Miracles played a role in the life and ministry of Christ. And miracles played a role in the life and ministry of the first century Christians. As they gave their lives in service to spreading the gospel, the miraculous marked their lives. We who live today should expect nothing less. While there are many things we can learn about miracles from the book of Acts, we’ll focus this week on two things we can do to set in motion the miraculous work of God in our lives. In this post we’ll focus on the first of the two.
1. Expect the Supernatural
On Thanksgiving I expect turkey. On Christmas I expect ham. On my birthday I expect presents. When I go into a store I expect good customer service (I’m often disappointed). And as a Christian I expect the miraculous to be a part of my life. Why? Because of what Jesus told his disciples in John 14:12 “…whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these…” This is exactly what happens in the book of Acts:
- During Jesus’ ministry he miraculously healed the lame (Matthew 15:30). Well, in the book of Acts Jesus’ followers also healed the lame (Peter in Acts 3:2, Philip in Acts 8:7 and Paul in Acts 14:8-10).
- During Jesus’ ministry he was miraculously attended to by angels. Well in the book of Acts Jesus’ followers were also attended by angels (the apostles in Acts 5, Philip in Acts 8:26 and Paul in Acts 27).
- During Jesus’ ministry he miraculously raised the dead (the widow’s son in Luke 7 and Lazarus in John 11). Well in the book of Acts we see Jesus’ followers having similar experiences (Peter raised Tabitha in Acts 9 and Paul raised Eutychus in Acts 20:12).
All throughout the book of Acts you see Jesus’ followers doing the same things Jesus did. They expected the supernatural because Jesus said they should (John 14:12). I expect the supernatural for the same reason. Some people object to the miraculous today saying “that was only for the apostles” but in the book of Acts it’s not just the apostles experiencing the miraculous (i.e. Stephen, Philip, Agabus). Others say that miracles were for the first century but not today. But Jesus did’t say that only the apostles would have these experiences – he said that “…whoever believes…” would do as he did.
So the first thing we can do to unleash God’s miraculous activity in our lives is take Jesus at his word and believe that he wants to do the miraculous in our lives in the twenty-first century, just as he did in the first century.