Many of us are in need of healing. We often pray that our Heavenly Father will lay His healing hands on those who are sick and those who are suffering so that they may be delivered from their circumstances. Scripture speaks often of miraculous healing through the work of Jesus Christ and faith through God. The Bible says, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am Your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10). God is there not only in the midst of our worries, pain and suffering, but also in the midst of the worries, pain and suffering of others. Whether you are in need of healing or you want to see more healing, God is there to restore you and bring you closer to Him.
If you are ready for a healing breakthrough, it’s important that you turn to Scripture. There are countless passages in the Bible that will encourage you and help you focus on finding comfort through the healing of Christ both spiritually and physically. We know from Scripture that the Lord has heard our prayers and seen our tears. He will heal us (2 Kings 20:5). Because we know that there is healing through God, we can create an atmosphere of faith for healing. However, there are obstacles that get in the way of people having faith in healing.
In the book “The Healing Breakthrough” pastor and author Randy Clark talks in detail about the false beliefs many Christians have about healing. For example, many use the passage “Paul’s Vision and His Thorn” (2 Corinthians 12:1-10) as the answer to why God isn’t healing them. This is problematic and here’s why. When Clark pastored in his younger days and wanted to be pray for a person’s healing, he was told, “No, just pray for that I’ll be strong in times of sickness, and that I’ll know God’s grace is sufficient,” and on other occasions he would be told, “Pastor, remember that even Paul wasn’t healed when he asked for it; he was told God’s grace would be sufficient.” Most people only pull from the last part of the passage: “Therefore, in order to keep me from being conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleased with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in my weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecution, in difficulties. For when I am weak, I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:7-10). However, when you take a closer look at the full passage, you begin to see how Paul’s words don’t necessarily correlate with the healing many of us call out to God for. First, we must note why Paul was given this “thorn”. It was given to him to keep him from “becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations” (verse 7). Clark explains that there are few of us that have had such surpassingly great revelations that we were not even sure if we were not even in our bodies at the time. Thus, we are hardly candidates to receive the “thorn” like Paul’s to keep us from being conceited.
Next, Paul calls his thorn a “messenger of Satan” (verse 7). If this is coming off to you as a very odd reference to sickness or disease, you’re on the right track. Clark explains that a better term for messenger in this passage would be a person, fallen angel or demon who carried a message from Satan. This would fit well if Paul is dealing in this passage with the Judaizers from Jerusalem. The word Judaizer comes from a Greek verb meaning “to live according to Jewish customs”. In the early church, Judaizers taught that in order for a Christian to be truly right with God, he must conform to Mosaic Law. According to their views and customs, Gentiles had to become Jewish proselytes first, and then they could come to Christ. In Galatians 2:14, Paul describes how he confronted Peter for forcing Gentile Christians to “Judaize”. This false doctrine was strongly condemned in the book of Galatians.
Finally, there are few references to thorns in the Old Testament and of the three that are referenced; they don’t refer to sickness at all but to human enemies. Clark explains that it is more likely that Paul’s thorn in the flesh, which has so often been interpreted as a physical sickness or disease is in fact referring to a person or persons. The thorns represent not sickness but people. What stands in the way of many having a healing breakthrough is our interpretation of Scripture. When people think that Paul’s “thorn” refers to sickness, and how this same “thorn” is why God is not healing them, it can stand in the way of healing. If we are looking for a healing breakthrough, it’s important that we uncover and clear away and false beliefs about healing.