Showing posts with label confession. Show all posts
Showing posts with label confession. Show all posts

Friday, February 3, 2017

How to handle suffering and sickness

“Are any of you suffering?
Are any of you joyful?
Praise God!

Are any of you sick?
Call on the spiritual leaders of your church,
and ask them to pray over you,
anointing you with oil in the name of Jesus.

The prayer of faith will restore you,
and the Lord will lift you up.
If you have committed sin, you will be forgiven.

Therefore, confess your sins to one another,
and pray for each other to be healed.
The prayer of a righteous person
has a super powerful effect!”

James 5:13–16 prayer-a-phrased by Mary Harwell Sayler, © 2017, using some of the many translations found on Bible Gateway.


Sunday, November 3, 2013

The healing power of confession

Through the Prophet Isaiah, God calls us to repentance before healing will occur. As God says:

When you lift your hands in prayer,
I won’t even look at you!
Even if you keep on praying and praying,
I will not listen because
you have bad blood on your hands.

Wash yourselves!
Get clean!
Get your ill treatment of others
away from My sight.
Stop doing anything bad!
Learn to do what’s good.

Look for justice.
Rescue people who are oppressed.
Defend children in need.
Plead for widows.

Come, let’s discuss this,
says the Lord.
Even if your sins cover you like scarlet,
I will whiten them like snow.
Even if they’re crimson red,
I will restore you as pure wool.

©2013, Mary Harwell Sayler compared some of the many translations on before prayer-a-phrasing today’s Bible reading from Isaiah 1:15-18.


Friday, October 18, 2013

The healing power of physicians

Honor physicians for their services
for the Lord created them.

Their gift of healing comes from the Most High,
and powerful leaders reward them.
The skill of physicians makes them distinguished,
and the great will admire them.

The Lord created medicines from the earth,
and sensible people will not despise them.
To human beings God gave skill,
so the Lord might be glorified
through this marvelous work.

With medicine, the physician
heals and takes away pain,
while the pharmacist makes
a mixture or prepares ointments.
This work will never be finished,
but from God health spreads
over all the earth.

My child, when you are ill,
do not delay, but pray to the Lord,
and God will heal you.

Confess your faults and give them up
to rid yourself of sin.
Then give the physician his place
for the Lord created the doctors
you need, and indeed, a time may come
when physicians hold your health
in their hands. They, too, pray to the Lord
to grant them success, rest, and healing
as they work to preserve your life.

©2013, Mary Harwell Sayler prayer-a-phrased today’s Daily Bible Reading from Sirach aka Ecclesiasticus 38:1-4, 6-10, 12-14.


Saturday, February 25, 2012

The Ten Commandments bring healing

Last time we talked about the healing power of confession and reconciliation, which is especially timely in the days before Passover and Easter. But some might wonder what the “good people” of God need to consider and confess.

While the entire Bible gives us guidelines that draw us closer to God, the Ten Commandments condense and highlight the areas most apt to pull us away.

“And God spoke these words, saying: ‘I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.

‘You shall have no other gods but Me.

‘You shall not make an idol of any likeness of anything in heaven above or the earth beneath or the water under the earth.

‘You shall not bow down to worship or serve idols, for I the LORD your God am a passionate God, Who allows the sins of the parents to visit their children unto the third and fourth generation of them who hate me,

‘But showing mercy unto the thousandth generation of those who love Me and keep My commandments.

‘You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold guiltless those who take the very name of God as a triviality.

‘Remember the Sabbath and treat the Sabbath rest as holy.

‘Six days shall you labor, and do all your work.

‘But the seventh day is the Sabbath rest of the LORD your God. In that rest you shall not do any work, nor shall your son or daughter, manservant or maidservant, or even your livestock and the stranger who stays with you.

‘For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them then rested on the seventh day. Therefore, the LORD blessed the Sabbath and made that rest holy.

‘Honor your father and mother so that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God gives to you.

‘You shall not murder anyone.

‘You shall not commit adultery.

‘You shall not steal.

‘You shall not bear false witness against anyone.

‘You shall not covet someone’s house, spouse, servant, livestock, or anything anyone owns’,”
Exodus 20:1-17.

As Moses came down from Mount Sinai to deliver those words from God, thunder and lightning accompanied him. Terrified, the people backed away and, standing in fear, begged Moses:

“Speak to us, and we will listen, but oh, please do not let God speak to us, or we will die!” Exodus 20:19.

Thousands of years later, many people of God still feel that way! But Moses said to them – and to us:

“Do not be afraid! God has come to test (examine) you that you may be in awe of God and sin not,” Exodus 20:20.

Through Moses, our awesome God gave us a condensed guide to a godly life, and, even today – or perhaps, especially today – those Ten Commandments continue to examine us as we examine our lives, ourselves, and our motives in their holy light.

© 2012, Mary Harwell Sayler, all rights reserved. Please do not copy without permission. Thank you, and thank God for always letting us know what is expected of us.


Thursday, February 9, 2012

The healing cleanse of confession

A popular topic in recent times has been the physical healing some find in a "body cleanse" such as juicing or drinking tons of filtered water. More important, though, is the healing power found in cleansing the soul and spirit.

For biblical examples, Jesus' forefather, Judah, and later, King David of the Tribe of Judah remained close to God, not because of their innocence but because they confessed their wrongdoing and sought forgiveness.

In seeking a "soul cleanse," Christians have even more reasons to be assured of God’s forgiving love because of our Lord Jesus Christ. Indeed, confessing Christ as our savior and redeemer offers another aspect of the art of Christian healing. Interestingly, though, both types of confession – confessing our sins and confessing salvation in Christ – find healing through confessional prayer and the listening responses of caring people.

Bible sources:

"I confess my iniquity. I am sorry for my sin." [Psalm 38:1]

"Many of those who were believers came, confessing and disclosing their practices." [Acts 19:18]

"So confess your sins to one another and pray for one another that you may be healed." [James 5:16]

A third century Christian martyr, Cyprian, wrote in his "Treatise VIII. On Works and Alms” these words: "Let us then acknowledge, beloved brethren, the wholesome gift of the divine mercy; and let us, who cannot be without some wound of conscience, heal our wounds by the spiritual remedies for the cleansing and purging of our sins. Nor let anyone so flatter himself with the notion of a pure and immaculate heart, as in dependence on his own innocence, to think that the medicine needs not to be applied to his wounds; since it is written, 'Who shall boast that he hath a clean heart, or who shall boast that he is pure from sins?' And again, in his epistle, John lays it down, and says, 'If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.' But if no one can be without sin, and whoever should say that he is without fault is either proud or foolish, how needful, how kind is the divine mercy, which, knowing that there are still found some wounds in those that have been healed, even after their healing, has given wholesome remedies (through prayer, confession, and reconciliation) for the curing and healing of their wounds anew!"

© 2012, Mary Harwell Sayler, all rights reserved. Please do not copy without permission. Thank you, and praise God for giving us fellowship with one another to confess, pardon, and forgive in Jesus’ Name.