(1) Knowing God.
Before Jesus and His ministry arrived on the scene, how were Jewish believers healed?
Now there is in Jerusalem by the sheep gate a pool, which is called in Hebrew Bethesda, having five porticoes. In these lay a multitude of those who were sick, blind, lame, and withered, [waiting for the moving of the waters; for an angel of the Lord went down at certain seasons into the pool and stirred up the water; whoever than first, after the stirring up of the water, stepped in was made well from whatever disease with which he was afflicted.] (John 5: 2-4)
Approximately 450 years separated the prophet, Malachi, and the ministry of Jesus. These are known as the silent years when no inspired prophet arose among the Jews. And without the Old Testament prophets, there were no healing ministries.
Yet, Jehovah Rapha kept his healing candle flickering in Jerusalem at the Pool of Bethesda. There, an angel of the Lord would periodically stir up the water, and whoever stepped into the pool first was supernaturally healed.
The odds of an individual sick person being healed at the pool were slim because hundreds of people were laying on the five porticoes, waiting for a chance to be healed.
So, think about this: For every supernaturally healed person who shouted for joy at the Pool of Bethesda, there were tears, anguish, disappointment and cries from the many hundreds who were not healed.
Jesus walked into one of these porticoes during a feast. Now, wouldn’t you think that this would have been a perfect time to hold a healing meeting? After all, the porticoes were filled with hundreds of desperate, hurting people.
But Jesus walked past and stepped over countless numbers of people to find one man. And just that one man, out of the hundreds laying there, received his healing from Jesus.
How could Jesus focus on one person and not be overwhelmed by all the suffering people at the Pool of Bethesda?
Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner. (John 5: 19)
Jesus intimately knew the Father, and the Father showed Jesus that just one person was to be healed by Him. And Jesus was at peace with the Father’s decision.
This is an important revelation for everyone who has or will have a healing ministry.
We need to intimately know God, walk with him and only do what He wants us to do. Otherwise, we will end up like William Branham, overworked, exhausted and sitting on the sidelines. Our hearts will be weighed down and tugged on by all the suffering people in the world.
Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. (Matthew 11: 29 -30)
When William Branham returned to ministry in 1950, he prayed for sick people in a different manner than he did in 1946 and 1947. No longer did he push himself past his physical limits. Yet, he was just as successful.
(Continued in Part 8)