazarene
A SEMINAR OFFERED BY
AFRICA NAZARENE CLERGY DEVELOPMENT
(G. CROFFORD)
Ministry as holistic
God cares about our whole being, and so we feed the
hungry, clothe the naked, dig wells, come to the rescue
of women who are the victims of gender-based
violence, and so much more.
It is this concern for the whole person
that undergirds our view of
divine healing.
Isaiah 61:1-3, in the Good News Translation
“The Sovereign LORD has filled me with his Spirit.
He has chosen me and sent me
To bring good news to the poor,
To heal the broken-hearted,
To announce release to captives
And freedom to those in prison.
He has sent me to proclaim
That the time has come
When the LORD will save his people
And defeat their enemies.
He has sent me to comfort all who mourn,
To give to those who mourn in Zion
Joy and gladness instead of grief,
A song of praise instead of sorrow.
They will be like trees
That the LORD himself has planted.
They will all do what is right,
And God will be praised for what he has done.”
Insight from FREDERICK GAISER
From his book, Healing in the Bible: Theological Insight for
Christian Ministry (Baker, 2010):
“Healing is not a commodity to be dispensed by the church or
achieved or purchased by the individual (2 Kings 5:15-16);
healing comes not apart from us, but along with, forgiveness
and salvation (Mark 2:9-12). Like forgiveness and salvation,
God’s healing is free, given without condition (Acts 3:6). Thus,
both biblically and in the practice of the church, healing will be
found in the context of the gospel, as part of the ministry of
word and sacraments. Prayers for and services of healing should
be a normal part of that ministry, complementing the
proclamation of the gospel and the administration of the
sacraments.”
JOHN WESLEY on Divine Healing
From “Notes on the New Testament” for James 5:14.
“This single conspicuous gift, which Christ committed
to his apostles, Mark vi. 13, remained in the church
long after the other miraculous gifts were withdrawn.
Indeed, it seems to have been designed to remain
always; and St James directs the elders, who were the
most, if not the only gifted men, to administer it. This
was the whole process of physic in the Christian
church, till it was lost through unbelief….”
Article XIV, “Divine Healing”
“We believe in the Bible doctrine of divine healing and
urge our people to offer the prayer of faith for the
healing of the sick. We also believe that God heals
through the means of medical science.”
Two observations from Dr Timothy Crutcher
1. Article XIV guards against the Gnostic notion that
our bodies are evil. Rather, they are the objects
of God’s loving concern.
2. Article XIV is not a guarantee that God
will heal, but an “exhortation to prayer.”
4 abuses surrounding healing
1. Realize that God can heal directly or indirectly.
In the late 19th century and early 20th century,
A.B. Simpson was among those who wrongly taught
that to trust God for healing means forsaking all
human provided medical care. Yet the Church of the
Nazarene has never had a problem believing that God
can heal directly (without doctors and nurses) or
indirectly, or instrumentally (through doctors and
nurses). Our earliest missionaries in Africa established
medical work in places like Swaziland.
4 abuses surrounding healing
2. Do not blame the victim if healing does not occur.
Some so-called “faith healers” will blame the sick person if
healing does not happen, saying that they didn’t have
enough faith. Yet Jesus said that only faith the size of a
grain of mustard seed is necessary to move mountains
(Matt 17:20). So obviously something besides the faith of
the sick person is involved.
Read Matthew 8:1-3.
When our faith meets God’s willingness,
there is a healing every time.
4 abuses surrounding healing
3. Sometimes, God withholds healing.
Three times Paul asked God to take away his thorn in
the flesh, yet God only responded:
“My grace is enough for you, because power is made
perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9).
4 abuses surrounding healing
4. Divine healing is a practice of the local church, and
not a big show for a stadium.
There are many abuses that have
grown up around healing. In a
large stadium, how do we know
each other? How do we know that the person who
comes in on crutches or in a wheel chair is truly an
invalid? Maybe they are just an actor. But in the local
church, we know each other.
“Three questions, three answers” (James 5:13-16)
James 5:13-16
13 Is
anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is
anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. 14 Is anyone
among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to
pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the
Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick
person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have
sinned, they will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins
to each other and pray for each other so that you may be
healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and
effective.
“Three questions, three answers” (James 5:13-16)
Question 1:
Is any of you in trouble?
Prayer is a soothing medicine that releases our stress.
It calms and helps us focus our eyes back on Almighty
God.
“Three questions, three answers” (James 5:13-16)
Question 2:
Is anyone happy?
Let him sing songs of praise…
This praise is not so much for yourself;
it’s medicine for others.
“Three questions, three answers” (James 5:13-16)
Question 3:
Is anyone of you sick?
He should call the elders of the church to pray…
3 observations
Sin can stand in the way of healing.
2. A prayer is offered in faith.
3. We anoint with oil in the name of the Lord Jesus.
1.
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A symbol of the Holy Spirit (1 Samuel 16:13)
A symbol of joy (Psalm 45:7)
A symbol of healing (Mark:12-13)
Healing service
James 5:13-16
13 Is
anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is
anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. 14 Is anyone
among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to
pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the
Lord. 15 And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick
person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have
sinned, they will be forgiven. 16 Therefore confess your sins
to each other and pray for each other so that you may be
healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and
effective.

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