There are some pastors, bishops, apostles and prophets that use anointed water, clothes, olive oil and many other material things to transfer God’s power of healing to people. They use the post office, courier services and other forms of transport to deliver these things.
Among the many there is prophet T.B. Joshua from Nigeria. He justifies his position in the post Anointing Water. The question many people could have, which forms a cloud around the healing practice, is :
- Is such practice covered in the Bible? Particularly in the New Testament.
- Is Jesus, the leader of Christians an example of such practice?
- The world, such as traditional healers do similar activities when healing their patients. Is this not clouding Christianity or the world has copied from Christians?
There are many scriptures, both in the New and Old Testament that relate instances where such practices were done by godly people and it was for healing the sick. Just as the post from T.B. Joshua’s website ‘Anointed Water’ says. Paul in the book of Acts 19:11 – 12 did extraordinary miracles under God’s power. This was manifested in many ways including handkerchiefs and aprons that touched his body. These were used in transferring the healing power unto the ill and drive away evil spirits.
Focusing on Jesus
When there is confusion, Christians should do as Jesus Christ did because Paul and everybody else follow Him.
Jesus Himself used some mud to heal a blind man. This is covered in John 9:1-12. It must be noted that Jesus healed the blind man in person, He did not send for someone to take the mud with to the sick or blind man. Jesus model of healing in absence was when He confirmed to the centurion that his son will be healed John 4:50.
Sending His Disciples to the world
Jesus in Luke 6: 6 – 13, sent out His disciples and gave them power or authority over evil spirits and sicknesses. In Matthew 10, He also gave them authority to drive out evil spirits and to heal every disease and sickness. In both instances, Jesus did not give His disciples anything to use to heal the sick but authority or power.
James 5:14, says elders should pray over the sick, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. Verse 15 then emphasises that it is prayer offered in faith that will restore the one who is sick. Verse 16 then unveils that confession of sin and praying afterwards makes one victorious in prayer.
The Common Ground
In all doings, Christians should avoid anything that is likened to the world (Romans 12:2). Anything that confused a brother should be avoided. This caution is given to Christians in 1 Corinthians 8:13 and Romans 14:21.
I believe it is not wrong to use some of the ornaments to heal people but the following can be said about it:
- People tend to trust these ornaments and the person that provided them as opposed to trusting Jesus Christ who is the one who has the authority over demons and sicknesses.
- These ornaments may easily be issued at a fee. This is against Jesus’ instruction that ‘freely you have received, freely give’ (Matthew 10:8).
Out of all conditions for a person to receive healing in Christian terms, the one that cannot be overlooked is having no sin. That is why James 5:16 emphasises the need to confess one’s sins as a condition of healing.
I cannot say that pastors should stop using these ornaments or material things, but I would caution them to be extra careful and not confuse the world.