A passage that we have probably heard before is Isaiah’s prophecy of Jesus in Isaiah chapter 53. The language in verses 4 and 5 is familiar.
“Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.” – Isaiah 53:4-5In verse four the Hebrew word translated “griefs” is holi (Strong's H2483). It is defined by the Hebrew scholar Gesenius as “disease, sickness, affliction.” He has borne our disease. The Hebrew word translated “sorrows” is makob (Strong's H4341). This word is defined by Gesenius as “physical pain.” He carried our physical pain. In verse five the Hebrew word translated “healed” is rapha (Strong's H7495). Gesenius defines rapha as to “heal or mend.”
Verse five tells us that we are healed by His stripes. This was written about seven-hundred years before the time of Jesus, and the prophet was looking forward to the Lord Jesus. After the death of Jesus, the Apostle Peter was looking back to the Cross when he wrote (in the past tense);
“Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.” – Second Peter 2:24Because the ways of the Lord are so much higher than our ways (Isaiah 55:9), we cannot always understand the Will of God. Sometimes that Will includes sickness. But our God is a God of healing. In fact, He has called Himself that very specifically.
In Exodus 15:26 the Lord said, “I am the LORD that healeth thee.” In the Hebrew He said, “I am Jehovah Rapha.” Rapha is the same Hebrew word used in Isaiah 53:5, and it means “to heal.”
The New Testament uses an interesting Greek word, sozo (Strong's G4982). It is used 110 times and means “to save from perishing, to make well, heal, restore to health.”
Sozo means to be spiritually saved:
“And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save (sozo) his people from their sins.” – Matthew 1:21
“And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved (sozo).” - Acts 2:21 (The Day of Pentecost.)It also means to be physically saved:
“Paul said to the centurion and to the soldiers, Except these abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved (sozo).” - Acts 27:31 (The shipwreck of Paul.)
“And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us (sozo): we perish.” – Matthew 8:25 (The storm on the Sea of Galilee.)The word sozo is also used in healing. Mark chapter five tells the story of Jairus coming to Jesus to ask Him to heal his young daughter who was dying.
“And (Jairus) besought him greatly, saying, My little daughter lieth at the point of death: I pray thee, come and lay thy hands on her, that she may be healed (sozo); and she shall live.” – Mark 5:23While Jesus was on the way to the home of Jairus, the woman with an issue of blood tried to just touch the hem of His robe.
“For she (the woman) said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole (sozo).” - Mark 5:28I was not aware of the underlying definitions of these words and passages that we are familiar with.
I am amazed. We are blessed.
Jesus Messiah has borne our disease. Jesus Messiah carried our physical pain. The Lord calls Himself “the LORD that heals you.” The Greek word sozo, used for salvation or saving, is also used for healing, as used when Jesus healed the woman with the issue of blood and He healed the daughter of Jairus. Jesus drew a parallel between Himself and the healing brass serpent that Moses lifted up in the wilderness. (John 3:14)
Let us, as directed in James 5:16, confess our faults one to another, and pray one for another, that we may be healed.
Praise the name of the mighty Lord Jesus and commune with Him, now and forever!