“Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise up and walk’? “But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins” Luke 5:24 (NKJ)
My spiritual objective and “heart’s desire” for 2015 is to experience a greater fullness of God in my life. Exactly how that is accomplished, I am totally dependent upon the Holy Spirit to guide and direct me (John 16:13). Guess what? You have to be careful what you ask for. I recently had the unique opportunity to experience Him in a new way—as my Healer. I’m not saying Jesus has never healed me. However, this time, Jesus extended His healing touch through exposure of sin in my life.
In Luke 5, Jesus is “walking the talk” He proclaimed after reading Isaiah 61 in the synagogue at Nazareth. He is “preaching, healing, and setting the bruised at liberty.” A great portion of Jesus’ ministry was dedicated to healing and setting at liberty those who were possessed by demons and/or oppressed by “spirits of infirmities” (Luke 13:11).
In our Scripture narrative (Luke 5:17-26), Jesus is healing people at a local home. Certain men, hearing that the “power of the Lord was present” (v. 17), brought a friend with palsy to Jesus. Blocked by the multitudes, the men sought a more direct way into the house by lifting the thatch roof and lowered the man “into the midst before Jesus”. Jesus realizing the faith they had place in His healing ability, responded: “Your sins are forgiven.” Why sins forgiven and not “you are healed”? Jesus lived in a culture where the assumption was that sickness was a result of sin. Jesus wanted to prove to the scribes and Pharisees that HE HAD THE POWER ON EARTH to forgive sins. Based on their assumption, and to illustrate His power, Jesus said to the man “your sins are forgiven…take your mat and go home” (v. 20). Healing followed the forgiveness of sin. Back to my experience!
I asked the Lord during my devotion time to show me the root of my tendency to “food binge”. I identified it in my initial prayer, as a “spirit of gluttony.” I prayed quietly and waited to hear His response. I expected a “remembrance”, an “unhealthy attachment”, or even the revealing of a “past wounding”. The Spirit of the Lord responded, “The source of your food binge is your willful disobedience and defiance against what God has purposed for you. Your body is the means of accomplishing that purpose.” I was shocked! The light of the Holy Spirit had revealed my sin. I had chosen to respond to the desires of the flesh when I should have died to them (Rom. 6: 11). What appeared at first to be an act against my own body was, in reality, an act of sin against God. I immediately confessed my sin and renounced any future control my flesh had over my life. I am now healed because God forgave my sin. Healing followed the forgiveness of sin.
Sometimes the issues we may struggle with—overeating, unfounded fear, sleeplessness, may really be an issue of unconfessed sin in our lives. David described these as “secret faults and presumptuous sins” (Ps. 19:12, 13). Romans 13:14 admonishes believers to “put on the Lord Jesus Christ and make no provision for the flesh to fulfill the lusts thereof.” Jesus is our Healer. He wants to heal those places that have been hidden from His view (or so we think). Invite Him today into your heart and let Him heal you. Don’t be surprised if His first order of business is to forgive! Healing follows the forgiveness of sin.
Good to the Last Byte…
Unbelievers can be possessed by demonic forces. Believers, on the other hand, cannot be possessed. This is because of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. They can, however, be “oppressed.” One cause of that oppression could be the entry of sin in their life or through unconfessed sin. That is why it is so important to continually ask the Holy Spirit to shed His light of truth on any area of our lives that cause us to remain in our sin. Sometimes we may not be aware of what that might be, but the Holy Spirit will lovingly reveal it, if you would but ask (Ps. 139:23, 24). Click here and invite the Holy Spirit to begin His “search.”