Well, at first glance it certainly seems the right thing to do, but the obvious is not always the right choice of action. I am going to make another strange statement, just as you knew I would. I do not believe God wants us to pray for someone to be physically healed.
Yes, I know that I seem to always say something that sounds wrong, but what I say always makes sense to me and if you think about it, I believe it will make sense to you as well.
I am aware that there are verses that say we should pray for the sick. James 5:14-20 is such an example. It seems clear to me that these verses are referring to someone who is spiritually ill, not to someone who is physically ill.
I asked myself, who is really sick and dying? Is it the Christian that is lying in bed with cancer and the doctor said he has only a few days to live? Or is it the athlete that is in perfect health, but does not know God? I would say it is the athlete that is facing death. No, already dead in his sins and will surly die the second death if he doesn’t repent and allow himself to be baptized. We all must die the first death, it is the second death, separation from God, that we have some control over and it is real death.
Here is the way I view the question. First I state the basics to myself. I believe that when I pass from this phase of my existence I will ascend to Heaven where there will be no sickness, worry, or problems that we face now. So, believing this, why would I try to stay here?
A long time ago I used to attend a small Bible study at a large church. One of the members was in charge of visitation. He once told me that some of the patients that he visited, who were very ill, would say to him, “I don’t understand why God doesn’t just take me” and I burst out laughing! You see they buy health insurance, have checkups, take any medicine that the doctor prescribes, have operations, and do anything else that they can do in order to stay here and then say “I don’t know why God doesn’t just take me”! Well, maybe it is because they were fighting like hell to keep Him from it!
(Isa 57:1 NIV) “The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil.”
So, I have to ask myself “Is it right to ask God to heal the physically ill and subject them to more evil, or is it right to just trust in His judgment and not ask?”
I am not perfect so I may start to feel ill and ask God to heal me, because no one wants to feel bad, but I know that what ever happens, it happens for my and your good. May God’s will be done; not mine.
There is an example in the Bible where someone prayed for physical healing and received it, even though it was not the will of God.
Consider Hezekiah, King of Judah. (2 Ki 18:5 NIV) “Hezekiah trusted in the LORD, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among all the kings of Judah, either before him or after him.”
Hezekiah became sick and God sent Isaiah to inform him that he was going to die. Hezekiah, because of his lack of faith in God, had a fit and God heard his prayer and granted him fifteen more years of life on this earth. During those fifteen years Hezekiah showed all of the treasurers of Judah to the envoys of Babylon and they came back, after Hezekiah had died and took those treasurers. They also killed many Jews and made slaves out of those they did not kill.
In those fifteen years Hezekiah also fathered Manasseh who was such a bad king that provoked God so much that He said He would wipe out Judah; and He did.
Hezekiah got what he asked for, but all of Judah suffered because he did! If Hezekiah had just accepted what God said then the Babylonians would not have known about the treasurers of Judah and Manasseh would have never existed.
(Gal 1:3-5 NIV) “Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,” who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
To leave this earth is to be rescued from this evil age. To stay here only endangers us as Satan is always trying to thwart God’s plan for us.
I am old now and I am not in perfect health. I have prayed that God would heal me, but I am not going to have a fit. What ever God has in store for me is the best thing for me and for others also. So, do not pray for my physical healing and I will not pray for yours as well. Let us place our faith in God and not in what we want, or what we think is best.