Last week I did a teaching about “IF”, and will continue it today.  How is it such a small word as “IF” can have such a huge impact on our lives? Let’s explore that further.  It is written in Exodus 15:26, If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee.
Many Christians die each year of sickness and disease, and there are those who say it happens because it is “God’s will”.  But is it?  Are we trying to blame on God what is really our own fault through lack of proper teaching, or refusal to follow God’s directions?  Think about that if you will.  While some will say healing is an automatic blessing, part of our covenant with God, I would point them to the “IF” that begins God’s statement. Yes, healing DOES belong to us, but are we taking advantage of it by obeying the conditions thereof?  Let’s look at Hosea 4:1-6,
Hos 4:1  Hear the word of the LORD, ye children of Israel: for the LORD hath a controversy with the inhabitants of the land, because there is no truth, nor mercy, nor knowledge of God in the land.
Hos 4:2  By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out, and blood toucheth blood.
Hos 4:3  Therefore shall the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein shall languish, with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven; yea, the fishes of the sea also shall be taken away.
Hos 4:4  Yet let no man strive, nor reprove another: for thy people are as they that strive with the priest.
Hos 4:5  Therefore shalt thou fall in the day, and the prophet also shall fall with thee in the night, and I will destroy thy mother.
Hos 4:6  My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.
Indeed, we are living “under grace”, yet that grace does not give us license to disregard the Word of God.  Isn’t it true that we are “healed by the stripes of Jesus”?  Yes, the Word says so.  In other words, healing comes by the Word of God, and it says in John 1:1-3;
Joh 1:1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Joh 1:2  The same was in the beginning with God.
Joh 1:3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
Healing doesn’t come by the medicine, or by the doctor, it comes by the Word, and the Word is Jesus, and His shed blood is the mediator of the covenant.  You know, the devil will try to deceive us in many ways.  One is actually by using the scriptures to deceive us.  He will use the scripture that says we are healed by the stripes of Jesus against us.  He will say, See, YOU aren’t healed, so God is not keeping His word, is He? But, like the way the devil twisted Psalm 91 when he was tempting Jesus in the wilderness, he will also conveniently twist the scriptures or omit something it says to trip YOU up by the Word.  Simply by omitting a part of the scripture or by using a verse or verses out of context, robs us of the full understanding of it.
There are those who try to insist we are healed by the stripes of Jesus with no conditions attached, that it is a promise of God that cannot be broken.  Yes it IS a promise of God that cannot be broken, but yet, it has conditions attached to receiving it.  I know people don’t like to hear that stuff, but it’s the truth, and if you want the “benefits”, you have to read the contract before you sign.  Simply saying “I didn’t read the fine print” doesn’t release you from YOUR part of the contract.  That’s why God said through Hosea that “MY people are destroyed for lack of knowledge…” You see, not reading the “fine print” and heeding it costs many their healing, and sometimes their life.  Is it God’s will they die or are destroyed?  NO!  God MADE the provision for your healing, and it isn’t God’s fault if we choose to be ignorant or disobedient.
Healing is not taught in many churches today, and as a result, their members are missing out on a benefit they could have, if only they were taught properly.  My wife brought up an interesting illustration to me a few minutes ago.  She asked, Do you know how to play tic-tac-toe? She said, One person makes their move, then the other one, meaning God makes His move, then we make ours.  Here’s my take on it; if one doesn’t move, the other one doesn’t get to move either. Well, God made HIS move, and He told us how to be healed.  Now it’s OUR move…Well, I know how to play tic-tac-toe, and there’s a way to win most every time, and there is a way to lose most every time.  If you start the game putting your mark in any corner, you’re almost guaranteed you will win if you keep putting your mark in the corners. There are rules to winning every situation. The way to winning with God is to obey His rules, and the devil hopes you won’t do that, but will try to do it by your own rules.  And of course, that’s a guaranteed loss.
When we try to get healed “our way”, we’re going to lose.  Some lose body parts that God created to keep you healthy, but sometimes doctors talk you out of those parts because those parts are not working right at the time.  But once they’re gone, they’re gone, and now you’re trying to live with less than God created you with.  Had they consistently used God’s Word and obeyed the conditions attached to the Word, they would still have their missing parts, and they would be working again, but it is those very people who will say, “It wasn’t God’s will to heal me.” To them I say, If it wasn’t God’s will to heal you, then WHY are you disobeying God and trying to get well? We both know how silly that is, or at least I HOPE so.
But then again, lack of knowledge is the culprit.  That’s why I’m here teaching you how to have your healing that God has already provided for you.  But healing is on God’s terms, not yours.  Does that mean God doesn’t want EVERYONE to be healed?  No, like I said, God made His move, now it’s YOUR turn.  You aren’t waiting on God to heal you, He is waiting for you to make your move and RECEIVE it.
Just like salvation, it has already long ago been provided, but it doesn’t become yours until you believe and act on it.  Healing is exactly the same.  Don’t say it’s too hard.  It isn’t.  In fact, it’s so easy you have to work at it to miss it.  Yet, many will, because they want to have faith in MY faith, rather than develop their own.  I’m happy to “spoon-feed” baby Christians to get them off to a healthy start, but God expects you to “grow up in the faith”.  Yes, it takes effort, and it took lots of MY effort to get in God’s Word and learn what belongs to me, and it takes my daily effort to OBEY God.  But it’s worth it!  Oh, my goodness, yes, it’s worth it!
While you’d say a newborn baby in a diaper that coos and burps and smiles and slobbers and fills diapers is cute, would you still say the same about a twenty year old that does the same thing?  NO!  It isn’t a bit cute, it’s pathetic!  Yet, there are many twenty year old Christians still in diapers that aren’t growing up, because they don’t get in the Word of God and feed on it  and OBEY!!!!. And they’re bawling and squalling that God’s Word isn’t working for them, and they’re turning others away from God as well.  Do yourself a favor today, get in God’s Word and read the “IF” words, and supply your part of the “IF”.  God said, I am the LORD that healeth thee. But DON’T miss the “IF” at the beginning.  God made His move, now He’s waiting for you to make YOUR move….