Q Zone: Why Not More?

After two weeks of large group teaching and further small group discussion on the healing in Acts 3, one question that keeps surfacing repeatedly goes something like this:  It seems that these kinds of miraculous things happen in other countries more than here in the US. What’s more, it seems that certain denominations see more of them than others? Is this an indictment on our country or specifically, our denomination? 

Well, let’s be honest and first of all admit that the question is rooted in one person’s perception. Furthermore, no where in Scripture have we been left a healing quota that we need to fulfill. To be fair, though, I think the typical Christian would probably agree, to an extent, with the gist and heart of the question — is something wrong when we don’t see the supernatural much, or at all?

Like it or not, there is no definitive answer to this question. True to the political season we’re in, the best answer may be both “Yes, it could be” and “No, it may not be.”

One on hand, we know that at one point in Jesus’ ministry, he left a town and “did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief” (Matthew 13:58). So does faith — or a lack of it — play a role in God’s supernatural activity? Sure! Even James commands us to pray in faith for the sick person so that they are healed (James 5:15).

Yet, God sovereignly acts and moves — and may not act and move — in supernatural ways; we dare not think we can use faith to leverage him. Sometimes, even in the middle of intense wickedness and without regard to specific, exhibited faith, God works supernaturally for the very purpose of drawing men and women to himself (Acts 9). At other times, in the face of great faith, God doesn’t move supernaturally to heal (2 Cor. 12:8-10). So while faith is one component, it isn’t the only factor in regards to healing and miracles. There could be other reasons God does — or doesn’t — manifest his power visibly.

So to be personally transparent, I don’t know. Could a lack of genuine, supernatural acts of God be an indication that the lamp stand has been removed? Possibly (Rev 2-3). Could less and less validating signs simply mean we’re not in need of them as much, thus their absence doesn’t indicate disapproval, merely disappearance? Maybe. (1 Cor 13). Could both be possibilites at different times or in different places?  Probably.

However, let me leave you with two admonitions in the middle of my “I don’t know:”

1. Keep taking steps of faith. Even though we may not fully understand the how or the why, we can still obey the what. So when God leads you to pray for someone’s healing, speak a word of prophecy (always tested still), give even when you’re already broke, or step out in trust into the unknown, do it! I’d rather use the faith God gives in a “trial and error” sort of way than be forever afraid to attempt anything for God until “success” was guaranteed. (For those who have a problem with that line of thinking, check out Acts 16:6-10.)

2. Refuse to compare. Whether its countries or denominations, let’s move away from lining them up based on their “power” rankings and instead simply thank God for the unique way he is using them, assuming he is. Notice I said “assuming.” This means that refusing to compare doesn’t mean you’re not willing to discern. Such evaluating is necessary. But when done, let’s not take sides among the faithful “power” hitters. This is exactly what Paul warned against 2000 years ago in 1 Cor 3, and we should take notice now as well. Remember — some plant, others water; it is God who gives the increase. Let us rejoice together in him and because of him! (John 4:36-38).

NOTE: I highly recommend 4 books that deal with this very issue: Straight Talk on Spiritual Power (Bill Hull), Are Miraculous Gifts for Today? (A Four View Book edited by Wayne Grudem/Stanley Gundry), The Beginner’s Guide to Spiritual Gifts and Convergence (both by Sam Storms).

0 Comments on “Q Zone: Why Not More?”

  1. In response, I have seen the Lord heal many people of many things. This includes myself, my mother, other family members, and fellow believers. Just some of these include HIV, heart disease, a birth defect, knees, spines, legs, sinuses, allergies, diabetes, a stroke, seizures, and a severe case of athlete’s feet. I think part of the answer is, as you pointed out, that Jesus could not do many mighty works because of their unbelief. They fell into the sin of familiarity saying don’t we know his brothers and mother, and isn’t this the son of a carpenter. Since they could not see Jesus as one sent from God, they had no confidence in Him. A friend of mine once said, “that everyone really believes in healing, because if they get a cut they expect it to heal.” God has put healing in our bodies, but there is also supernatural healing available. The Bible is also clear that we have not because we ask not. For some people, asking the Lord for healing is the last thing they do after putting up with the sickness, and then maybe trying medical treatment first. Not everyone who prays or gets prayed for gets healed, but more get healed who ask than those that don’t. Many denominations don’t encourage people to ask. Another key is giving God the glory! The Lord is the healer! The last thing that some people do is they separate in their mind that salvation is only about going to heaven and your sins being forgiven. Jesus himself said in Mark chapter two to the paralytic your sins be forgiven. When they questioned him about the statement he say which is easier to say, “your sins be forgiven you, or to say take up your bed and walk?” The definition of salvation in both the Greek and the Hebrew (sozo, soteria, yeshuwah) is deliver, health, victory, prosperity, welfare, and saving. God is our deliverer, he is our healer, he is our provider, he is our savior!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *