The Gospels depict Jesus as having spent a surprising amount of time healing people. Although, like the author of Job before him, he specifically rejected the theory that sickness was God's way of getting even with sinners (John 9:1-3), he nonetheless seems to have suggested a connection between sickness and sin, almost to have seen sin as a kind of sickness. "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick," he said. "I came not to call the righteous but sinners." (Mark 2:17)
This is entirely compatible, of course, with the Hebrew view of man as a psychosomatic unity, an indivisible amalgam of body and soul whereby if either goes wrong, the other is affected. It is significant also that the Greek verb sozo was used in Jesus' day to mean both to save and to heal, and soter could signify either savior or physician.
Ever since the time of Jesus, healing has been part of the Christian tradition. In this century it has usually been associated ...1