Healing the World

Healing Man’s Infection of Sin

“The Egyptians will know the LORD in that day. They will even worship with sacrifice and offering, and will make a vow to the LORD and perform it” (Isaiah 19:21. All scriptures from the New American Standard Bible unless otherwise noted).

by Ernie Kuenzli

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Today mankind is sick: (1) physically, living under the penalty of death; (2) mentally, being blind to the ways of God and (3) morally, being ignorant of God’s principles of truth and righteousness. The objective of God’s plan of salvation is to heal
mankind: mentally, morally, physically, and moreover, to eliminate in mankind the desire and willingness to sin. Without this healing, man cannot come back into harmony with God
and gain everlasting life.

Mankind’s illness originated back in the Garden of Eden, when our parents disobeyed God’s commandment: “But from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die” (Genesis 2:17).

In man there was no desire to disobey that commandment until it was stimulated by Lucifer — first with the woman, and then with the man. “The serpent said to the woman, ‘You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and
evil’” (Genesis 3:4-5). Eve had no desire to disobey until Satan: (1) lied about the penalty, and (2) stimulated the desire for something she did not have — the knowledge of good and evil.
Eve was deceived because she had never been lied to before.
When faced with the contradiction between God’s commandment and Satan’s lie, she had more faith in Satan’s
lie than God’s truth.

Then the temptation passed to Adam, who was not deceived (1 Timothy 2:14). He knew the penalty of death was real and he would lose his helpmate Eve. Rather than seek God’s guidance, he leaned on his own reasoning. Thinking there was no way out
of the situation, he likely concluded it was better to die with Eve than live without her.

Sin comes from two things: First, disregarding God’s commandments through lack of faith and trust, and relying on someone else’s reasoning — one’s own or someone else’s. This is what both Eve and Adam did. Eve trusted the serpent. Adam trusted his own judgment.

The second cause of sin is covetousness, the desire to have something God has not provided. Both Eve and Adam did this. Eve coveted to be “like God.” Adam coveted Eve. Much of sin comes from covetousness, the desire for someone or something one does not have.

Sin and Covetousness Began with Satan

Covetousness began with Satan. “You said in your heart, ‘I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God
… I will make myself like the Most High’” (Isaiah 14:13-14). Lucifer’s covetousness originated with pride: “Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; You corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor” (Ezekiel 28:17). Lucifer’s pride led
to covetousness, his ambition for rulership not authorized.
Covetousness led him to deceive Eve to obtain this rulership, and he stimulated similar covetousness in her.

Adam’s sin resulted in mankind becoming sick —
mentally, morally, physically, and thereby, dying. 1Corinthians 15:21-22: “By a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.” Seeing the end from the beginning, God knew that Satan would disobey and tempt mankind, and that mankind would fall. Therefore, He planned to use this as a great
learning experience for all of His intelligent creation, both earthly and spiritual. God’s lesson would be four-fold, and teach the: (1) Terrible effects of sin or disobedience. (2) Need for
God’s righteous penalty for sin. (3) Need to have faith and trust in God’s laws of righteousness. (4) Need for obedience to God’s laws.

Solomon wrote in Proverbs 3:5,7-8: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding. … Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the LORD and turn away from evil. It will be healing to your body And refreshment to your bones.” This is the lesson God is teaching man.

God Has Promised to Heal Mankind

Since the Garden of Eden, man has been learning the lesson of sin and its fruit of evil. But shortly mankind will begin to learn the lesson of God’s goodness, through Christ’s kingdom. Isaiah 57:16-19: “‘I will not contend forever … For the spirit [of man] would grow faint before Me … Because of the iniquity of his unjust gain I was angry and struck him; I hid My face and was angry, And he went on turning away, in the way of his heart … but I will heal him; I will lead him and restore comfort to him
and to his mourners, Creating the praise of the lips. Peace, peace to him who is far and to him who is near,’ Says the LORD, ‘and I will heal him.’” God will not contend with man forever
lest man be destroyed. God sees man’s unjust and sinful ways. But He will heal him, both Gentiles [those afar] and Jews [those near].

Isaiah 19:20 prophesies about the healing of mankind represented by the Egyptians: “They [Egyptians] will cry to the LORD because of oppressors, and He will send them a Savior
and a Champion [the Christ], and He will deliver them.” The world cries because of the oppression of sin and death. God will shortly send them a Savior, the Christ, to deliver them.

Verse 21: “Thus the LORD will make Himself known to Egypt, and the Egyptians will know the LORD in that day. They will even worship with sacrifice and offering, and will make a vow to the LORD and perform it.” Egypt will make a vow of obedience to no longer sin and they will perform it. Verse 22: “The LORD will strike Egypt, striking but healing; so they will return to the LORD, and He will respond to them and will heal them.”

Healing of Mankind Demonstrated by Jesus’ Healings

The healing of mankind in Christ’s kingdom, prophesied throughout the Old Testament, was demonstrated throughout our Lord’s earthly ministry. Matthew 4:23: “Jesus was going throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people.”

Peter says in Acts 10:38: “Jesus of Nazareth … God anointed … with the holy Spirit and with power, and … he went about doing
good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.”

Matthew 15:31 says this caught the attention of the people: “the crowd marveled as they saw the mute speaking, the crippled restored, and the lame walking, and the blind seeing; and
they glorified the God of Israel.” The healings revealed Jesus as their Messiah and led them to consider the Gospel he was preaching.

Healing Peter’s Mother-in-Law

One of the healings that Jesus performed involved Peter’s mother-in-law, in Luke 4:38-39. “Then he got up and left the synagogue, and entered Simon’s home. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever, and they asked him to help her. And standing over her, he rebuked the fever, and it left her; and she immediately got up and waited on them.”

The faith involved in this healing was on the part of the disciples and not Peter’s mother-in-law. Peter’s mother-in-law obviously had some type of infection and the high fever was her body’s reaction to the infection. If not quickly cured, a high fever will kill an individual. In a similar fashion, man is infected with sin and it is killing him — just like it would have killed Peter’s mother-in-law had Jesus not cured her.

Symbolic of Healing in Christ’s Kingdom

This particular healing, taking place on the Sabbath, was symbolic of the healing that would take place in Christ’s earthly kingdom. That healing will be two-fold: (1) Healing of man’s literal diseases by removing the Adamic curse of “dying thou shalt die.” (2) Healing mankind’s infection of sin.

In Christ’s kingdom all the diseases experienced by mankind will be cured once the blood of Christ is applied on their behalf. This healing will be the result of God’s justice, as Isaiah writes in Isaiah 33:24: “And no resident will say, ‘I am sick’; The people who dwell there will be forgiven their iniquity.” Just as the condemnation of sin brought man sickness and death, the forgiveness of sin will bring health and the opportunity for everlasting life.

Healing the Infection of Sin

Just as importantly, our Lord will heal mankind from the infection of sin. The desire to seek that which was forbidden will be removed so that man will no longer seek to transgress God’s commandments. But how will this be done? We suggest God will take five actions via Christ’s kingdom to perform this healing.

(1) God’s Commandments Made Clear to All

First, God’s word and commandments will be made clear to all. Isaiah 11:9 says: “They will not hurt or destroy in all My holy mountain, For the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD As the waters cover the sea.” Unlike Eve, mankind will not be confused between right and wrong. The adversary will be bound, that he deceive the nations no more. The knowledge of God will cover the earth as waters cover the sea, leading to a change in man’s behavior. They will no longer hurt or destroy.

Through this teaching, all men will know God. “’They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,’ declares the LORD” (Jeremiah 31:34).

Isaiah 2:2,3 describes how mankind will come to the LORD to seek this knowledge and its associated well-being and peace. “In the last days The mountain of the house of the LORD Will be established as the chief of the mountains, And will be raised above the hills; And all the nations will stream to it. And many
peoples will come and say, ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, To the house of the God of Jacob; That He may teach us concerning His ways And that we may walk in His paths.’ For the law will go forth from Zion And the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.”

(2) Pour Out His Spirit Upon All Flesh.

God’s second action to heal the infection of sin is mentioned in Joel 2:28: “It will come about after this That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind.” Zechariah 12:10 adds: “I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication.” God’s Spirit will help Israel and mankind to recognize Jesus as the Messiah and help them understand the words of God, just as it has helped the church understand God’s word during the Gospel Age.

Isaiah 32:15-17 describes the pouring out of God’s Spirit: “Until the Spirit is poured out upon us from on high … Then justice will dwell in the wilderness And righteousness will abide in the fertile field.” God’s Spirit will teach mankind what true justice and righteousness are.

Isaiah 44:3,5 adds: “‘I will pour out My Spirit on your offspring And My blessing on your descendants … This one will say, ‘I am the LORD’s; And that one will call on the name of Jacob; And another will write on his hand, ‘Belonging to the LORD.’” God’s spirit will help mankind shift their allegiance to the Lord and
away from themselves, the pursuit of earthly things and the pursuit of sin.

(3) Provide for All of Man’s Needs

God’s third action to heal mankind’s infection will be to provide for all their needs. Isaiah 25:6 reads: “The LORD of hosts will prepare a lavish banquet for all peoples on this mountain; A banquet of aged wine, choice pieces with marrow, And refined, aged wine.” This overwhelming goodness of the Lord, a lavish
banquet of temporal and spiritual blessings, will break the hardness of man’s heart so that God’s law can be written there.

Jeremiah 31:12 says: “They will … shout for joy on the height of Zion, And they will be radiant over the bounty of the LORD.” God will provide a banquet for all, not just a few.

Jeremiah 24:6, 7 adds: “For I will set My eyes on them for good, and I will bring them again to this land; and I will build them up and not overthrow them, and I will plant them and not pluck them up. I will give them a heart to know Me, for I am the LORD; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart.” God’s overwhelming goodness will for most, remove covetousness as a reason for sin.

(4) Physical Healing and the Resurrection

God’s fourth action will involve the physical healing of the human family we have already mentioned. Revelation 21:4 reads: “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.” Think about how many tears have been shed by the billions
of mankind over the past six thousand years of man’s existence on this earth. God has taken note of every single tear and promises every tear will be wiped away.

This idea of wiping away every tear is found in Isaiah 25:8: “And the Lord GOD will wipe tears away from all faces.” More than this, John 5:28-29 says: “For an hour is coming, in which all who are in the tombs will hear his [Jesus’] voice, and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment.” The world of mankind will awake to resurrection by judgment — an opportunity for leaving sin behind and by obedience reaching for everlasting life here on the earth.

As that resurrection begins rolling back through the generations of mankind, think of the joy as families are reunited to be parted no more. Mankind’s reaction to this is summed up by the prophet in Isaiah 25:9: “And it will be said in that day, “Behold, this is our God for whom we have waited that He might save us.
This is the LORD for whom we have waited; Let us rejoice and be glad in His salvation.”

(5) Remove the Stones Plaguing Mankind

God’s fifth action will be to remove all the stones that have caused mankind to stumble — especially those of oppression. Isaiah describes this in Isaiah 65:21-23, 25: “ ‘They will build
houses and inhabit them; They will also plant vineyards and eat their fruit. They will not build and another inhabit, They will not plant and another eat; For as the lifetime of a tree, so will be the days of My people, And My chosen ones will wear out the work of their hands. They will not labor in vain, Or bear children
for calamity; For they are the offspring of those blessed by the LORD, And their descendants with them. … They will do no evil or harm in all My holy mountain,’ says the LORD.”
There will be nothing to hurt, to do evil, to oppress or to cause fear in Christ’s kingdom.

Micah 4:3,4 explains how God will accomplish this: “And He will judge between many peoples And render decisions for mighty, distant nations. Then they will hammer their swords into plowshares And their spears into pruning hooks; Nation will not lift up sword against nation, And never again will they train
for war. Each of them will sit under his vine And under his fig tree, With no one to make them afraid.” Through the Christ, God will judge the nations and as a result, man will abandon violence and replace it with love. No one will make them afraid.

Isaiah 62:10 describes how the pathway will be made smooth: “Clear the way for the people … build up the highway, Remove the stones, lift up a standard over the peoples.” The Christ
will clear the way for the people, build up the Highway of Holiness (Isaiah 35:8), clear away the stones or obstacles that encourage sin and lift up the standard of Christ — the standard of obedience — for all to follow.

When mankind is the recipient of all of these blessings, man will be freed from the desire to disobey. Sin’s hold on mankind, like a chain, will be broken. There will be nothing to be gained and everything to be lost from continued sin.

Mankind will have an accurate knowledge of both good and evil, and be able to make an informed choice, unlike the choice Eve and Adam made. The vast majority will choose obedience. Then, “They shall be My people, and I will be their God; and I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me always, for their own good and for the good of their children” (Jeremiah 32:38-40).

 

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