I want to share with you some true stories about the miracles of God in our present age. It is my hope that they give you hope and increase your faith in the God of Truth.
It was a sunny summer day. Norma was busy doing the housework and keeping a close eye on her newborn baby boy who was asleep in the basinet on the kitchen table. All of a sudden she heard popping sounds outside. Curious she went over towards the kitchen window to see what the noise was. As she did so her little boy woke up and started to fuss. She picked him up out of the basinet and approached the window. She looked out at the field behind their home and caught a glimpse of a couple of boys moving about behind the hedge. As she gazed out she noticed an apparition materialize in front of her and as she tried to focus, all of a sudden “pop – tink – chew”, a .22 calibre bullet pierced the first pane of glass and cracked the second pane. She was standing right in front of the window with her baby in her arms. The police said had the bullet gone through both panes of glass, which it should have considering the short distance from where it was fired, it would have killed her baby for sure and possibly even her. They were curious why they could not find the bullet. It left a hole in the first pane of glass but only cracked the second pane, so all they could do was surmise that it ricocheted out the hole the bullet made in the first pane even though a 180 degree ricochet seemed rather impossible. To this day she claims it was an angel she saw that stopped the bullet that the two young neighbor boys who were playing around with their father’s .22 caliber rifle inadvertently shot through her window that day.
Our daughter was born with a strawberry birthmark on the top of her head. It was the size of a quarter and because she had fine blonde hair it really stood out. The Happy Hunters were in town (a husband/wife evangelical team) and my wife and I decided to go with some friends. During the service, they asked that if anyone wanted prayer for anything to go up. I suggested to my wife that she take our daughter up and have them pray about that birthmark. So she started to walk up … our daughter howling all the way up there (she was very colicky). I got distracted and started talking to my friend about other things. All of a sudden his wife yelled …”LOOK … LOOK”. I turned my head and noticed that Mrs. Hunter had our daughter in her arms and she was out cold ... like her eyes were closed like she was asleep. “That’s impossible” I thought, “She was crying all the way up there, she should still be crying”. After Mrs. Hunter prayed for her she handed her back to my wife and next thing I knew she fell back onto the floor with our daughter in her arms. “WOW … I thought … what is going on?” Eventually she got back up and as soon as she did our daughter started howling again as if nothing had happened. I couldn’t wait to ask her what had happened. No sooner had she sat down next to me I was drilling her with questions. I asked if anyone had pushed her … but she said no one did. She said as soon as Mrs. Hunter handed our daughter back to her, she felt an immense power go through her and she could not stand. A few weeks later … the strawberry birthmark was gone. Unbelievers have said that we were all under mass hypnosis or something. The thing is I cannot be hypnotized … too strong willed apparently, not to mention I wasn’t even paying attention at first till someone told me to look. I cannot deny what my two eyes saw. They say that seeing is believing … so I say that was one genuine miracle. ^_^
Joan was raised Catholic but did not know who Jesus was. She was told by her peers that the Bible was just a religious book written by a bunch of men and that not everything written in it was true, so she never read it. There was one person she knew that she made fun of who was a born-again Christian and who prayed for her. She got into Satan worship as a teen and has a scar and a streak of white hair to prove it. The scar she got when a demon touched her. She was terrified and called out to God … even though she did not know who Jesus was, she still believed in God. The demon left her and she stopped dabbling in the occult. Several years later she met someone online who shared the gospel of Christ with her and she started to go to an evangelical church, where she got baptized and grew in the faith. When one particular song was played in church, the power of God would come over her and she would lift her hands to heaven and sing loudly, sometimes the power of God would come over her so heavily that she could not stand and would collapse back into the pew. She is a very shy person and so something like this was out of character, but when the power of God came over her she could not stop what happened. Her online friend told her to try recording the song and playing it back at home while she slept … she did this and during the night she had visions of her youth. She was raped as a baby by her cousin. This almost killed her and she was in intensive care for months. She did not know about this as her family had kept this from her. After receiving this vision she asked her older sister about it and she told her what happened confirming that the vision was true. As God was showing her all the things that happened to her in her childhood, both the bad and good, she noticed Jesus was sitting next to her holding her hand. She could feel the love He had for her, and she felt at peace. God was showing her that even when we go through trials in our lives that He is there by our side. She could have died as a baby and very nearly did, but He chose to preserve her life, for He had a plan and purpose for her life, and nothing can thwart His plans, and nothing can separate us from His love. Shortly after she was baptized she met the classmate who had prayed for her all those years. She met her on Facebook and now they are closer than friends … they are sisters in Christ.
There are many other miracles I could share but shared these to lead up to what I am about to share now. I found this on the internet written by a pastor who does not believe that the gift of prophecy and other spiritual gifts such as the gift of healing, or the vehicles by which some of these gifts are imparted such as the laying on of hands is for the present day church. He quotes passages from the “New Testament” to support this claim –
“Colossians 2:8-10 tells us Christians are complete in Christ. We have all the supernatural knowledge from God that we need and all He will ever give in the Scriptures (2 Timothy 3:16, 17; 2 Peter 1:3). We have the record of miracles to confirm that message (John 20:30, 31).
1 Corinthians 13:8-10 tells us God did miracles in the age when His written word was not complete. By God’s supernatural power, men revealed His will and confirmed by miracles that it was from God (Mark 16:20; Acts 14:3; Heb. 2:3, 4). Since the written word (that which is perfect — James 1:25) has come, God no longer gives men the power of prophecy.
So, no one today can prophecy by the power of God. Anyone who claims such a power is not doing it by God’s power. Whatever power he claims, it must be a form of occult divination, condemned by God.”
Like many false teachers this uninspired man has his spiritual eyes closed to the Truth. Let us look at his claims in the Light of God’s Word and with the wisdom He imparts to those whom He has chosen.
First you will notice that he uses only the writings of the New Testament to support his claim. This is the mistake of many self-proclaimed advocates of God’s Truth. They form doctrines around what they perceive as being the Truth without the full knowledge of what the Truth actually is. Granted the New Testament writings are inspired by God … but what is referred to as “the Scriptures” and “The Written Word of God” by New Testament writers is actually the inspired writings of “the Law and the Prophets” or the Old Testament (Torah). If a doctrine is not supported by the Old Testament, then it is must be questioned, for we are warned not to add anything to or take anything away from the Word of God that would corrupt it’s divine message (Deuteronomy 4:2; Deuteronomy 12:32; Proverbs 30:5-6; Revelation 22:18-19; Galatians 1:6-12). Nowhere in the Old Testament does it say that miracles or prophecy will cease before the Lord returns … this alone should be proof that this doctrine is in error. Advocates of this doctrine cite Zechariah 13:1-3 as proof that prophecy ended at the day of Pentecost (others say when the books of the bible were canonized) … and yet Paul says that the gift of prophecy will continue even after that and this is alluded to in his letter to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 12:10; 14:1-5,18-25). Also like many false teachers … they take what is spoken of in Zechariah 13:1-3 out of context. If we look back to Zechariah 12 we find that this event will not take place until Christ returns in glory to defeat the armies of the Anti-Christ at His second coming. The prophecy was partially fulfilled by the atoning death of Christ and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost, but will be fully realized at His coming in glory. Only those who do not worship God in Spirit and in Truth would be deceived into thinking spiritual gifts and miracles will end before Christ’s return. If this were the case, then what of the two witnesses God will raise up during the reign of the Anti-Christ (the Beast) spoken of in Revelation 11? His word is absolute and infallible, He cannot be unfaithful to His word (2 Timothy 2:13) and so either the apostle John who wrote the Book of Revelation is a false prophet, or God changes His mind like the wind and is not faithful to His Word at all. These false teachers cannot even use simple reasoning to see the error in their teaching, for Satan has blinded them to the Truth and they are ensnared by their own lies to their undoing. They have committed the unpardonable sin … they have slandered the Holy Spirit, by saying that those who prophecy or do other miracles such as casting out of demons or healing through the laying on of hands in Jesus name are doing so by the power of the evil one. It is true that there have been many false prophets and teachers throughout history and one false prophet in particular who will come in the last days during the reign of the Anti-Christ and perform all manner of false signs and wonders to deceive even the elect if possible, but this does not mean that all prophets and workers of miracles are false ones. Only those who do not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh (let the reader understand) are servants of the devil. You shall know them by their fruits. Are they vain and self-seeking or are they humbly doing their good works in accordance to His will and purpose and for His glory alone? Do they display the fruits of the Spirit in their lives? A bad branch cannot bear good fruit! Think about this before you make any rash judgements that could put your eternal life in the balance. Better still, DO NOT JUDGE … for by the measure you use, by that you too will be judged. Only those who have been perfected in love can give righteous judgement. Since only the Holy Spirit is perfect and is at work in every true believer to conform our spirits into His likeness, this perfection will only be fully realized when we are changed at His coming forever putting off the flesh which is at constant war with our spirits. May you be true to your calling until that day. Amen. Note: Jesus did not come to judge and condemn the world but to offer salvation to the lost … are we not called to do the same thing and follow in His footsteps?
But even though we are not called to condemn or judge anyone, we are told to test the spirits to see if they are from God or not. (1 John 4:1) Can light fellowship with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14) No … we can pray for the lost and show them the love of God, but we are told not to fellowship with those who hold to a form of godliness but deny its power. (2 Timothy 3:5) Remember, not everyone who cries out “Lord, Lord” will be saved, but only those who do the will of the Father (Matthew 7:21). And so to those of you who are seeking out the truth take heed … stay away from those who teach that the miraculous spiritual gifts of tongues, prophecy, casting out of demons, and healing are no longer in operation and claim that those that practice these are not doing so by the power of God, but by the power of the devil. These false teachers have committed the unpardonable sin of blaspheming the Holy Spirit (see Matthew 12:22-37). This being the case, I am not even sure they can ever be forgiven, but regardless would still pray that God rescue those He has called and chosen from the clutches of this destructive and divisive false doctrine of man that has been inspired by Satan himself, as are all false doctrines. I pray you find the Truth while it may be found.
Now let us look at the passages found in the New Testament used by this false teacher to support his argument that the gift of prophecy has ceased. If you read these in the light of Truth, there is no way they support his false claims.
Colossians 2:8-10 simply says that we are to guard against those who would try and dissuade us from following the Truth through deceitful philosophy and vain traditions of man. For just as the fullness of God dwells in the Son, so too does the fullness of God dwell in those who have been spiritually reborn. We are made complete in Christ, for if you are one with Christ you are also one with the Father and the Holy Spirit as well.
2 Timothy 3:16, 17 simply says that every scripture in the Torah (Old Testament) is God inspired and can be used in confidence to teach others the way God wants us to live our lives. Following the inspired teachings found in the Torah (Old Testament) make it possible to live a life pleasing to God and therefore in our best interests.
2 Peter 1:1-4 simply says that those who have been given faith in Christ now have a deeper knowledge of God and made it possible for them to be partakers of His righteousness.
John 20:30, 31 simply says that the apostle John did not record all the miracles Jesus did and words Jesus spoke during His earthly ministry, but enough so that faith in Christ would be instilled in our hearts.
1 Corinthians 13:8-10 does not “tell us that God did miracles in the age when His written word was not complete” … to fully understand what this passage is talking about we need to look at the entire 13th chapter. 1 Corinthians 13:1-13 has love as its main theme, NOT the gifts of the spirit. It is simply saying that love is more important than the spiritual gifts of knowledge, tongues and prophecy. It is even more important than Hope or Faith. For even if you know the Holy Bible inside and out, and even believe in Jesus, and have hope your faith will save you, if you do not have love it is meaningless, for God is love. If you do not love those you can see, how can you love a God you cannot see? Now concerning 1 Corinthians 13:8-12, it is saying that when we see God face to face, then there will be no need for prophecy, or tongues or knowledge, for everything will be made clear at that time. Let the reader understand, Paul is inferring Christ’s return when the dead in Christ will rise and those faithful believers who are still alive at His coming will be changed and meet the Lord in the air as He is descending with His army of angels and so we will forever be with the Lord. Now we see Him dimly through the veil of our flesh and our knowledge is incomplete, but when we meet Him face to face when He returns everything will be made known to us so there will be no need for the gifts of knowledge, prophecy or tongues, just as the prophet Zechariah prophesied (Zechariah 13:1-3). This false teacher is basically saying that he has reached perfection already … that the Holy Spirit that indwells the believer has already made you perfect in knowledge, that he is all knowing like God, and that he is without sin for Jesus blood has washed him clean. But this is not what scripture says. Anyone who says they are without sin does not have the Truth in them. They are deceiving themselves if they think that they will ever reach perfection while they are in their mortal bodies, for our flesh is cursed with the inherent sin of the first Adam. It is only our spirit that has been revivified (reborn) and is in constant battle with our flesh, which we must crucify on a daily basis. But if we walk in the light of His truth and continue in fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Christ, the blood of Jesus will purify us from all sin. We must continually be washed by His word so must study the scriptures and pray without ceasing, for our adversary is like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. So we must remain vigilant and work out our salvation with fear and trembling with the hope of our reward at our journeys end.
Mark 16:20 – Before His ascension, Jesus sent forth his disciples to preach the good news and went with them in the spirit showing forth miraculous signs as proof their words were the Truth.
Acts 14:3 – Here Paul and Barnabas shared the good news at the Jewish synagogue in Iconium (modern Konya in Turkey) and many believed because God enabled them to perform many miraculous signs.
Heb. 2:3, 4 – simply says to avoid the wrath to come we should not neglect the way of salvation first shown to us by the Lord and confirmed by His disciples through many signs and wonders that God enabled them to perform.
James 1:25 – simply says that those who not only study God’s Word (Old Testament or Torah) but put into practice the teachings found therein will be blessed. Here the false teacher used this portion of the letter by James to support his claim that “Since the written word (that which is perfect) has come, God no longer gives men the power of prophecy.” But in reality, James is referring to the Old Testament which was the only thing referred to as “The Scriptures” or “The Word of God” at that time for the New Testament had not been compiled and canonized until much later (4th Century). In reality, the Word of God and The Holy Scriptures which are spoken of in both the Old and New Testaments refers to the writings of Moses and the prophets in the Torah or Old Testament. The New Testament is all the canonized books that were adopted by the Christian church and can be referred to collectively as the Gospel (good news) of Christ, though the book of Revelation seems to be in a class of its own. The books of the Apocrypha are not included in many bibles as they are not considered by many Christians to be inspired. I have read them and have to agree that they have no life in them at all and have ideas in them that detract from the Truth. It is a wonder why the Catholic Church backtracked and later included them in their Canon. What is Satan up to?