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Joe Mcintyre

This paper was written by Joe Mcintyre.

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Joe McIntyre is the President of the International Fellowship of Ministries.


Originally published in Refleks 1-1 (2002). Included by permission.

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Articles > Charismatic Theology > Healing In Redemption

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Covenant Promises and Divine Disclosure

 

In his dealings with Israel, (and with the Church) God is always the initiator. This is not to say that the prayers of the God’s people don’t influence him, but that God alone determines what he will do for his people. No one ever sent a delegation to God and said, “Here’s what we would like you to promise us.” God reveals himself and makes promises as he chooses, not as men wish. So if God reveals himself in a particular way it because he desires to be known in the chosen manner. “Basic to ancient Hebrew religion is the concept of divine revelation. While God is conceived of as revealing his attributes and will in a number of ways in the OT, one of the most theologically significant modes of divine self-disclosure is the revelation inherent in the names of God.”[xii]

 

So when the Lord revealed himself to Israel at Marah (Ex. 15:22-26) this is a significant revelation of how God desires to be known to his people. As Keil and Delitzsch point out, “it was intended to impress this truth upon the Israelites, that Jehovah as their Physician would save them from all the diseases which He has sent upon Egypt, if they would hear His voice, do what was right in His eyes, and keep all His commandments.”[xiii]

 

To a Jew, the Pentateuch was the foundation of everything. The Law stated the terms of Israel’s covenant relationship with God and the Prophets confirmed it. But the first five books were esteemed above all else. So if a truth was established in the Law, it was, for Israel, beyond dispute. It was also important that things be established in the mouth of two or three witnesses (Deut. 17:6; 19:15)[xiv]. The apostle Paul refers to this in 2 Corinthians 13:1: “by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word shall be established.”

 

God had chosen to reveal himself by the name of The Lord our Healer in Ex. 15:26. In Ex. 23:25 he says he will take sickness away from [his people’s] midst. In Deut. 7:15 he affirms that he will take away from them all sickness.[xv] This threefold witness would forever establish God’s will to a Hebrew believer. Healing, health and long life were to be expected for the covenantally obedient.

 

It is often assumed (with some truth) that Jesus healed to validate his ministry as the Messiah. Yet Paul makes it clear that Jesus was, in his earthly ministry, confirming the covenant with Israel. “Now I say that Jesus Christ has become a servant to the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made to the fathers.”(Rom. 15:8 my italics).

 

The Blessing of Abraham

 

The covenant blessings were actually promised to Abraham and his seed. The Law (and its curse) was added later until the Seed, (Christ), should come to whom the promises were made. Sickness was part of the curse of the broken Law. As Paul tells us in Galatians 3:13, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the Law, having become a curse for us… that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus…” As pointed out above, health and provision, protection and victory were aspects of covenant provision among all Semitic people and their gods. The God of Israel promised to provide all that the other gods offered their devotees, if they would serve him alone.[xvi]

 

As New Covenant believers we may claim for our inheritance in Christ, “all the promises of God,” because they are “Yes and Amen in Christ”(2 Cor. 1:20). Paul, here, is referring to the Old Covenant promises. This would include Ex. 15:26, 23:25, Deut. 7:15.

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User Contributed Comments

Julius k.Campbell
Saturday 06th of August 2005

Yourmessage on Divine healing is abousolutetly 100%right keep on the good of God the father and ourLORD JESUS CHRIST.Ithank God for giving you HIS Spirit of wisdom and revealation knowledge of Him. Keep on the good work for the LORD JESUSCHRST he reward in heaven . God bless you. AMEN! Your fellow worker in the LORD. Healing evangelist.


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