devotional

15JUL
2012

The ministry of Jesus

 

     The profundity and far reaching implications of the words and miracles of Jesus are completely mind boggling. No one that God has given the Scriptures to will ever stop marveling at their perfection and symmetry. Through the study of Scripture, I’ve recently realized my own complete underestimation of the power of Jesus’ public ministry. No one ever did the kinds of things He did! No one ever spoke as He did! Some of the prophets of old were used to show God’s wrath against every false god of Egypt (as with Moses in the Exodus). They called fire from heaven to show the futility of worshipping other false gods, 1 Kings 18:20-39. They were used to raise the dead, 2 Kings 4:32-35. All of these works were worked by God through them; with Jesus, it was God working His own works. He worked more miracles in His three short years of public ministry than all of them put together even considering just what we read in holy writ, cf. John 21:25. Jesus’ ministry power had no equal!

     Throughout history, there have been four main times in Scripture that God demonstrated supernatural miracle power. In order they were: 1) at creation, 2) with Moses and Joshua, 3) with Elijah and Elisha, and 4) in the initiation of the New Testament with Jesus and His chosen apostolic messengers. These were extraordinary outpourings of power. Each epoch of time’s miraculous signs served to authenticate that section of God’s teachers in redemptive history. God verified the law, the prophets and the New Testament's commencement with such miracle power. With some exceptions, the rest of the time saw comparably very little miracle power with many of God’s prophets receiving only one revelation or word from heaven in their lifetime.

     The people marveled at Jesus’ speech: “They were astonished at His teaching, for He taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes,” Mark 1:22. When any Christian today speaks they speak by the authority of Jesus, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, James, the writer of Hebrews, Jude, Peter, Isaiah, Moses, etc. All of these, except for Jesus, spoke on a vested authority of their own as well. Men today have no authority to speak of from themselves. Jesus, however, could speak on His own authority. Just imagine any of these people listed saying something like, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live,” John 11:25. The people of Jesus’ day remarked at the fact that no one had ever done works equal to His in history, John 9:32. Jesus was attested to among the people by His mighty works, Acts 2:22. Jesus healed every single person that came to Him. He cast out demons, walked on water, brought gold from the sea in the mouth of a fish, fed perhaps over 20,000 people with a few fish and a few loaves of bread, spoke and healed people in other places, calmed the sea, raised the dead and taught things that made the hearts of people burn. Wow! How dare the world ever doubt what He said! How insane is anyone that does not fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God! Surely, anyone who does so will be worthy of hell.

     Go and read of His miracles, Christian. Go back in time and watch them and marvel in Scripture. Then remember that they never converted anyone. Scores passed through the Red Sea on dry land and then built a false god to thank for it!? Whole cities saw His works and heard His teaching before crucifying Him. Conviction of sin and the gift of regeneration wrought in the hearts of the elect is a miracle work on par with any other. The miracle worker is still at work among us today, and the people still marvel.

 

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