Volume: 851 March 21, 2022T
heme: Heath Issues
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So many are battling serious health issues. Perhaps this edition may help and encourage them. If you think it may, please forward it to those that could use uplifting.
Paul was a man used greatly by God. Because of God’s helping hand, the evangelist survived shipwrecks, beatings, persecutions, imprisonments, and other ill-treatment. With God’s miraculous help, this man was used in healings, revivals, and many miracles. However, as utilized by God as he was, Paul still had a personal ailment.
“And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.” II Corinthians 12:7
Commentators have strained at attempting to name Paul’s “thorn in the flesh,” although God chose not to make it clear to us. No matter what it was, Paul made it evident that he faced an infirmity. Three times he pleaded with God to remove the malady from him (II Cor. 12:8). God’s answer was “… My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness …” (II Cor. 12:9).
Here was a man that had seen glorious things in the third heaven (II Cor. 12:2-4). He had been delivered from many horrible things, yet God wanted Paul to experience this physical problem. God could have easily healed his body, but the God’s answer was that His grace was enough for him to live with the situation. Paul’s infirmity was a vehicle to make him spiritually stronger.
If God would allow one of His great spiritual warriors to face such a battle, we too should not be surprised if we face health problems. As it is with most trials, we can do one of two things when going through testing. We can either shake our fist at God and be angry with him, which is not the wise thing to do when we need Him the most. However, during that testing time, we can get close to Him and rely on Him to get us through the challenge.
Paul chose not to be foolish and get angry with God, as some do. He decided that if God allowed him to go through the problem, he would have a good attitude about it (II Cor. 12: 10) and give God the glory. In so doing, Paul learned what God wanted him to know. He understood that when he was weak, the preacher was the strongest through God’s help!
“Some cry, “Why me?” when they go through a trial.”
My question to them is, “Why wouldn’t it be you? Are you something special that you shouldn’t have problems or sicknesses?” God promises eternal life in Heaven to the saved. He promised no one he would not have problems on this Earth. — B. Brinkworth
Thoughts on Cancer
By Dr. Curtis Hutson, while going through cancer which later took his life.
- Cancer can shorten your earthly life, but it cannot affect your eternal life.
- Cancer can steal your days, but it cannot steal your dreams.
- Cancer can cause you to be immobile, but it cannot keep you from being immovable.
- Cancer may make you weak, but it cannot take away the joy of the Lord, which is our strength.
- Cancer can incapacitate you, but it cannot captivate you.
- Cancer may bring pain, but it cannot keep you from praising the Lord and rejoicing in His name.
- Cancer may make you look bad on the outside, but it cannot change the inside where you have everlasting life and the very presence of God Himself in the Person of the Holy Spirit.
- Cancer may take your physical life, but it cannot destroy the everlasting life given to you the moment you trust Christ as Savior. In fact, it can’t even diminish it. It is just as real in your weakest moment as the day you trusted Him as Saviour.
- Cancer may put you in the grave, but it cannot keep you there. There shall be a resurrection.
- Cancer may destroy the physical tabernacle in which you live, but it cannot touch the heavenly mansion prepared for you.
- Cancer may cause a temporary separation from your family and friends, but it cannot stop the blessed reunion that will take place someday when all of God’s children are called on to Heaven either by way of death or the rapture.
- Cancer may weaken your body where you cannot even say to your dearest friends, “I love you,” but it cannot keep you from loving.
- Cancer may follow you to the graveyard, but it cannot follow you beyond.
- Cancer, at times, may cause you to want to give up\, but it cannot keep you from going up. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (II Cor. 5:6-8).
- Cancer can stop your labors, but it cannot undo your works.
When I consider my crosses, tribulations, and temptations, I shame myself almost to death, thinking what are they in comparison to the suffering of my blessed Savior, Jesus Christ. — Martin Luther
Paul had an unspecified health problem, so he would have to trust God for His help to get through the difficulty.
“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” II Cor. 12:9 Read also: I Peter 5:10.
Job went through many trials and tribulations, including health problems. God allowed Satan to inflict Job with health difficulties so that Satan would see Job was faithful to God, not just because God blessed Job’s life. Sometimes health troubles are a witness to others, so they can observe how a Christian goes through trials.
“And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause… 5 But put forth thine hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face. 6 And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; but save his life. 7 So went Satan forth from the presence of the LORD, and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown.” Job 2:3-7
The author of Psalms 119, most likely David, learned more about God’s Word when going through afflictions.
“It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.” Psalm 119:71
Some have health afflictions, not because of any sin they have committed, but so God can get the glory and credit when the person is healed.
“And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. 2 And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? 3 Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.” John 9:1-3
“When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.” John 11:4
A centurion’s servant was sick, so the centurion had an opportunity to exercise his faith when he trusted Jesus to heal his ill helper.
“And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him, 6 And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. . . . 8 The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. . . . 13 And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.” Matthew 8:5-13
Some have health problems because of unconfessed sin. In this biblical case, it was partaking of the Lord’s Supper without confessing their sins to God.
“After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. 27 Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 28 But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. 29 For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. 30 For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.” I Cor. 11:26-30
“We are usually closest to God when we need Him the most. That is usually when our prayer life is the strongest.” — B. Brinkworth
Thyra Bjorn told the story of accompanying her pastor-father one evening to the shack of a poverty-stricken elderly man. He was crippled with age and pain, yet he offered them what hospitality he could. When they prayed together, the older man’s face came alive as the agony of his present life gave way to radiant joy. Rather than asking anything of God, the man thanked Him for his shack, warm bed, visitors, and everything that was a part of his seemingly cramped and limited existence. When he had finished, Bjorn wrote, “He looked as happy and contented as though he had no discomfort at all.”
On the way home through the dark, cold, fall air, Thyra’s father sighted a lamp being lit in their parsonage in the valley below and called his daughter’s attention to it. Then the young girl thought that this too was what the old man in the cabin had seen. “He had seen his Father’s house and knew that he soon would be home. There would be no more sickness, pain, or loneliness and no more sorrow. The light of his faith would lead him home.”
“Without faith, we are as stained glass windows in the dark.” — Author Unknown
Dr. James M. Gray, former president of the Moody Bible Institute, convalesced from a severe illness. His physician, thinking that a change of scenery might bring the relaxation his patient needed, advised him to take an ocean voyage.
When arrangements for the journey were completed, Dr. Gray experienced an unexpected physical setback. He was greatly disappointed and wondered why the heavenly Father had allowed this new affliction to come.
About a week later, he picked up a newspaper that carried on the front page the tragic account of a steamer that had sunk after striking a reef in St. John’s harbor. There were no survivors. When Gray read that this was the ship he would have taken, he realized how perfectly the Lord had directed his way. His temporary sickness had delivered him from certain death.