A considerable weight is given in Christian doctrine and tradition,
to the concept of a God who intervenes in human affairs to heal the sick.
A more considered approach must realise that this is unrealistic.
Where healing does occur it derives from mental assent to
the charisma of the healer - to faith in his power,
rather than to any magical power itself.
Loyalty to literal biblical inerrancy and the common view
that there is a link between sickness and sin
bolsters the traditional view of such magical power.
Physical healing seems to be reported repeatedly in the Bible,
perhaps because, without modern medicine, this was the only hope.
The shaman, or priest, was expected to offer a healing ministry.
It was, and is, a key part of the religious package
and sometimes it worked, and works.
However the Greek word "sozo"
can be translated as meaning either "heal" or "save.".
Whilst Bible commentaries generally assume the former,
the latter is a more practical interpretation.
So we might suspect that many of the Gospel reports cover another change,
which is aligned to a change of heart rather to a physical healing;
A change of allegiance that needed to be hidden from authority;
A report of a change to a person's politico-religious allegiance.
Salvation from the soul-destroying nature of peasant life.
Here, in the Gospels, we may see the message of Israel's salvation
from the domination of Rome, the brutality of the Roman army.
Here we also see a reflection of the reports and messages
circulated round the country, in code.
Undetected by authority
Could this be a truer explanation, for some is needed,
of many of the unrealistic healing miracles reported,
or is the whole story contrived to build our faith
and so to bolster the standing of the leader
in the eyes of his obedient followers?
Go to Main List of Miracles