Healings Among the Danis

While wonderful healings had occurred since the earliest days of the Dani church, they were more frequent during the revival. Although not all healings were clinically confirmed, the healings greatly encouraged the faith of the Dani believers. The Christians took advantage of medical help but knew that ultimately they could depend only on God. In the Karubaga church, a man named Ogogu had not responded to medical treatment. His stomach had become large and distended. In early 1983 he called for Musa, the local pastor, and the elders to pray for him. Immediately he had relief, and over the next few weeks he was completely healed.

A woman by the name of Ninggen in the village of Kowari suddenly became very ill, first foaming at the mouth and then losing consciousness. The people had prepared the wood for her funeral pyre. "She is kanggerak (she has died)," they said. Jan Yikwa, a teacher at the Dani Bible school, was visiting the village. After he and others prayed for Ninggen, Jan advised the woman's relatives to take her to the clinic. On the way, the woman revived. Her father was so happy that he wanted to give Jan a leg of pork. But Jan said, "No, it was not my work, but God's."

Butiman and Laale were two others who had sought all the medical help available but had been given up for dead. Friends had gathered to pay their last respects; the funeral pyre was waiting. Musa was called in as a last resort. As he and the elders prayed, the Lord responded by dramatically healing the two. These were tremendous testimonies to the Lord's power. People realized that God had worked miracles on their behalf through the prayers of the church.

Many children, too, were prayed for when parents had despaired of their lives. In June 1983 little Kina's father broke down and cried, fearing she would die. Medicine had failed. Jan Yikwa, who was visiting the village, urged the man to have faith in God. "I'll get some of the students from the school, and we'll be back to pray for her." He and the students formed a circle around the girl and asked the Lord to raise her up. Soon the little girl sat up, took a drink of water, and then ate. The next day she was in school.

Amberingga had always opposed the gospel. The opposition increased to the point where the Christians wondered whether he was possessed. "Why don't we pray especially for this man?" An elder suggested. After all the elders had joined in prayer for the man, they gathered around him. "O Lord, we ask You by Your power to dispel whatever possesses Amberingga and set him free so he can become one of Your children. We ask this in Jesus' name." As they prayed, "something like a butterfly came out of him," and immediately the man was in his right mind. Quietly he sat down to listen to the gospel. Amberingga testified to all around about what God had done for him. "Now I want to learn God's Word," he told the elders.

The people of Kanggime knew that Ndaganiyapmban Lambe had been a very sick man for many years. Medical workers had sent him to the hospital in Mulia, but there was no improvement until one day when a visitor was reading to him from the Bible.

"Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up." (James 5:14,15 KJV).

"Where are you reading, my brother?" The sick man asked.

"From the book of James."

"These words-they are for us, too, are they not?"

"Yes, I believe that."

"Then I would like the elders to pray for me and to anoint me."

The elders came and gathered around the man's bed. With expectation, the sick man and the elders joined their hearts in asking God for healing.

Then there was rejoicing and thanksgiving as Ndaganiyapmban was restored.

"If we added the healings in the churches in other areas with those in Karubaga and Kanggime, there would be hundreds of cases where the Lord has miraculously intervened on behalf of His people," Jan Yikwa declared.

Dekker, John (with Lois Neely). Torches of Joy. Seattle: YWAM Publishing, 1985, 1999 p. 171-173.

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