One time – No more
If you have been a christian for very long you’ve probably heard the teaching that if you pray more than once about something then you’re in unbelief. Most of the time this is preached in reference to praying for the sick or the sick person receiving their healing. They say that if you ask God for your healing then you are to stand in faith that what you asked for will come to pass. In other words, as Smith Wigglesworth has been quoted as saying, “If you pray for healing six times, then five of them are in unbelief.” We are to “walk by faith”, “not doubt in our heart”, and not be “double minded” because if we are we can not expect to receive anything from God. This sounds really spiritual, even scriptural, but there is a problem with this as it pertains to healing; Healing was accomplished as part of the atonement.
4 Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. (NKJV)
In Leviticus 5:1 we read that if a soul sins then he shall bear (nasa) his iniquity. In Isaiah 53:12 we read that Jesus was numbered with the transgressors and bore (nasa) the sins of many. It is unquestionably clear that God is telling us that in the same way Jesus bore (nasa) the payment for our sins, He bore (nasa) our sickness and disease and took it away. The Holy Spirit also declares this to be true when He inspired Matthew (Mat 8:16-17) to quote the passage in Isaiah 53 showing that He was talking about bodily sickness and disease.
16 When evening had come, they brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick, 17 that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “He Himself took our infirmities
Some may say, “you see, it says that Jesus fulfilled that prophesy through His ministry of healing and not through what He did on the cross. Healing and deliverance are not for today. According to Luke 4:17-21 Jesus took the scripture and opened it up to Isaiah where it spoke about Him having the Spirit of God on Him to preach the gospel to the poor, heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, set at liberty those who are oppressed. He then closed the book and said that today this scripture was fulfilled in their hearing. If you say that healing was fulfilled and not part of the atonement, then you have to say that the preaching of the gospel, healing the broken-hearted, and delivering the captives has also ceased. Obviously, Jesus is still preaching the gospel through those who believe in Him and He is also still healing the sick through those that believe in Him!
1 Peter 2:24
He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed. (NIV)
Peter quoted the passage in Isaiah but made it past tense indicated that this is something that has already happened. Just as Jesus has already forgiven you of all your sins, He has also already healed you! You just need to receive it by faith.
So you see, we can’t be in unbelief because we don’t pray for healing. You don’t ask God to do something that He has already done. You don’t ask Him to save you again, you receive what He has already accomplished at the whipping post and on the cross one time for all. We don’t ask God to heal us, we command the sickness / disease / problem to leave the body and for the body to be here on earth as it is in Heaven. For it to line up with the truth we have already been healed. So you are not in unbelief because you are NOT asking or believing God to do anything. You believe He has already healed you or the person you are praying for and are persisting until everything bows to the reality of Jesus’ Lordship. You don’t just tell it what to do then walk away, you persist until it does what you commanded it to do. To say that you’re in unbelief if you pray twice is admitting that you don’t believe that healing was part of the atonement and so in reality you are denying the finished work of the cross. You are the one in unbelief, not the one demanding that everything be on earth as it is in heaven.