Sid Roth - You Must Hear What Jesus Told Me in Heaven
Sid Roth: Hello. Sid Roth here. Welcome to my world where it's naturally supernatural. My guest has had meetings all over the world where a hundred percent of the people in attendance get physically healed. But what happens when an incurable disease goes into his home? Many people suffer needlessly. My guest says no more! So you go to spirit-filled churches. They believe in healing, Pentecostal churches. You see a little bit and then you get hit with really a chronic back condition. And so what was your first thought when you found out what was wrong with you?
Art Thomas: Well I believe God could heal. I just didn't know if he would. And you know, the doctor told me I was going to have surgery. I was going to have to go through all these things. So I just went along with it, took the pain medication I was supposed to take. He said, "You're a little young for the surgery". But I didn't have a lot of hope that I would definitely be healed until the Lord started teaching me about healing ministry and I realized what was available.
Sid Roth: What was wrong with your back?
Art Thomas: I had degenerative disk disease.
Sid Roth: That sounds bad.
Art Thomas: Yes. I wasn't allowed to lift more than 30 pounds. My back would go out two to four times a year. I'd be on strict bed rest two weeks at a time and I was miserable all the time, constant chronic pain. But the healing happened in April 2011. I started healing ministry, however, in August 2009. So for a year and a half I watched other people's backs get healed and watched them receive the miracle that I knew Jesus paid for, for me, and just had to persevere through that and hold fast to the truth that Jesus wanted it.
Sid Roth: But a major, major key happened in your life when you went to Heaven. Tell me about it.
Art Thomas: Yes. I had this one experience where I fell on my face. In my vision I saw Heaven. I fall on my face and I was on this road that was just like reflective, really. And I saw my reflection, and I was so overwhelmed with the experience I just looked at this reflection. I said, "Jesus, I'm tired of seeing myself. I want to see you". And in that moment my reflection spoke back and he said, "You do see me". And that's when I realized the reality of Galatians 2:20, that I was crucified with Christ. I no longer live. Christ lives in me. He's there. He's here. He's in all of us. So Paul said to the Corinthian Church, in Chapter 11, First Corinthians, he said that, "One of the reasons that there are weak and sick, and even dead people among you is because you failed to discern the Lord's body". Now he says this in the context on the teaching of communion. So we easily go to the bread, somehow we're supposed to discern Jesus in there. But the context of First Corinthians, even that whole area, is we the people are the body of Christ and we have to be walking in fellowship with each other. One of the problems we run into is, you know, people will drive for hours and hours to get to one of my meetings, but I'm like, I feel bad because I want to let them know, you know, you could have just reached out touched the person who sits next to you in church every week. That's just as much the body of Jesus as anyone. First Corinthians 6 says that our bodies are members of Christ himself. Our bodies are members of Christ himself. That means I am a physical extension of Jesus and so is every believer who the Spirit of God dwells inside of.
Sid Roth: At your meetings, why do you tell one person to pray for another?
Art Thomas: So when I got into healing ministry I started studying the scriptures and I saw Jesus say things, like in John 14:12, he said, "Everyone who believes in me will do the same things I've been doing". You know, "These signs accompany those who believe". So I realized this was for everyone. In Acts, Chapter 5, all the believers were gathering together in Solomon's colony and it says just a couple of verses later that the people brought all the sick and demon-possessed, and all of them were healed. So there is a biblical precedent, post-Jesus for 100 percent results and it was happening as all the believers gathered and ministered to each other. So I just teach people how to do this, which really is just put your hand there and let Jesus do the heavy lifting, and then we turn them loose on each other and we watch what God does. I'm an ordinary believer just like anybody.
Sid Roth: You're telling me anyone that's an ordinary believer can do what you as an ordinary believer do.
Art Thomas: Absolutely. In fact, the first 25 years of my life, no miracles, and I prayed for lots of people to be healed. And all of a sudden when I realized Jesus wants it, he paid for it, he wouldn't pay for something he didn't want, that it's something that's available in the scriptures, and that it's for all believers to do, I was like, oh, I'm out of excuses. There is nothing that I have to hold onto to say, well I can disqualify myself. If you believe you fit the qualifications. If anyone says, I feel unworthy, they're right. There is no such thing as being worthy to ministry miracles. There is no such thing as being worthy of anything in the Christian life. It's all about Jesus being worthy.
Sid Roth: You see tens of thousands of miracles. So what happens to Art when he develops Crohn's disease?
Art Thomas: Actually, it's interesting, the last time I was on your show I was up the night before with cramping in my stomach, wondering, God, what is going on? How do I survive this thing? And I was struggling. I had come back from Africa and had some bleeding issues, and I was afraid, did I get a parasite or what? Well it turns out I was diagnosed with Crohn's disease about a year later. And several months after that I wrote a blog post on my website and told my readers, you know, "The only common denominator of all the miracles in the Gospels was somebody who made contact with Jesus". And I said, "You, if you're seeking a miracle, you need to make contact with Jesus and here's the good news, just as we were talking, we're the body of Christ. Grab the shirtsleeve of the person next to you at church this Sunday". And so I also said, "Now I want you to know I'm not speaking from some ivory tower telling you something that I don't understand. I'm in this with you. I've got Crohn's disease right now and I'm struggling with the pain of it. Sometimes I'm laying hands on other people with my stomach twisted in knots". I said, "But I'm going after this thing because Jesus deserves what he paid for". People hit "Reply" on that email list.
Sid Roth: Not you deserve, Jesus deserves.
Art Thomas: Oh come on, he deserves it.
Sid Roth: Do you get that?
Art Thomas: Yes.
Sid Roth: Big distinction.
Art Thomas: People hit "Reply" on that email list and they were writing me saying the things that I had been teaching them to do. They're typing in there, "Crohn's disease, leave in Jesus' name. Be healed in Jesus' name". I'm reading these emails and I'm thinking to myself, this is the moment for me to take my own advice. These are ordinary people. Nobody has a clue who they are. I don't know who they are, but that's the body of Jesus speaking to me right now. And I said, "Jesus, I thank you for ministering to me right now". The very next day, 80 percent of the symptoms were gone and by the end of the month, completely healed. And now it's been over a year.
Sid Roth: Now you say, okay, but Art knows a lot. Do you know what he told me? His two-year-old son can do it. If his two-year-old son can do it, so can you. We'll be right back.
Sid Roth: You know, I was fascinated, and you know the one thing you said that really hit me like a two-by-four, is I would put my hand on someone and pray for them, and kind of get the Holy Spirit to go through my hand into them. But you said something different.
Art Thomas: Yes. I was always raised with this idea. I don't think anyone ever taught it to me. But I thought that healing was something you learned yourself into, that you had to like learn techniques and figure out how to push power out your arm, and all that. I discovered it is none of that. It's just my job is to do my part and only my part to completely trust Jesus to do the rest. I don't have to think the right thought, feel the right feelings, say the right words, quote the right scriptures, claim the right promises, any of that. It's just take Jesus at his word. He said, "Lay your hands on the sick and they'll recover".
Sid Roth: Tell me about your two-year-old son. Again, there's hope for me and you. Even a two-year-old can do it.
Art Thomas: My wife was playing in the living room with our two boys and my four-year-old was right between her knees on the floor, and she had her elbows on her knees, leaning forward, and that four-year-old Joey popped up and hit her right in the nose. And I'm sitting in the dining room and I heard this loud pop. She reaches up and she's got blood coming down her hands, and J.J., the two-year-old, he hops up, runs over before I could get there and says, "Mommy, you okay"? Touches her nose with his hand and said, "Nose be healed Jesus' name". The bleeding stops. The pain stops. She goes and looks in the mirror. There's no sign of a broken nose. All she had to do was clean the blood off her hands and she was totally fine. Still to this day, no sign of a broken nose.
Sid Roth: What a wonderful way to be raised. But something really beyond broken nose happened. Your wife goes into labor, 24 weeks, and you know that's not a cool thing to happen. What occurred?
Art Thomas: Yes. That's when she was in labor with Jeremiah, J.J., the youngest. I was at the store and she had had pre-term labor with our first, and so we were kind of expecting to be careful. But she knew what labor felt like. And I'm at the grocery store, and she called me and said, "I'm in labor". And I said, "Are you serious? It hasn't been long". She said, "Yeah, I know and the contractions are five minutes apart". I left my shopping cart there in the aisle, took off running for the car, drove as fast as I could to get home. Don't tell the police. But as I'm driving I'm crying, sobbing in prayer. And I just said to the Lord out loud, I said, "God, I can't do this. I'm not strong enough for this". And he spoke back to my spirit right in that moment, and he said, "This is what I meant when I said, 'My power is made perfect in your weakness.'" This peace hit me. I realized I never was strong enough. It was never about that. I drive home the rest of the way in peace still knowing it's a serious issue, and I hurried into the house. My wife is standing there in the kitchen with her hands backwards on the counter having another contraction. And I knelt down on the floor, laid my hands on her stomach and said, "In Jesus' name, contractions stop now". That one stopped instantly. We grabbed the overnight bag, jumped in the car, drove a half-hour to the hospital. She had two or three more contractions on the way further and further apart. By the time we arrived the contractions were done. They ran a bunch of tests. They said, "We can't find anything wrong with you. We don't know what happened".
Sid Roth: Why is it harder for even, say, a healing evangelist when they get hit with an incurable disease in their own home? I mean, that should be the easiest place. Why is it harder?
Art Thomas: Really, honestly, the only blocks exist between our own ears. So we had these problems with how much we love our family member. And so we have these expectations like, uh-oh, I hope this works, because if it doesn't I have to go to bed with this person tonight or I have to see them in the morning, you know. And we wonder, is it going to happen this time? We've been pursuing it for so long. Like Proverbs 13 says that, "Hope deferred makes the heart sick". This thing you've been believing for and pushing for, for so long, gets put off and put off. Your heart can get sick and you start to expect, well it didn't happen the last 37 times I laid hands on my spouse or my kid, or whatever. Maybe it will happen this time. Probably not. I'll just expect it in the future. And it's hard to talk about how to persevere without setting people up with an expectation that they'll have to persevere. And so we end up trying. We see nothing. We don't know what to do after that. It is possible to persevere, but it's also possible to expect it right here, right now, and that's what we have to expect every single time we minister to our family.
Sid Roth: Okay. I heard what you said. But I want you to talk to someone that for 20 years has been dealing with a chronic problem and I don't know even know if they believe anymore.
Art Thomas: Right.
Sid Roth: Talk to them.
Art Thomas: First thing's first, you're doing everything right. You're doing everything right. The only, this is the thing, people ask me, is it okay if I minister healing to myself? I say absolutely. Yes. There's nothing in Scripture that tell you that you can't minister healing to yourself. Okay. However, there's also not a prescription that says you have to. In other words, if you're trying and you're seeing results, don't feel bad. It wasn't, the weight of responsibility wasn't on your shoulders to begin with. So the only prescription for a sick believer is found in James 5, which is to go to other mature believers and have them minister to you. So my job as a believer, my job as a sick person is really to contend as much as I can to do whatever it is I know I can do, but remember, I can't earn a healing. There's nothing I can do that's going to accomplish more than what Jesus already did. He did all the work. It is finished. That's the truth. So I have to bank on that. I have to hold onto that truth and just keep persevering. Jesus said everyone who seeks, finds. Everyone who knocks, the door is open. The only way that that doesn't happen is if I stop knocking, I stop seeking, I stop asking, there has to be perseverance. Now beyond all that, I would encourage you, when you're seeking healing, you're seeking for Jesus to receive what he paid for. That means that seeking healing is an act of worship, whether you're seeking your own healing or seeking someone else's healing. And it's a form of worship that only exists in this world. You're not going to have that on the other side of eternity because you're going to be well. Everybody is fine there. But right now you have a very valuable form of worship that is meaningful to the Lord. It's dear to his heart. You know, Matthew 25, Jesus talks about this parable of separating sheep from goats, and he's talking about the final judgment. And he says to the sheep, "I was sick and you cared for me, or you looked after me. He didn't say, "I was sick and you healed me". See, when I stand before the Lord at the end of time I'm not going to have to answer for whether or not I ever worked a miracle. In fact, the people who pointed at their miracles for their justification, he says, "I never knew you". What I will have to answer for is whether or not I loved. And so people who have someone who is in a chronic condition and they're not healed yet, know that the greatest and most important thing to the Lord's heart is the fact that you are loving and you're caring, and you're going out of your way to take care of that person.
Sid Roth: I want Art to pray when we come back. Number one, I believe God is going to operate through words of knowledge for your healing. I mean, he's had many, many meetings where a hundred percent have been healed. But I also want him to pray that you have all these barriers come off and you start fresh for the greatest move of God's spirit in history. God thinks enough about you. He had you born for this big wrap-up move of his Spirit. Be right back.
Sid Roth: Art, you talk about a lot about mental barriers. Give us some examples.
Art Thomas: Yes. I mean, we already talked about the hope deferred thing that happens to so many of us. Another one is judging people based on their merit, and that could be in the positive or the negative, you know. Sometimes we come at this saying, you know, Lord, this person has been so faithful. They've loved you so many years. There's such a faithful minister, whatever. What we're really doing is saying, God, don't you see all the wonderful things they did to earn their healing? And our emphasis is all on their action and not Jesus's action. It also works in the negative. It's like with your family, it's a lot harder.
Sid Roth: You know they're backslidden. So you say, you've never healed them.
Art Thomas: Yes. If I'm on the street and someone says to me, I got diabetes, I'm like, come on, diabetes, get out, pancreas, function well, right. When your loved one that you know and you know their lifestyle says I got diabetes, you're thinking, lay off the Twinkies, man, it's your own fault. Right? Yeah.
Sid Roth: So what should I, all right, you know that let's suppose you know someone's even in sin. You know that. How does it affect you pray?
Art Thomas: Well it's not about me. It's not about them. See, James 5 says that, "The prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well. The Lord will raise him up. If he sinned he'll be forgiven". So there's a provision there. If their sickness came as a result of sin, the forgiveness is automatic. It happens right away.
Sid Roth: Now many people say it's a lack of faith if you go to a doctor. It's a lack of faith if you take medicine. What do you say?
Art Thomas: Well first of all, the irony is if I don't believe it's God's will to heal, then why am I going to the doctor? That's fighting against God's will. So medicine is only going to work with a theology that says God wants me well.
Sid Roth: What do I say to the people that write me often, maybe it's you, okay, you believe in healing, Sid. Why do you wear glasses?
Art Thomas: You know, my experience should not trump what the scripture says. So you know, we can make a theology out of the things we haven't seen or we can make a theology out of Jesus who perfectly revealed the Father. And I think that makes a lot more sense. So like I said, I was struggling with degenerative disk disease for a year and a half watching other people get healed until I had my own miracle. What I say is, listen, what I'm telling you, what I'm believing, what I'm preaching is what the Word of God says regardless of my experience. I refuse to be a disciple of disappointment because then I can only reproduce disappointment. I have to be a disciple of Jesus so that I can reproduce Jesus.
Sid Roth: I want you to reach deep and pray whatever the Spirit of God tells you.
Art Thomas: Right now I'm seeing a picture of a right arm, and I'm actually, there's a green sleeve around it. I'm not sure if that means anything to someone who's watching right now. But whatever it is that's going on with your right arm, I speak life and wholeness to it right now in Jesus' name. And just try to move that, see if anything's changed. Yes, I'm also hearing, hearing loss, specifically left ear, but really, Jesus paid the price for both ears. So if you've got hearing loss of any kind I tell those ears to open up right now in Jesus' name. Throat conditions, in fact, there's like a throat cancer, throat, some sort of laryngitis or something, things that are going on in the throat. We tell those things to stop. Thyroid, there's like a nodule on someone's thyroid that's been swollen up and we tell that to shrivel up right now. Peace to you in Jesus' name. If anyone has Crohn's disease like I used to have, we tell Crohn's to get out and never come back. I speak peace to your digestive system right now. Every sickness, every disease, every spirit of infirmity, I tell you to leave and never come back in the name of Jesus. Now if you can safely do it, test out those conditions. Try to do something you couldn't do and let us know what happens.
Sid Roth: Well I'm going to tell you what's going to happen. You are going to not look back anymore. I can tell you that it's a new beginning for you. God is pure love and he wants you to know him, know him, and have Jesus come inside of you and be your Lord, and say, Lord, I want to have experiential knowledge of you in Jesus' name. Amen.