The Gift of Healing

When my boy was two he was beating up on a passenger in the back seat of our car.  We encouraged him to be nice and to be like Jesus.  Immediately he put his hand out toward the pummeled passenger and said, "be healed".  It had taken him mere months to come to a conclusion that I didn't reach for thirty years--to be like Jesus is to heal people.

 Ask anyone unfamiliar with Christianity to read the gospels and tell us what they notice, they will most definitely remark on Jesus' habit of healing everyone who came to Him.  Jesus was the original and most normal Christian, the watermark, and He has modeled for believers what our practice toward sickness is to be.  We are to do as He did (John 20:21).  Healing people is to be one of the most normal virtues of the Christian life.  Our exceeding "niceness" is noted as diseases leave people's bodies.  "Heal the sick, cleanse the leper, raise the dead, cast out demons" (Mt. 10:8).  Our Body is fueled and driven by this verse which describes how the original followers were sent to preach and demonstrate the kingdom of God.  This message was not just for the first disciples but for everyone.  They were instructed to teach the nations all that He had commanded them (Mt. 28:20).  Go, teach everyone else what you have learned in my presence.  So, they did.  All Christians are supposed to move in the gift of healing, the most recognized aspect of Jesus' life.

Approaching the gift of healing believers will often remember Paul’s words more than they will Jesus’ words.  Does everyone have the gift of healing?  In 1 Corinthians 12 Paul goes over the nine gifts of the Spirit and then begins to explain that not everyone has the same gifts.  “All do not have gifts of healing, do they?” (12:30).  It is my understanding that Paul is describing what is taking place in a believer’s meeting.  As the Spirit is moving in a meeting someone may be used to heal that “Sunday”, another may have a prophetic word, another an interpretation to a message that was spoken in an unknown language.
However we interpret 1 Corinthians 12, we must allow what Jesus said to help us interpret what Paul has said.  Jesus has directly instructed us to heal the sick, so regardless of what Paul may be talking about we are all still supposed to heal the sick.  Yes, actually heal the sick, the diseased, the dying, the injured, the demonized and the dead.
We usually conclude that someone has the gift of healing because people get healed when he or she prays for others.  I believe this approach has contributed to the dying out of this gift.  This gift is available to every believer because every believer has the Holy Spirit within.  And within the Spirit are the gifts of the Spirit.  The moment we receive Jesus, Holy Spirit sets up shop within us and every good thing, fruit and gift is now available to us.  And it is faith that makes what’s available accessible.  We receive all of the Holy Spirit, not just parts of His nature and power.  He’s all in there!  Putting the gift to work with expectation allows that gift to mature.
Here's a fact:  pray for sick with faith and expectation and you will see people get healed.  Everyone may not get healed, but that is the standard that Jesus has set for me.  And He's pleased with me as I lovingly and joyously long for His likeness to be seen in me.  I'm excited for the coming day when my Christian profession is responded to with "Oh, so you heal the sick, right?"