Monday, February 26, 2018

By His Stripes (1)

God promised that we would be healed by Jesus stripes.

Surely, he took up our sicknesses
and carried our pains as his burden,
yet we considered him plagued,
smitten by God, and afflicted.
But he was wounded for our rebellion,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
and by his wounds (bruises) we are healed (Is 53:4-5).
If his stripes/bruising are healing for us, how does this work.

In my book called Healing, I explain that the sickness of Christians can have two possible causes. Some sickness is the consequence of sin. The other type of sickness is a direct evil attack on the believer. This sickness is undeserved, because there is no sin that lets it in.

Sickness caused by sin is dealt with by the blood of Jesus. If we repent and trust in Jesus, our sins are forgiven and the sickness it has caused will go. The man who could not walk is an example. When Jesus said that his sins were forgiven, he got up and walked (Mark 2:1-11).

Not all sickness is caused by sin. Some sin is the result of an attack by evil. Sickness that is an attack by the enemy is undeserved. It occurs when the enemy cheats. He has no legal right to attack us, but he attacks us anyway. Much of the sickness experienced by mature Christians is undeserved sickness. The powers of evil attack them with sickness to disrupt and destroy their ministry.

Jesus stripes were undeserved. The various soldiers did not have legal authority to inflict punishment on him, because he had not been convicted. Rather, ruthless guards and soldiers were being mean. They beat up Jesus for their own fun, because they enjoyed hurting people. They did not care if his trial was not complete and judgment had not been given.

Jesus’ underserved beatings are the key to dealing with these underserved attacks of sickness.

When he inflicts undeserved sickness on someone the devil is cheating. Commanding the sickness to leave may not work, because the powers of evil were cheating when they gave us the sickness, so they are unlikely to stop cheating and remove the sickness just because we ask them. They are more likely to keep on cheating and leave us suffering. Our authority did not stop them from inflicting the sickness in the first place, so they are unlikely to recognise it when we tell them to remove the sickness.

We need a more effective solution. The answer is that Jesus bruises and beatings healed underserved sickness.

The bruising/beating was not necessary for dealing with sin, as the bloodshed on the cross fully deals with it. The beating/bruises were not needed for dealing with sin, so they must have achieved something else. We need to understand what and how.

How does this work?

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