Category Archives: Miracles

Bitterness Hurts the One Who Holds It

Bitterness, resentment, and unforgiveness can be real obstacles to healing relationships or just healing in your own life after feeling hurt by others. Even if the person who hurt you does not repent and you never reconcile, holding bitterness and resentment is not helpful. Release it to God and move on with your life.

[Matthew 6:14-15] 14 “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. 15 But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.

[Romans 12:14-19]

14 Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them. 15 Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!

17 Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. 18 Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone. 19 Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say,

“I will take revenge;
    I will pay them back,”[a]
    says the Lord.

[Hebrew 12:14-15] 14 Work at living in peace with everyone, and work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord. 15 Look after each other so that none of you fails to receive the grace of God. Watch out that no poisonous root of bitterness grows up to trouble you, corrupting many.

Remember that holding bitterness and resentment in your heart continues to hurt you and impede your healing process. It is like holding a hot pot without a handle… it hurts the one who holds it.

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Jesus Heals and Casts Out Demons

We often face hardship in this world including sickness, and yes… demon possession, though many today reject that concept. However, scripture is clear… it differentiates between Jesus’ healing of sickness and His casting out of demons. Jesus demonstrates His power through a series of miracles in Matthew 8:1-17.

Large crowds followed Jesus as he came down the mountainside. Suddenly, a man with leprosy approached him and knelt before him. “Lord,” the man said, “if you are willing, you can heal me and make me clean.”

Jesus reached out and touched him. “I am willing,” he said. “Be healed!” And instantly the leprosy disappeared. Then Jesus said to him, “Don’t tell anyone about this. Instead, go to the priest and let him examine you. Take along the offering required in the law of Moses for those who have been healed of leprosy.[a] This will be a public testimony that you have been cleansed.”

When Jesus returned to Capernaum, a Roman officer[b] came and pleaded with him, “Lord, my young servant[c] lies in bed, paralyzed and in terrible pain.”

Jesus said, “I will come and heal him.”

But the officer said, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home. Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed. I know this because I am under the authority of my superior officers, and I have authority over my soldiers. I only need to say, ‘Go,’ and they go, or ‘Come,’ and they come. And if I say to my slaves, ‘Do this,’ they do it.”

10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to those who were following him, he said, “I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel! 11 And I tell you this, that many Gentiles will come from all over the world—from east and west—and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the feast in the Kingdom of Heaven. 12 But many Israelites—those for whom the Kingdom was prepared—will be thrown into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

13 Then Jesus said to the Roman officer, “Go back home. Because you believed, it has happened.” And the young servant was healed that same hour.

14 When Jesus arrived at Peter’s house, Peter’s mother-in-law was sick in bed with a high fever. 15 But when Jesus touched her hand, the fever left her. Then she got up and prepared a meal for him.

16 That evening many demon-possessed people were brought to Jesus. He cast out the evil spirits with a simple command, and he healed all the sick. 17 This fulfilled the word of the Lord through the prophet Isaiah, who said,

“He took our sicknesses
    and removed our diseases.”[d]

Jesus makes no promise of healing everyone physically in this world. We live in a fallen world based on our own sin nature. Sometimes it may even serve God’s bigger plan to allow sickness or death in some circumstances for the furthering of His kingdom. God allowed Satan to torment Job, a faithful servant of God’s,  with physical illness and pain… not to mention a long list of other suffering.

In most of the examples above… people who had demons or were ill sought out Jesus. They came to him humbly and in faith that He could and would heal them. It is clear that neither illness nor demons are a difficult problem for Jesus to solve.

Unfortunately quite a few pastors twist this scripture and others like it. They would have you believe if you come to Jesus with faith you are guaranteed a healing and if you are not healed then you failed in your faith. Though a lack of faith may certainly block you from receiving healing from Jesus, the fact that you were not healed does not always mean you did not have enough faith or that God did not hear your prayers. Sometimes He wants us to glorify Him even in our illness or suffering. Sometimes it is just a result of a fallen world and He has chosen not to intervene to provide healing. We may never know why He chooses not to intervene at times, but we are to trust God as His followers.

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O Lord, Don’t Rebuke Me in Your Anger

In Psalm 6 we get to share in David’s grief in time of suffering. David consistently turns to God throughout his live in times of adversity.

O Lord, don’t rebuke me in your anger
    or discipline me in your rage.
Have compassion on me, Lord, for I am weak.
    Heal me, Lord, for my bones are in agony.
I am sick at heart.
    How long, O Lord, until you restore me?

Return, O Lord, and rescue me.
    Save me because of your unfailing love.
For the dead do not remember you.
    Who can praise you from the grave?[b]

I am worn out from sobbing.
    All night I flood my bed with weeping,
    drenching it with my tears.
My vision is blurred by grief;
    my eyes are worn out because of all my enemies.

Go away, all you who do evil,
    for the Lord has heard my weeping.
The Lord has heard my plea;
    the Lord will answer my prayer.
10 May all my enemies be disgraced and terrified.
    May they suddenly turn back in shame.

David starts by acknowledging that his actions are worthy of rebuke from God. He is not leading a perfect, godly life. He accepts that God may be disciplining him, but asks Him not to do so in anger.

David honestly and openly comes before God with humble heart and cries out in prayer that he compassion and healing. He needs God to save him from his difficult situation in life.

David recognizes that God is not saving him because he is worthy, but rather because of God’s unfailing love.

David clearly feels overwhelmed by the situation and his enemies. He cannot overcome the challenge by himself.

David knows even while still praying that God has heard him and his prayer. Further, despite the fact that he is in this difficult time, he still has faith that God will answer his prayer.

Not once does David blame God for his situation, collapse, and give up. He is broken and suffering and comes humbly and faithfully before God for help.

What a beautiful example of how we can approach our loving God when we are in times of difficulty, when we feel totally overwhelmed.

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Cleansing the Temple

After Jesus enters Jerusalem for the Passover feast, and to be crucified, buried and resurrected for our sins, He visits the temple. In Matthew 21:12-17, we are reminded that there is such as thing as righteous anger from God against those who profane what He has declared to be holy… to be set aside for His purposes. God is not just love, but is righteous and holy and absolutely feels righteous anger against us when we break His commands and instructions, especially when we know better, or should.

12And Jesus entered the temple and drove out all those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves. 13And He said to them, “It is written, ‘MY HOUSE SHALL BE CALLED A HOUSE OF PRAYER’; but you are making it a ROBBERSDEN.”

14And the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them. 15But when the chief priests and the scribes saw the wonderful things that He had done, and the children who were shouting in the temple, “Hosanna to the Son of David,” they became indignant 16and said to Him, “Do You hear what these children are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read, ‘OUT OF THE MOUTH OF INFANTS AND NURSING BABIES YOU HAVE PREPARED PRAISE FOR YOURSELF’?” 17And He left them and went out of the city to Bethany, and spent the night there.

God’s temple is to be set aside as holy, for God’s purposes, not just as market to sell things. So, too are other things which God commands, such as the Sabbath. It is to be set aside to honor God and obey His commands, not profaned or made common by work. God commanded us to celebrate Sabbath on the seventh day of the week from Genesis and reinforced it through the life of Jesus as He did so without fail. (In the Jewish calendar, days start at sundown, so Sabbath actually starts Friday at sundown and ends Saturday at sundown. Sunday was introduced by tradition of men in contradiction to God’s commands.) What God sets apart as holy, we are not to make common. We should keep it holy, whether it is the temple, or the Sabbath, or other things God sets apart as holy.

Jesus, after disrupting the market, welcomed the blind and lame to be healed at the temple. All the chief priests and scribes could do is stand indignant, disregarding the miracles Jesus  performed, and disregarding the truth of who He was. They should have known better, but were unwilling to submit to God when His teaching was different from their traditions of men. They were so blinded by their religion and traditions of men, that theses esteemed and studied scholars of scripture could not recognize Jesus as the Christ and Messiah, even when it was so obvious that even the children could see it. They called out “Hosanna to the Son of David,”.

The chief priests and scribes challenged Jesus that He should deny such a claim, but He did the opposite. He accepted it and rebuked the religious leaders.

Jesus clearly claimed to be the Christ and Messiah. He is not “a good man” or a “good teacher” or a “good prophet”. Jesus Christ is either God, as He claimed, or he is a madman or a liar.  Judaism and Islam have made a significant error in their assessment of Jesus Christ. Jesus is God and to deny Him is to deny the offer of salvation through grace by faith.

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