The Miracle Cure

Bible Reading: Jeremiah 46; 47 - Listen

"Go up to Gilead and get balm.... But you multiply remedies in vain; there is no healing for you" (46:11).

Throughout the book of Jeremiah, God agonizes over the "incurable wound" of his people (Jer. 8:21-22; 10:19; 14:17; 17:9; 30:12-17). God, the Great Physician, was the only one who could heal their injury, but they wouldn’t go to the Doctor. He wanted to administer the only balm that could cure their terminal condition, but they created their own useless remedies instead, dressing their wound "as though it were not serious" (Jer. 6:14; 8:11, 22; 46:11). Jeremiah asks, "Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then is there no healing for the wound of my people?" (Jer. 8:22).

The "balm of Gilead" was the medicinal substance of a tree which grew in the region of Gilead. The sap which flowed out, after the tree was pierced, contained healing properties found nowhere else. Just as there was certainly a curing balm in Gilead, if people would just go up and get it, God freely offered a cure to his people if they would just come to him and receive it. Symbolic of the healing power of the cross, the "balm of Gilead" still flows from the hands of Jesus, to cleanse and heal our sinful, wounded souls. "He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed" (Is. 53:5).

The battlefield of life is full of wounded warriors. Some are bleeding from freshly inflicted wounds. Others still carry with them the emotional, psychological, and sometimes physical, wounds which were caused by cruel abuses and painfully-regretted choices of long ago. They search in vain for a way to cope with their pain. They slap on a Band-aid and ignore the depth and severity of the injury. Unaware of those around them who suffer very similar wounds, they "stumble over another" (46:12). Feeling hopeless and alone, they "both will fall down together" (46:12).

God cries out, "Go up to Gilead and get balm for her pain" (Jer. 46:11; 51:8). Yet, many are unable to pull themselves up off the battlefield. They need a friend to pick them up and carry them to Gilead, to the foot of the cross, to see the Great Physician who promises, "I will restore you to health and heal your wounds" (Jer. 30:17).

Some physical injuries require more than one trip to the doctor. Deep emotional wounds also take time to heal. If we will allow God to regularly apply the balm of his unfailing love to our injured hearts, over the process of time, we will experience true healing and lasting freedom from our pain. Let us mutually encourage each other to keep going to Jesus, day after day, for the only remedy that will penetrate and heal all the layers of our pain. Every time we fall down, let us get up and run into his out-stretched arms. God's powerful love, which was demonstrated on the cross, is confirmed in our lives every day if we will honestly look for it. His heart of grace and compassion is richly woven throughout the scriptures. As the truth of his word reaches deeper and deeper into our pain, he will cleanse, soften and heal our hurting hearts. The miracle cure for our "incurable wound" flows freely from Calvary's tree.