"So many believers are in the sickness prison, and the enemy has them believing that the prison door is locked, the key thrown away. But the blood of Jesus shed for us put that lie to shame! "The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor; He has sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound" (Isa. 61:1). The phrase, "the opening of the prison," is God's metaphorical way of saying that we have been released from the bondage of Satan. That includes sin, sickness, disease and torment--everything that is involved with Satan's prison house. The prison door was opened through the redemptive act of Jesus Christ. And whatever we need--spiritually, mentally, emotionally or financially--has been provided by that act." - Sandra Smith
Keep in mind that I am not advocating for accepting illness and not seeking God for healing. The bible is clear that if we are sick we should call for the elders of the church to pray the prayer of faith over us. The problem is when we start assuming God must heal us. That somehow He has promised all believers to never be sick. This is an absurd premise that infects the body of Christ today. Smith quotes Isaiah 61:1 but again misses the point. When using the word healing Isaiah ascribes it to the broken-hearted, not the infirmed. That is what the Gospel does! Consider the explanation of liberty for the captives from Gill's Exposition:
"to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening, of the prison to them that are bound; to such who were captives to sin, Satan, and the law, and as it were prisoners to them, shut up by them, and in them, and held fast there; but Christ, as he is the author of liberty; obtains it for his people, and makes them free with it, so he proclaims it in the Gospel; a liberty from sin, from the damning and governing power of it; a freedom from the curse and condemnation of the law; a deliverance from Satan, as of a prey from the mighty, or as of prisoners from the prison house." - Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Smith rushes to include sickness in with the bondage from sin and in doing so glosses over sin, which is the entire point. We love this world because it is all we know and as such we often miss the eternal truths for the pursuit of mortal promises. The truth is that our freedom in Christ transcends this world. Should we pray? Absolutely. Should we demand healing from the creator of the entire universe? Tread lightly!
"We constantly see that even though the prison door is open, the devil has been successful at keeping countless people inside. Many of them have accepted Christ as their Savior and have received salvation. They have received the spiritual benefits of the redemptive plan of God. But the devil has kept many of these Christians deceived regarding the physical inheritance that was bought for them on the cross and is rightfully theirs." - Sandra Smith
This is dangerously arrogant theology. God did not send His Son to die for our physical or mental illnesses. There is zero biblical support for that thinking. He sent His only Son for our spiritual sickness. Isn't that enough? God so loved the world He didn't want to see them suffering from arthritis? Stomach ailments? No. God so loved the world because we were His creation and we were separated from Him due to sin, no other reason. The problem is that sin is no longer preached today. The atoning blood is no longer sang about in churches. Instead the focus is on this world and our comforts in this life. We seek blessings that are entirely carnal in nature. Is it any wonder then that we would focus on sicknesses in this world?
"Why did Jesus open the prison door for us? According to Moffatt's translation of Isaiah 61:1, it was "to tell prisoners they are free, to tell captives they are released." How did Jesus open the prison door for us? By bearing the punishment for our sins. We see that in Isaiah 53. Young's Literal Translation of the Holy Bible records the last part of Isaiah 53:6 as "Jehovah hath caused to meet on him, the punishment of us all." In Deuteronomy 28, all sickness is listed among the punishments. And God tells us in Galatians 3:13 that we have been redeemed from those punishments. In Rotherham's translation of Isaiah 53:10 we read, "He laid on him sickness." Matthew 8:17 says, "He Himself took our infirmities and bore our sicknesses." So, you see, according to Scriptures, Jesus paid our debt. And because He did, we do not have to pay it. It is already paid in full." - Sandra Smith
Putting aside the need to hopscotch through dubious translations of the bible, let us instead focus on the biblical sleight of hand Smith traffics in here. Because she is seeking validation, she continues to miss the point even though it is slapping her in the face as she tries to shoehorn it into her poor theology. Let's go back to basics so we are not confused. The original plan of God was for His people to obey the Mosaic Law. The benefits of obedience and the curses for disobedience are found in Deuteronomy 28, which Smith references here. It is true that all sorts of sickness were listed among the various curses. It is also true that Jesus bore our infirmities, but again these are spiritual in nature. He came to complete the law that no one could keep. The law convicts us before a holy God of our sins and the Good News (Gospel) is that Jesus came to deliver us from that judgment. To set us free from the captivity of our sin that would have led to eternal judgment if based upon the Mosaic Law. What Galatians 3 redeems us from is the law, not sickness. It means we will be judged by the finished work of the cross instead of our sins from breaking God's law. That does not mean that we will now never get sick. It means that our sin-sickness will no longer condemn us.