THE WORKS OF GOD
By W. G. Guy
Crowds followed Jesus because of what they saw Him do and heard Him teach. Many of them wanted the power that He had, but His response to them was that they should want to simply believe in Him.
John 6:28-29 – Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.
The mighty words and miracles that they desired of Him was actually a factor of a relationship with Him as savoir and Lord. It is all a matter of believing in God, His Word and in Jesus His Son.
John 14:11-12 – Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works’ sake. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
Believing in Jesus Christ as savoir and Lord makes that believer a child of God which means he then has the same life in him that Jesus had which is of God the Father. Then, being a representative of the kingdom of God and as a child of God, the believer is to function in this life as Jesus did showing forth the power of Christ in a new life.
John 14:13-14 – And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
That power is in the name that is above all names, the Lord Jesus Christ. We also read that those who really believe and have that eternal (zoe) life in them can apply His name to demonstrate to the lost world that He is the Son of God and the resurrection and the life. In so doing, believers then glorify God and the Son, bringing honor and recognition to Him as the mighty and Holy One.
Mark 16:15-16 – And he (Jesus) said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
We should recognize the absolute power that is given to us in His name to do the works that Jesus said believers in Him would do.
Mark 16:17-18 – And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
The problem is that today too many who say they are believers DO NOT BELIEVE this to be true. They actually deny what Jesus said, claiming that it is not for today. They deny the power of God that Jesus said they would receive when the Holy Spirit comes upon them, (Acts 1:8). The apostle Paul predicted that in the last days that there would be those churches that would deny the power.
2 Timothy 3:1 & 5 – This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. …..having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
So when did God change His mind; when did Jesus retract His promise? HE DIDN’T! The problem is with those who claim they believe but really don’t! Think on that!
Where true believers do what Jesus called us to do in ministry around the world, the power of God is seen and draws people to Christ for salvation. This is the key to real ministry as listed in Mark 16 above. Everyone knows that they need healing from sickness, disease and various infirmities; and when a true follower of Jesus lays hands on them or prays for them and miraculous healings occur, people accept that Jesus is the answer to their condition and to their sins.
Healings draw people’s attention just like the example Jesus gives us when He began His ministry. Jesus even sent His advance men to go and do the same thing; and these were not just His twelve apostles. He sent seventy additional advance men that He gave power to heal and cast out demons.
Matthew 10:5 & 7-8 – These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: …….. And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.
Luke 10:1, 9 & 17 – After these things the Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come. …….and heal the sick that are therein, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you. …… And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.
Note that the power is in HIS NAME! There is not much time remaining before the return of the Lord Jesus Christ and there is much work yet to be done. We need these power tools to finish what Jesus instructed us to do.
Matthew 28:19-20 – Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.
Matthew 24:14 – And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Note that the gospel of the kingdom includes healing and casting out evil spirits as well as the forgiveness of sins, just as Jesus taught and did. One thing to keep in mind is that the purpose of ministering to others, and the key to operating in that power, is LOVE. It is having enough compassion for those that you want to touch them with the love of God in the name of Jesus Christ. Scripture gives us an example when Peter and John met the lame man at the gate of the temple.
Acts 3:6-8, 16 – Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. …..And his name through faith in his name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
It is time for the saints to put faith to work and finish the task assigned to us by the Lord and believing in His name and showing that miraculous saving and healing power to others. Clearly the apostate church or the modern Laodicean type church cannot and will not do such things. Will you?
Then we will see and experience the power of God demonstrated as the truth of God’s Word is proclaimed by those who truly believe just as happened in the early church.
Mark 16:20 – And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.
In the above verse where it says, the Lord working with them, it is actually the Holy Spirit acting on the truth they spoke representing Jesus Christ and the kingdom of God. This is exactly what was promised to those who believe that were baptized with the Holy Spirit.
Acts 1:8 – But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judæa, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
That power is of the Holy Spirit responding to what words believers speak in faith and confidence that Jesus and the Father stand behind those words and actions on behalf of Jesus and His kingdom. The supernatural power that operates is known as the nine Gifts of the Spirit given to those who have been baptized with the Holy Spirit.
1 Corinthians 12:7-11 – But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: but all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.
With all that our Lord has provided, why are we not walking in the fullness of His power? Most likely because we do not take the Lord Jesus Christ and His Word seriously which is a shame on the church. Too many believers are in the Laodicean type of church of self-indulgence and lacking in true faith.
Therefore it becomes obvious that we need to repent of our unbelief and endeavor to move more deeply in our relationship with Him and obey His command to “go into all the world and proclaim the truth of His gospel and His kingdom. Remember, in His kingdom, which we have access to through Him, there is no sickness; no disease, no infirmity, no evil spirits and total forgiveness of sin. We are to represent this as well as experience it for ourselves.
Ask the Lord for the boldness to pray for those in need, and lay hands on the infirmed, and BELIVE in Him who promised. He is the one who heals and sets the captive free; but He operates through those who believe enough to go and do it. Don’t be fearful of making a fool of yourself when making a bold yet true testimony about the Lord Jesus Christ. The fool is the one who will not believe.
When we go and speak as His representative, it is His power that is presented to those that hear. And don’t fear what the enemy might do or say about you because the enemy has no power; Jesus has it all and it is He, by His Spirit, that brings about the supernatural manifestations and healings. And don’t back down from the opposition of the enemy, Satan and his followers, because he has no real power since Jesus has it all. All he can do is lie and intimidate using those under his influence that he manipulates, (in governments and false religions), to oppose you and try to prevent the gospel message from going forth.
Matthew 20:18-20 – And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.
Why do we need to minister with the power and works of God? Paul gave us the reason:
1 Corinthians 2:4-5 – And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.
We are to go in His name and teach others to do the same.