I learned that asking "Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there?" is like asking "Is there no oil in Saudi Arabia ? Are there no oil companies there?" These are facetious questions. Of course there is oil in Saudi Arabia. Of course there are oil companies, drawing out, barreling and selling oil!
Gilead was a distribution center to the reachable world for ‘balm’ – an ointment made of resin from evergreen trees native to western Africa and Asia. There was always balm in Gilead. And Gilead was full of physicians who practiced their trade by distributing the balm to those in need.
I was struck by the ridiculousness of the idea that there could be a shortage of practical care to meet one's need for healing. Jeremiah's facetiousness led me to ask, am I going to believe that the infinite Mind, that is God, has stopped knowing His creation? Or the divine Love that is God has stopped loving us and meeting our needs? There is no problem with the delivery system of care from God to man.
As sure as there is "balm in Gilead" we are loved. As sure as there are "physicians there", we have access to practical, tender care for our needs. Christ Jesus said, "And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you." (John 14:16-18)
The healing Christ is the balm that comforts and heals and never runs out. There is no limit or block to the practical care of the Christ for the "health of the daughter of God's people."
O dreamer, leave thy dreams for joyful waking,
O captive, rise and sing, for thou art free;
The Christ is here, all dreams of error breaking,
Unloosing bonds of all captivity.
He comes to bless thee on his wings of healing;
To banish pain, and wipe all tears away;
He comes anew, to humble hearts revealing
The mounting footsteps of the upward way.
He comes to give thee joy for desolation,
Beauty for ashes of the vanished years;
For every tear to bring full compensation,
To give thee confidence for all thy fears.
He comes to call the dumb to joyful singing;
The deaf to hear; the blinded eyes to see;
The glorious tidings of salvation bringing.
O captive, rise, thy Saviour comes to thee.
Hymn 412, Christian Science Hymnal