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Spiritual Healing: Jesus Christ in the Flesh
Does Jesus Christ live in heaven today in the flesh as a man? And if so, how does His living in the flesh relate to the physical reality of spiritual healing today?
Christians live in faith that Jesus Christ is the Word that became a human being (John1:1,14). We believe that just as death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead also comes through a man (I Corinthians 15:21)...Jesus Christ.
As the Son of God, Jesus many times referred to himself as being "The son of man." We intellectually understand Jesus as being both man and God, but do we really grasp its full implication?
Jesus Christ Lives in the Flesh:
II John 7 speaks of Jesus "as coming" in the flesh. The word in Greek, erchomai (pronounced er'-khom-ahee), is in the middle voice of a primary verb written in present tense. I Timothy 2:5 speaks of Jesus as being "the man" who is our mediator. The word in Greek, anthropos (pronounced anth'-ro-pos), is written in present tense form.
When Jesus ascended into heaven, Angels told those witnessing the event that this same Jesus will "come back in the same way" they saw Him leave. How did they see Him leave? As a man!
What all of these verses say is that Jesus Christ, the Son of God and son of man, is alive in the flesh in heaven as "the man" Paul tells us He is.
When we read John's Gospel account we learn "The Word became flesh." (John 1:14).The original language transliterated reads, "The Word flesh was made." The Greek word for "was made," ginomai (pronounced ghin'-om-ahee), is a prolongation and middle voice form of a primary verb; to cause to be or to become. In other words, When God became man, it was for eternity. He did not merely take on a human form as a temporary act, but rather fused his being to human flesh forever (Colossians 2:9) God incarnate!
Side Note: The Question of Flesh and Blood
I Corinthians 15:51 states that "flesh and blood" cannot inherit the kingdom of God. The term, "flesh and blood" has caused many Christians to incorrectly interpret "flesh and blood" as substance (man's body) rather than a state of being.
The term "flesh and blood" is used frequently throughout Scripture. It is an old Jewish expression that refers to man as he is now: weak, frail, and subject to corruption, sin, decay, and death. Used in I Corinthians 15, it is not the substance (the physical body) that Paul has in mind but rather what "flesh and blood" represent.
A few biblical examples of "flesh and blood" to illustrate what "flesh and blood represent are Matthew 16:17 and Galatians 1:15-16. The word "man" in both verses is translated from the original term "flesh and blood." In other words, it was not from the lips of corruptible flesh that revealed this knowledge to the Apostles, Peter and Paul. Again, the term was commonly used as an expression of man as he now is.
Jesus Christ is continually in the flesh, just as man's flesh will be in the resurrection. Our flesh will be changed (not exchanged - I Corinthians 15:51) in the resurrection, and our body will become as His flesh is...glorified, incorruptible and immortal.
Paul says that this teaching is at the very core of the Gospel (I Corinthians 15:1-4, 12) and basic to our Christian faith.
By His Stripes We Are Healed:
Many of our brethren in Christ say that God no longer works healing miracles. They say that these things passed away with the completion of God's Holy Word. But by saying so many Christians unwittingly dismiss the suffering of Jesus' body as meaningless. Why?
Isaiah tells us that He (Jesus) took up all of man's sickness, disease and physical ailments (Isaiah 53:4) and that by His wounds (in the flesh) we are healed (Isaiah 53:5) - Not just for a brief time in history, but from the beginning of time for all eternity.
The Apostle Peter also tells us that by His stripes we have been healed (I Peter 2:24). It wasn't just our sins He carried on the Cross, His body bore all of man's sickness and diseases. Our sins are forgiven through His shed blood (Hebrews 9:22). Healing is made possible by His stripes (Psalm 103:3; I Peter 2:24).
Peter tells us that God considers our fleshly body vital to our existence as a human being. For man cannot be a human being without his body, spirit and soul all dwelling together (Genesis 2:7). Why else would God go through all the agony He did? Do we not think that if there were another less painful way for man's salvation (healing the whole of man) that God would have chosen it?
That we do not heal in body when asked to be healed should tell us that we are missing something, not that divine healing no longer exists. David tells us it is sin in our lives that keeps our body imprisoned with physical suffering (Psalm 38:3-8). James tells us the same thing (James 5:14-16). And Paul tells us that we remain sick because we do not rightly discern the body of Jesus Christ (I Corinthians 11:29-30).
Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). He lives for your healing. Were He to leave his body, there could be no healing of any kind (Romans 11:36; Colossians 1:15-18).
Our responsibility now is to purge our lives as best we can of the sin which prevents our healing. Fear, anxiety, anger, worry are all of Satan, not of God (I John 4:18). For God empowers us with the might of His powerful Word to drive out fear.
May God be praised forever.
Jim Lynn, a minister in the church of Christ, is the author of The Miracle of Healing in Your Church Today, available at God's Healing Word: http://godshealingword.org
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