I’ve got to be honest with you…
I have a hard time with this one. I want to hide in my theological corner and cling to the descriptive not prescriptive philosophy of the book of Acts. “This was just what happened then, we’re not supposed to do this now.” And I don’t know. I really don’t. I don’t know if we’re supposed to be calling on God to raise people from the dead. And if we are, I don’t know why I’ve never heard a true story about it. I hope that doesn’t scare you, hearing your pastor say he doesn’t know something about the Bible. The truth is, there’s a lot about the Bible that many pastors don’t know, it’s just that most pretend that’s not true.
They called on God for the raising of the dead.
But Peter put them all outside and knelt down and prayed; then turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, rise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up (Acts 9:40).
There was a rumor going around our town & county growing up about a church that was trying to raise their pastor from the dead. I guess the son was praying over his dad’s body in the church, trying to bring him back to life. Last I heard he was still dead. Though, I don’t run in those circles anymore, maybe he did come back to life and is currently roaming the hills of Cooper Hollow. I doubt it. Whether this is true or not, I don’t know. It’s just a rumor I heard.
One reason we don’t see many miracles today might be because of the reasons we’re trying to perform them. For this son who was trying to raise his dad from the dead, do you think his intent was so his dad could continue on the work God had for him to do on the earth? Do you think this son was convinced that his dad wasn’t finished yet and he needed to stay? Or do you think he just wanted his dad back? I don’t know. But, I know God’s reasons and ways are much higher than ours, and if he chooses to work a miracle like this, it’s going to be for a reason – to bring him glory.
Another reason we don’t see miracles is because God knows our hearts and knows how we would respond to the attention we would get from them. I wonder if we started performing miracles in our time if we would continue to give the credit to God. Or if, over time we would start taking the credit ourselves because it was our faith that was doing these miracles. I wonder, with all the forms of social media, if people would start worshipping us because of the latest miracle we posted on YouTube. And I wonder if we would stop them.
We have to have a good, theological understanding of the miraculous if we ever hope to see God work in that way. And the foundation for that theology is that any miracle that God performs (not us) is to bring glory to himself. For now, we don’t need to go much deeper than that. We just need to know that when we pray for miracles, it’s always God’s choice and God’s glory. Does that mean we don’t pray for them? Absolutely not. But it does mean that God isn’t a genie in our back pocket that we can pull out and start granting people’s wishes so we can look cool.
The Three for Morning, Afternoon and Evening.
“Now for Next” Prayer
What do we need to do now as a church to be ready for what God has for us next.
“What’s My Role” Prayer
Pray for God to show us the role we will play individually in accomplishing that mission.
For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.