Divine Healing

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TEXT: Isaiah 53:1-5; Mark 5:22-42; James 5:13-16


The students will understand and be able to relate that divine healing is a miraculous restoration of our physical bodies, inexplainable in terms of ordinary natural forces. It was provided for mankind in the Atonement.


Jairus was one of three synagogue rulers mentioned in the New Testament. The other two were Crispus (Acts 18:8) and Sosthenes (Acts 18:17). The synagogue ruler was also called president of the synagogue. He was in charge of the service, including the reading of the Torah, the Scriptures, and the people who led the service. He was responsible for the synagogue building, including maintenance, repair, and even the cleaning chores. As an official, he kept order during the service and made sure that people did not become unruly or do anything they should not do in a synagogue.

The synagogue was one of the most important places in town, the center of Jewish religious life in the community. This placed the synagogue ruler in a prominent position, a civic leader as well as a religious leader. As an elder of the synagogue, he sat in one of the seats reserved for important people at the services.

People living in the time of the Old Testament believed sickness to be a punishment for sin. The Book of Job explores that idea. Jesus never taught that God sent disease on a person to punish him. He knew that His Father’s intent was for mankind to be whole in body as well as spirit. Through His miracles, Jesus showed that He loved the ordinary man. As God’s Son, He had power to raise the dead, to cause instant healing of leprosy and injury, and to give sight to the blind. Because of one man’s sin, death entered into the world, and because we live in this imperfect world, we are subject to encounter illnesses. However, we know that Jesus heals, and we can trust Him to care for His own.


Many times in the Bible we are given accounts of healing for the physical body. Since we know that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8) we have every right to believe that divine healing for our bodies is available today.

  1. In our text in Mark 5, we have a beautiful example of Jesus healing a young girl who not only was critically ill, but who actually died while Jesus was on His way to heal her. While He was going to her home, a woman who had been diseased for twelve years (verses 25-34) touched His clothes and was immediately healed. What attribute do we see exhibited by the father of the sick girl and by the sick woman, which resulted in their healing? In what way did they exercise this attribute in order to obtain the results?

    Response: The father and the sick woman both exhibited faith. Explain how it was necessary for them to have faith in God in order to be healed. Ask your students to give other examples in the Bible where Jesus healed a person because of the faith of someone else (Matthew 15:28; Mark 2:5; Luke 7:9). This could lead into a discussion concerning the responsibility of Christians to pray in faith for those in need. For example: those represented by the prayer requests which are brought before the church, and those who are infirm and unable to pray for themselves.
  2. A miracle is an act of God whereby something occurs which is unexplainable in terms of known scientific laws, such as healing for an incurable disease. Give an example from your own experience or possibly from the experience of someone you know who has received a definite healing.

    Response: Allow time for class members to share their experiences, bringing out that God is still working miracles of healing in our day. A number of our tracts on healing give strong evidence to support this. You may also wish to have on hand an issue of a Higher Way magazine which relates accounts of miracles of healing.
  3. Many will tell us that the day of miracles is past, that healing was provided only during Jesus’ ministry and in the time of the Early Church. Read Mark 16:17-18. In the light of these Scriptures, what conclusion can we reach in regard to the previous statement?

    Response: Your students should conclude that the statement is not true—the day of miracles is not past. Discuss with the class that the promise was to “them that believe.” The promise was not restricted to any time frame. Thus, believers of any era have the right to claim the promise in verse 18—that “they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
  4. In Mark 6:5-6 and Matthew 13:58, we find that Jesus was sometimes hindered in performing miracles. What reason is given in these Scriptures?

    Response: “Because of their unbelief.” Explain that sometimes we do not receive healing for our bodies because we do not have faith to believe. Ask your students what should be done if there is a lack of faith, leading them to conclude that they should pray as the man who had the epileptic son in Mark 9:24, “Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.”
  5. On occasion, afflictions may arise which seem especially difficult with regard to healing. One such example is given in Mark 9:25-29. What did Jesus say was necessary in order to receive the answer in this case?

    Response: Jesus said this kind of healing came only by prayer and fasting. Discuss with your class that many times it is necessary to really persevere and wait on the Lord for the answer, but He has promised to give it. Your class should recognize that the answer may not always be yes. At times, God’s perfect will for us may be to allow us to be tested through a physical affliction. Possibly the purpose could not be accomplished if the affliction were removed. The key in our persevering prayer is to pray that the Lord’s will be done.
  6. Some may say that Christians should never become sick, and if they do it shows a lack of faith or that they are living a life displeasing to God. However, we have examples in the Scriptures that would indicate differently. In the following examples, what might have been the reason for the affliction?
    Job 23:10
    Psalm 119:71
    John 9:3
    2 Corinthians 12:7-9

    Response: Your students may come up with varied thoughts on each of these Scriptures. Some possibilities could include:
    Job 23:10 — spiritual refining
    Psalm 119:71 — to learn God’s statutes
    John 9:3 — to manifest the works of God
    2 Corinthians 12:7-9 — to prove God’s grace is sufficient
    Your students may also bring out that other reasons why Christians go through sickness could be: to test their faith in God; to be an example before others of how a Christian trusts God for healing; to be able to relate to others that are sick, encouraging and praying for them; or to test their patience in suffering for the Lord.
  7. What formula does the Bible give us regarding prayer for the healing of our physical bodies? James 5:14-15

    Response: The elders of the church are to anoint us with oil in the Name of the Lord and pray for us. Your students should know, of course, that there is no special virtue in the anointing oil, but that divine healing is received because they have come in obedience to God’s Word, believing that Jesus’ Blood will avail for their healing. Mark 6:13 can also be read, showing this is the method the twelve Apostles used in healing the sick when Christ sent them forth.
  8. If we are in need of divine healing, and are unable to go to an elder or have him come to us, what Biblical example do we find in Acts 19:11-12?

    Response: Handkerchiefs and aprons were taken to the sick, and the sick were healed. Explain that in addition to anointed handkerchiefs, before our church papers and tracts are distributed, they are prayed over by the ministry and Gospel workers for the healing of the sick. Many miracles of healing have been accomplished by laying an anointed cloth, tract, or church paper on a sick person. However, these are never to be used for a kind of good-luck charm or some similar purpose.
  9. Both the Old and New Testaments teach us that one of the provisions of Christ’s atonement on Calvary is healing for our body. How do Isaiah 53:5 and 1 Peter 2:24 substantiate the beautiful truth that Jesus’ Blood avails for our physical healing?

    Response: The Scripture found in 1 Peter reveals that the prophecy in Isaiah 53:5 was fulfilled in Jesus’ death on the tree, “with his stripes we are healed.” Some would have us believe that this is just for spiritual healing, but Matthew 8:16-17 plainly teaches that physical healing is the correct meaning of the Scripture. This is one of the benefits available to all. Have you availed yourself of this benefit?


Bring to class something you made that has a problem which needs fixing: a knitted article with a flaw; a paper folded shape with one or two folds made incorrectly; a drawing with something obviously left out, etc. Ask the students to describe the flaw, and what should be done to remedy it. Inquire who they think can fix it—the obvious answer being the one who made the object in the first place. As you begin to correct the flaw (unravel the knitting, refold the paper, or draw in a detail), explain that God, who created us in the beginning, is the One who is best able to take care of us when something goes wrong.

Take the letters in the words “divine healing” and let your students see how many words they can make using those letters. The words should be related to healing. For example, they could include parts of the body which might need healing, name of a sickness, name of someone they know who has been healed.

Bring a first-aid kit to class. Include band-aids, gauze, antiseptic, etc. Discuss how these are what man uses to treat an injury. Lead the discussion to the fact that God can do more than sterilize the wound or cover it; He can heal it completely.

Have someone come to your class and relate a personal experience in which God’s power to heal was evidenced.