John G. Lake
Now I want to teach you something of the inner things of healing that people are not aware of. There is a conscious dominion Jesus Christ gives to the Christian soul. It was that thing in the soul of Peter when he met the lame man at the Beautiful Gate.
Instead of praying for the man's healing, Peter said, In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. Acts 3:6. No prayer about it; no intercession.
Peter exercised the dominion that was in his soul. The divine flash of the power of God went forth from his soul, and the man instantly arose and went with them into the Temple walking and leaping, and praising God. Verse 8.
Sometimes those who minister to the sick are aware of what takes place, although the individual himself is unaware of any healing. There is a dominion in the soul of the real man of God who is in touch with Heaven. When the real thing takes place when a person is saved or healed from disease we know what it is. We pray until we are satisfied in our souls that the work is complete.
In the same building that we had our Healing Rooms, there was an X-ray laboratory. The technicians wanted to see what it was all about, so they asked to take X-rays, at no charge to us of some of our prospects for healing. It was a unique opportunity.
Among those we sent to them was a man with tuberculosis. Each time after he was ministered to in prayer, they would take an X-ray. We could see the progress of the healing. Each picture showed less and less of the disease until there was no more evidence of it. He was completely well.
We always prayed for a person until we were satisfied that the healing was complete. There was no dependence on the arm of man (flesh).
Mr. W. A. Fay suffered from cancer of the stomach. He has been ministered too perhaps thirty times.
For the first ten days there was no evidence of healing whatever or a subsiding of his suffering. After that, there was a gradual subsiding; then color began to return to his face, and he began to put on flesh.
Now he can eat anything and everything, and as much of it as he can get!
And that is not all, beloved. He found the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ while the process was going on, and he says that is the big part of it.
I guess the Lord knows how to open doors in people's hearts. A good many Christians overlook the fact that Jesus Christ made the ministry of healing just as broad as He could make it.
Luke 10: 8-9. To the Seventy, He said.... into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you ... heal the sick that are therein. And then what did He tell them to do? ... Say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.
I once lived near a man who was sick unto death. Some went to him and told him he had to be baptized, or he would die and go to hell.
I have always said that was a form of coercion, and Jesus Christ never used it. He was too much of a gentleman. He never took advantage of a man when he was down to grind his soul and try to influence him to be a Christian.
If the man was sick, Jesus went and healed him by the power of God. Then, when that man was healed, the natural response of his loving soul led him to Christ.
I wonder, have you ever paid attention to the different occasions in reading the Scriptures when the Voice of God is mentioned?
You know, the thing that makes the Bible the Bible is the fact that somebody had an interview with God! Somebody heard from Heaven before there was any Bible. Then the conversation or the incident was recorded, and these became the Word of God.
Now, the Word of God is indestructible, because it was a real Voice, a real experience. God really did or said something, and the record of it is true.
It is very simple to prove the inspiration of the Bible. Every child is taught to "prove" whether or not his sum in mathematics is correct.
If you have doubts, questions, and fears concerning the Bible and its inspiration, we know that if one soul ever heard from Heaven, another soul may.
If one soul ever had an interview with God, another soul may.
If any man ever knew his sins were forgiven at any period, another man may know his sins are forgiven now.
If a man or woman ever was healed by the power of God, then men and women can be healed again.
The only thing necessary is to return again in soul experience to that same place of intimacy where the first individual met God.
That is the way you prove the Word of God.
That is the reason Christians love the Word of God.
That is the reason the Word of God becomes the thing men live by, the thing men will die for. The Word of God becomes a present, living reality to them not just a theory.
In my church in South Africa we published a paper in 10,000 lots. We would have the printers send them to the church, and we would lay them out on the front platform in packages of 100 and 200. At the evening service I would call certain people from the congregation (that I knew to be in contact with the living God) to come and kneel around the packages and lay their hands on them.
We asked God to not only bless the reading matter in the paper that the message of Christ should come through the words printed on the paper, but that the paper' itself become filled with the Spirit of God, just as the handkerchiefs became filled with the power of God. (Acts 19:12.)
I could show you thousands of letters from people in all parts of the world, telling me that the Spirit of God came upon them when they received our paper. Not only were they healed, but the joy of God came into their hearts and many were saved.
One woman wrote from South America: "I received your paper. When I took it into my hands, my body began to vibrate so, I could hardly sit on the chair. I did not understand it. I laid the paper down, and after a while took it up again. As soon as I had it in my hands, I shook again. The third time I picked up the paper, the Spirit of God came upon me so powerfully, I was baptized in the Holy Ghost."
Beloved, do you see that this message and this quality of the Spirit contains the thing that confuses all the philosophers and all the practice of philosophy in the world? It shows the clearest distinction, which characterizes the real religion of Jesus Christ. It is distinct from all other religions and all other ministries.
The ministry of Christianity is the ministry of the Spirit. It is the Spirit of God that inhabits the words, that speaks to the spirit of another and reveals Christ in and through him.
Miss K. is a woman I term a victim of surgery operated on 26 times, then left to die. She was an invalid for 13 years, and was visited and ministered to by different physicians for 6 years.
(I know you will pardon me if I speak with great plainness. I must in order to let you know what God has done in this woman's life.)
In one operation, an incision was made connecting the rectum and the vagina. That wound refused to heal. Three times the wound was sewn up, but to no avail. Also, she was thought to be tubercular, and no doubt she was.
One day this dear soul called Brother West wood to minister to her. We commenced to pray the prayer of faith on her behalf, and right away the wounds on her body began to heal until all the outer wounds were healed. If you were close enough to her, you could see scars all down her throat and neck where some of these 26 operations had been performed.
Now I want you to see the power of God: When she discovered that the rectal incision had not healed, it became a matter of special prayer. Soon her bowels ceased to operate; she had no movement for 28 days. Think of it! If such a thing occurs in your life for three or four days, you think you are going to die.
Note the purpose of God: During those 28 days when there was no movement whatever, the wound healed up.
Miss K. went to the south side of town to do some dressmaking; but while working, she became unconscious due to the gas pressing upon her heart and lungs.
A physician was called. In his examination, he discovered that the incision was perfectly healed; but during the long time that the lower end of the rectum had not been used, it had adhesed. Now according to the doctor, she could never have a movement of the bowels until she was operated on.
They were about to carry Miss K. off to the hospital when she became conscious and said, "No more operations for me, even if I die. I have committed my body, my soul, and my spirit to God!"
So they took her home.
She came down to the Tabernacle to drill the children for their Christmas entertainment. On her way home, she fainted on the street and was carried to the emergency hospital. They examined her there and corroborated the statement of the other physician.
They were in the act of taking her to St. Luke's when she became conscious and said, "No, sir! No more operations for me, even if I die."
When they asked her what she wanted to do, she told them she was coming to my home. That was on Saturday, November 27th.
On Sunday afternoon, November 28th, she was sitting in the audience. As prayer was being offered, she said it seemed as though a hand was laid upon her body (abdomen) and another hand on her head. Then a Voice said, "You are healed."
She left the Audience Room and became perfectly normal, and has remained a normal woman ever since.
Beloved, people who oppose this ministry and do not understand it will say, "That is all right. We know God does do such things as that on special occasions, but they are special cases. Paul had a thorn in the flesh. He prayed three times that it might be healed, and the Lord said, 'Paul, My grace is sufficient for you'. 2 Corinthians 12 9, and he was not healed."
Who said so? Who gave you the interpretation? Did you hear the Voice of God, or are you repeating the old fable that has come down through theology for 100 years?
Do you not see, beloved, just one of the many tricks the old theological dodgers use to get away from the responsibility of praying the prayer of faith that saves the sick?
My, the Church has had a time trying to dodge this issue of healing! They come up with Paul's thorn in the flesh.
Paul said, "I wrote this large letter with my own hand" (Galatians 6:11), and they interpret that to read that he had bad eyes. Who said so?
On another occasion, the people said they loved Paul so much they would pluck out their eyes for him. I believe they would have cut off their leg or their right arm, too, if it would have done him any good, but none of these things argue for a moment that there was anything wrong with his leg, his arm, or his eyes.
Paul prayed three times. The first two times he was not conscious of the answer. He prayed again, bless God, and this time God met his faith and said to him, "Paul, My grace is sufficient for you."
Apply it, Paul. Dive in, Paul, and take all you want of the grace of God. It will fix your thorn in the flesh and everything else that is troubling you.
We went to Lourdes, France, in the company of a group of Church of England people who had been appointed as a committee to visit all the institutions of repute along the healing lines in Europe.
We visited a Catholic institution where healing is obtained by the waters of Lourdes. They maintain a board of 200 physicians whose business it is to examine all candidates and report on them.
We also visited the greatest hypnotic institution for healing in the world while at Lourdes. This institution sent its representatives to demonstrate their method before the Catholic board of 200 physicians. Hearing of our committee, they invited us to come before this body and demonstrate healing along our lines.
I agreed to take part, if I were given the final demonstration. The committee selected five candidates. People who had been pronounced absolutely incurable.
The hypnotists tried their several methods without success.
I then had the five candidates placed in chairs in a row upon the platform, in view of this large audience of physicians and scientists. I then prayed over each of them separately and at the same time laid my hands upon them.
Three were instantly healed, a fourth recovered in a few days, and one died.
In 1901, I joined the Dowie Institution and moved to Zion City, Illinois, with the objective of becoming a student and teacher of divine healing.
I was made manager of Dowie's Building Department. During that year we handled business amounting to $1.2 million, or $100,000 per month. We issued 1,200 building contracts.
This was the year John Alexander Dowie made his trip from Zion City to New York City, taking 3,000 people with him in ten trains. We had a road choir of 1,200 selected voices and a road processional of 100 church officers.
Dowie rented Madison Square Garden, which holds 20,000 people. The New York City Police said some nights they turned away as many as 100,000 people. The streets were congested for four blocks away.
In 1904, when Dowie's financial affairs were entangled, I left Zion City practically broke, my holdings in the Dowie property having become depreciated at his death.
One Saturday night in South Africa, the church was packed. All available standing room was occupied as men stood shoulder to shoulder. The majority of them were men from the Tattersall Racing Club. Most were Jews. They included horsemen of all classes: bookies, jockeys, stablemen, racetrack gamblers, etc.
I was preaching on the power of God and, in a strong spirit, was endeavoring to demonstrate that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever; that His power is as great as it ever was; and that the only qualification for touching God for anything is faith in Him. The audience was greatly moved.
At this point, I observed a gentleman and two ladies trying to squeeze through the people who were standing in the aisles. I asked the crowd to separate, if possible, to permit the ladies to come through and I tried to arrange seating space for them on the steps of the platform.
As they approached, I observed that one of the ladies held her arms perfectly stiff. She did not move them at all. By instinct, I knew at once that she was a rheumatic cripple.
When she got to the platform, I asked, "What is the reason you do not move your arms?"
She said, "My shoulders are set from rheumatics." I said, "How long have they been like this?"
She replied, "Ten years."
I inquired if she had been treated by physicians.
She replied, "I have been discharged from three hospitals as incurable." "What hospitals?"
She answered, "Kimberley, Johannesburg, and Pretoria.
Then addressing the gentleman who accompanied her, I asked, "Do you know this lady?"
He said, "Yes, she is my sister in law."
I said, "Do you know her story to be correct?" "Absolutely," he said.
I asked her what she had come for.
She replied, "In the hope that the Lord would heal me."
I inquired, "Do you wish me to pray for you for healing?" "Yes," she said.
Addressing the noisy crowd in the aisles and around the doors, I said, "You men never saw Jesus heal a person in your life. You do not know anything about this matter. You have never witnessed an exhibition of the power of God, and therefore you should be considerate enough to keep still, confess your ignorance of such matters, and learn.
"This is what I want: Select two men from your group, and let them come and see for themselves if this woman's arms are stiff, as she states."
I waited for them to make their selection. Finally, they put forward two men. One was a barber, a very intelligent gentleman. I learned afterwards he was an American.
They examined the lady's arms critically and found them to be as she had said quite immovable.
I asked the men, "Have you finished your examination? Are you satisfied her condition is as stated?"
They said, "We are."
"Then stand back, for I am going to pray that the Lord will heal this woman." Placing my hands on her shoulders, I commanded in the name of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, that this rheumatic devil that bound the woman be cast out. In Christ's name I commanded it to go, rebuking it with all the energy of my soul.
The power of God flashed through me like a burning fire until perspiration burst from the woman's face.
Then, taking her by the hands, I said, "In the name of Jesus Christ, put your arms up!"
The right arm went up.
Then I said, "In the name of Jesus Christ, put the other arm up, too." She instantly obeyed. Her arms had become free!
As I moved her arms, making the shoulders rotate, I heard a grinding sound in the joints. I said to the two men from the audience, "You have never heard a dry joint in your life. Come put your ear to this woman's back while I make her arms move." As they did, I moved her arms, and the shoulder joints ground, because the oil had not yet returned to them.
In the woman's delight at being healed, she threw up her hands, praised God, and started for the door. The crowd parted for her, and she disappeared. I did not see her again for some months.