Does my faith make me whole?
It seems like the Savior said “thy faith hath made thee whole” so often throughout His ministry. But He only said that phrase to four people!
One person whose story was told three times (in Matthew, Mark, and Luke) is the woman with an issue of blood.
For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour.
But the woman fearing and trembling, knowing what was done in her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth. And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.
And when the woman saw that she was not hid, she came trembling, and falling down before him, she declared unto him before all the people for what cause she had touched him, and how she was healed immediately. And he said unto her, Daughter, be of good comfort: thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace.
Another is blind Bartimæus’ story.
And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me. And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou Son of David, have mercy on me.
And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee. And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus.
And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight. And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.
Another scriptural reference of the phrase occurred before the Savior’s earthly ministry with the prophet Enos. The Lord answered Enos’ plea for forgiveness as Enos repented of his sins.
And I said: Lord, how is it done?
And he said unto me: Because of thy faith in Christ, whom thou hast never before heard nor seen. And many years pass away before he shall manifest himself in the flesh; wherefore, go to, thy faith hath made thee whole.
The Savior also said the phrase to a Samaritan leper.
And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee. And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.
And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed.
And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, And fell down on his face at his feet, giving him thanks: and he was a Samaritan.
And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. And he said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.
Thankfulness to Wholeness
I used to read this story as sort of an accusation against everyone the Lord blesses but who remain ungrateful people. It means something different to me now.
But every time I read it, something always stuck out. All of the lepers were healed. But the Savior specifically acknowledged the leper who returned’s faith as making him whole. So the leprous healing wasn’t the wholeness healing.
Now I read it as a journey from “lack” mindset and “victim” mentality to a “whole or abundant” mindset and “empowered creator” mentality.
If I liken the story to myself, I can see how I receive heavenly blessings and take them for granted—life, air, breath, health, talents, opportunities, relationships, nature, spiritual gifts, material blessings. I’ve had crises of health, relationship, faith, et cetera that’s been healed/overcome through divine intervention. Like the nine lepers, I say, great, hooray, and run off on my way! I run to do what’s required of me, what the Lord’s asked me to do. I’m compliant, just as these lepers are.
But in those circumstances, I wasn’t really changed. Maybe instead of leprosy, the next crisis would be an issue of blood or blindness or sin. Because I’m not changed, the cycle perpetuates, as it has my whole life. I recognize the limitation. I ask for divine intervention. I am healed or the circumstances shift. I comply with the requisites. I feel satisfied that I am keeping the law or what I’ve defined as the covenant because I see the flow of miracles in my life and I try to do what the Lord asks of me.
However, in this state, I only exude “lack.” I am perpetually poor. I’m not poor in spirit, I’m just poor. Jesus alluded to how many of us stay stuck in this mode when he told the lack mentality disciples “For ye have the poor always with you, but me ye have not always.”
And so even though I’m ticking off all the to-do boxes, my soul never feels truly satisfied. My mindset focuses on “what happens to me” and what trial I’ll endure next. I am satisfied that I’m enduring trials and checking those boxing, but deep feelings of wholeness elude me. “And he shall snatch on the right hand and be hungry, and he shall eat on the left hand and they shall not be satisfied.”
Jacob offers the solution.
Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your labor for that which cannot satisfy. Hearken diligently unto me, and remember the words which I have spoken; and come unto the Holy One of Israel, and feast upon that which perisheth not, neither can be corrupted, and let your soul delight in fatness.
Stop running in that perpetual loop. Stop the cycle of lack. Do you want to be satisfied? Whole? There is a way. “Come unto the Holy One of Israel.” And feast. Feast.
The feast is always available every time divine intervention occurs. Along with the miracle, I could receive the feast—if I chose to.
For what doth it profit a man if a gift is bestowed upon him, and he receive not the gift? Behold, he rejoices not in that which is given unto him, neither rejoices in him who is the giver of the gift.
The Giver of the Gift
When that former leper turned, he changed. He acknowledged the divine intervention, the gift. He rejoiced in the giver of the gift.
When I turn to Him and receive His gift, I recognize all of the other gifts. My life and those gifts gains perspective. Instead of perpetuating cycles, I cast those burdens on Him and receive His atoning grace. I learn how to act instead of being acted upon.
Suddenly, the outlook changes from living paycheck to paycheck on that which doesn’t satisfy to receiving the abundance of the God of the universe who promises that I can become joint-heirs with Christ.
They are they into whose hands the Father has given all things.
For the earth is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.
Glory to God
The Savior seems surprised that only one former leper made the choice. “Were there not 10…There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger.” The leper gave glory to God.
The glory of God is intelligence, or, in other words, light and truth. Light and truth forsake that evil one.
As the Savior approached Gethsemane, he verbalized how He glorified the Father.
I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do.
Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again.
The leper, the blind man, the woman, and Enos all, on their own path, developed the faith—the power of action—to receive the giver’s gift, to feast, to glorify God, and to hear the Savior declare “thy faith hath made thee whole.”
I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I have moved 64 times and have not tired of experiencing this beautiful earth! I love the people, languages, histories/anthropologies, & especially religious cultures of the world. My life long passion is the study & searching out of religious symbolism, specifically related to ancient & modern temples. My husband Anthony and I love our bulldog Stig, adventures, traveling, movies, motorcycling, and time with friends and family.