Bible · Christianity · life · Paul the Apostle · religion

Are Christians supposed to be free of sickness?

bedridden patientThe Word Faith Movement has been responsible for a lot of teachings seeping into the church for several decades now and one of the more popular teachings stemming from them is the idea that Christians should never be sick. Take for instance the following statement from Gloria Copeland:

“When Jesus bore away our sins, He also bore away our diseases. The Cross pronounced a complete cure for the ills of mankind.

The Church of Jesus Christ has been made just as free from sickness as it has been made free from sin. …

A Christian may continue to be sick after he has been born again, but he does not have to. He has been redeemed from sickness. The price has been paid for his healing. Sickness can no longer exert dominion over him unless he allows it.”

Is this really true? Are Christians really supposed to be free of sickness? There is proof in scripture that Paul got sick. He told the following to the Galatians in chapter 4:

13 Ye know how through infirmity of the flesh I preached the gospel unto you at the first.

14 And my temptation which was in my flesh ye despised not, nor rejected; but received me as an angel of God, even as Christ Jesus.

15 Where is then the blessedness ye spake of? for I bear you record, that, if it had been possible, ye would have plucked out your own eyes, and have given them to me.

It’s quite possible that his sickness dealt with his eyes if the Galatians were willing to donate their eyes to him. There are other instances where it is acknowledged Christians can be sick. For instance, Jesus said in Matthew 25:

34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:

35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:

36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. ….

40 …Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

In this passage, Jesus acknowledged that his brethren, the believers, would get sick. We also witness in Philippians 2 that Epaphroditus nearly died from the sickness he got while he was busy doing the work of the Lord. In 1 Timothy 5, Paul instructed Timothy to drink wine for his stomach ailment and for his “often infirmities.” James acknowledged that believers in the church got sick in James 5, and instructed the sick to call the elders of the church so they could pray over them and anoint them for their healing. It’s obvious that the Bible teaches that sickness is a byproduct of living in a fallen world and is not necessarily a reflection on one’s spiritual state since Christians can get sick even if they don’t want to.

Harry A. Gaylord

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4 thoughts on “Are Christians supposed to be free of sickness?

  1. Hello there brother Harry,

    I’ve been reading some of your posts/thoughts, and have much respect for your firmness in His Word and your uncompromising attitude.

    I am a relatively young believer myself, and I was just wondering if I could keep in contact with you through E-Mail, and shoot you a question now and then? I would be blessed to see what your interpretations are, and also go into “Berean mode” to search The Scriptures myself.

    As I did not find your contact information on your blog, I assume that you’ve opted to keep it private, so I would really appreciate it if you would kindly send me a short E-Mail and we can keep in touch that way. My E-Mail address is **************.

    Thanks for your contribution to The Body Of Christ, and may Grace and Peace Be Upon you From Our Lord Jesus Christ!

    In Christ’s Glorious Service together,

    Dickens H. Cheung

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  2. Harry, thank you for clearly and rightly dividing the Word of truth.

    It seems the ‘word faithers’ have the ‘Word’ part right, because we all need to grow in faith and to believe more in God’s Word and promises. They also seem to have the ‘faith’ part right, because we all need to exercise having more faith and trust in God. But then they tend to make it all about ‘YOU’ instead of Jesus, and everything ‘word faith’ falls apart.

    The ‘word faith’ doctrine implies that If you get sick as a Christian, it’s because YOU have some ungodliness in your life, or YOU didn’t have faith enough or YOU didn’t stand on God’s Word enough. Where ‘word faithers’ fall apart is in getting fixated on is ‘SELF’ instead of ‘GOD’. They also tend to fixate on one scripture verse, Proverbs 18:21, ‘,,,life and death in the power of the tongue’. ‘Word faithers’ take this scripture and make all other scripture bend to it. The onus then all rests upon ‘self’…upon a legalistic view that if you ever say or do anything ‘wrong’ you bring sickness and illness upon yourself. The believer then becomes trapped in fear instead of resting wholly in the marvellous amazing and saving grace of God.

    As the Psalmsist wrote: “MANY ARE…the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers them out of them all.” (Psalm 34: 19) God doesn’t say that His followers won’t face trials, persecutions or troubles, We will. And when we do, we need to put our greater hope and faith in Him anew. What we DO NOT need to do is to begin beating ourselves up because we didn’t have enough faith or stand on the Word enough or say the right thing at some time or other. The ‘word faither’ doctrine has a good sound to it, but the more you listen carefully to it, the more you hear the ‘accuser of the brethren’, doing his damage and twisting God’s Word and truth.

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