Thursday, February 16, 2012

Signs and Wonders

Acts 5:12 ¶ And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among the people; (and they were all with one accord in Solomon's porch. 13 And of the rest durst no man join himself to them: but the people magnified them. 14 And believers were the more added to the Lord, multitudes both of men and women.) 15 Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them. 16 There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one.

God of the impossible
-          Signs of what? Signs are not just there for beauty's sake. They point to something. What do these signs point to? 
o   God’s Kingdom (already here but not yet fully here)
o   God’s Spirit given
o   Christ’s Lordship 
o   God’s Gospel verified
o   God’s will is good
-          Can God…? Anaias and Sapphira had asked this question in a way. They tested God. The Israelites tested God in the wilderness, asking "can God provide us meat?" In both cases the results were bad and the answer was an emphatic "God can!"
-          Human weakness was overcome by the Spirit. Peter was not a perfect man. He had fallen into sin recently, and shortly after this he had to be confronted by Paul for racist hypocrisy, yet now his shadow brought healing. 
o   All things are possible to those who believe (Mark 9:23). 
-          Get a new perspective – there are no limits!

A flame of love
-          Judgment led to unity
-          Love embraces and love excludes!
-          The church did not exclude anyone (hypocrites excluded themselves voluntarily), multitudes joined.
-          Welcome the burning, cleansing flame

Power for restoration
-          Sickness, sin, and evil spirits are out of order.
-          God’s miracles are not chaotic. It would be scary if the God of the impossible were arbitrary. There's good news. He is all good. 
-          The forces of evil rage against us, but through God we will overcome!
-          These signs point to the way things should and eventually will be
o   All will be healed!
o   All (who repent and believe) will be forgiven and set free from sin for eternity!
o   All evil spirits bound and souls delivered!