Tag: signs and wonders

Faith to be healed!

Scripture reading for May 25th:  Acts 14

Paul and Barnabas, commissioned by the church in Antioch, went out under the leading of the Holy Spirit to do the work that God would prepare for them.  (Acts 13:4)  They found many willing listeners and some believed.  They also ran into opposition, primarily from the strong Jews who felt threatened by the Gospel message.  They then took the message to the Gentiles as well as the Jews.

“At Iconium Paul and Barnabas went as usual into the Jewish synagogue.  There they spoke so effectively that a great number of Jews and Gentiles believed.  But the Jews who refused to believe stirred up the Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brothers.  So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of His grace by enabling them to do miraculous signs and wonders.”  (Acts 14:1-3)  God worked with and through these missionaries enabling them to preach effectively.  They also had the message confirmed by miracles.  But this also stirred up opposition and a plot to stone them caused them to flee to Lystra and Derbe.

“In Lystra, there sat a man crippled in his feet, who was lame from birth and never walked.  He listened to Paul as he was speaking.  Paul looked directly at him, saw that he had faith to be healed and called out, “Stand up on your feet!”  At that, the man jumped up and began to walk.”  (Acts 14:8-10)  Paul discerned what God could do through the faith of this man.  Paul encouraged him with a command and this man jumped up and walked around!  This opened the door for the apostles to preach to a great crowd of people before the Jews from Iconium came and stoned Paul and dragged his body outside the city!   God works through faith!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Healing by shadow!

Scripture reading for May 12th:  Acts 5

“The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people. And all believers used to meet together in Solomon’s Colonnade.  No one else dared join them, even though they were highly regarded by the people.  Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and were added to their number.  As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by.  Crowds gathered also from towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by evil spirits, and all of them were healed.”  (Acts 5:12-16)

Right after the sudden deaths of Ananias and his wife Sapphira for lying to the Holy Spirit, a holy fear came over the church and people.  There were understandable reservations about joining the apostles and their group who met in a room near the temple.  The apostles were highly regarded because of the miraculous signs and wonders that they performed on a regular basis as they ministered to the lost, sick and demon-possessed.  However, as they ministered and preached the Gospel of the resurrected Christ, many were added to the number of believers!

As the disciples moved about ministering, people would bring the sick into the streets and seek to get them close enough to Peter and the apostles that their shadow might bring healing or at least get their attention for ministry and prayer!  God so anointed them that all the sick and demon-possessed that were brought to them from Jerusalem and surrounding towns were healed!  God honors faith and faithfulness!  Has your shadow been sought by the hurting because of the anointing of Jesus on your life?  God’s willing to use us!

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Prayer that shakes the house!

Scripture reading for May 11th:  Acts 4

The miracle of healing the crippled man at the temple gate shook the religious house.  “The priest and the captain of the guard came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the crowd.  They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead.  They seized Peter and John, and because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day.”   (Acts 4:1-3)  The religious leaders were not happy at the mention of Jesus!

They questioned Peter and John to find out by what power they had done this miracle.  “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: “Rulers and elders of the people!  If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a cripple and are asked how he was healed, then know this, you and all the people of Israel:  It is by the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. ” . . .”Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”” (Acts 4:8-10,12)

The rulers and elders ordered the apostles not to speak in the Name of Jesus Christ any more and threatened them. But the apostles told them that they must obey God and not men.  They let them go and they returned to the others and prayed:  “Now Lord consider their threats and enable Your servants to speak Your word with great boldness.  Stretch out Your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the Name of your holy servant Jesus.”  “After they prayed, the place were they were meeting was shaken.”  (Acts 4:29-31)

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Moses and Christ!

Scripture reading for June 9th:  Acts 7:1-29

The story of one of the seven deacons, Stephen, is interesting.  Stephen was full of faith and the Holy Spirit and God used him in miraculous signs and wonders.  You would think that this would make him a popular preacher, but there were those religious Jews that did not appreciate his message or miracles.  They stirred up some people to testify falsely that he was speaking blasphemy against Moses and God.  (Acts 6:11-14)  They brought him before the Sanhedrin for questioning.  As they looked at him, Stephen’s face took on the characteristics of an angel.

When asked if he were guilty of the charges, Stephen began to speak under the anointing of the Holy Spirit.  He was a young man who spoke respectfully to the elders and leaders he was standing before.  He spoke about the Holy Scriptures that Moses had written, showing his knowledge and respect for that written record.  He began in Genesis with Abraham and God’s call and quickly took them through the history of the Jewish people up to the time of  Moses.

As Stephen mentioned the story of Joseph, he emphasized how the patriarchs were jealous of him and sold him into slavery.  Stephen was trying to get these religious leaders to see that their own jealousy of God’s plan and vision through Christ was a problem.  (Acts 7:9-10)  God raised Joseph up to be ruler over Egypt and the one who would save Israel and the world from a great famine.

Moses was also raised up by the hand of God and raised in Pharaoh’s household.  He was a Jew but given all the wisdom of the Egyptians.  At forty years of age, he saw an Israelite being mistreated by and Egyptian and killed the Egyptian.  Moses was surprised to learn that his act was not appreciated by the Israelites!  He fled to Midian for forty years and tended sheep while the vision to deliver God’s people went dormant. (Acts 7:20-29)

God was trying to speak to these Jews who were jealous of the power of this follower of Jesus.  He was showing them that the Jews had a history of missing what God was doing.  He wanted them to listen and learn from the past.  These Old Testament stories showed truth.  Are you open to learn today?  Are you reading God’s word with a teachable heart?  God is speaking today!


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The sign of Jonah!

Scripture reading for April 5th: Luke 11:14-36

Jesus’ ministry was marked by supernatural power.  He was a man of prayer who sought God for instructions each day and then walked out what God showed Him to do.  He did not play to the crowd, doing miraculous signs just to please those who watched.  He wasn’t into popularity or fame, but instead was solely focused on His Father’s will.

There were those who were sceptical of Jesus’ spiritual power to cast out demons.  After the miraculous deliverance of a mute man, some accused Him of casting out these devils by the power of Beelzebub, the prince of demons.  Still others wanted to see more signs and the crowds grew in anticipation of a greater show of power.  (Luke 11:14-16) “As the crowds increased, Jesus said, “This is a wicked generation.  It asks for a miraculous sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah.  For as Jonah was a sign to the Ninevites, so also will the Son of Man be to this generation.” ” (Luke 11:29-30)

Jesus did not take the popular approach and perform some more miracles for these skeptical people.  He gave them a word picture from the Scriptures about one of their prophets, Jonah, who was running from God and His purpose for his life.  A great storm came upon the boat as he fled and the result was Jonah thrown overboard and swallowed by a great fish. (Jonah 2:14-17)   Jonah spent three days and nights in the belly of that fish before being vomited out on the shores of Nineveh.  The Ninevites repented at his preaching and were spared disaster.  (Jonah 3:4-10)  (Matthew 12:39-41)

The major sign Jesus would give these skeptical people was His own death, burial, and resurrection.  On the third day He would rise from the dead and His resurrection would proclaim He was a greater prophet than Jonah.  These people would be judged for their rejection of His message of repentance.  “The men of Nineveh will stand up at the judgment with this generation and condemn it; for they repented at the preaching of Jonah, and now One greater than Jonah is here.” (Luke 11:32)

Be careful of seeking more signs that Jesus is Messiah.  Believe the grand sign, Jesus Christ alive from the dead after three days!  His death and resurrection prove His power and declare He is the Son of God!  (Romans 1:4)

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