“And Jesus went about all Galilee, ... healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people. And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, ...and he healed them. ” Matthew 4:23-25
Suggested Further Reading: 2 Kings 6:11-23
Take care that you bring your relatives to Christ on the arms of your faith. Faith is that which puts strength into prayer. The reason why we do not receive the answer to our supplications is, because we do not believe we shall be heard. You remember my sermon the other sabbath morning from the text, “Whatsoever things ye shall desire when ye pray, believe that ye receive them and ye shall have them.” (See August 13) If you can exercise faith for a dead soul, that dead soul shall be quickened and receive faith itself. If you can look to Christ with the eye of faith for a blind soul, that blind soul shall have sight given it and it shall see. There is a wonderful power in vicarious faith—faith for another. Not that any one of you can be saved without faith yourself; but that when another believes for you and on your account, and quotes the promise before God for you, you may be unconscious of it, but God hears and answers that faith, and breathes on your soul, and gives you faith to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. I do not think Christians exercise enough of this power. They are so busy with faith about their troubles, faith about their sins, faith about their personal experience, that they have not time to exercise that faith for another. Oh but surely that gift was never bestowed upon us for our own use merely, but for other people. Try it, Christian man; try it, Christian woman; see whether God is not as good as your faith when your faith is exercised concerning the soul of your poor neighbour, of your poor drunken kinsman, or of some poor soul who thus far has defied every effort to reclaim him from the error of his ways.
For meditation: Sometimes Jesus healed the sick as the result of the faith of others (Matthew 8:10,13; 15:28; Mark 2:5; 9:23,24; Luke 8:50; John 4:50). Are you praying like this for the conversion of some who at present can’t and won’t pray for themselves?
Sermon no. 333
2 September (1860)