Dr. John Hartmann

Proclaiming the Whole Counsel of God

Dr. John Hartmann header image 2
Cialis online

The Power of Prayer for Healing and in Suffering

March 6th, 2011 · No Comments

This study addresses the three questions raised in James 5:13-18 in relation to what one is to do when one is 1) suffering, 2) cheerful, or 3) sick.

Please Note: Due to technical issues this audio has severe static and is difficult to hear between 16:21-33:35 and 54:00-63:26

We lay a good foundation for understanding this text by surveying what the NT and other literature tells us about James, the Lord’s brother and author of this epistle. His name appears in a list of Jesus’ siblings in Matthew 13:53-58, and then in a text that lists James as one of the chosen witnesses of Jesus’ resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:7). His name also appears three times in the book of Acts (12:17; 15:13; 21:18) and twice in Paul’s letter to the Galatians (1:19; 2:9). He also appears in the writings of the Jewish historian Josephus, and in the very early church history of Eusebius, bishop of Caesarea. James, the Lord’s brother, was, without question, a very important and prominent figure not only in the early church but also among the Jewish people in general, who spoke of him as “the righteous one”.

James writes his letter to believers who are suffering in one of four possible ways (the list here is not meant to be exhaustive):

1) Persecution for their testimony of Jesus (cf. Acts 8:1-4; Hebrews 10:32-34)

2) Famine (cf. Acts 11:27-30; Galatians 2:6-10; 2 Corinthians 8-9).

3) Economic injustices and oppression (pictured in James 5:1-6; cf. Malachi 3:5).

4) Sickness. The covenant God, in various places throughout the OT, reveals His “Name” to His people, one aspect being that He is the Healer of His people; cf. Exodus 15:26. God has many means through which He works to heal sicknesses; James lists one of them: anointing with oil by the elders, the prayer of faith, confession of sins, forgiveness, restoration.

James also exhorts his readers to find encouragement and help through consideration of the prophets and the much-afflicted Job, both of whom are examples of endurance when suffering, and of the triumph of Divine compassion and grace (James 5:10-11)

In summary, God’s prescription for those who are going through suffering is that they above all pray. The Lord’s counsel to the suffering is not resignation but actively and intentionally seeking His face. He is a rewarder of those who seek for Him (Hebrews 11:6).

Our study closes with consideration of Psalm 145 and Jeremiah 29:1-14, both of which give the seeker the promise of a future and a hope, even restoration of fortunes from a God Who redeems.

Tags: Sermons

0 responses so far ↓

  • There are no comments yet...Kick things off by filling out the form below.

You must log in to post a comment.