Therefore they could not believe, because that Esaias said again, He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them. – John 12:37-40
This could be interpreted as the ultimate teaching in predestination. That interpretation would be that these people were never given the opportunity to believe because of Isaiah’s prophecies. However, the Word of God makes it clear that “whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Rom. 10:13); “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me” (Rev. 3:20); and “whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely” (Rev. 22:17). No one has ever been denied the opportunity to accept salvation (Ti. 2:11).
Mark 6:5 says that “he (Jesus) could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them.” In that instance, it is evident that the reason Jesus couldn’t do any mighty work was not because He didn’t possess the power, but because He chose not to use that power against a person’s will. He couldn’t perform the mighty works because of His decision to uphold our freedom of choice.
Likewise, these Jews could not believe because of their choice to reject Jesus. They could not believe because they chose not to believe. “They stumbled at the stumblingstone” (Rom. 9:32), which was Jesus.
Isaiah did not predestine them to this fate. Rather he saw that very few would receive the report (Isa. 53:1) about the Messiah, and therefore would be kept from the knowledge of salvation because they rejected Him in whom all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are found (Col. 2:3). This is what Isaiah prophesied, and it came to pass. Be careful what you choose.
RIGHT LIVING IS A RESULT OF RIGHT BELIEVING
For as he thinks in his heart, so is he… – Proverbs 23:7
Preaching about right living will not result in long-lasting or permanent change in people’s behavior. It’s time for us to go after the root, and the root is not in preaching right living, but in preaching right believing. Believe right and you will live right. The opposite is also true: Believe wrong and you will live wrong.
My friend, Christianity is not about behavior modification. It is about inward heart transformation. So start addressing the root instead. Get hold of good teachings that are full of God’s grace and that reveal His righteousness that comes by faith in Jesus.
When you are anchored on these unshakable foundations, your outward behavior will come in line with His Word and you will begin to be transformed into His image from glory to glory (2 Corinthians 3:18).
So today, meditate on God’s grace toward you and how you are made right by Jesus’ finished work on the cross. You will produce the fruits of righteousness and reign in life!
THE 12 WELLS AND 70 PALM TREES …
Exodus 15:27 – Then they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water and seventy palm trees; so they camped there by the waters.
Would you like to know an important biblical key to divine health? It is found in todays verse, which comes right after God says, I am the Lord who heals you. He said this to His people after He brought them out of Egypt. (Exodus 15:26)
The wells of water and palm trees speak of refreshment. They paint a picture of an oasis in the desert. The Israelites rested and were refreshed there. But why the numbers 12 and 70?
There are no insignificant details in the Bible. The 12 wells of water and 70 palm trees represent anointed ministries that refresh you with Gods Word. So if you want to know Jesus as the Lord who heals you, sit under anointed preaching of Gods Word because when His Word goes forth, it will heal you. His Word is medicine to all your flesh! (Proverbs 4:22)
How did I make that connection? Let the Bible interpret the Bible. Matthew 10:1 says that when Jesus had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease. He sent out the 12 and said to them, And as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons… (Matthew 10:78)
Then, in Luke 10:1, the Lord appointed seventy others also, and sent them two by two before His face into every city and place where He Himself was about to go. He also said to the 70, And heal the sick there, and say to them, The kingdom of God has come near to you. (Luke 10:9)
In other words, Jesus anointed the 12 and then the 70 disciples to preach Gods Word and heal the sick. Today, if you want refreshment, if you want health and healing, don’t sit under ministries that tell you that God doesn’t always want to heal and that He sometimes gives you diseases to teach you lessons. Instead, sit under anointed ministries that preach the good news and practice healing the sick. My friend, that is how you can begin to walk in divine health!