What the Bible says about healing and praying for the sick

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What does the Bible says about healing and praying for the sick, find out more on this article.

Our God is almighty, he is love and he accompanies us and blesses us always. God has given us the greatest miracle we can ever experience: the salvation of our souls. But he also wants to help us in the midst of our daily struggles and difficulties. One of the requests we make of him most often is for healing because we live in physical bodies that suffer from illness and pain.

In the Bible, we find many examples of divine healing. God’s power does not change, God is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Malachi 3: 6; Hebrews 13: 8) and we can trust that he still heals. Let’s look at some of the healings mentioned in the Bible and strengthen our confidence in God’s healing power.

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Healings in the Old Testament

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Hannah (1 Samuel 1: 1-20)

Hannah could not have children, something for which she suffered ridicule and torment. One day she went to the temple and shed her heart and tears before God. She promised God that if he gave her a child, she would give it to him and he would grow up in the service of God. God heard her, healed her of barrenness, and as time passed she gave birth to a boy, Samuel, who became a great leader and prophet of the people of Israel.

Naaman (2 Kings 5: 1-15)

Naaman was the commander of the army of the king of Syria, a very brave and prestigious soldier who was sick with leprosy. In their home, there was a young Israelite maid and she told them about the prophet Elisha and how he could heal Naaman of leprosy.

Naaman spoke to the king of Syria who granted him permission to go to Israel. He handed him a letter to the king that said: “When this letter reaches you, you will see that the bearer is Naaman, one of my officers. I am sending it to you so that you can heal him of his leprosy. (2 Kings 5: 6)

The king of Israel became very nervous, he saw this as an act with the intention of starting a war since he knew he was unable to heal. Elisha sent a reassuring message to the king and told him that he would receive Naaman. Elisha instructed Naaman so that he could receive healing in the name of the Lord. Naaman followed the instructions, was healed, and recognized the God of Israel as the true God.


Healings in the New Testament

The beggar in the temple (Acts 3: 1-10)

Peter and John were going to the temple to pray one afternoon and saw a crippled (lame) man begging at the door of the temple. This man begged there every day and when he saw Pedro and Juan approaching, he asked them for alms in the hope that they would give him at least some coins.

Peter replied: “I don’t have silver or gold, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, get up and walk!” And taking it by the right hand, he raised it. Instantly the man’s feet and ankles grew stronger.
(Acts 3: 6-7)

Publius’ father and other sick people (Acts 28: 7-10)

After a shipwreck, Pablo and all those who had been shipwrecked with him arrived on the island of Malta. The island’s chief official, Publius, kindly received them at his home and hosted them for three days.

Publio’s father was in bed, ill with fever and dysentery. Paul came in to see him and, after praying, laid his hands on him and healed him. As a consequence of this, the other sick people on the island also came and were healed.
(Acts 28: 8-9)


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The ministry of Jesus

Matthew 4:23

The Gospels detail many of the miracles that Jesus performed during his three years of ministry, and a good part of those miracles were healings. Let’s look at some of those healings and learn about the ministry of Jesus.

Some healings of Jesus


Biblical reference

The petition

What did Jesus do, how did he pray


LeprosyMatthew 8: 1-4Sir, if you want, you can wash me.Yes, I do, ”he said. It is clean!Instant healing.
ParalysisMatthew 8: 5-13(The centurion said 🙂 Sir, my servant is lying at home with paralysis, and he is suffering terribly.He offered to go and heal him, but the centurion said he trusted the authority of Jesus’ word. Jesus then said: “Go! Everything will be done just as you believed.”Healing in the same hour.
FeverMatthew 8: 14-15None. Jesus saw Peter’s mother-in-law who was sick.He didn’t pray, he just touched her.Instant healing.
BlindnessJohn 9: 1-7None. The disciples asked Jesus: “Rabbi, for this man to have been born blind, who sinned, he or his parents?”Jesus replied: “Neither he sinned, nor his parents, but this happened so that the work of God would become evident in his life.” He spat on the ground, made mud with his saliva, and rubbed it on the eyes of the blind man, telling him to go wash in the pool of Siloam.The blind man went and washed, and when he came back he could see.
DisabilityJohn 5: 1-9None. Jesus noticed him among many sick people who were in the pool of Bethesda.Jesus asked him if he wanted to be healed, the sick man replied with excuses, but Jesus told him: Get up, pick up your mat and walk.He was instantly healthy.
Paralyzed dry handMatthew 12: 9-14None. Jesus saw the man as he entered the synagogue.Jesus told him to reach out.Instant healing.
Deaf and dumbMark 7: 31-37Others brought him to Jesus and they begged him to put his hand on the deaf and dumb.Jesus took the sick man aside, put his fingers in his ears, and touched his tongue with saliva. He looked up at the sky, sighed, and said “open up.”Instant healing.
Various diseasesMatthew 15: 29-31The crowds placed all kinds of sick people at Jesus’ feet: deaf, dumb, lame, blind, and much more.We don’t know how, but he healed them.Instant healing.
Blood flowMatthew 9: 20-22She touched the hem of Jesus’ robe while thinking “If I can at least touch his robe, I will be healed.”Jesus turned around, saw her, and said to her: Courage, daughter! Your faith has healed you.Instant healing.
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We can see that Jesus did not have a specific pattern or formula for healing. Sometimes the sick asked him for healing; other times their friends or family did. But sometimes he decided to heal without being asked. What we do see in Jesus is the certainty that it was the right time for healing to come to that person.

What was “the secret” of Jesus’ ministry? He kept in communication with the Father and followed his direction and guidance in everything he did and said (John 5: 17-18; John 8:26). Even though he was God, he decided to submit to the will of the Father.

Certainly I assure you that the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does, the Son does also.
(John 5:19)

pray without ceasing

How to pray for the sick

As children of God, we have already experienced the power of God. We know that he, as a good Father that he is, wants to give good things to His children (Matthew 7:11) and he encourages us to ask him for what we need.

Ask and will be given; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; If you search you will find; and to the one who knocks, it is opened. Which of you, if your child asks for bread, gives him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, does he give him a snake? For if you, even though you are bad, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!
(Matthew 7: 7-11)

But we should not demand what we want or ask for whatever we want. We must ask humbly (2 Chronicles 7: 14-15), within God’s will (1 John 5: 14-15), with faith (James 5: 14-15), trusting that what God does (or does not) is the best for us.

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Praying for healing should be part of our life as Christians because it is within the mission that God has entrusted to those of us who believe in him.

These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents in their hands; and when they drink something poisonous, it won’t hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will regain health.
(Mark 16: 17-18)

We will not do these things in our own strength. We will do them in the name of Jesus, in humility and following his example (Philippians 2: 1-11).

What if God doesn’t heal?

There are times when God decides not to physically heal a person. When this happens, the following must be remembered:

  • We must continue to trust in God’s power, love, and goodness for us. He has already granted us the miracle of eternal life and that is what we really need.

For the wages of sin is death, while the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 6:23)

  • We should not blame ourselves or the sick person. We must submit to the will of God because there are things that we will not understand while we are in our human body.

Now we see indirectly and veiled, as in a mirror; But then we’ll see eye to eye Now I know imperfectly, but then I will know as I am known.
(1 Corinthians 13:12)

  • Remember that God’s thoughts are different from ours and what he most wants is to give us that which helps us in our spiritual growth.

Because my thoughts are not yours, nor are your ways mine, ”says the Lord.
(Isaiah 55: 8)

  • Not resist God’s will but strengthen ourselves in him and rest in his promises.

Because thus says the Almighty Lord, the Holy One of Israel: «In repentance and calm is your salvation, in serenity and trust is your strength, but you do not want to recognize it!
(Isaiah 30:15)