The word of God has many stories that look at healing and restoration. These stories inspire us as we face physical and spiritual challenges on our Christian journey and give hope. Today we will take a look at Biblical stories that depict how many Bible characters recovered from various diseases.
Healing stories in the Bible Old Testament
The stories below look at how leprosy, infertility, and other kinds of diseases were healed thanks to the amazing power of God.
The story of Elijah and the widow’s son (1 Kings 17:17-23)
Elijah the prophet was staying in Kerith Ravine near a brook where he was fed by ravens. As the drought got more severe the brook dried up. God told him to visit Zarephath where a widow would feed him.
When Elijah got to Zarephath he met the widow as she was getting ready to have her last meal from the little flour and oil that she had. Elijah told her that she should prepare something for him first. She followed his instructions, and just as the prophet had said the flour and oil did not run out.
Sometime later the widow’s son became very ill and eventually died. Elijah took her son to the upper room, laid him on his bed, then prayed to God. God restored life to the young man and Elijah took him to his mother.
Life application: There are many lessons that may be learnt from this story. God has the power to restore us to perfect health even if death should claim our mortal frame. Some illnesses may be looked at as a life sentence but we serve a God who has power over death and the grave.
If we remain faithful, He will reward us with eternal life and we shall live in a new earth where there will be no sickness, crying, or death.
The story of Elisha and the Shunammite (2 Kings 4:8-37)
Elisha met a kind woman in Shunem. Every time he visited the area the Shunammite woman urged him to stay for a meal. After a while she encouraged her husband to add a room to their house so that the prophet could stay at their house when he visited.
The Prophet Elisha thought about the kindness of the woman and wanted to do something to repay her kindness. He told the woman that she would have a son the following year and his words came to pass.
One day the young man went to the field to look for his father. As he was there, he started to complain about his head. A servant took him home to his mother but sometime after he passed away. The Shunammite woman quickly went to Mount Carmel to get the prophet.
Elisha returned with her and went into the room where the boy was. He had told Gehazi his servant to go ahead of him and lay his staff on the boy but when Elisha got there the boy was still dead.
Elisha laid on the boy and he began to get warm. The prophet got up, walked around, then laid on the boy a second time. The boy sneezed seven times and then opened his eyes.
Life application: The Shunammite woman could have sent one of her husband’s servants to Mount Carmel to get the prophet for her. She could have returned with Gehazi the prophet’s servant but she insisted that Elisha needed to be there.
Sometimes we need to take a vested interest in the matters that concern us and our physical healing. Be vigilant and persistent when you ask God for something. Don’t pray wavering instead endure in faith.
Story of Abimelek’s wife (Genesis 20)
This story gives a glimpse of Abraham’s life while he and his wife settled in Gerar. While there, Abraham feared that he may be killed because of his wife. To prevent any problems, he told others that his wife is his sister.
Not knowing that Sarah was not only Abraham’s sister but also his wife Abimelek, king of Gerar took her. The Lord appeared to Abimelek in a dream and told him he needed to make things right. While Sarah was with Abimelek, his wife and all the female servants were not able to conceive.
Abimelek returned Sarah, gave gifts to Abraham, and told him to choose where he would like to live. Abraham prayed to God and God healed Abimelek, his wife, and all his female slaves so that they could have children.
Life application: It is the Lord’s desire for His children to be healthy physically, mentally, and spiritually. If our spiritual health is compromised, the bond we share with Him will be broken. When we make amends like Abimelek, we receive forgiveness and restoration.
The story of Naaman the leper (2 Kings 5)
Naaman was the commander of the Syrian army but he had leprosy. He found out through a little girl who was taken captive in a raid that the prophet in Samaria could heal him. Naaman spoke to his king who sent him to the king of Israel with a letter. Elisha heard about Naaman’s visit and told the king to send Naaman to him.
When Naaman visited the prophet’s house he was told to go to the river Jordan and wash himself seven times. Naaman was upset because the prophet didn’t come out of the house to greet him and heal him.
He also felt that there were much better rivers in Damascus. Naaman’s servants spoke with him and told him to be humble and follow the instructions. After washing himself seven times in river Jordan Naaman’s leprosy left his body.
Life application: This story is a reminder of how important it is to put away pride and humble ourselves before Almighty God. It took more than a step of faith for Naaman’s leprosy to be healed. He had to wash in a river that was not as good as what he was used to.
To receive the healing that you desire, you may have to take a step of faith and come out of your comfort zone.
Story of the Serpent in the dessert (Numbers 21:4-9)
This story is an account of how the children of Israel spoke against Moses and God. They complained that they hated the food they were eating and murmured that he took them from Egypt to die in the wilderness.
The Lord was very displeased with them and sent venomous snakes among them. Many of them were bitten by the snakes and the poison killed them. They went to Moses, confessed that they have sinned, and asked him to pray for them.
The Lord told Moses to make a snake and put it up on a pole. Anyone who was bitten by a snake would not die if they looked at the snake on the pole.
Life application: Amidst the difficulties and hardships we face we should always lift up the name of Jesus and look to Him to save us. The moment we turn away from Him is the moment we abandon our true source of hope. Call on the name of the Lord, look to Him for help, and wait for Him to save you.
Stories of recovery in the Bible
There are many stories and Bible verses that look at recovery. The stories below are a reminder that recovery may be a speedy process for some while others may have to wait for a long time.
The story of Peter and the crippled man (Acts 3:1-11)
A man who had been lame from birth stayed at the temple gate called Beautiful and asks others for money as they went into the temple. One day, as Peter and John were about to enter the temple the man asked them for money.
Peter told the crippled man that he does not have silver or gold but is happy to share what he does have. He commanded the man in the name of Christ to walk. The man’s feet and ankles were immediately healed. He jumped to his feet, began to walk, then went into the temple to praise God.
Life application: This story teaches that sometimes in the moment when we least expect it, God answers our prayers for recovery. The lame man did not just receive physical healing. Thanks to his ability to walk he was no longer dependent on others to give him money.
The Lord will not only heal you but He will also empower and uplift you.
The story of Simon’s mother-in-law (Luke 4:38-39)
After leaving the synagogue one day Jesus went to Simon’s home. When He got there Simon’s mother-in-law was suffering from a high fever. Jesus was asked to help her, so He bent over her and rebuked the fever. The fever left her body and she began to serve them.
Life application: This story is a reminder that Jesus Christ cares for all His children. He doesn’t only care about complicated medical emergencies and incurable diseases. Don’t be afraid to ask Him for help when you or a family member have a minor headache, a little nausea, or a simple bruise.
He values your health and wellbeing and He wants nothing but the best for you.
The story of Saul’s sight being restored (Acts 9:17-18)
Saul was well known for persecuting the followers of Christ before his conversion. He planned a trip to Damascus and got permission from the high priest to capture prisoners in that area. While he was on his way to Damascus, he saw a bright light then heard the voice of the Lord. After this encounter Saul lost his.
When Saul got to Damascus a disciple named Ananias placed his hands on him, told him his sight will be restored, and that he will be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Life application: Illness and healing are experiences that may help us to be closer drawn to the Lord. After his encounter with God, Saul converted. He was transformed from a persecutor of Christ’s followers to one of His most ardent believers.
It doesn’t matter how unworthy you think you are or the severity of your illness. The same God who transformed Saul and restored his sight can work a miracle for you.
The story of the man with leprosy (Matthew 8:1-4)
After returning from the mountainside one day a large crowd started to follow Jesus. While they were all there a leper approached Him to ask for healing. The leper knelt before Jesus and said, Lord if you are willing you can make me clean. Jesus reached out His hand, touched him, and said be clean.
Life application: This Bible story points to something that is often overlooked- God’s will. We all know that the Lord is more than able to cure any disease we may have. However sometimes we think He has abandoned us when He delays His response or doesn’t heal us at all.
It doesn’t only take faith in the Lord to receive healing. We also have to trust His timing and submit to His will for our lives.
The story of the two demon possessed men (Matthew 8:28-34)
This story is about two men who were possessed by evil spirits. Their affliction was so great that no one could walk near them because of their violent behavior.
The men with unclean spirits were coming from the tombs when they saw Jesus. The spirits acknowledged Jesus as the son of God and afterwards Jesus healed the two men by sending the spirits into a herd of pigs.
Life application: The fact that evil spirits are able to acknowledge Jesus Christ and submit to His power is a testimony to followers of Christ. We should never hesitate to acknowledge our awesome Savior and beseech Him to cover us under His life-giving blood.
Jesus’ healing stories
Jesus performed many miracles of healing during His earthly ministry. Let’s take a look at some of these miracles and how we may apply lessons from these New Testament stories to our lives today.
The story of the centurion and his servant (Matthew 8:5-13)
One day while Jesus was in Capernaum a centurion came to Him and told Him that his servant was paralyzed. Jesus asked if he wanted Him to visit his house and heal his servant. The centurion told Jesus that he doesn’t deserve to have Jesus at his house but that Jesus could just speak and heal the servant.
Jesus was amazed at the centurion’s faith. He spoke and the servant was healed at the same moment.
Life application: Two points that this story highlights are humility and faith. The Lord is not concerned about your status and accomplishments He want you to always be humble as you approach Him in faith.
The story of the paralyzed man who was forgiven (Mark 2:1-5)
This story is about four men who believed in God’s power. They heard that Jesus was in Capernaum and they decided that they would take their crippled friend to be healed. When they got to where Jesus was, the house was too crowded for them to enter.
The men made a hole in the roof and lowered the paralyzed man on his mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he told the man that his sins were forgiven. He told him to get up, take up his mat, and go home.
Life application: This is one of the stories of Jesus which teaches that forgiveness of sins is important for receiving physical and spiritual healing. Never hesitate to ask the Lord to forgive you and restore you spiritually when you ask Him for relief from physical ailments.
Story of the woman with the issue of blood (Luke 8:44-48)
Jesus was at a large gathering when Jairus asked him to visit his house and heal his little girl. A woman with a chronic illness for twelve years was also in the crowd. As Jesus was trying to press His way through the gathering the woman touched the hem of his cloak and immediately, she was healed.
Jesus felt the power left His body and asked who touched Him. The woman knelt at His feet and admitted that she was the one who touched Him. Jesus told her that she should go in peace because her faith had made her well.
Life application: The woman with the issue of blood not only knew that Jesus was a healer but had great faith in His power. She didn’t expect Jesus to do or say anything. She was convinced that even a touch was enough to cure a disease that doctors could not help her with.
When modern medicine is not able to help never lose hope in the man Christ Jesus. If you reach out to Him in faith it’s enough to make you well again.
The God we serve is still able and willing to heal and restore us to health. Never hesitate to call upon Him and have faith in His healing powers. Submit to His will, be persistent as you endure in faith, and wait for Him to work a miracle in your life.