Introduction: 1 Corinthians 12:9-10
The Working of Miracles is a supernatural intervention by God in the ordinary course of nature.
Working = (Strong’s 1755) Energēma = meaning to operate.
This gift of the Spirit doesn’t just happen. You don’t just show up, and the miracles start. There is an operation or work that needs to take place for the miracle to happen.
Miracles = (Strong’s 1411) dunamis = force, power, miracle.
Dunamis is where we get our word dynamite. For the Dynamite to work with its force, a wick must be lit.
The Gift of Working of Miracles is the supernatural ability to pray, see, and do things with the supernatural power of God in a situation, person, or amongst people. It’s moving beyond the natural realm and natural laws and accomplishing the will of God.
- Commissioned for the Miraculous (Mark 16:14-20)
Commissioned – an instruction, command, or duty given to a person or group of people. A group of people officially charged with a particular function.
Jesus said, go, there’s the command, go! Preach the Gospel to every creature (human being).
AS you are going and preaching, baptizing, these signs will follow. These miraculous signs will follow you as you are following the Commission of going, preaching, and baptizing!
All these signs, miraculous expressions, and operations were all connected to the Great Commission. The miraculous will happen the more we give ourselves to evangelism. Miracles don’t necessarily happen when we come to church, it happens as the church goes!
Here’s Caution for the non-committed to the Commission.
Study the Book of Acts, and you will see the operation of miracles most closely linked with the office of evangelism because the operation of miracles is primarily for the unbeliever. Why? Because the believer’s faith is not increased by seeing miracles.
God dedicated an entire segment of history to prove this point. Read Exodus and Numbers, and you will see God continually performing signs and wonders for His people. The Red Sea parted before them. Manna came down from heaven to them. They were directed by a huge cloud each day and a pillar of fire every night. They were bitten by poisonous snakes and miraculously preserved. The earth opened and swallowed the rebellious among them. They were a people who witnessed miracle after miracle daily. And yet, what was the end of the story? They couldn’t enter the Promised Land because of unbelief.
People think if they could see a miracle or two, their faith would soar. Not so. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17). For the believer, the way to grow in faith is not to see the miraculous but to meditate on His word day and night.
It is for the unbeliever that God will confirm His Word with signs and wonders.
When Paul wrote to the church at Corinth 1 Corinthians 2:1-5. It was a far different method than he tried in Athens (Acts 17).
Paul preached at Mars Hill in Athens—the place where the intelligentsia of the day dialogued with one another in the city known for an ongoing stream of philosophical interaction. Referring to the one thousand altars throughout Athens dedicated to various deities, Paul opened his message, saying, “The unknown god to whom you have dedicated an altar is the God of whom I want to speak.”
He delivered a dissertation to the Athenians explaining the true and living God; Paul quoted from their poets, discussed their philosophy, and alluded to their culture. But the success of his sermon was very minimal. Most of those who heard him mocked him. Others said, “Come back later, and we’ll hear more.” Only a handful believed.
Acts 17 shows he never mentioned Jesus Christ crucified. Although he alluded to the Resurrection, he never stated straightforwardly and with the simplicity that Jesus had died for their sins and had risen from the dead. Instead, he tried to be philosophical. He tried to be professional. He tried to be relatable. As a result, no church was established in Athens.
However, at the next stop—Corinth—Paul changed his mode of operation radically. He forsook flowery speech and talked about Jesus Christ and Him being crucified. Many responded, and a church was planted.
Preaching the wonder-working power of the Blood of Jesus Christ, His death, burial, and Resurrection is what the church has been charged, commissioned, to do. We fulfill that Commission, not by arguing a demon out or out-argue that demon, persuade politically, or protest. No, we are to preach the Gospel, we take that action, and the miraculous will operate to demonstrate that the Jesus who performed miracles and who died on the Cross is still alive and His on the throne. It will cause many to become believers.
- The Effect of the Miraculous. (John 21:25)
- John 2:1-11 – Water turned into wine = His Disciples believed in Him
- John 4:46-47 – Cured the Nobleman’s Son- – John 4:53 – the father and his whole household believed.
- Luke 5:1-11 – The Great Fish Haul – They forsook all and followed Him.
- Mark 1:23-28 – Cast out the Unclean Spirit – Jesus’ fame spread.
- Mark 1:30-31 – Peter’s Mother-in-law healed – She served them.
- Mark 1:40-45 – Jesus Heals a Leper – He spread it around and people came to Jesus from Evert Direction (45)
- Luke 2:1-12 – Jesus forgives and heals a paralytic – All were amazed and glorified God.
- Luke 7:11-18 – Widow’s son from Nain raised from the Dead. – They Glorified God and the fame of his name spread through the region.
- John 11:1-44 – Those around believed and many – who had seen the things which Jesus did believed (45)
For every good effect of the miraculous, some were upset or even angered by the miracle. Even those mistook what Jesus had performed as a work of the devil, and some never understood the point of the miracle.
When Jesus stilled the storm on Lake Galilee, His frightened disciples were reprimanded by Jesus for their “little faith.” “The men were amazed and asked, ‘What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey Him'” (Matthew 8:27)
When He enabled the mute man to speak, “the crowd was amazed and said, ‘Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel.’ But the Pharisees said, ‘It is by the prince of demons that he drives out demons'” (Matthew 9:33-34).
It is amazing that so many of the miracles Jesus performed leave no recorded response of gratitude or praise by beneficiaries or observers.
After Jesus healed the centurion’s servant at Capernaum, the episode closes with the statement: “And his servant was healed at that very hour” (Matthew 8:5-13)
On the same day Jesus Healed the Centurion’s servant, He cast out many demons from people who were brought to Him and healed all the sick who were present. Matthew’ uses this statement that this activity fulfilled a Messianic prophecy of Isaiah (Matthew 8:16- 17).
Jesus opened the eyes of a blind man who lived in Bethsaida. All that follows is Jesus’ instruction to the man to go home (Mark 8:22-26).
Jesus restored the shriveled hand of a man in a synagogue on a Sabbath day. The Pharisees and teachers of the Law were so furious that they began to plot against Him (Luke 6:6-11)
When Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, they began to plot how they would kill Jesus, then later how they would kill Lazarus.
The effect of the miraculous often has to do with the condition of your own heart.
The real effect of a miracle is to bring glory to God, and the exaltation of Jesus Christ on the earth as the Son of God.
For His Name’s Sake:
He restores our soul for His Name’s Sake: Psalm 23:3
He Pardon’s iniquity for His Name’s Sake – Psalm 25:11
He leads and guides for His Name’s Sake – Psalm 31:3
He brings victory for His Name’s Sake – Joshua 7:9
He brings you into the promised land for His Name’s Sake – Ezekiel 20:44
He restores fortunes and has mercy for His Name’s Sake – Ezekiel 39:25
He will make His Name Great – Malachi 1:11
Miracles Bring Glory to God.
Three Reasons for the Working of Miraculous.
It shows the compassion of God for needs of people. (Mark 1:41)
He was filled with Compassion. He’s showing the heart of God, for His people. He is deeply concerned about the pain of your life. He is moved in compassion because of the conditions his people experience.
Everything that Jesus did shows us the heart of God.
He wept –
Healed, calmed, provided, and delivered.
It confirms His identity.
The miracles weren’t the point, miracles were serving a sign to prove that He was the Son of God. (Acts 2:22)
22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know-
The Hope of the World wasn’t dependant on feeding five thousand, healing a blood disorder. No the Hope of the World was that men, women, young and old. Would realize that the one who performed the miracles. Was the only begotten Son, who was sent because loved the world, and He didn’t desire for them to perish, but have everlasting life, therefore they needed to know who He was and is, so that they will believe in Him and on Him. He’s God manifested in the flesh.
16 And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness:
God was manifested in the flesh,
Justified in the Spirit,
Seen by angels,
Preached among the Gentiles,
Believed on in the world,
Received up in glory. (1 Timothy 3:16)
(John 1:12 NKJV; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; John 1:15-18; Colossians 2:9-10; John 1:1, 14; 1 Corinthians 8:6; Revelation 2:8)
The Miracles, signs and wonders point you to a deeper truth, one that does more than fix a physical need but changes your eternity. It’s for you to come to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. To move from unbelief to belief that He is who He said is. He is alive and He is still on the throne, that He is far above everything that has a name. He holds all power in heaven and earth in His Hand.
The Gospel didn’t hinge on the healings but on the death, burial, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
The miracles are merely a sign pointing you in the right direction.
John the Baptist asked if he was the one Jesus responds look at the signs John!
Luke 7:18-22 NKJV
18 Then the disciples of John reported to him concerning all these things. 19 And John, calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to Jesus, saying, “Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?”
20 When the men had come to Him, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to You, saying, ‘Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?'” 21 And that very hour He cured many of infirmities, afflictions, and evil spirits; and to many blind He gave sight.
22 Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things you have seen and heard: that the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the Gospel preached to them. 23 And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.”
It’s a glimpse of Heaven on Earth!
Paul said that we look through a glass darkly, we see in part! 1 Corinthians 13:3 However, the miracles of Jesus the working of miracles gives a glimpse of what heaven will be like. As we struggle to see, he sends a sign a marker to let us know we are on the right path.
When we think that this life and all that this world offered is the end-all, a miracle springs forth and reminds us that this world and it’s brokenness is not our world. We are simply traveling through.
IT reminds us that we aren’t natural beings having a supernatural experience; instead, we are supernatural beings having a natural experience. It reminds me that Jesus Christ came to put things back into the order that was present in the Garden of Eden.
That’s where humankind was in perfect harmony and at peace with God. Where man walked and talked with God face to face!
When Jesus healed the sick, cast out demons, restored sight to the blind, calmed storms, raised the dead, and delivered the bound, He was taking us back to what it was then yet showing what’s to come.
In the garden, the lion laid down with the lamb, no sickness, no disease, no death, no separation, no evil, no murder, no envy, no jealousy, no sin. It was paradise. He’s going to recreate it again.
Revelation 21:1-6,10-14,22-27. Revelation 22:1-5
“We view the miracles of God as the suspension of the natural order, but Jesus meant them as a restoration of the natural order.” – Keller
Miracles are not here to challenge your mind, but instead to bring confirmation to your heart that He is who says He is and He can do what He says He can do. He is bringing the restoration of all things.
May we have an experience of Heaven on Earth!
May the working of miracles be used by God to make His name famous on the earth.
May you be assured today that the Same God that multiplied bread and fish, that parted the waters, calmed storms, made an ax head float, made a widow’s pot of oil become a fountain of oil, perform a miracle through you.
The operation of the working of miracles is so that the works of God will be made known on the earth. Through the working (operation) of miracles (God’s mighty power), it will encourage you and confound and astonish them that are without Christ so that they will come to know Jesus Christ.