Is Natural Medicine A False God or Anti-Christian? What the Bible Says About Medicine

Magazine articles and news media directed at Christians, and even many Christians themselves, tell us to forgo alternative medicine. They tell us that it’s a false god or anti-Christian.

Fortunately, there is plenty of Scripture in God’s Word to help us figure out this issue. So let’s take an honest, Biblical look at this topic using only God’s Word as our guide.

But before we do this, I would like to specify that when I say “natural medicine,” I am referring to things that are just that–natural. God-created. Foods in their whole form. Herbs. Plants. And of course, the power of Jesus Christ.

There are many alternative medicines out there right now, many of which have foundations in New Age and Eastern religions. Things like reiki healing, accupuncture, applied kinesiology are a few. Medical studies are providing documented proof of the benefits of some of these forms of alternative medicine. But for the purpose of this post, I would like to differentiate between what we are about to discuss–natural medicine–and practices of alternative medicine such as these.

Remember when I am referring to natural medicine, I mean the use of things God created (plants/herbs, natural foods, etc.) and the use of His supernatural healing from Jesus Christ.

So is natural medicine a false god or Anti-Christian? What does Scripture say?

In the thirty-ninth year of his reign Asa was afflicted with a disease in his feet. Though his disease was severe, even in his illness he did not seek help from the LORD, but only from the physicians.
2 Chronicles 16:12

(Clearly, the issue was that Asa turned to doctors without seeking help or healing from God.)

And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. (Mark 5:25-29)

Note that she spent all she had on doctors and continued to get worse. Like the story of Asa, we can see the striking similarities in our own culture today.

Additionally, both these verses demonstrate that physicians/doctors were present and in practice thousands of years ago. Yet all of these verses refer to using the healing power of God.

Even in the Old Testament, God’s instructions for diseases in Levitical laws put the priest in charge of duties now assigned to medical doctors. (For instance, see Leviticus chapter 13.)

Most people know the story of Naaman in the Old Testament who was healed of leprosy.  But what most people, even most Christians, do not know is that he did NOT like the way God was going to heal him.  In 2 Kings chapter 5:9-12, it says:

So Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house. 10 Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.”


11 But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy.12 Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” So he turned and went off in a rage.

Naaman put God’s healing in a box and figured God would only heal him a certain way.  When he discovered that God’s healing would come through an alternative method, he almost missed his opportunity to be healed because of his anger and doubt!  He figured that God would have Elisha wave his hand over him and cure him that way, and if God was going to heal him in water then it should at least be a cleaner river.

This story provides us with a clear example of how God sometimes chooses unconditional ways of healing specifically so that He can see where our faith is.

Additional references to what people today would consider “alternative medicine” and what I call “natural medicine” are:

  • Then Isaiah said, “Prepare a poultice of figs.” They did so and applied it to the boil, and he recovered. (2 Kings 20:7)
  • Isaiah 1:6 refers to the use of sores cleansed and soothed with oil.
  • Jeremiah 8:22 discusses the Balm of Gilead used for healing.
  • In Luke 10:34, the Good Samaritan treated the wounded man on the road with wine (which is an antiseptic and coagulates the blood) and oil (which soothes and forms a coating).
  • In 1 Timothy 5:23, the apostle Paul tells the people to “Stop drinking only water and use a little wine because of your stomach and frequent illnesses.” We know now that wine and other fermented foods/drinks contain probiotics that are essential for good gut health and good digestion.
  • James 5:14 gives us very specific instructions for what to do when we are sick:

Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord.

Check out this example of utilizing God’s Word for healing in today’s world from one mom:

This is a little gross, but really awesome. My 2-year-old (potty trained) son started getting a few, small, pimply bumps on his bottom about 2 months ago. I knew from a past encounter with these that it was a mild staph infection. They weren’t causing him much pain, but we couldn’t get rid of them, and there was no way I was going to take him to the doctor for some crazy antibiotic. For two months I tried every trick in the book: Coconut oil, colloidal silver, ACV, tea tree oil, honey/turmeric, and Redmond clay. Nothing worked. Finally, I read in 2 Kings 20:7 about Hezekiah’s boils that “were plaguing him unto death.” Isaiah told him to place figs over the boil and he would be healed. I thought, “My son’s aren’t boils, just tiny little bumps,” and I put it out of my mind. After another week of struggling with the infection, I was walking through the produce section at the grocery store and saw a bin full of figs. Out of desperation, I grabbed several. That night my husband and I sliced up the figs and laid the strips over the affected area on my son. I really thought it was a long shot – I mean, none of the “common” natural remedies had helped. The next morning when we took the figs off of him, all of the bumps had surfaced, drained, and dried up! After several months of struggling and seeing absolutely no improvement, they were now nothing but a few tiny scabs. All it took was one, measly fig and he was healed. God’s medicine is amazing!

In addition to utilizing the power that Christ used to conquer death to help people find healing, I want to discuss the use of His creation, especially the very thing He originally designed us to use as our sole source of food:

Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. (Genesis 1:29)

Fruits and vegetables are powerful healers, and scientists are even discovering the amazing healing properties and compounds found in these natural foods.

In 1986, prestigious molecular biology departments at various colleges and research centers discovered (or confirmed) amazing cancer-inhibiting qualities of fruits and vegetables. In test tube and animal studies, these obscure compounds were exhibiting a remarkable ability to disrupt the formation of malignant and benign tumors.

One such discovery was the compound sulforaphane found in cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, cabbage, and brussels sprouts. Sulfoaphane boosts production of the body’s phase II enzymes that cart off dangerous residues of procarcinogens (cancer-causing precursors capable of damaging cellular DNA).

Today our knowledge of phytochemicals (compounds of plant origin) is exploding. However, 6,000 years ago, God had already given us this information as demonstrated in Genesis 1:29.

In addition to foods, Scripture designates leaves as that which will be used for healing everyone:

On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. (Revelations 22:2)

Ezekial 47:12 also discusses the leaves used for healing.

While Scripture provides numerous instances of healing either through the power of Christ or the power of His creation (plants, herbs, foods, etc.), the same cannot be said about references to healing through doctors’ chemicals. What Scripture does say about these chemicals is where we find the Greek Word for “magic spell” or “sorcery,” which is Pharmakeia (pharmacy): The use or administering of drugs; poisoning; sorcery/magic arts; metaph-the deceptions and seductions of idolatry.”

For instance, “Pharmakeia” appears here:

The light of a lamp will never shine in you again. The voice of bridegroom and bride will never be heard in you again. Your merchants were the world’s important people. By your magic spell all the nations were led astray.
(Revelations 18:23)

And also here:

The rest of mankind that were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood—idols that cannot see or hear or walk. Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts. (Revelations 9:20-21)

From these verses, we can see that Pharmakeia is the very thing that will lead all the nations astray and will be held onto until the very end. We are told and forewarned that this is the very thing that will be one of the ultimate deceptions. Yet we miss this forewarning and do not heed the foreknowledge God has given us.

To analyze the stark contrasts between these methods, let’s take cancer and weigh these verses out. The Gerson Therapy uses mega loads of organic fruits and vegetables (Gen. 1:29 and Rev. 22:2) for treatment of cancer (and other illnesses).

Conventional medicine uses (chemical) pharmaceuticals for cancer treatment (Rev. 18:23).

Now go back and read those verses again and tell me which one you think is the false god we are following in America. How deceived we’ve become and how ironic that Biblical methods are spoken against by so many of God’s people. We know so little of God’s Word and yet expect not to be deceived?

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. (Proverbs 9:10)

I am not proposing that we never seek out medical attention. I am simply proposing that we heed the wisdom and forewarning found in Scripture so that we are not deceived and led astray.

Of course, it’s important to note that we should also not worship the created but only the Creator Himself. He is the one that gives us these natural medicines and He is the one that has intricately designed them for our benefit, whether they are used for prevention or for treatment.  

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Comments & Responses

7 Responses so far.

  1. […] than most Christians realize and that most Christians actually consider “New Age.” (Read my post Is Natural Medicine a False God or Anti-Christian? […]

  2. […] Natural Medicine A False god or anti-christian Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… […]

  3. […] whether as a food, an oil, or both, can heal even diseases like cancer?!!  You will also want to read my article where I analyze what Scripture says about medicine to see which kind of medicine(s) …: Is Natural Medicine A False God or […]

  4. Kathryn Arnold says:

    I think I can honestly say that finally recognizing that things created by God had done more to heal me of my maladies…and that MOST of those illnesses were actually side-effects and/or the results of side effects of prescription medications, was huge in my being able to finally push away doubts and place full faith in Jesus Christ.

    I’d heard of Him all my life but always stumbled over unanswered questions and many ignorant misunderstandings of things I read in the Bible. For decades I had sought the “something greater” I intuitively knew had to be, but wanted “proof”…to be somehow sure of Jesus BEFORE placing faith in Him. I didn’t understand, then, the truth that the Gospel is foolishness to those who have not already accepted it.

    One of the many paradoxes I have since discovered are Biblical and true in my life. So exciting to look forward to seeing the truth of others as I learn to live closer to the Holy Spirit!

    Had I only sought the Lord instead of doctors and the “easy little pill” when my anxiety began my tragic health journey, how different my life would have been. I accept that the future holds fine things as God uses my weak decisions ultimately for good, and remembering where trusting man-made healing took me helps me to resist the temptation to the “quick fix” of prescription meds, but I confess to a deep grief over that “what if” in my past.

    It takes some effort to educate myself (my health journey has left me with no financial resources and continuing health consequences from liver and other damage from all the medications), and the natural treatments are sometimes slower and require some work, but the results seldom include additional problems — additional problems was the routine with doctors.

    I appreciated this article. Most of the people around me still turn to doctors, not realizing that they are “cash cows” to the pharmaceutical industry which truly does not create cures but only lifelong customers. I get no small amount of flak for my stance against medications and it grieves me that these come worst from those who think as I once did…with a sense of near helpless dependence on the wisdom of the world. I HAVE questioned many times whether I was relying too heavily on allopathic management of symptoms and healing by substance (even if they are God’s own substances…foods, herbs, minerals, etc.) versus healing by God Himself directly.

    I recently studied the subject of God’s identity and my identity in Him. In this I’ve encountered much about supernatural Christianity and must admit that I find nothing in the Bible to argue against divine healing. It’s not possible to tell it all in a few words, but here’s one instance of making use of what I’m learning… I live with so many sad effects from thirty years of medication (I take as little as possible or none, now, despite continuing ill health). One thing that began to torment me as I weaned off meds and began improving my diet and turning to herbs and homeopathy for symptom relief is leg and foot cramps. Homeopathy worked for a while. I finally found raw ACV and keep a bottle of that, water, and a glass near the bed. Very recently I woke with severe cramps, noting sleepily that there was something different about them this time. Chronic poor sleep makes anything that forces me to get out of bed during the night an unhappy thing. As I was coming awake enough to get up and get the ACV, I was sufficiently struck by the “something different” to muse a bit about it instead of my now mechanical rise-prepare-and-drink. I heard that still, simple voice inside my head say, “You know what to do.” Quite surprised by that, and not a little reluctant to get up, I decided to pray as I’d heard others recently do. I claimed my status as an adopted child of God, rebuked the devil and told it to leave my leg and foot. Instantly the cramp stopped. Even with ACV it can take five minutes or so…this was instantaneous. Amazed as I was, I just gratefully dropped back off to sleep… but, let me tell you, that experience is definitely working in my head these days!

    So, even as the Bible indicates, it’s not an either/or matter. What does matter is that I reject the easy pill way of falsely promised and seldom produced healing. Like most things from the devil, prescriptions often seemed at first to be working for me, only to turn on me shortly after while still having the emotional hold on me that they were my only hope. I’ve learned to turn first and foremost to God. Directly or by way of what He provided in creation, I trust Him to heal.

    No, I wouldn’t decline standard medical care in an emergency situation where I don’t know what provision God made for my situation. There are precious few readily available healers who can help me overcome my ignorance of natural healing resources and I long since “gave all my living” to the doctors who only made my situation a thousand times worse. Even if I must struggle to find my the information I need with the few financial resources I have left, I’ll look to God first in every way I’m able. Better to do without some needed herb than to take a medication and greatly compound the problem.

    Were you aware that herbalists were among those targeted in the false “Christian” programs history calls the Inquisition? It was worth one’s life to let anyone, even one’s own children, know that certain herbal teas were being offered with deliberate intent to heal particular ills. Some burned as witches were simply women who had knowledge of healing through herbs. It doesn’t surprise me at all that the evil powers that be continue in this day to target legislatively those who turn to God’s pharmacy for healing.

  5. Good article, I definitely agree that we seek GOD for healing and give HIM the glory for what HE has already provided for us. There is a spectrum of choices for keeping ourselves healthy ranging from ‘clean’ foods to using therapeutic essential oils to the laying on of hands and we don’t know how GOD is going to do it but we certainly can cooperate with HIM by using what HE designed us to use from the beginning, green plants/leaves of trees. Please read Healing Oils of the Bible by Dr. David Stewart, 2007 version, it confirms much of what you shared with an emphasis on therapeutic essential oils like Frankincense and Myrrh that were brought to baby JESUS and so many others. Every Christian should know the broader reasons of why these two powerful essential oils were brought to baby JESUS and the many others that were used during biblical times and which are now being used for health and wellness.

  6. Sophia says:

    Great post, I really appreciated it.

    I would just like to add that while some people do practice acupuncture within a religious frame, the practice itself is not rooted in any religion and does not require one to worship or assume a deity (or lack-there-of). It’s rooted in observation of how the natural world works, and uses a lot of whole-food and natural occurring (God made) herbs to heal, based on observation of how they work in the body. The ‘religious’ association is a bad stigma that I think needs to be broken in todays modern world. Yes, it did birth out of a taoist culture, just like allopathic medicine birthed out of both a pagan (early on) and then Christian culture. Saying it has foundations in a religion is analogous to saying allopathic care has foundations in pagan religions or even christianity. Acupuncture manually stimulates pressure points, trigger points or nervous-system innervations without the use of any synthetic drug. Understanding how the body works and how disease manifests in it, allows someone to use these points together to help promote healing within the body. I would argue that acupuncture and the herbal and dietary medicines it accompanies, are God made medicines.

    That’s all 🙂

  7. […] For more information on the difference between God’s medicine and Man’s medicine, check out my post here. […]

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