Prayer Brings Healing

James McConkey

Sometime in 1902 or 1903 Mr. McConkey asked Mr. Huntington and Mr. Banks to come to his room and pray with him for the healing of his body. Mr. McConkey read James 5: 14-16 and then Mr. Banks anointed him with oil. The three knelt together to ask God that the frail body might be strengthened for service, simply and solely to glorify Him. There was no immediate definite answer but the fact that sufficient strength was granted day by day for about thirty years to carry on a ministry such as very few have ever been privileged to have was proof to Mr. Huntington that the Lord heard and answered that day.

Mr. McConkey did not agree with those who held that healing is in the Atonement in the sense that all one needs to do is to accept it as he accepts salvation— that it is always God’s will to heal. His interpretation of that familiar passage, “the prayer of faith shall save the sick,” seems logical. It was his conviction, born out of his own experience, that if the believer had un- forced, God-given faith that in a particular instance it was God’s will to heal, then the patient assuredly would recover. But if the Lord does not send this faith into the soul of the suppliant, he could not work up a faith for healing that would be effective. For more than fifty years, he did not know the meaning of robust health; yet there were special times when he experienced the healing touch of the Lord, the result of which was sufficient strength to carry on the good works for which he had been created in Christ Jesus. He was not opposed to the use of means and frequently consulted doctors, but he believed that there were times when the Lord chose to heal either naturally or miraculously, without the use of medicine. He was not an example of one who had received and continued in perfect health, but he was an example of one who for years had asked for strength sufficient to carry on his God-planned work day by day and had received it.

Taken from J. H. McConkey, 44,45