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7 In that region there was an estate of the leading citizen of the island, whose name was Publius, who received us and entertained us courteously for three days. 8 And it happened that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever and dysentery. Paul went in to him and prayed, and he laid his hands on him and healed him. 9 So when this was done, the rest of those on the island who had diseases also came and were healed. 10 They also honored us in many ways; and when we departed, they provided such things as were necessary. 

 

Paul healed Publius’s father of sickness in verses 7-10.  

28:7 

In that region there was an estate of the leading citizen of the island, whose name was Publius, who received us and entertained us courteously for three days. 

A leading citizen named Publius welcomed people from the ship to his estate and provided their needs for three days.  

28:8 

And it happened that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever and dysentery. Paul went in to him and prayed, and he laid his hands on him and healed him. 

During the time the shipwrecked people stayed with Publius, his father fell sick with fever and dysentery. Paul prayed and laid his hands on him so that he was healed 

28:9 

So when this was done, the rest of those on the island who had diseases also came and were healed. 

The report of Publius’s father being healed spread to other people on the island who needed healing. They came and were healed 

28:10 

They also honored us in many ways; and when we departed, they provided such things as were necessary. 

The people of Malta honored Paul and his group in many ways, including making provisions for their journey to Rome a few months later.  

PRINCIPLE: 

It is not always God’s will to heal. 

APPLICATION: 

It is essential to distinguish between the gifts of healing and the possibility of healing. The healing gifts ceased with the apostles, but God can still heal in answer to prayer or at His own volition. In every case, it is God who sovereignly bestows healing. Gifts of healing do not account for all healing in the New Testament. 

God can and does heal today, but this is not the gift of healing. No one can heal like Jesus or the apostles. Paul could not heal his friend Epaphroditus (Php 2:27) or his close protégé Timothy (1 Ti 5:23). He left his associate Trophimus in Miletus sick (2 Ti 4:20). He only exercised the gift of healing to confirm the gospel, never to heal a friend. 

For Christians to demand that God heal today is to play god by exercising sovereignty over God Almighty. It is not always God’s will for everyone to be cured. The gift of healing was the prerogative of the person with the gift, and it did not depend on the faith of the individual healed (Acts 3:1-10; 9:32-35; 14:8; 28:7-9). Paul had a physical ailment that God did not heal (2 Co 12:9).  

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