by Peter Masters
Published by the Wakeman Trust.
With a Foreword by John C. Whitcomb.
Chapter 11 is by Professor Verna Wright MD FRCP and is entitled A Medical View of Miraculous Healing.
Also translated into Hungarian, Russian and Chinese.
This very popular book answers charismatic claims and arguments, showing that sign-gifts have ceased. It includes chapters on demons; on how James 5 should be honoured; on the Bible’s insistence that the mind should always be ‘switched on’ in worship, and on medical aspects of divine healing.
Dr Peter Masters is the pastor of the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London, the church of the famous 19th Century Reformed Baptist preacher Charles H. Spurgeon.
Acknowledgments by Peter Masters
I would like to express the deepest gratitude to all who have in various ways contributed to and influenced to and influenced this book:
To the fellowship worshipping at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, who sponsored the Day of Special Studies on Divine Healing in November 1986, when the Tabernacle was crowded with pastors and Christian workers from throughout the UK. The ministry of that day expanded into these pages.
To Professor Verna Wright of Leeds University Medical School, who gave two lectures at the Day of Special Studies and kindly consented to the reproduction of these as the final chapter of this book – A Medical View of Miraculous Healing.
To Professor John Whitcomb of Grace Theological Seminary, Indiana, USA, for his gracious and masterly Foreword.
To the staff at Metropolitan Tabernacle, other friends and my wife; who processed the manuscript and proofs, contributing countless invaluable suggestions.
The God of all grace, who hath called us unto hos eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 5.10-11).
Foreword by John C. Whitcomb
Does our God have sufficient power to heal all types of physical affliction today and even to raise and glorify those who have already died? Of course He does, for He said, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh: is there anything too hard for me? (Jeremiah 32.27). No true Christian will deny this.
Our wonderful God, however, has something more than mere power. He also had a plan and a programme for His world and for His people. Nothing is clearer in Scripture than the fact that God does not always do what He can do. For example, He could raise and glorify some dead believers today and a few more next week; but this would contradict His revealed programme for physical glorification: Each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming (1 Corinthians 15.23 NASB). Therefore, it is neither His lack of power nor our lack of faith, but His programme which eliminates the possibility of occasional glorification of believers.
When personal tragedy struck our family in the late 1960s, I became deeply concerned about God’s ways with sick and dying believers. After nearly two years of serious illness, my wife died, leaving me with four children. There was much prayer on her behalf, and great confidence that God would raise her from the sick-bed. This He chose to do twice, in His mercy. But these healings were niether sign-miracles (like those our Lord and Hid apostles perfomed) nor were they permanent.
In subsequent years I searched the Scriptures and came to the following conclusions:
(1) God can do anything He wants to do.
(2) Even in Bible times, however, sign-miracles were very rare. Therefore it is obvious that God did not want to miraculously heal all true believers who needed such help.
(3) Toward the end of his spectacular ministry of miracles, even the apostle Paul could no longer heal people, because this was not God’s will.
(4) God’s plan nor seriously sick Christians is not to go to faith-healers, but to call for the elders of their own local church to pray for them.
(5) Our Lord promised that the apostles would begin to do greater works than He did, namely, to preach the true Gospel of the cross and the resurrection.
(6) Some day, when Christ completes His redemptive purpose for His people through their bodily resurrection, our physical needs will be perfectly and permanently cared for.
Because of widespread confusion and misunderstanding in these vitally important questions, I commend this volume to God’s people everywhere. Only His Truth can bring us freedom from fear and anxiety when pain and sickness come our way.
JOHN C WHITCOMB
Winona Lake, Indiana, USA