A prayer cloth is a piece of material that someone -- or a group -- prays over and delivers to a sick person for the purpose of attaining their healing. Paul's "handkerchiefs and aprons" were pieces of cloth tied around his head to catch sweat and his work aprons tied around his waist.
The scriptural precedent is in Acts 19:11-12: "Now God worked unusual miracles by the hands of Paul, so that even handkerchiefs or aprons were brought from his body to the sick, and the diseases left them and the evil spirits went out of them."
However, this practice is not the usual method of healing. The standard method for healing is:
1). Laying on of hands, see Mark 16:18 (last part) -- "they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover."
2). Anointing of oil and the prayer of faith, see James 5:14-16 -- "Is anyone among you sick? 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 will save the sick, and the LORD will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much."
It should be clearly understood that the oil itself does not heal anyone. It is considered a point of contact for the power of YEHOVAH God to flow through. Oil is a type of the holy spirit of YEHOVAH God.
Notice Matthew 9:20-22: "And suddenly a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the hem of his [the Messiah's] garment. For she said to herself, 'If only I touch his garment, I shall be made well.' But Jesus turned around, and when he saw her he said, 'Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well.' And the woman was made well from that hour."
We learn in Luke 8:45-46 -- "And Jesus said, 'Who touched me?' When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, 'Master, the multitudes throng and press you, and you say, 'Who touched me?' But Jesus said, 'Somebody touched me, for I perceived power going out from me.'"
In this instance the woman touched the Messiah's garment. The garment itself healed no one, but it was a point of contact for the woman's faith and YEHOVAH God's healing power through the Messiah.
In another case the Messiah rubbed mud in one man's eye in order for him to receive YEHOVAH's healing, notice! "Now it was a Sabbath when Jesus made the clay and opened his eyes. Then the Pharisees also asked him again how he had received his sight. He said to them, 'he put clay on my eyes, and I washed, and I see" (John 9:14-15).
The Book of Acts provides another example of extraordinary healing methods: "...so they brought the sick out into the streets and laid them on beds and couches, that at least the shadow of Peter passing by might fall on some of them" (Acts 5:15).
Hands, oil, mud, shadow or cloth could provide a point of contact for the power of YEHOVAH God to flow into another's body.
In the Old Testament the prophet Elisha told an unbelieving leper to dip in the Jordan River seven times! This caused Naaman to become angry and he refused. After some prodding he did it -- notice! "So he went down and dipped seven times in the Jordan, according to the saying of the man of God; and his flesh was restored like the flesh of a little child, and he was clean" (2 Kings 5:14).
The river didn't heal Naaman -- his obedience to the word of YEHOVAH God through Elisha did!
Some points to remember --
1). Only use this method if a man of YEHOVAH God is not available in your area and you have a pressing health need to do so.
2). Any method used must be initiated in faith.
3). Avoid putting YEHOVAH God in a box -- and don't despise the method He may choose to heal you. When you think you have him figured out He may choose to do it differently.
If you have a need for a prayer cloth, please contact us at:
Hope of Israel Ministries