'Healing afflictions?'
An oxymoron is the combining of contradictory terms, as in 'a deafening silence' or 'bitter sweet', in order to
draw attention to the complex meaning of a particular object, name, situation or concept.  Scripture reflects
certain oxymora that cause the reader to pause and meditate on the profound and deeper meaning of God's
written word.  One such
seeming contradiction is in the concept of a "healing affliction" (1) ... "Before I was
afflicted I went astray, but now I obey Your word"
(2).  Scripture offers examples where affliction can be a
consequence of going astray (into sin).  Scripture supports instances in which God allows circumstance to
enter our lives to bring us to the foot of His throne that we might repent and receive His forgiveness, grace and
restoration.  Our 'healing' may, at times, be wrought through a situation that appears (in the natural) to
frustrate or interfere with our recovery, yet in God's economy such a divine prompting may bring us into the
hollow of His healing hand
(3)  and the center of His will.
There are those, even today, that preach and teach that 'healing' for the physical body was not an intrinsic part
of the Atonement of Christ on the Cross.  Doctrine that denies the healing aspect of the atoning work of Christ
also, then, must change God's name from "I AM THAT I AM"
(4)  and ... for I Am the Lord that healeth thee"(5)
to 'I Am the God that Was and used to healeth thee'.  If Jesus Christ is "... the same yesterday, and to day, and
for ever"
(6), then His saving grace(7)  and healing virtue do not change according to man's dispensations.
Christ Himself, His propitiation, His promises and His eternal majesty are the hope we have as an anchor for
our soul
(8).  In our 'blessed hope' (Titus 2:13) there are no contradiction(s). God will use the foolish things of
this world to confound the wise, allow trials for the purpose of strengthening our faith and even permit
affliction to bring us to the place where He can release His healing virtue into all our spiritual and physical
The more obstinate, rebellious and contrary we are to having our lives brought into the center of God's will, the
more likely it is He will allow an occurrence, such as a 'healing affliction', to quicken our obedience and the
keeping of His word
(2).  God is patient, merciful and long-suffering in perfecting us into the image of His Son,
yet He will not contend nor strive with man's rebellious nature without end
(9).  How much better it is to obey
Him now than to have to pay the price of a later sacrifice
(10).  We can avoid many 'healing afflictions' through
our obedience to His call, His commandants and His guiding word.  As the Lord has anointed you, so now arise
and enter into the fullness of the call He has purposed in your life.  Let your obedience keep you in Christ's
righteousness ... this is not a time to wait for the
prompting of an affliction, but to eagerly seek out and fulfill
your destiny in Christ Jesus.  The enemy is roaming about seeking whom he may 'kill, steal from and destroy'
(Jhn. 10:10) and each one of these sorties (armed attacks) will have embedded into it an affliction of one kind or
another ... again, how much better it is to obey than to have to pay the price for a later sacrifice

Jon D. Hannum, Ph.D.
Amen Ministries of Austin
(1) (Hungry for More of Jesus, p.136, D. Wilkerson)  (2) (Ps. 119:67)  (3) (see Deu. 32:39)  (4) (Exo. 3:14)  (5) (Exo.
15:26)   (6) (Heb. 13:8)   (7) (see Eph. 2:8)  (8) Heb. 6:19)   (9) (see Gen. 6:3-Niv)   (10) (see 1 Sam. 15:22).
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