It was our separation from God that was healed by the stripes Christ suffered. We were never promised that our body would be healed in this life, only that it could be.
But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. ~ Isaiah 53:5
Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. ~ 1 Peter 2:24
God created a perfect world with two perfect human beings. When Adam and Eve chose to doubt God’s Word and to follow the way of Satan, they sinned, by disobeying God. The freedom of choice was given them by God and as our parents this is the choice they made which resulted in bringing condemnation on the entire world and all of mankind to come.
Their act of disobedience was in reality a choice for Satan as the one that would have the rule over this world. Even though we today may be forgiven of our sins and born again, Bible believing, commandment keeping Christians, we still live in a sinful fallen world with consequences. A world ruled by a fallen angel that hates God and all humanity being we are made in the image of God. Yet, there are many who get angry and turn their back on God and Church because they claim that a loving God would not allow the suffering and death we see or hear about every day. They read Isaiah 53:5, and 1Peter 2:24 and do not understand why God does not heal their body or that of their loved one.
If one reads the context of Isaiah 53:5, and 1 Peter 2:24 it should be clear that Christ healed our Spiritual disease of sin that separated us from God the Father. He never PROMISED to heal our diseases of the flesh in this life even though He often does so when it suits His purpose for our life or the life of another. As the Bible makes plain, this body of flesh is condemned to die, that is for certain but it is our Spirit that He ransomed from the grave.
It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life. ~ John 6:63
The verses we referenced in Isaiah and in 1Peter are telling us that Jesus healed the division between God and man that was broken by the sin of Adam and Eve. This healing made personal relationships between God and man possible and opened the door not only for bodily healing, but the spiritual healing we receive when our sins are forgiven. It did not remove the curse of a sinful fallen world, it opened a door.
The fact is, because of sin in the world this body is aging and falling apart, and will someday die as will this entire world. If God were going to make this earthen body perfect, why would I need the new body we are promised in 1 Corinthians? Take a look at 1 Corinthians 15:43, talking about our bodies, . . . it is sown [buried] in weakness. If God promised perfect health, in this life, we would be strong and healthy all through this life, then how could our bodies be weak when they are buried? If all were strong and healthy even into old age and God healed every ailment why then should we ever want to go to heaven? The fact is, it is by Jesus' stripes all who come and surrender to Him are healed, SPIRITUALLY!
We take a closer look at part of Isaiah 53:5, . . .and with his stripes we are healed. Also drop down to verses 6-11, where we see that the Lord laid the iniquity (sin, wickedness), of all of us on Jesus Christ. In verse eight God Himself tells us why Jesus received those stripes; . . .for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
Continuing on in Isaiah 53, verse ten informs us that Jesus' soul was made an offering for sin. For SIN, ...an offering for sin..., not for bodily health, or for healing was He stricken, but for sin. So we are told that the stripes, the beating Jesus suffered were to heal our spiritual sickness brought on not only by Adam and Eve, but also by all the sins that we would ever commit. Verse eleven goes on to say that many will be justified by this righteous servant, as Jesus is known, because, ...he shall bear their iniquities..., or sins.
What kind of healing did we receive? We received spiritual healing, making it possible for God's Spirit to dwell in each of us. Also making it possible for us to inherit those new glorified bodies mentioned earlier.
Some will rightly ask about Matthew 8:17:
That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.
Examining the beginning of this verse in Matthew; That it might be fulfilled. . . . we see that Jesus healed those spoken of previously in verses fifteen and sixteen. This was so that the prophecy given in Isaiah 53 could be fulfilled, thereby giving Glory to the Father and making it plain that Jesus was the Messiah! Many times in the New Testament Jesus made a special effort to do something or say something that it might be fulfilled, meaning those things prophesied in the Old Testament. Romans 8:23 tells us we have the firstfruits of the Spirit, that being Spiritual Salvation, yet we wait in travail (labor, suffering) for the adoption, the redemption of our bodies which will be realized upon the physical death of this flesh that we reside in now. Jesus' stripes gave us a hope that is not seen, for if it were already fulfilled, we would not look forward to it (Romans 8:24). Until that hope is fulfilled, the Spirit helps us in our sickness and infirmities, according to the will of God (Romans 8:26-27). That should leave each of us needing Jesus daily in our life. Matthew 8:17 does not say that Jesus took our infirmities and sicknesses AWAY, it says He took them on Himself that we might find help in dealing with them through the Holy Spirit, and not have to bear them and their penalty always.
Jesus promised in John 14:2, . . . I go to prepare a place for you, and folks, what a place that will be!
But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. ~ 1 Corinthians 2:9
Until then, we live in this sinful fallen world, but we have the promises of a new world and a new body. Jesus never promised to dry our tears, until we get to Heaven (Revelation 7:17; 21:4). As a matter of fact, Revelation 21:4, talking about when God comes to dwell among us says, . . . neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. This indicates pain and suffering will always be with us in this world until God dwells with us (Revelation 21:3).
Dear reader, please do not misunderstand! All of this is not to say that there is no healing for today! Quite the contrary, we are told throughout the New Testament to pray for healing. As we stated earlier, Jesus heals us when it glorifies His Father in Heaven or otherwise suits His purposes (Romans 8:26-27).
Folks remember, perfect health is not promised in this life, but is in the next. If we have been healed spiritually, through the forgiveness of our sins, we have received the most important healing of all, and hopefully we realize that Gods' forgiveness is but the down payment on our total healing that is yet to come! We are to humble ourselves before God and allow Him to set us on high. He alone knows what we need in our lives to mold us in His image spiritually. We should thank Him and praise Him for loving us enough to allow the difficulties that draw us closer to Him. Psalm 119:71 tells us it is good to be afflicted. So let the truth of God’s Word keep your faith from being undermined by the enemy of our soul.