The Church of God of The Firstborn
|A LIFE FULL OF FAITH --The Book on Bible Facts
Written by A. G. Etterman
BIBLE TRUTHS ON DIVINE HEALING
Many people preach on divine healing, but have no Bible proofs. That's why there is no success. We have no proof in the Bible that Jesus ever healed a sinner, or an unclean person. We find in Matthew 15:26 where Jesus speaks,” It is not meet to take the children's bread and cast it to dogs.” There we see what it takes to be partaker of that blessing, in Matthew 15:27, “And she said, truth Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their master's table.”
We must humble ourselves at the feet of Jesus, so that the Lord sees our contrite spirit and a willing and humble heart, then He will abundantly pardon, and every case of affliction will He make whole. If God's word stood good with the Hebrews, how much more should it stand for the spiritual Israel in this Holy Ghost dispensation. Let us look in God's word, we find Deut. 7:15, "And the Lord will take away from thee all sickness and will put none of the evil diseases of Egypt which thou knowest upon thee, but will lay them upon all them that hate thee."
Know this. God's promises stand good today as in the days of old. No matter what our modern people say, that God has changed, the word of God says let all men be liars and the word of God be true. Shall, we read again in the Bible in Malachi 3:6, "For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed."
So according to this verse God did not change as most of us would have Him. It is a living fact that the power of God is just the same today as in the days of old. The same Jesus that healed the leper nineteen hundred years ago can heal His people today, if we obey His commands. Deut. 7:11, "Thou shalt therefore keep the commandments, and the statutes and the judgments which I command thee this day to do them."
We have somewhat to do, we cannot live in filth of this world and then desire to be healed by the power of God. Our Lord wants a clean and holy people, because He is holy. We find that in I Peter 1:16, "Because it is written, be ye holy for I am holy."
Shall we emphasize these blessed words to our readers that without holiness no man shall see the Lord, neither can anyone receive healing for the body. You will find these words in Hebrew 12:14, "Follow peace with all men and holiness without which no man shall see the Lord."
How dreadful it is to know that without doing the Father's will we can't see our Saviour's face. And so we know that divine healing is also included in the full will of God, as also our Saviour speaks in the Gospel of John 6:38, "For I came down from heaven not to do mine own will but the will of Him that sent me."
And know that Jesus' mission on the earth was teaching the people a clean and holy life, and healing all kinds of diseases, and He also gave His disciples this command in Matthew 10:1, "And when He had called unto Him His twelve disciples He gave them power against unclean spirits to cast them out and to heal all manner of diseases."
In this day they tell us that is not for us. But what shall we say, is it fair to believe man more than God? When Jesus speaks these words to His disciples He also speaks these words, what they should teach us, which we find in the Gospel of Matthew 28:20, "Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you, and lo I am with you always, even unto the end of the world."
Surely we are living in this world yet; then the promise is yet for me and you. The thing we need is to have more Holy Ghost ministers preaching the full gospel, also living it. We must be a living example before all men in words and in deeds.
As the word of God also speaks the husbandman must be partaker of the fruit first before he can teach others or pray for others; so then we know that it is not everybody's business to pray for the sick; that is the reason that the so called full gospel ministry is a failure. God's promises are yea and amen; but men are a failure. Let us read again in the Bible in the Gospel of John 9:31, "Now we know that God heareth not sinners; but if any may be a worshipper of God and doeth His will, him He heareth."
I do believe with all my heart if we are men of God we will have the same success as the Apostles. Let us go and search the scriptures as the Lord Jesus commanded us to do. There we find that divine healing was practiced from Genesis to Revelation. Shall we mention a few in the Old Testament. Exodus 15:26, "If thou wilt diligently harken to the voice of the Lord thy God and wilt do that which is right in His sight and wilt give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes I will put none of these diseases upon thee which I have brought upon the Egyptians for I am the Lord that healeth thee."
So it is not as or all medicine we can swallow or all the doctors we can call, it is understood the Lord wants us to come to Him and honor Him through our simple faith and prayer. Jesus speaks to us in the Gospel of John 14:13-14, "And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name that will I do that the Father may be glorified in the son; if ye shall ask anything in my name I will do it."
Is there anything too hard for our God? He says whatsoever; that includes healing for the body. Shall we go on, and proving from the word of God all other proofs are a failure. As we mentioned before, no matter what the preachers say, the main thing is what does the Bible say? Why should we carry any diseases on our bodies when the Prophet Isaiah heralds through the ages that in time to come there will be a Saviour and a Physician born, which we now know our Saviour, Jesus, that by His stripes we are healed. Let us explain what these stripes were. The stripes which the Roman soldiers made with their rods. Let us again read the Bible, Isaiah 53:5, "But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him, and with His stripes we are healed."
It is also said in the Prophet Jeremiah about trusting in the living God, if we say we do trust in God, if we have a sickness and we call a doctor or take any other remedy to relieve that sickness then we trust in man or in the arm of flesh. We say that doesn't hurt, God has created doctors and medicines. If that is so let us search the scriptures in Jeremiah 17:5, "Thus saith the Lord, cursed be the man that trusteth in man and maketh flesh his arm and whose heart departeth from the Lord."
So there is a fearful word. Cursed is the man, and that includes me and you when we don't trust fully in God. It is not because I or any other may say so it is does the Bible say so, in Jeremiah 17:7, "Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is."
It sounds to the man or woman as music to their soul when we can read these words that God pronounces His blessing on us, as we all know that the curse of God was upon all man from Adam until Jesus was born; from that time every one that is saved and obeys God's command that curse is lifted, because Jesus became a curse for us. So if we ask our God for healing we receive a great blessing if our prayers are answered. Shall we look up any more versus in the Old Testament? It is written in Malachi 4:2, "But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings, and ye shall go forth and grow up as calves of the stall."
So then we shall not as children of God go as half dead ones, but we shall be as fatted calves. Does it look in this world when you go through the cities there are over half of our poor people sick and crippled surely there must be a reason for. Shall we make a few remarks and mention a few reasons? First, we are fallen from faith in God. How can we have faith when no man preaches it? In the book of Romans 10:15, "And how shall they preach except they be sent as it is written?"
How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace and bring glad tidings of good things. And the 17th verse in the same chapter reads like this: "So then faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God."
And as you all know the word of God is a subject that is very little used, that is your bodily healing is a thing of the past. Many of our people say have faith but lack works, and the Bible says faith without works is dead, as is recorded in the book of James 2:17-18, "Even so faith if it hath not works is dead being alone. Yea, a man may say, thou hast faith and I have works: show me thy faith without works and I will show thee my faith by my works."
Brother James is challenging these men that claim they have faith but cannot produce without the power of God and a holy life. No man is able to do anything, as also the Lord Jesus speaks in the Gospel of John 14:4, "Abide in me and I in you, as the branch cannot bear fruit of itself except it abide in the vine, no more can ye except ye abide in me."
Here we see that an unclean person has no part in the blessing of God unless he has the Saviour dwell in his heart. Let us not forget that healing for the body is doing a great deal for many people when we see suffering humanity struggling along in darkness, because of lack of knowledge. The Lord in His word says, "My people perish."
They are perishing by the thousands and going into the grave when God hath set a time for His children to die in the books of Psalm, we can prove all those that say it is the Lord's will to die anytime, Psalm 90:10, "The days of our years are three score years and ten and if by any reason of strength they be four score years yet is their strength labour and sorrow: for it is soon cut off and we fly away."
Why should this be in the word of God and not mean anything? Does the Bible contradict itself? God forbid. The Bible speaks, by two or three witnesses is the truth established, so then we will find another place in the Bible. Ecclesiastes 7:17, "Be not over much wicked, neither be thou foolish. Why shouldest thou die before thy time?"
This verse proves to us that there is a time set so let us then find the reason why so many so called Christians die so young, because of lack of teaching the whole Bible. And others are disobedient of the truth. They hear it and understand it but make little of it. Then both these classes are no Christians but back-sliders, and a back-slider is equal with a sinner. What then shall make us free, in the Gospel of John 8:32, "And ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free." And also in the same chapter, the 36th verse, "If the son therefore shall make you free ye shall be free indeed."
What is truth? The Bible. Then the Bible and the Lord Jesus can set us free from sin and also from all manner of sickness. There is one more part that we must play and that is to know how to discern the body of Christ. We shall first read it in the Word, and then we shall make a few remarks which we believe will help many of our readers. I Corinthians 11:29-30, "For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you and many sleep."
Let us understand there is the visible body of Christ which every saint of God is a member of; let us not forget to treat every member according to the office he occupies, and not have respect of persons. But have discernment of the body of Christ of which we are members in particular. And there is another way to discern the body of Christ. When we are taking the Lord's Supper remember the body was broken for our body, so then the bread we must take by faith for our bodies. And the blood was shed for the remission of sins. Thank God for his two fold atonement and for soul and body. When our Lord Jesus speaks to that lawyer the parable about the good Samaritan there we see where he gave the man 2 pence, not one for soul and body. In Luke 10:35, "And on the morrow when he departed he took out 2 pence and gave them to the host, and said unto him, take care of him and whatsoever thou spendest more when I come again I will repay thee."
When we therefore do our duty here on earth when the Lord will appear in the clouds of glory He will repay us then. The promises are unto us as well as unto the old patriots. Then we go to the Bible. There are over 3,000 promises which belong to us. We can claim them all because our maker in heaven hath signed them all. Thus saith the Lord. "So then there is so great an opportunity for in this dispensation, let us rejoice and be exceedingly glad that for us also a Saviour was born, not only born, but he also died that we might have life."
He went on the Cross of Calvary and by His stripes we are healed as we find in the Old Testament in the book of Isaiah. So now we want to see what Brother Peter has to say, as we know Peter was one of Christ's first disciples and Jesus also commanded Peter to lead his sheep and also his lambs. If we are the sheep of Jesus let us read the words of Peter and also believe them. We find these words in I Peter 2:24, "Who his ownself bare our sins in his own body on the tree that we being dead to sins should live unto righteousness by whose stripes ye were healed."
This is a positive promise. It does not say we would be or should be, but it says ye were healed. God helps us then not to make our dear Saviour new stripes. Let us understand as soon as we say diseases are from God or God's will we are striping our Lord anew. Almost every disease in the Bible times came from sin because Jesus says, "Thy sins are forgiven thee." In the Gospel Matthew 9:5-6, "For whether is easier to say, thy sins be forgiven thee, or to say, arise and walk? But that ye may know that the son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins (then saith he to the sick of the palsy) arise, take up they bed and go unto thine house."
It is understood that the Lord wasn't talking to sinners alone. But the Bible speaks on this order, then saith He to the sick of the palsy. It even mentions the sickness so that the modernist and skeptics have no comeback. We could go and find more Bible proofs, but I am sure if every reader doesn't believe one or two verses in the Bible it would not help if we would refer you to 1000 verses.
We can tell you about people that the Lord Jesus touched in our ministry, not in foreign lands or in the Holy lands, but in your own home country, in the state of North Dakota. In the city of Carpio, ND, a lady by the name of Mrs. Sullivan was healed from a dreadful disease. She is now enjoying perfect health; and also Mrs. Greenly of Berthold, ND, was healed of diabetes. She spent much money but could not get relief. Then we were called to her bedside and so by the help of our God and Saviour, I told her about that great Physician now is near, the sympathising Jesus, and as soon as she received the message she was made whole. She also is praising God in good and perfect health. A sister in Enid, OK, had her face full of cancer while we had a revival meeting there. She was also prayed for and the great God touched her body. And in Nash, OK, Mrs. Bruner, the doctor told her that she had to have an operation or she could not live. She was troubled with female trouble. She called us to pray for her and the Lord healed her instantly. We could write about many other cases but time is too short.
We want to remind our readers about what I think of an operation. Surely we all admit that our God is a perfect God, and what He makes must also be perfect. So then do we not claim that God created all things? In other words, God is the maker of Heavens and the earth and everything that is therein; so we are God's creation. Then if a manufacturer can build a machine so that men find no flaw in it, how much more can the Lord make a perfect man? I am talking about our bodies. Why do we need so much patching work done? When God made man he knew that they could not live without an appendix, so then he put one in, and we take and call a man with a butcher knife and cut it out. What would you think for instance if you built a motor with a perfect oiling system and I took and broke the oil pipes out? How long do you think your motor would run without oil? I say not long. Also is your body. The appendix is our oiling system and when that is gone our body is wrecked. All the other members of our body are put there for a purpose, and if we remove one of them, we also sin against the maker which is God. The word of God says, "who destroys this temple him will I destroy."
Then what shall we do when sickness comes to our home? Let us point you to the Bible again. God promises that He will keep us from all pestilence if we meet the condition which He has laid down for us in the 91st Psalm. Remember that means a Saint of God only. There is no sinner or ungodly included, so read and the word says that he that hath an ear to hear let him hear. Psalm 91:1-8, "He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God, in Him will I put my trust. Surely He shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with His feathers and under His wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night nor for the arrow that flieth by day. Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand shall fall at thy side and ten thousand at they right hand: but it shall not come nigh thee. Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked."
That one word secret place has a great meaning in the Christian's life. It means hidden away with God as John the revelator on the Isle of Patmos, hidden from all the world and its pleasures, not looking back to the old filth of our formers life, as Lot's wife did and turned to a pillar of salt. Then if in spite of all our watching comes a sickness on the Christian. How many times it is the minister's fault, he has neglected to teach, and to watch over his flock. There is a great secret hidden in that verse in Acts 20:28, "Take heed therefore unto yourselves and to all the flock over which the Holy Ghost has made you overseer to feed the Church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood."
So then it is not only to be called a preacher but oftentimes they are to blame for a life which is snuffed out. It should not surprise use when the people call for the preacher when they're sick. It is also in the Bible and so many cases we have witnessed that ministers were called to a sick bed and instead of reading the word of God to them they give them a newspaper and say to them: Sister or Brother, you have to suffer until its over because the Lord has put this on you, which is not scripture. We have made it clear and proved it by the word of God, and now let us see what every minister's duty is in such a case. We find in the word of God that if any among you is sick let them call for the elders of the Church. If we do that we have obeyed God's word and then let's see what the elder must do in the book of James 5:14-15, "Is any sick among you, let him call for the elders of the Church; and let them pray over him anointing him or her with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he has committed sins they shall be forgiven him."
It surely seems different then, we hear of most of our preachers, they have all kinds of excuses for the simple reason they are too stubborn and too lazy to become partakers of the spiritual fruits first and then feed others and lift poor souls and bodies out of destruction and misery. Shall we also be reasonable with all men. Not every man or even every preacher can pray for the sick and the Lord will heal them. There are special gifts in the Bible which every preacher should have one or more. There is a gift of healing and there is also a gift of faith, and also the prayer of faith. Then if a preacher has not got the gift of healing, and is an elder in the church, neither has the gift of faith, let him pray the prayer of faith. The word says the prayer of faith shall save the sick. And not tell them things that rob the people from their little faith they have. It is fearful to withhold such great blessing from humanity. Let us therefore wake up, realize what the word of God says to such men or women, that preach only part of the gospel. In the last book of the Bible we find great warning which every man and woman should take heed, in Revelation 22:18-19, "For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophesy of this book, if any man shall add unto these things God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book, and if any man shall take away from the words of the book of the prophesy God shall take away his part out of the book of life and out of the Holy City and from the things which are written in this Book."
These two verses alone should speed every man and woman to preach the full Gospel and not hide behind our ignorance and say we do all we know. Now,
ignorance doesn't excuse any man. The word says they have Moses and the prophets, let them hear them. And so there is no excuse for you. We have the Bible and the Lord Jesus has promised us the Comforter. He shall lead you in all the truths. The word is truth and the help of the Holy Ghost. We can understand the whole Bible. Let us remember when we read the Holy Bible we must read it prayerfully and have the mind of Christ before all these promises are ours.
Again I say these things do not belong to a sinner. All these spiritual blessings belong to the children of God, which we shall mention. Salvation first. Ye must be born again. Gospel of John, 3rd chapter. Then Water Baptism. We find in Romans 6th chapter, also in the Gospel of Matthew 28:19. Then Sanctification, I Thess. 4:3-4; also Hebrews 12:14. And then comes the wonderful promise of our Father in Heaven, the Baptism of the Holy Ghost; as the first Gentiles received it so must every Christian receive it. In Acts 10:45-46. Then divine healing we find through the whole Bible, especially in the book of James 5:14. After we receive all these blessings we must live a clean and holy life all our days. May the great God sanctify the words and also the readers of this book that many souls be won. Praise the Lord.
I shall also give my testimony for the honor and glory of God. I hope and pray that these simple words will help some unfortunate person like I was sixteen years ago. I became a sick man, every cold I caught developed into pneumonia, and I lived in deep sin. Then I went to a specialist. I had tried all the doctors I could find and spent all I had then. The specialist told me openly there was no help for me. Thank God for that solemn hour. There I found my Saviour and also my Healer. I became a saved and healthy body, which I praise my God for it. Had been a Lutheran preacher but was not saved. Had been teaching others and I myself was a castaway. From the time God saved and healed me I preached the full gospel. In that time while I traveled through the country I was had backslid. Not to boast of it but I am sorry to say. God was merciful to me. Three years ago a white sore appeared on the bottom of my legs. In a period of two years I was full of that sore until my body. God knows I did all I could spiritually and then I saw prayer that did not help. Then I started praying for my life to be taken. I was tired of this great torment. God only knows the awful pain I went through. One day I prayed to this end, God take me or heal me. God spoke, go and preach the gospel and I will heal thee. I also preached every night in the state of North Dakota, but I always supported myself. So then I arose from my knees and built a house truck, took my family and traveled two thousand miles south where I preached the third sermon in San Marcos, Texas. God delivered my legs and now I am the healthiest man that ever lived. I thank my God for all these blessings. Praise the Holy name of Jesus.