Devotional: ‘The LORD Who Healeth All Thy Diseases’

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Psalm 103:1 Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. 2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: 3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;

There are many reasons why we should bless God, but for today I would like to call our attention to the phrase – ‘who healeth all thy diseases.’ Many interpret this to mean that God will cure us of our every physical ailment. It is true, God does often heal us of our infirmities, but the sickness that many others believe the psalmist is referring to is not the sickness of the body, but rather the sickness of the soul. Note again the psalmist’s words: “Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases.”

One of God’s names is – Jehovah Rapha which means – “The LORD your healer.” (Ex 15:26) God is capable of healing us of our physical diseases, but even more so He is capable and desires greatly to heal us of our spiritual diseases. There is an old spir­it­u­al song that says: “There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole; there is a balm in Gilead to heal the sin sick soul.” During the days of the Bible, the land of Gilead was famous for its healing ointments. From this analogy the prophet Jeremiah cried out: “Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there?” (Jer 8:22) In other words, is there no hope for my people? There is a balm in Gilead and there is a great Physician; yet in order to experience God’s perfect healing, we must follow His prescribed plan.

First, in order for there to be spiritual healing, there must be a cleansing out of the infection.

“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12 ESV)

God uses His Word like a surgeon uses his scalpel. It is through our careful study of the Bible that we are taught biblical principles that will enable us to live in such a way that will please God. But sometimes we are resistant to God’s surgery. Like many who avoid going to the doctor, many of us avoid going to our Great Physician. It is then that the Lord must chasten us in order to cause us to seek Him. God did so to the nation of Israel through the invasion of the Babylonians.

Jeremiah 27:5 “It is I who by my great power and my outstretched arm have made the earth, with the men and animals that are on the earth, and I give it to whomever it seems right to me. 6 Now I have given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, my servant…”

Nebuchadnezzar was not called God’s servant because he was a righteous man, but because he was an agent that God would use to do His perfect will. (see Pr 16:4; 21:1) It was through Nebuchadnezzar’s conquest that the nation of Israel was finally broken and made to seek after God. Later in our studies we will read where the LORD said to them – “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.” (Jer 29:13) God is not interested in spiritual hypocrisy. God desires a heart that is sincere and pure.

It is therefore the wise person who allows God to perform this spiritual cleansing on a daily basis. David understood this and wrote:

“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Ps 139:23-24)

God’s Word is like a sword that He uses to perform spiritual surgery. But it is also like a salve that He uses to bring spiritual healing. Again that old song comes to my mind – “There is a balm in Gilead to make the wounded whole; there is a balm in Gilead to heal the sin sick soul.”

How does God heal the soul? First we must note that God’s Word is His medicine. Solomon wrote –

“My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings. Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.” (Pr 4:20-21)

Secondly we must note that Christ is His Physician. We read from the book of Hebrews:

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:14-16 ESV)

Jesus is a Physician with great bedside manners. He understands what it is like to be human. He sympathizes with our weaknesses. Scripture teaches us that His desire is not to condemn us, but rather to heal us. With a heart full of mercy He desires to apply the medicine of grace to our spiritual wounds.

There is another important part to God’s spiritual healing. It is the personal Attendant that He has given to each of us. Jesus said:

John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. 27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

Walking beside every believer is God’s Holy Spirit whose ministry is to teach us the Word of God and to help us apply it to our lives. Paul wrote-

“Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.’ (1 Cor 2:12-13)

It is the Holy Spirit who guided men what to write in the Bible and it is the Holy Spirit who guides us to understand it and to apply it to our lives. Recently someone shared with me how their mother has often encouraged them to pray for the Spirit’s guidance before they begin to read the Bible. What a wise and godly mother this is.

Psalm 103:1 Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. 2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: 3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;

We praise God for healing us of our physical infirmities. Even more we praise Him for healing us of our spiritual diseases.

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