Like words to describe various facets of a diamond, there are many beautiful Hebrew names that point to one of the infinite characteristics of God. Names such as Adonai (“Lord over all”), Jehovah Nissi (“God our banner who gives victory”), and Yahweh-Jireh (“God will provide”) point us to recall and call on God in our times of need.  As I continue with my “God alphabet,” I want to point out one of these great names:

Jehovah Rapha:  God our Healer.

God heals people.  The One who created everything—including us—is the ultimate Healer of our souls, minds, emotions, and bodies. Even as God loves to heal and restore people, His primary plan is to inaugurate a new, forever kingdom where sickness and death are gone, no longer in the realm of our existence. God is preparing this kingdom for all who have entered into a redeemed relationship with Him through Jesus Christ.

In his earthy ministry, Jesus compassionately touched and healed many people. In doing this, He revealed His divine nature and gave a glimpse of the coming kingdom of God the Father:

“…when the sun was setting, all those who had people sick with various diseases brought them to him. By laying his hands on each one of them, [Jesus] cured them.” Luke 4: 40

God, who is unchanging, still does this today! I have personally seen God’s healing touch bring people back from hospice to health, life-threatening disease to clean diagnosis, and troubled soul to peace-filled heart. I have also seen God’s healing touch on the people who have had to say goodbye to a loved one. These people were given God’s supernatural peace, strength, comfort, endurance, and hope for the future.

I stand in awe of God’s love and power in all these circumstances.  So how do we approach God for healing? Here are a few considerations:

1. As we pray for healing, it’s right first to ask God to perform a spiritual heart-check, just as the Psalmist did:

“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” Psalm 139: 23-24

As much as it’s very good to seek God’s healing, it’s also imperative that we seek God FIRST so that healing doesn’t take precedence over God and become a false idol.  Giving God prime importance and freedom in our being also breaks spiritual blockages within us and frees us to experience His healing power.

2. When we pray for healing, we should seek for God to be glorified in and through us. As my pastor and friend Chris Holck has often stated, “God loves to show up…and show off!” Just before Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, he reminded people of this when He stated:

“Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” John 11:40

When a few of us prayed over our friend Emily who lay in a life-threatening coma at the hospital after a severe brain bleed, we prayed that God would be glorified in and through her. Not only did God bring physical healing to her over the next weeks and months, but Emily’s mother also sought a new relationship with God after seeing His power at work in her daughter. God was glorified as He showed up and showed off!

3. I’m a big proponent of praying God’s Word out loud in all areas of life, including healing. The Bible tells us that God’s breathed word never returns empty but always accomplishes what He desires (see Isaiah 55:11). I have remembered and treasured the following verses and often pray them out loud, especially in times of sickness:

“Praise the Lord, my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits—who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” Psalm 103:1-5

God is true to His Word and will answer when we pray to Him.

4. Seek God’s healing in the presence of other believers. There is power when God’s Word moves in the church, as this vital Scripture verse reveals:

“Is anyone sick among you? 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 any sins, he will be forgiven.” James 5:14

I have witnessed God’s healing power manifested in the obedient carrying out of this instruction.

5. Finally, wait on God, trust in Him, and rest in Him. He will renew your strength!

“”…Those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40: 31

Jehovah Rapha:  God is our Healer.  God is My Healer and YOUR Healer. The “H’ of my God alphabet is this: God is the Ultimate Healer.

God bless you!

Chris Atkins