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Rick Richardson: Experiencing Healing Prayer

 

Rick Richardson, Experiencing Healing Prayer: How God Turns Our Hurts into Wholeness (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2005), 249 pages, ISBN 0830832572.

Introduction

In his new book, Experiencing Healing Prayer, author Rick Richardson contends that true biblical healing is much more than the removal of physical pain or the alleviation of a physical disease. Instead, he argues, biblical healing is a journey in which the believer trusts in God for the healing of the whole person. Such healing may include deliverance from addictions, identity crises, negative imaginations, bitterness, social ills, and other problems that may be related to one’s soul or inner being.

According to Richardson, Jesus practiced a “whole-person” approach to healing (p. 27). He writes: “Healing is primarily about the transformation of the person into a truer and more whole follower, worshipper and lover of God” (p. 27). He further writes that healing is a process that affects people on different levels of their being. He asserts: “Healing is an inside-out deal. We are transformed from the core of who we are. As we experience and live out that transformation, we are healed on every level” (p. 30).

Richardson is associate director of evangelism for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA. He is also an ordained priest with the Anglican Mission in America, and holds a Master of Divinity degree from Northern Baptist Seminary. He is coauthor with Brenda Salter McNeil of The Heart of Racial Justice.

His new book is a practical guide that explains “how God turns our hurts into wholeness.” In addition to offering tips and guidelines for those who need healing, it provides a model for those who wish to have a healing ministry. The book offers insight into the ministry of Christ and makes a strong argument for a ministry that brings healing to the whole person.

An overview

Richardson covers his topic in 17 chapters. Most of them conclude with discussion questions and a healing prayer. He includes a detailed Appendix section that highlights the need for healing in race relations. In the same section, he provides a model for a healing prayer ministry. He also offers advice for accountability.

Richardson opens his work with a discussion that illustrates the need for healing on many levels. He notes such issues as divorce, broken homes, sexual addictions, pornography and problems with gender identity, among others. He follows this discussion with a look at biblical healing. Interestingly enough, he begins the topic with a review of a television evangelist who promises miracles for money. Richardson uses this as a launching point to explain the nature of healing from a biblical perspective. He uses Christ and the Apostle Paul as examples to follow.

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Category: Spirit, Winter 2008

About the Author: Roscoe Barnes III, Ph.D. in Church History (University of Pretoria, S. Africa), is the author of F.F. Bosworth: The Man Behind ‘Christ the Healer’ (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009), The Guide to Effective Gospel Tract Ministry (Church Growth Institute, 2004) and Off to War (White Mane Publishing, 1996). His articles have appeared in Refleks Journal, The Journal of the European Pentecostal Theological Association, The Africa Journal of Pentecostal Studies, and in numerous newspapers and popular magazines.

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