The Laying on of Hands – Christian Back to Basics #4

The First Principles of the Oracles of God

The Laying on of Hands – Sermon Notes

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The laying on of hands is simply an act of one person laying hands upon another. Outside the realm of Christianity, it’s a very common act for many reasons. Two men greeting one another shaking hands, a mother putting her hands on an unwell child, giving assurance and comfort. Within Christianity, it’s merely an adaptation of a very natural human action to have physical contact with another, however, in the realm of Christianity, the laying on of hands has a very definite and spiritual purpose.

Throughout the Old and the New Testament, the laying on of hands was common and when examined, shows up in three main areas. Examining these uncovers the fourth of the foundational doctrines.

The Three Purposes of the Laying on of Hands

For healing (physical and emotional)

For Ordination of Overseers in the Church

For imparting the Baptism of the Holy Spirit


The first element is God’s provision for divine supernatural physical healing. Through Jesus Christ, an individual can receive healing for various illnesses and conditions only possible by the power of God.

(Math 8:16) “…and He (Jesus) healed all that were sick; that it might be fulfilled by Isaiah the Prophet saying “Himself took our infirmities and bare our sickness…”

Not only did Jesus perform these miracles during His earthly ministry but through the Holy Spirit, He made it possible for us to be healed by the laying on of hands.

(Mark 16:17) “…..they (us) shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover…..”

(James 5:14) “…is any sick among you….and the prayer of faith shall save the sick…”

(Acts 3:7) “…and he took him by the right hand and lifted him up and immediately his ankle bones received strength…”

The laying on of hands is not the only method for divine healing rather it represents the primary method.


Ordination is a process in which an individual is set forward and recognised by the laying on of hands to Oversee within the Church. Not an implication of a transfer of power, rather recognition that the individual is called, gifted of God and has met all of the requirements set forth in scriptures having been examined by the existing Church Oversight. No other process of ordination exists within the scriptures.

(Deut 34:9) “….and Joshua was full of the spirit of wisdom for Moses had laid hands on him….”

(Acts 13) “….the Holy Ghost said separate unto me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. And when they had prayed and fasted they laid hands on them…”

(1 Tim 4:14) “…..neglect not the gift that is within you, which was given you by Prophecy and by the laying on of hands by the presbytery (elders)…”

Impartation of the Holy Ghost

The laying on of hands is one method in which an individual can receive the impartation of the Baptism of the Spirit through an appointed overseer of God’s Church. This is not the only method a person can receive but is the primary method shown in scripture.

(Acts 8:17) “…..then they (the Apostles) laid their hands upon them and they received the Holy Ghost…”

(Acts 19:6) “…and when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Ghost came on them…”

These teachings represent the very basics in these understandings, but like all the others, lay a simple and clear foundation to build one’s knowledge and revelation upon.

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About Steven Birnie

Steven Birnie is a former local Church Minister and the author of Christian publications which include non-fiction, fictional and teaching eBooks with audio sermons. From the north-east coast of Scotland, Pastor Steven is married to Sharon and together, they have two young children called Emily and David. After seven years of training, three years of overseeing youth and young adults and, three years of being the Assistant Pastor in his local Church, Pastor Steven moved on to focus on writing Christian Publications. In the future, he hopes to write The Tribulation Soldier, his newest Series of Fictional, Military EBooks on the End Times, the Rapture and the Tribulation Period, as a 2.5 Million Word Series. But despite continuing pastoral work and writing, Steven remains devoted to his children, enjoying his family life with caravan holidays in the Highlands, fishing, canoeing and his favourite pastime, riding his motorbike through the Scottish countryside.