When I was just learning to drive, the object was to stay on the road and out of the ditch.  The dirt roads were narrow and the ditches were sometimes deep. Yeah, I know, most of you don’t know what a dirt road is, but it was back in the early 60’s. 1960’s, not 1860’s.  I’m not THAT old…. I remember my Dad must have somehow knew my eyes were fixed on the road about a foot in front of the car, so he told me to look farther ahead down the road.  It was hard for me to do that, because I was more interested in where I was than where I would be in a few seconds.
    Years later when taking flying lessons, I had to use that lesson of looking farther ahead again, in order to keep the plane on the runway when taking off and landing.  You pick a place WAY in front of you and head toward it, otherwise, you tend to weave from side to side and over-correct, and maybe end up in a wreck or overturned.  And it’s that way in the spirit realm as well.
 Over the years I’ve heard a lot of good teaching, but there have been a few that have failed to stay in the middle of the road, and have ended up in the ditch and taken many with them.  Now, I’m called primarily into a healing ministry, so in the beginning that was all I wanted to focus on, but it didn’t take long for me to see there’s more to the Gospel of Jesus Christ than healing.  You see, Christ Jesus is concerned about healing of the total man, spirit, soul, and body, and if we just focus on one area, we tend to ignore the others, which leads to getting out of balance.
    Most important, of course,  is dealing with the sin problem which brought mankind sickness in the first place, and the Lord Jesus didn’t trust someone else to deal with that, He came Himself and died on the cross as payment for our sin. Rising again the third day from the dead, He placed His blood on the Mercy Seat in heaven as payment in full for our sins, so the sin problem is solved forevermore.  Paid in full.  Gone.  Now we can move on to other things.
   Grace:  ah, yes, the word that sets us free from bondage.  You see, we are still the vile beings we were before Christ Jesus died on the cross for us.  We aren’t saved by anything WE do, but by what HE did on the cross.  Nothing has really changed with the nature of man, we’re still sinful by nature, as any of us will testify who have been saved by the Blood of Jesus.  But two things happen when we ask the Lord Jesus to save us: number one, our spirit gets born again, and somehow by the wonderful grace of God, we no longer delight in doing things that separated us from God in the first place.  Number two, we lose the consciousness of sin.  Oh, sin is still out there, but here’s what it means to me, God no longer looks at me and sees sin, because Jesus took care of my sin problem.  That means when the Father looks at me, He sees the Blood of Jesus that has been applied to me, and I’m exempt from being charged with sin.  Does that mean I cannot sin?  Yes and no. 
   Yes, I could go rob the Seven-Eleven store, but I won’t, because that would displease my heavenly Father, and I no longer want to displease Him. No, because according to 1 John 3:9, Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for His seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.  Does that sound like “double-talk” to you?  It doesn’t need to.  See it like this: if God has said your sins are forgiven, and He has, then sin is no longer an issue for you.  It’s like the Government taking down all the speed limit signs on the highway: if there’s no speed limit, there’s no way to break it,  Now before you think I’ve gotten in the ditch with this, remember, if you love the Lord, you will not want to displease Him, you will not want to practice sin.   And only those who love the Lord are forgiven of their sin. Now, that doesn’t mean we won’t slip occasionally, and that is what “grace” is for.  1 John 1:9 covers the times we slip up.  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  And if all unrighteousness is removed from us, all that remains is that we are clean.  See, isn’t grace wonderful?  We don’t have to spend our time begging God to forgive us every ten minutes.  We ARE forgiven, as His children.  Let’s move on.
   There are those who preach a prosperity message, and that’s fine, because God doesn’t want His little crumb-grabbers to be crumb-grabbers.  He wants us to sit at His table and enjoy the goodness He sets before us, not be crawling around under the table grubbing for crumbs.  You see, poverty is a doctrine some churches try to put on God’s children to make them think if they’re poor, they are holy, but poverty is a curse!  Don’t you see, Jesus became a curse for us, and delivered us from the curse, ALL of it!  On the other side of the coin, there are those who are so blinded by the prosperity message, that it is all they can see, and they get in the ditch with it.  And of course, the devil will play upon the greedy nature of people to get them so focused on the prosperity message that they aren’t interested in anything but prosperity.  Forget God, just give me the money.  What happens then?  Some preachers promise if you give into their ministry that God is somehow obligated to give you a hundred-fold return on your giving.  The dollar signs light up in people’s eyes when they hear that, and they think if I give a dollar, I’ll get a hundred. If I give a hundred, I’ll get ten thousand, if I give a thousand, I’ll get a hundred thousand.  Yes, there are preachers who preach that, and I have personally heard it.  And when God doesn’t do what the preacher promised, they get mad at God and walk away.  Only it’s hard to walk out of a steep, slippery ditch, and that’s what they’ve allowed themselves to get into.
   There are those who only focus on the healing ministry of the Lord Jesus, and forget the other things He did, like shedding His blood to take away our sins.  True, they may need healing for their body, and we read in the Bible that the sick came out to him by multitudes, and He healed them ALL.  But tell me, what good is a healed body if you’re going to hell with it when you die?  Get the sin problem taken care of FIRST, then the healing will come.  Some try to put the cart before the horse and have their healed body so they can go back to their sinful life.  Sorry, that doesn’t work.  Now, to set the record straight, I have seen many people healed by the grace of God who were not saved at the time of their healing, but when they saw the goodness and grace of God, they came for salvation QUICKLY!  Only God knows what is truly in the heart of a person, and He does as He sees fit for their eternal good. 
    We see clearly in the Bible that God is not willing that ANY should perish, but all come to repentance, and if it be that a person must suffer with sickness for a while in order to come to repentance, the greater good is that they be saved so as not to suffer hellfire.  God used the sickness the devil put on me to get my attention, and boy did He ever get my attention!  When I saw I was dying, I finally repented and asked Jesus to save me.  Did God make me sick?  No.  Here’s how to stay out of the ditch: nowhere in the Bible does it say God puts sickness on people to teach them a lesson.  In fact, it is written in Deuteronomy 7:12-15, that He delivers us from sickness!  Wherefore it shall come to pass, if ye hearken to these judgments, and keep, and do them, that the LORD thy God shall keep unto thee the covenant and the mercy which He sware unto thy fathers: and He will love thee, and bless thee, and multiply thee: He will also bless the fruit of thy womb, and the fruit of thy land, thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep, in the land which He sware unto thy fathers to give thee.  Thou shall be blessed above all people: there shall not be male or female barren among you, or among your cattle. We know sickness is a result of sin, and if the sin is removed, the sickness has to go, that’s a given according to Psalm 103:2-3 which says, Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: who forgiveth all thine iniquities, who healeth all thy diseases. 
   To me, it’s sad to see all the hoops religious people try to get those who are sick to jump through in order to be healed.  The solution is simple, so simple you’d have to work at it to mess it up.  When the Lord Jesus walked the earth some 2000 years ago, He healed all who asked of Him, refusing absolutely NO ONE!  He never said, “Have you repented of your sins?”, or , “Have you paid your tithes?”, or, “Have you forgiven those who have sinned against you?”  He just healed them.  The Bible says Jesus Christ the same, yesterday, today, and for ever.  So…..that means He is the same today, the Healer.  But we must come according to God’s rules, not our own.  He says we must come believing.  Now, hoping and believing are not the same.  Hope is just, well, desire or wishing something were so.  Believing is being fully convinced of it. Looking at it that way, you can see there is a difference. 
   Many have told me they are convinced healing is theirs according to the Bible, but they still aren’t seeing it manifested in their body.  Since when does seeing it manifest in your body make it so?  When God said it, it became so, whether your body feels like it or not.  That’s what I discovered when I was dying of cancer in 1993.  God said I was healed, and that settled it for me.  As a result, I’m well, but did I look or feel healed?  No, but God said I was healed, so who was I to argue with God?  I’m not the smartest person in the world, but even I know not to call God a liar!
   According to God’s word, I was healed, it was done, and there was nothing lacking in my healing, “according to God’s word”.  So why was I seeing something different that what God said?  It became so when I quit looking at what I saw and felt, and simply took God at His word. In other words, it became so when I “believed”, just like my salvation became so when I believed.  Remember, the works were already done before the foundation of the world, BUT, they weren’t true for me until I believed. 
   The Lord Jesus said in Mark 11:24, “Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.”  Hey, folks, those are the words of Jesus, not mine.  If you want to argue with Him, then feel free to do so.  But don’t blame me when you lose the argument.
   These things I have written to you that you may look far ahead and stay out of the ditch, because there are lots of nasty things in the ditch, and it’s hard to climb out once you’re in there.  God has many good things on the table for you to enjoy.  Stop wasting your time under the table looking for crumbs.  You can spend your life dining on “steak” and miss out on all the rest of the buffet.  Look carefully at everything the Lord has in the Bible for you, and know that if you meet His conditions, all the promises are yea and amen!  And His conditions are not hard to meet:  obey, believe, and receive, in that order.