Monday, June 3, 2024

Believing Is Seeing

Throughout church history, giants in the faith have always risen up to continue the ministry of Christ on the earth. Jesus tells us, "And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” (Mark 16:17-18) "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father." (John 14:12) In these two scriptures, I want to point out two very important words, "who believe." Although Jesus is talking to His disciples, the term "who believe" applies across the board for everyone, anyone, all who believe, anytime and anywhere. How do we know that this applies to the church today?

First and foremost, there is absolutely not one verse or passage of scripture that tells us that miracles, signs and wonders are not to be apart of the daily lives of believers today, unless we take scripture out of context and or not permit scripture to confirm scripture. Just prior to Jesus' departure from earth to return to heaven, He tells His disciples, "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen. (Matthew 28:19-20) He plainly tells the eleven to go make disciples, to instruct them to attend to carefully, ALL THINGS that He (Jesus) commanded them (the apostles). 

Let us look at one of the commands that Jesus gave to the twelve apostles, "These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give." (Matthew 10:5-8) In this passage we find Jesus giving the twelve apostles a command to do some very specific things, "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons." So, if this is a command from Jesus, which it is, and if He commanded the eleven to, "make disciples of all the nations...teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you," which He did, then it only stands to reason, it is only logical, that the command to, "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons" has not been relinquished, dismissed, taken away from, or cease to operate in the church by Jesus ever! This is a command that all who believe have been commissioned (commanded) to do!

If the church, all who believe, are commanded to continue the ministry of Jesus on the earth, then why do so many believers reject the full extent of the great commission, which is not only preaching regeneration to the lost, but also includes, miracles, signs and wonders? The answer is quite simple, "these signs will follow those who believe: Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me." Walking in the supernatural, powered by the Holy Spirit, in the Name of Jesus takes faith. To have faith, is to have complete trust or confidence in the Lord and His Word. Faith has absolutely nothing to do with our five senses, which are the vehicles from where most of our knowledge comes from as we live and operate in the natural realm. However, faith transcends the natural realm to believe God (His Word) when it seems foolish, ridiculous, absurd, impossible or just too hard to believe. 

Throughout church history, even more recently, there are men and women who went beyond a mere religious Christianity, to true Christianity that reveals our Lord Jesus Christ through miracles, signs and wonders. Some of these fellow believers are, John Alexander Dowie, Maria Woodworth-Etter, John G. Lake, Smith Wigglesworth, Aimee Semple McPherson, Kathryn Kuhlman, William Branham, A. A. Allen, K.W. Kenyon and Oral Roberts. They were not perfect people, nor were they special to God above any other believer. They simply believed. They believed the very thing that Jesus said "whoever believes" could do, release the supernatural, that is, do the things that Jesus did. These men and women believers are some of the giants of the faith. People that we can admire and glean from or sit back and criticize. Remember, "But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, that no flesh should glory in His presence." (1 Corinthians 1:27-29)

The Apostle Paul tells us, "For the kingdom of God is not in word but in power." (1 Corinthians 4:20) He also reveals to us, "Therefore I have reason to glory in Christ Jesus in the things which pertain to God. For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ has not accomplished through me, in word and deed, to make the Gentiles obedient in mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God, so that from Jerusalem and round about to Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ." (Romans 15:17-19) Paul proved Jesus not in word but in power. His ministry revealed Jesus through not only his preaching of the gospel, but through mighty signs and wonders. He discloses an important message for us all to hear when he says, "I have fully preached the gospel of Christ." In other words, Paul tells us in this passage, that the full gospel is not complete without mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God. 

The gospel according to Mark also shows us, "So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs." Amen. (Mark 16:19-20) Notice that the Lord confirmed His Word through accompanying signs. Some may say, "Well that was the apostles, therefore, now that they are gone, we do not need signs and wonders because we have the Bible" or "God does not do signs and wonders through believers today because they were only needed back in the days of the early church." Believing statements like these are why so many people in the church have more faith in what man can do than what God has done through Christ and what believers are to do through the Holy Spirit. When people in the church come to such a conclusion that miracles, signs and wonders are not part of the church today, it is simply due to relying on what their five senses can apprehend. To get beyond this, they simply need to believe God and act upon His Word.  

For the Apostle Thomas, seeing was believing, (John 20:24-25), for all the giants of the faith, believing is seeing. When we truly believe that God and His Word are not void of power at anytime, we will see the supernatural of God moving across the earth, even greater than it did in the early church. So, let us stop looking at the weakness of our flesh, stop listening to the lies of devil, and let God arise in His mighty immeasurable power at work in us (Ephesians 3:20) as a testimony of Jesus, the Lord and Savior of all and walk with giants.

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