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Faith and Medication Part 1 (Is it wrong for Christians to use Medication? Correcting The Olive Oil Syndrome)

The word of God is not against the use of medication, provided it does not involve pagan practice. From what we know, James the apostle never condemned or discouraged the use of medicinal means by Christians of his time. Let's do a little check up on this subject matter from the following scriptural text,   James 5:14, using the King James version as our main Bible text. 
I did some study on this passage some time ago and I was amazed at what I discovered, contrary to the traditional practice we find in many Church groups. Recently the Lord Has been instructing me to share more with the body of Christ the wonderful New Covenant or New Creation truths that abound in His word. You may be shocked at some of the things I will be saying here, as you may not have come across them before, but it's okay I understand the way it feels when one comes in contact with fresh truth which has never been a part of what one has been traditionally taught. 
You see I learnt very early one thing about Bible truth, that: Truth plus truth, plus truth, plus another truth is the truth you need in order to know the whole truth. What this statement means to me is that:
1. No truth stands alone. One characteristic of truth is that it must take you into further truth. Only revelation truth can take you into more truth.
2. Truth frees from religious lies and formalities. It frees one from dead works and all other forms of religious bondage. Head knowledge is not truth. What Christians need is revelation truth. That is, truth that is brought forth through insight given by the Holy Spirit. 

And what is truth? This was the question Pilate asked Jesus (John 18:38). In case you are asking this same question, this is a good question. Truth is Christ and His finished work. (John 14:6). It is the stated facts of the word of God understandood in light of the person of Christ and all He Has accomplished and made available for us in His redemptive work. 
Paul declared, "All I seek to know among you is nothing more, except Jesus and Him crucified" (1 Cor. 2:2)
One may have one million books and have read all and still not have understanding of the Gospel based on revelation knowledge. One may have multiple University degrees and even be a Bishop of many Church groups, a Bible school or university professor and still be far from the Gospel truth, wallowing in religion and dead works. So it's not about what one has or has attained. It's about the Holy Spirit communicating truth to you such that you receive the understanding of divine realities. 
Charles Capps rightly pointed out that, misunderstood Scriptures hold a lot of Christians in bondage. You see, misunderstood Scriptures mislead people. And James 5:14 happens to be one of the many misunderstood verses in the Bible. 
Now let's get back to James 5:14, and kick out some religious sacred cows. 
In this verse, the word translated as "ANOINTING" is not "CHRIO" (which refers to Spiritual Anointing). It is "ALEIPSANTES". Most Christians have thought that this word has a connection to spiritual anointing but it doesn't. So they have always read a wrong meaning into why James said to anoint the sick person with oil. 
ALEIPSANTES is a derivative of ALEIPHO, which on it own means "to rub". But you see, ALEIPSANTES is usually expressed as the past participle of ALEIPHO. It means; "having rubbed". (see Bagster's interlinear, Strongs, and Thayer). 
By using the Greek word ALEIPSANTES, James is simply pointing out that the anointing of the sick person with oil is something that ought to occur before the prayer of faith is prayed for the sick folk. It precedes the prayer of faith. This implies that the anointing with oil is not a part of the prayer of faith. Nothing in the passage or the entire New Testament suggests that it is. The person mixing the two together is just confused. 
Notice the anointing with oil comes first before the prayer of faith. This means that they are two different things. James never muddled them together as one as many Christians have been found doing today. The difficulty encountered by many in this verse lies in the fact that majority of our translations make that verse to read as though the anointing with oil is taking place at the same time as the prayer of faith, without bringing out the fact that the prayer of faith ought to take place after having anointed the sick folk with oil. The King James Version for instance says,  "... let them prayer over him anointing him with oil in the Name of the Lord". A more accurate reading would be, "... let them pray over him, having anointed him with oil in the Name of the Lord."  
Having anointed him with oil is in the past participle, showing that it occurs before the prayer of faith, and not together with it, as people have erroneously thought. James never instructed the early Church Pastors to marry intermingle or lump the two actions together. The is because the anointing of the sick person with oil isn't a part of, or a method of divine healing, contrary to what many Church folks have been taught and practice. Anointing with oil is has never been, is not, and will never be a part of the prayer of faith. If you make it one, then you err greatly and do injustice to the New Covenant. 
Since the anointing with oil was never a part of the prayer of faith, why then did James instruct the Elders to use it? The reason is that he was simply pointing out that there was nothing wrong with Christians using medicinal treatment as a temporary or first aid treatment for ailments. You see, at times, as the occasion may warrant, Christians may apply medicinal treatment as a temporary remedy for sickness, and of course this depends on the persons faith level at the moment in question.
Let it be clear at this point that James was never suggesting or implying that the anointing with oil is to be used for any spiritual purpose. People who are spiritualizing the use of oil are insulting the Holy Spirit. Some might insist saying, "But it works spiritually". That may sound reasonable on the surface but the truth is that, it's not the oil that works spiritually, it's the name of Jesus which we call upon in faith. There is absolutely no power in the oil. One great man of faith I know once said he uses olive oil to fry eggs. This reminds me of what another man of God said, that as Christians our faith is not supposed to be in any material medium, but in the name of Jesus and the word of God. 
How much faith are we supposed to place in material medium? None! It is true that the power of God can pass through any material medium, but that doesn't mean God Has instructed us in the New Covenant to make them a doctrine, none the less use them as our modus operandi. Such practices have led many Christians into bondage to material mediums, and dead works. Moreover this is another form of idolatry, because these people don't believe that their prayers made in the name of Jesus is enough to work without the use of any material medium. 
Lets get this straight, James is not suggesting that the oil is part of what will make the prayer of faith to work, nor is he saying that it is meant to provide any spiritual boost or remedy to our prayers, or that it is for spiritual anointing. If this was what he meant, he would not have used the Greek word "ALEIPSANTES", which has no connection to spiritual anointing or the Holy Spirit. Rather he would have used another Greek word known as "CHRIO", which is the Greek word often used in the New Testament in reference to spiritual anointing, or anointing by the Holy Spirit for spiritual purpose. 
Therefore, James used the word "ALEIPSANTES", to specifically point out that he wasn't referring to spiritual anointing, which is CHRIO, or to the use of olive oil as anointing oil for spiritual purpose. There is no such thing as anointing oil under the New Covenant. One popular Bishop in Nigeria some time ago published a book titled, "The mystery of the Anointing Oil". The book says, "the anointing oil is the Holy Spirit mysteriously packaged in a bottle". That book is a religious fraud. I don't mean to sound insulting to the Bishop, but this is just the truth. 
Understand that the practice of using olive oil as a sacred thing, or as a means of spiritual anointing was an Old Testament tradition, practiced by the Jews under the Mosaic economy, and those before the Mosaic dispensation. They were Divinely instructed to do so because they were spiritually dead men and women, they couldn't walk with God beyond the sense realm. Moreover there was no redeemer yet, Christ had not yet come then, so there was no redemption yet, none of them could be born again, and in addition to that, the Holy Spirit had not yet been given as we have Him today. 
Today, we are not under the law, but under a New Deal (New Covenant, also known as the Grace Covenant) with God. All that the people under the law of Moses did not and could not have, we already have in full. In addition, we have also received the Holy Spirit in person. As a result, we today, as Christians are not meant to be carrying bottles of olive oil around, in the name of anointing oil. That practice where olive oil is used to anoint Christians for spiritual purpose is totally foreign to the New Covenant and a grave dishonor to the Holy Spirit. 
James permitted the use of that oil (We are not told what particular oil it is. But we know it must have been ointment used for sick folks of that time, as it must have had some medicinal components in it, just like the various medicinal ointments we have today) on a sick Christian fellow because of its medicinal components, and only for the purpose of providing medicinal relief. We know this because the Greek word "ELAION" (Green's Interlinear), which is translated as "OIL" in James 5:14, is the same word also translated as oil in both Mark 6:13 and Luke 10:34, and in these passages ELAION (Oil) is used in reference to sick folks. This clearly proves that the particular olive oil that James is referring to in James 5:14, must have been oil used specifically for sick folks. Therefore he must have instructed the use of the oil because of its medicinal value. 
No one can object to the fact that in those early days, the Jews had different kinds of medicinal ointments or oil, which they used for the treatment or relief of ailments or diseases caused by bacteria or fungi. One of such popular ointments as we know is the one you probably must have heard your pastor mention in Church, known as the Balm of Gilead, Jeremiah 8: 22; 46:11. Again we see Isaiah 1:5,6  and then Luke 10:34. All of these passages show that healing remedies were employed in those days, just as we have today. 
Under the New Covenant, we don't need to go up into Gilead, to take Balm (Jer 46:11). This is because Jesus is our Balm of Gilead. We have healing and health today in the name of Jesus. He is our greatest physician also. However, this doesn't mean that God forbids us from using health medications to relief stress, or for medical treatment, depending on our faith level. All of this depends on a persons faith level. You see we all don't operate at the same level of faith. And we don't operate at the same level of faith all the time. Individually we walk with God based on our level of faith (revelation) or understanding. But then it becomes an error for you to let your self be in bondage to medication. You have to learn to grow in your walk with God. You can enjoy divine health here on earth. You can stay totally healed. I know Christians who have stayed for years without falling sick. I have never been hospitalized in my entire life, and I never will be. Since I got born again, for up to thirty years going, I have only needed to see a doctor once. 

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