In class last night we discussed the struggle some have with dissociation and Dissociative Identity Disorder (formerly called Multiple Personality Disorder). At one point we began talking about demonic possession and inner healing. As usually happens, there were questions about the efficacy of inner healing ministries. Should they be trusted? Are they good? Why do they work for some and not for others? Here are some of my thoughts on inner healing as a way through deep pain and hurt.
1. Most inner healing ministries want to see people free from the lies of the evil one. Good goal.
2. Most inner healing ministries move through a process of imagery, prayer, forgiveness, release, etc. Most fixate on Jesus as the healer and restorer of health. While each piece I just mentioned are good, I start to worry because what is implied is:
A. Follow these steps and you will be free. Guaranteed. Dangerous and unbiblical.
B. If you are not free, then the problem is what (not enough faith, didn’t do it right, rebellion, more demons to be cast out
C. Sanctification (a daily life of faith, repentance, rest in the Truth) is achieved in leaps and bounds and once you achieve this freedom, life will be easier. Forgiveness and repentance are not once and done things but daily acts of submission to Christ.
3. Some people are delivered once and for all from enslavements to fear but many aren’t. There is little interest in being daily delivered on a slower trajectory than immediate and complete healing from fear.
4. Most disciples of an inner healing ministry are more sold out than the creators of the model, creating people more inclined to hurt others by demanding that vulnerable do the model.
5. Healing models tend to be fixated on universal laws (order) and the presence/characteristic of victim wounds.
I’ve written several articles on inner healing, related biblical imagery, and more specifically, on one particular model of inner healing. What I also have noticed is that most people fall on one extreme or another about inner healing. Either they are wholly sold out on it, or think it is utterly evil. I’m convinced God has used healing ministries to show his power to heal but I’m also convinced most healing ministries are based on personal experience, bad theology, and attempts to make one miraculous act of God into a sure deal for everyone else.
4 responses to “Thoughts on Inner Healing”
Thanks for writing about this topic. I’m interested in reading your other articles on inner healing. Are they archived here and I didn’t see them or are they available elsewhere. I’m helping a church think through the ramifications of Ed Smith’s Theophostic Counseling so I could use some resources.
This is a good article. I agree with the author about how inner healing prayer can get out of control. I think with all things there has to be balance and knowledge. And without these things, there can be a lot of hurt and abuse. Inner healing prayer can be helpful, but, like everything else, there are many factors that contribute to the success for an individual.
Hello, in reading your article I found it very you Biblical Concepts interesting. As a person who has listened to these inner healing models, and as a person that has received some inner emotional healing, here are some points that you left out–
Here is what I’ve learned / received–
1) First and foremost, a relationship with Jesus Christ is necessary for Christian models of inner healing. The Christian process is a relationship of Jesus going back with you into the memory, so if you have no relationship with him, Christian inner healing models stop here until that relationship is established.
2) The process of inner healing is Jesus going back with you into that memory, walking beside you, and bringing healing to that memory. The memory is not forgotten, but as Jesus comes along side you, it is not as painful to ‘revisit’ the experience / emotion. And, yes, sometimes people are freed from the memory, but not always.
3) The fundamental of Biblical counseling is giving to God that pain, hurt, and leaving it in His hands for judgment. That does not say that ‘justice’ happens on this side of Heaven. Quite the contrary, it may / may not happen here or in heaven, but because of sin, our minds are skewed, and this is placing it into the hands of the one ‘whose thoughts are not my thoughts…and my ways not His ways’.
4) Christian healing models DO NOT guarantee results — DO NOT say ‘you have to have more faith’ and results DO vary. I encourage you to further examine scriptures and see that the healings were not done by the same method or the same results. And, yes, sometimes the ‘healing’ is someone passes away to heaven where there is no pain, tears, sorrow – but joy, peace.
This is a mystery of God, and also where ‘the rubber meets the road’ in the realm of faith.
I’m not a psychologist, I’m just a Christian woman who has received healing from Jesus AND the process is NOT over. My process of healing will continue until I pass away. Inner healing is not a ‘quick fix’ but a live-long, relational process with a living, active, and true God that does free people from addictions, bondages, and demonic spirits.
Finally, your article mentioned nothing about ‘portals’ – the gateways in which people can enslave themselves to sin. Christian counseling says ‘seeking anything outside of God for healing is ‘digging empty wells’. People use entertainment, food, alcohol, drugs, sex, gambling, etc. as a ‘release’ from their problems. However, these things will not fix the ‘root’ issue of the problem.
Also, tarot cards, fortunes, witchcraft books, and New Age materials are all elements that could potentially allow demonic spirits into their lives and enslave them.
Thank you for the time in reading my letter. As a Christian woman, I do like to hear different perspectives on inner healing, but it frustrates me when people want to keep someone from experiencing a relationship with Christ that has the potential / power to transform and change lives. As a result of my relationship with Jesus, I’m more free to love people, to accept different cultures / backgrounds, and to move toward unity and not dissension.
Thank you again for your time.
Thank you for sharing this. I have seen the good and the bad in some of the healing ministries out there. I think much of it comes down to the person ministering and if they will be Biblical in both approach and in spirit. Thank you for putting this out there.