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Sermon of the Week 
Saturday, December 16 2023

A few weeks ago I said that every time we open the bible, we are reading the will. When a will is read, everyone gathers to find out what they will receive from the individual who has passed on. Every church service is the reading of the will.

When 67 year old carpenter Russell Herman died in 1994, his will included a staggering list of things he wished to leave money to. Included in his plan for distribution was more than two billion dollars for the City of East St. Louis, another billion and a half for the State of Illinois, two and a half billion for the national forest system, and to top off the list, Herman left six trillion dollars to the government to help pay off the national debt. That sounds amazingly generous, but there was a small problem—Herman’s only asset when he died was a 1983 Oldsmobile. So, what he wanted to give, had no security to back it up....                                                                    I’m glad to report that in God’s will and testament, He is willing to give more than you can think or ask or even imagine, and He has been giving it out to all those who are willing to receive, for 2000 years....It’sincluded in the will.... So, let’s read some of the will today....

ISAIAH 53:4-5 Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed (valued) Him not. He was stricken, and smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are (present tense) healed.

This passage in Isaiah foretells the great redemptive sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross, paying the price to redeem all mankind from the curse resulting from Adam’s rebellion. As you can clearly see, it includes healing along with full payment for our sins.

In Matthew 8 we have the inspired commentary of the Holy Spirit Himself, affirming that the passage in Isaiah 53:4-5 includes physical healing.

MATTHEW 8:16-17 When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, 17 that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: "He Himself took our infirmities And bore our sicknesses."

Every Christmas, my mom would have her 3 children make a list of what they would like for Christmas. Then we would be excited to see which of the things we listed, would show up under the tree. We knew that one of the items would be there, Sothere was still a mystery about which one we would get. We already had something we hadn’t taken possession of, but we knew it was still ours. Scripture tells us what God has made available to us. It’s already ours, but we haven’t taken possession of it yet.                                                                                          As Peter, was writing to believers in New Covenant times, he tells them that they were (already) healed. That didn’t mean they were in possession of the healing, but that healing still belonged to them.

1 PETER 2:24 “He Himself, bore our sins in His own body on the cross, so that we, having died to sin, might live for righteousness -- by His stripes you have been healed”.

Let’s declare together.....”I am a child of God.  I have receivedthe Lord as my Savior and He has blessed me with His righteousness.  My Lord has taken sickness and disease out of my life.  Sickness and disease cannot stay in my body because God has taken it away from me. I walk in divine health. I am healed and healthy in the Name of Jesus”.

Just as much as your hands or your feet belong to you, healing belongs to you. You do not need to ask God, if He will allow youto use your hands or feet. They belong to you. They were given to you as a gift that is part of you and You did not have to earn them in any way.

It is the same with healing. You could not earn it. It was a gift from God that is part of you. Jesus paid for it with His own suffering. By the wounds He suffered, healing became availablefor you. When you say “I am saved” you are also saying “I am healed”, “I am delivered”, “I am blessed”, “My God shall supply all my needs, according to His riches in glory”....

The normal human response to this great news is usually something like "If healing belongs to me, then why am I sick?"

Ownership and possession are not the same thing. You can own something that you have never taken possession of.

If you had money in a bank account in your name, but you did not know about it, it would do you no good.

If someone bought a house for you and gave you the legal ownership papers, it would belong to you. Even if you had never seen the house and were living in another state, it would still be yours. Even if someone else was living in the house, it would still be yours.

But if you wanted to possess that house and enjoy living in it, you would have to decide to move there. If others occupied it when you arrived, you would have to evict them and give them their walking papers. As the owner, the law is on your side, but you have to enforce the law that allows you to possess it. If sickness has moved into the house you own, it must be evicted as a trespasser. Jesus drove out the trespasser and healed them.

Jesus purchased for you the house called "Healing & Health" and the written Word of God is the legal notice of your ownership. Where you choose to live now is up to you. Just because this belongs to you does not mean the Lord will force you to live in it.                                                                                                  

                                                                                                                      So, we should not approach healing in a passive manner, waiting on God to do something. What we have torealize is that God has already done something about sickness and disease. Now we are supposed to do something. We are to resist sickness and actively receive and possess by faith the healing God has already given us in Christ.

Provision has been made by God. Now it is our responsibility to possess it.

Let’s declare together.....”When I call upon God, He always answers me.  He is with me in trouble.  He delivers me and honors me with long life. God is showing me His salvation right now.  He’s showing me His deliverance, His protection, and His healing power.  That power is flowing through my body this very moment.  God is healing me right now. I believe I have received my inheritance, and sickness and disease cannot prosper against me because God is my Deliverer and my Healer”.

This is exactly the way God worked with the children of Israel in the Old Testament. Father God told them that the promised land belonged to them, but when they arrived, it was still occupied by giants and they had to fight to possess the land.When Joshua first entered the land, many thought of it as a land of giants, but Joshua and Caleb saw it as the land of Joshua and Caleb.... Caleb said, “I am well able to take the land”.....It was all in the way they saw it.... 

It will be no different with you and me. For you to possess all that God says is yours will require you to fight the fight of faith for it, but your fight will not be with other people, but with your own feelings, thoughts, emotions, and will. Those things will keep you out of the faith realm and keep you in the natural realm of what you see and feel and hear, if you let them, and the giants will beat you down...

God told them “I have given you the land” (past tense) but you must still possess it!!! Just as you accept the Bible as evidence enough to believe that your sins are forgiven and you have a home in Heaven, regardless of how you may feel, you should do the same with what the Bible says about What God says is already yours.

With that out of the way, we can now focus on how to possess what already belongs to us, instead of begging God to give us something He has already given to us.

We went to West Palm for Thanksgiving. The ladies went shopping, while we guys went to the golf range. When we got back, to the resort, there was something Winnie was not able to find, so we made one more trip so she could get what she had been looking for. We found out while we were out, that her phone was missing. I got a call on my phone and the manager of the store said, she had found Winnie’s phone, but we would need to get there quick, because they were closing... Here’s my point. Even though Winnie was not in possession of her phone, it was still her phone. All she had to do to have it, was go get it.

Mark 11:24 Believe that you have received it and you shall have it

What evidence should we demand of God before we will believe that Jesus purchased our healing and it is already ours? Should we demand that our bodies show no symptoms of sickness? Should we demand a signed note from our medical doctor? Should we demand that God appear to us and tell us that His written Word is actually true, in order to believe it.

Are we not willing to accept the evidence of God's Word, but willing to always believe what the symptoms in our bodies tell us? Are the symptoms in our bodies more reliable than God? Or is His word enough.                                                                                                                      We can’t approach God’s covenant of healing, like Gertrude approached sky diving.... Gertrude was about to make her first parachute jump. The instructor said, “First, you pull the big cord. If it doesn’t work, you pull the little cord. There will be a red pickup truck waiting for you when you land.”

Well Gertrude jumped and when she pulled the big cord, nothing happened, so she pulled the little cord. Still nothing happened. “That’s great,” she muttered. “The way things are going, that red pickup truck won’t be there either.”

Should we ignore what God has said and trust completely in our physical senses, and medical doctors, as our supreme authority? There’s a reason why Doctor’s call their profession, “A Practice”... THEY’RE STILL PRACTICING!!...God is not, He doesn’t need practice!

*Who is the final authority? It may be true that sickness is in your physical body, but that is no proof it has a right to stay there. Do our symptoms make God a liar, or does God’s word make the sickness a liar! They can’t both be true...

Wouldn’t Winnie be foolish to think that because her phone was not in her possession, that it no longer belonged to her...While she was trying to find it, it was still, always hers..                                                                                           We can beg God to heal us, and believe He has when we feel no more symptoms of sickness in our body, Or, we can believe what God says in the Bible that healing was obtained for us through the sacrifice of our Lord Jesus, and therefore we should give the sickness no power,   and by faith possess the healing that already belongs to us in spite of the symptoms that we see or feel.. just like the lost phone, the gifts of God belong to us regardless of what we see or don’t see.                                                                                                                  

Mark 16:17 And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; 18 they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover."

Hey, church, there’s no child sized Holy Spirit and another Holy Spirit for adults or teens.... One size fits all...My son Chris is a Children’s Pastor in Virginia and he has the children do all of the ministry, and they pray for the sick and afflicted, just like in adult church. 

God's Word has told us what belongs to us. Now we must act on what we have been told, and resist everything contrary to our new reality, that Jesus has redeemed us from the power of the curse.                                                     

Let’s declare it together..... “Praise you Lord God. I give You thanks for all of your benefits and I thank You for forgiving all of my iniquities and allowing me to stand righteous before You. I praise You Lord, for healing all of my diseases. I believe I am walking in Divine health and I am healthy and whole. I thank You that You have redeemed my life from the pit and from destruction. The devil will not destroy me with sickness and disease.  I will not accept it Lord, for You have crowned me with Your loving kindness and tender mercy, and, satisfied my mouth with good things, so that my youth is renewed like the eagle’s. My body is strong and full of health.  I look better and better every day.  My body is being renewed and every tissue and organ in my body is performing it’s perfect work.  I am healthy.  I am healed. I am whole”.

We choose to overcome, but Can we expect that all Christians will always follow God’s plan in sickness? Not any more than we can expect them to always resist sin. But just because we fail to walk in complete victory is not proof that it is still God's will for us to be healed, body, soul and spirit, and know that it is completely available to us. Scripture uses the same words to tell us Jesus bore our sicknesses as it does to tell us that Jesus bore our sins.                                                                

Psalm 103:2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: 3 Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases.” It’s a package deal!                                                                                                               

We know that we may still sin, but we understand that Jesus has set us free from sin's power so we don't have to remain under the power of sin any longer. We must learn to see sickness and resist it, the same way we would resist sin.

Salvation is a package deal. When we received Christ, we received our savior, our healer, our deliverer, our peace, and a friend that sticks closer than a brother.                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Peter 2:24 “For He bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sin, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.”

Healing belongs to you. So decide to quit letting the devil steal health from you and your loved ones.

SAY THIS with me... “Healing belongs to me because Jesus already paid for it”.

   GOD’S COVENANT OF HEALING belongs to us. No matter what condition                                   

     Comes our way that we have to overcome.

     Exodus 15:26 “…For I am the LORD who heals you... (present tense).                   

I said last week that blessings and curses cannot occupy the same   space, so when you establish one, you evict the other.....We read the scripture from 1 Samuel 5:4 “But the following morning when they rose, there was Dagon, fallen on his face on the ground before the ark of the Lord! His head and hands had been broken off and were lying on the threshold; only his broken body remained”.

The head represented his authority which was broken off, his hands represented his power which was broken off! God has done that for us!

Satan is not greater than your choice when God backs you up, and the Holy Spirit of truth, confirms your truth confession!

Here are a few covenant statements in God’s word....

“Your words are life to those that find them, and health to all their flesh”. “They shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover”

‘We shall prosper and be in health even as our soul prospers”

“By His stripes I am healed”

“He forgives our iniquities and heals our diseases”

”Your words oh Lord, are life and health to those who seek them”

What a powerful truth and reality, we have been given!

The work is already done, the gift is already given, What we need has already been provided, Now, we reach out in faith and receive it!

Mark 16:15 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and if they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them,  they will place their hands on sick people, and they will be healed.”

Let’s declare it together.....”Jesus, You bore all my sickness and disease so that I don’t have to bear them. You took every sickness and every disease known to man upon Your own body. I no longer have to bear what You Lord, have already borne for me. I will not allow any disease or sickness to live in my body because You took all of my weakness and gave me Your strength, You took my sin and gave me Your righteousness, You took my sickness and gave me Your wholeness, so I refuse to allow sickness and pain to have any place                                             

I am healed right now. I receive health in place of sickness, strength in place of weakness, and comfort in place of pain. I am healed because You took my place.  I am healed by Your finished work. I praise You Lord that Your healing power is flowing through me right now driving out every symptom of sickness and disease. I thank you that I am not healed by what I feel or what man says. I am healed by Your immutable promise, and provision which You already made on calvary”.                                            

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