February 7, 2015

Jesus Has Given Us Authority To Heal (Epiphany 5)

The Gospel story of Jesus healing a sick woman AND casting out a demon (Mark 1.29-39) opens our eyes to the supernatural world of the healing ministry in the Bible. This is an Epiphany moment. Many people in our time have been told the healing miracles of Jesus are exaggerations, from a pre-scientific and superstitious culture; or that healing only happened in the time of Jesus. This is wrong information. Those of us in the healing ministry have personal experience that people in our time can be healed from both physical illness and spiritual oppression – just like it says in the Bible. The Healing Ministry is scientific and reasonable because it is based on observable evidence in our time.

Our words have power in the spiritual realm
A very long time ago Lucille and I were reading John and Paula Sanford’s books on the Healing Ministry. This couple have been writing books, leading conferences and doing prayer ministry for over 50 years.

One of my first Epiphany Moments in the healing ministry was not very prayerful or elegant. My son Christopher was visiting an asleep in another room. Suddenly he started screaming. He had night terrors and  it was very difficult to wake him. Even cold water did not work. Then I remembered what I had been reading about this strange supernatural world – the world described in the Bible. I remembered that John Sanford had said something about the power of words spoken with authority. I climbed onto the bed, put my hand on my still screaming sons head and said one word - “stop”! He stopped and there was this long stunning silence. It was an Epiphany Moment. Our words do have power – just as Jesus taught.

  1. Spiritual oppression is real
In our modern scientific culture the disciplines of Psychology and Theology often provide very different explanations for the same symptoms. We get into trouble if we automatically exclude either Psychology or Theology as possible explanations. Those who are sceptical about spiritual oppression should withhold judgement until they have read the works of M. Scott Peck. The Road Less Travelled is evidence of a highly educated atheistic Psychiatrist who tried all the modern treatments of drugs and counselling and after two years of failure was driven to approach the Roman Catholic Church for an Exorcist. Peck shares with us the difficulty of finding a priest interested in exorcism. To make a long story short they did an exorcism, Scott Peck had an Epiphany moment and became a serious Christian.
My own Epiphany moment came in watching Dr. Charles Kraft and his team do an exorcism and hearing an evil spirit speak using a woman’s voice. Dr. Kraft’s book “I Give You Authority” is a good introduction to this very misunderstood and over dramatized ministry. This ministry is not for amateurs or those without professional Psychiatric and spiritual backup – but it does give us evidence and help us understand the supernatural.

  1. We have the authority to heal and free the oppressed
More recently I have attended a number of Family Foundations International healing workshops which have taught me how personal sins, curses and vows can somehow open a doorway into our souls and cause emotional damage. For me it was an Epiphany moment to realize that in addition to doing ourselves Psychological and emotional harm, we can do ourselves spiritual harm with destructive consequences in our lives.

Another of my Epiphany moments was in prayer ministry for a man who was going through the 12 step process of Alcoholics Anonymous. This Step required him to write out a very long and detailed confession and go to a priest for absolution. He came in with about 30 pages of confession, including over 20 wrongful sexual relationships. As part of the healing ministry we closed our eyes and saw an image of all these women standing around him in a circle. We could also both see the silver cord that was still connecting him to each woman. These cords were like a spiritual pipeline, allowing all of each persons’ guilt and shame to flow into the other. In prayer we asked the Holy Spirit to come with a sword to sever all these connections and free each person. Both of us were able to see this happening. This man was freed from the guilt and shame that was driving his alcoholism.

My Epiphany moments in healing ministry have warned me to be very cautious in what I do and say and convinced me of the good news that Jesus has given us authority to heal!

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