Forgiveness Brings Healing – Healing Brings Forgiveness

James 5:13-16

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

Specific needs require specific answers.  Only one answer will work in each situation.  God’s way!  Suffering, sickness can take many forms.  Healing is provided if we take the right medicine.  When a doctor gives a medicine, he writes a prescription.  There are specific ways to take the medication.  It is the same way spiritually.

Suffering and sickness is not only a physical need.  It can include

  • Emotional needs
  • Financial needs
  • Marital needs
  • Sinful problems

Healing is provided for all, but we need to follow the “prescription.”

  • Call for the elders of the church
  • Anoint with oil
  • Prayer of faith

Byproduct of following the “prescription” is – sins forgiven.

Verse 16 – Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. 

Ephesians 4:32 – Make a clean break with all cutting, backbiting, profane talk. Be gentle with one another, sensitive. Forgive one another as quickly and thoroughly as God in Christ forgave you.

Matthew 6:12-15 – And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.   And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.  For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.   “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

  • Unity of the brothers/sisters – Let it go or retain it (anger/bitterness or forgiveness

Matthew 18:15-20 – Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.’ And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector.  “Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.  “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”

Mark 11:24-26 – Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”

Luke 4:18 – The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed.

Jesus speaks to the whole man – spiritual, physical, emotional, your whole being.  Forgiveness brings healing.

God’s Love and Our Response

Titus 3:4-7

But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

  • Because of God’s love, we need to confess our sin.
  • Do you confess your sin by name? Or, do you generalize?
  • Do you confess AND then forsake your sin?
  • Are you willing to give up all sin for God?  To live a holy life

1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

  • Because of God’s love, we need to always endeavor to keep our relationship with others free of offenses.
  • Do you consistently seek forgiveness from those who you wrong or offend?
  • Can you say that your conscience is clear with everyone?

Acts 24:16 – This being so, I myself always strive to have a conscience without offense toward God and men.

  • Because of God’s love, we need to make sure that all we do, all we say, all we think brings glory to the name of the Lord Jesus.
  • Do you love what God loves?  Hate what God hates?
  • Do you value highly the things that please God?
  • Do I forgive others as God has forgiven me? 
  • Do I value the Word of God, taking time to read/study/absorb the truths in the Word?
  • Do I teach and caution others? 
  • Do I give thanks to God?

Colossians 3:12-17 – Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;  bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.  But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.  And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.  Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.  And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

  • Because of God’s love, we need to be sensitive to the conviction and prompting of God’s Spirit.
  • Are you quick to respond to the voice of God?
  • Are you willing to seek reconciliation with someone who is offended with you?

Matthew 5:23-24 – Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.

Titus tells us we have become heirs of God and have the hope of eternal life.  As we receive that great love and gift of God, our hearts should be so grateful that we will joyfully and lovingly want to follow God’s Word in all we do, all we think, all we say, all we are.

Names of God – His Name is Forgiveness

Philippians 2:5-11

Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

My Name is Forgiveness

Micah 7:18-19 – Who is a God like You, pardoning iniquity and passing over the transgression of the remnant of His heritage?  He does not retain His anger forever, because He delights in mercy.  He will again have compassion on us, and will subdue our iniquities.  You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea.

John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Nehemiah 9:17 – …But You are God, ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, abundant in kindness, and did not forsake them.

Psalm 130:1-4 – Out of the depths I have cried to You, O Lord; Lord, hear my voice!  Let Your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.  If You, Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand?
But there is forgiveness with You, that You may be feared.

Psalm 86:5 – For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive, and abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You.

Quote of David Wilkerson – “Discovering the Lord as a God who forgives is the only way out of all our depths of despair, all the casting down of our souls brought on by guilt and condemnation.”

No hope – no hope – no hope – but then the shadow of a cross appeared.  The sun grew dark with misery, the moon was cold and chill.  But then the shadow of a cross arose upon a lonely hill.

  • Without Christ – hopeless eternity        
  • With Christ – eternal hope

A perverted concept of forgiveness is prevalent in the world today.

  • We recognize that God is good
  • We recognize that God is merciful
  • We recognize that God is longsuffering
  • We recognize that God forgives all sin

BUT

  • ·         There is no repentance
  • There is no change of heart
  • There is no attitude change

We feel sorry for the moment because we do not want God’s judgment and we do not want to go to hell, but we do not really change our way of living.

Isaiah 55:7 – Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord,
and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.

John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

The blood sacrifice for the forgiveness of our sin is seen throughout the Bible.

  • God killed animals to made clothes for Adam and Eve
  • Abel sacrificed
  • Abraham – the ram caught in the bushes
  • The sacrifices in the Old Testament revealed God’s nature of forgiveness
  • John 3:16 reinforced it
  • Jesus’ fulfillment of that promise completed the work

Hebrews 10:18 – And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.

God’s continued call to repentance from beginning to end is proof that there is forgiveness in His name.  There is forgiveness through His blood.

Admonitions Against Sin

Galatians 5:17-21

For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.  Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

The number of sins listed in Galatians 5 are 18.  Obviously, there are countless more than this and we hesitate to admit we have come close to committing many of them.  As society plummets headlong and blindly into the abyss, there are more being added every day due to modern technology and the desire, sinful and lusting, to satisfy an unsatisfied craving, an itch that needs to be scratched.

A renewing of the mind is what is needed in our world today.  The cravings that were in existence a generation ago are magnified beyond belief.

Romans 12:1-2 – I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

1 Corinthians 6:4-10 – If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you, not even one, who will be able to judge between his brethren? But brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers!  Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren! Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.

Self-control and personal accountability are needed in our lives.

Colossians 3:5-9 – Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.  But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds,

Forgiveness, forgiveness, forgiveness is what is needed.  But we have rights, we shout.  And we do.  But our rights are not available to us except through the scriptures that shout to us, “love one another.”

1 John 4:7-8 – Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

Colossians 3:12-13 – Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.

Oh our big mouth!  What damage it does.  If only our spiritual IQ was as big as our mouth.  We would have converted the whole world by now.  And caustic!  Oh, how much damage we do with our tongues, probably equal to all the rest of the things we are guilty of.  God help us!

James 3:6-8 – And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity. The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and creature of the sea, is tamed and has been tamed by mankind. But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

Christ Has Set Us Free

Colossians 2:13-15

And you who were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh (your sensuality, your sinful carnal nature), [God] brought to life together with [Christ], having [freely] forgiven us all our transgressions, having cancelled and blotted out and wiped away the handwriting of the note (bond) with its legal decrees and demands which was in force and stood against us (hostile to us). This [note with its regulations, decrees, and demands] He set aside and cleared completely out of our way by nailing it to [His] cross. [God] disarmed the principalities and powers that were ranged against us and made a bold display and public example of them, in triumphing over them in Him and in it [the cross]. Amplified Bible

THE CONDITION OF MAN – SIN AND DEATH

  • Man’s concept of sin is different than God’s as stated in the Bible.  Man does not see sin as a violation of God’s will.  This simply shows how weak man and his ideas and thinking are in comparison to God.  Man looks at sin and calls it
  • Human error
  • Personal slip
  • Moral flaw
  • Physical failure
  • Character defect
  • Shortcoming
  • Immaturity
  • Unpreventable
  • Misunderstanding
  • Mistake
  • Irresponsibility
  • Semantics
  • Labeling sin something other than it is – sin – does not change it in God’s eyes, nor does it change the penalty for sin.  We may blame sin or whatever we choose to call it – the result of our environment, training, heritage, and/or belief or a combination of these.  Whatever we call sin or what ever we blame it on does not really matter.  In God’s eyes sin is sin.  Sin is a violation of God’s law or will.  Sin is also rebellion and insurrection against Him and the way He has told mankind to live. 

SAY NO TO SIN AND YES TO GOD!!

  • Man’s view of death, the penalty for sin, also varies according to a person’s background and beliefs.  Some of the views of death that man has come up with are
  • Ceasing to exist
  • Passing into oblivion
  • A semi-conscious state
  • A deep sleep
  • Reincarnation into another form of life
  • Moving into another dimension
  • Most of men’s ideas about death involve either denial of a life hereafter or else another chance to work oneself into the favor of God.  All of man’s ideas and concepts of sin and death are based on man’s knowledge, man’s ability, man’s energy, and man’s power to somehow make himself acceptable to God.  If mankind could make himself acceptable to God, then Christ died in vain.  But He did die and we cannot make ourselves acceptable.
  • If there was something I could do on my own, there was no reason for Christ to go to the cross.  But He did go to the cross and we cannot atone for our sins.
  • There would have been no need for the Lamb of God, Jesus Christ to give of Himself on the cross for our sins.  But He did!
  • There would have been no need for our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ to give of His blood for the redemption of fallen man.  But He did!
  • There would have been no need for our precious Lord, our Healer to take upon Himself stripes on His back for our healing.  But He did!
  • There would have been no need for our provider, Jesus Christ the Righteous, to cry out to the Father in heaven asking pardon for you and I.  But He did!
  • There would have been no need for our Savior, Jesus Christ, to suffer pain and torment at the hands of wicked men so that we might have everlasting freedom.  But He did!
  • We cannot help ourselves so Christ gave Himself on the cross.

THE CONDITION OF MAN BECAUSE OF THE SACRIFICE ON THE CROSS

  • Man has a chance for new life because of the cross.
  • Man has a chance for new life because of Christ’s sacrifice.
  • Man has a chance if he will repent of his sins and change his way of living.
  • Man has a chance if he will surrender to God.
  • Man has a chance if he will throw himself on the mercy of God.
  • Man has a chance if he will submit to God.
  • Because of the cross I
  • Have new life
  • Hope eternal
  • Forgiveness
  • I am free

John 5:24 – Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. 

Ephesians 2:1-8 – And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among whom also we all once con-ducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.  But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.  For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

Isaiah 53:6 – All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, everyone, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

Romans 6:23 – The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life.

Romans 8:6 – To be carnally (fleshly) (worldly) minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.

CHRIST IS OUR HOPE

  • All requirements of the Law were fulfilled in Jesus Christ
  • 613 laws of Moses
  • 248 prohibitions – “Thou shall not”
  • 365 affirmations – “Thou shall”
  • There is no need for us to go back to the Law of Moses and try to follow all those requirements, holidays, holy days, dietary laws, purification laws, sacrificing laws.  The Pharisees tried to keep the Law.  They could not!  The Law pointed toward Jesus Christ and since He has appeared these laws are no longer needed.  It is just like you receive a gift at Christmas or a birthday or for some other day or occasion.   After the gift is opened and you have taken it for yourself and begin to enjoy it, you no longer keep the package or the wrapping paper that it came in.  That is not the important part of the gift.  The gift came in the package.  The gift was not the package.  Christ is now here.  He was and is God’s gift to fallen man.  He is our Hope; our only Hope. 
  • All the guilt charges, all the condemnation, all the crimes heaped against you and I, and all mankind from the beginning of creation were nailed to the cross.  He was saying my blood is enough to do away with them all.  The sacrificial lambs all pointed toward this day but they could only cover the sin.  I’m cleansing it; I’m washing it away for all time.  Just receive it.  It is finished.  He conquered it all…He made a public display of the fact that your sins and mine were nailed to the cross, triumphing over all principalities, powers, evil forces, demonic foes that might come against you.  Christ conquered all that.  So why do we feel defeated?   There is no need.  You are set free in Jesus Christ.  Just receive it.  Just believe it. 

Romans 8:1 – There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.

Romans 8:37 – I am more than a conqueror through Him (Christ Jesus) who loved us (me). 

John 12:31-32 – Now is the judgment of this world; now the ruler of this world will be cast out.  And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself.

Hebrews 3:14-15 – “Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” 

1 John 3:8b – For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.

John 3:16 – For God so loved the world (me, you, all mankind), that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever (me, you, all mankind that will receive) believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.