God's Purpose for Miracles (Acts 3:1-11)
God’s Strategic Purpose for Miracles in the Early Church (Acts 3:1-11) God worked amazing miracles – sometimes. Why? WHAT GOD DID NOT USE MIRACLES TO DO: 1. Miracles did not display ________________________ power or spirituality. Acts 3:12 So when Peter saw it, he responded to the people: "Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? 1 Cor 12:28 And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings … (cf. 12:7-30) 2. God did not use miracles to remove _______________________ sickness. a. God will accomplish this, but much later Rev 21:1-4 4 "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." b. The church did not seek or expect miraculous healing for everyone 2 Cor 12:10 Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong. Phil 2:25-27 Yet I considered it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker, and fellow soldier, but your messenger and the one who ministered to my need; 26 since he was longing for you all, and was distressed because you had heard that he was sick. 27 For indeed he was sick almost unto death; but God had mercy on him, and not only on him but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow. 1 Tim 5:9-10 Do not let a widow under sixty years old be taken into the number, and not unless she has been the wife of one man, … 10 well reported for good works: if she has brought up children, … if she has relieved the afflicted… 1 Tim 5:23 No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for your stomach's sake and your frequent infirmities. 2 Tim 4:20 Erastus stayed in Corinth, but Trophimus I have left in Miletus sick. James 5:14-16 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. HOW GOD USED MIRACLES IN THE EARLY CHURCH: 1. Miracles were used to __________________ God’s messenger & message. Acts 2:22 "Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know 2 Cor 12:12 Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds. Northridge Baptist Church – Pastor Kevin Subra – September 20, 2020 2. 3. 4. 5. Acts 4:13-14 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus. 14 And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it. Acts 10:38 "how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. (cf. Acts 5:14-16; 8:5-8; 14:8-19; 19:11-12; 28:7-10; Heb 2:1-4) Miracles were used to encourage ________________________. Acts 4:7 And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, "By what power or by what name have you done this?" Miracles were used to attract ____________________ to God & His power. Acts 3:16 "And His name, through faith in His name, has made this man strong, whom you see and know. Yes, the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all. Acts 4:10 "let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. Acts 4:30 "by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus." Acts 9:34 And Peter said to him, "Aeneas, Jesus the Christ heals you. Arise and make your bed." Then he arose immediately. Miracles were used to meet special ________________________. Acts 9:36-42 At Joppa there was a certain disciple named Tabitha, which is translated Dorcas. This woman was full of good works and charitable deeds which she did. 37 But it happened in those days that she became sick and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in an upper room. 38 And since Lydda was near Joppa, and the disciples had heard that Peter was there, they sent two men to him, imploring him not to delay in coming to them. 39 Then Peter arose and went with them. When he had come, they brought him to the upper room. And all the widows stood by him weeping, showing the tunics and garments which Dorcas had made while she was with them. 40 But Peter put them all out, and knelt down and prayed. And turning to the body he said, "Tabitha, arise." And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up. 41 Then he gave her his hand and lifted her up; and when he had called the saints and widows, he presented her alive. 42 And it became known throughout all Joppa, and many believed on the Lord. (cp. 1 Cor 12:7-30) Miracles were used to assist the ________________________. a. To remove hindrances to the Gospel Acts 16:17-18 18 And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, "I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her." And he came out that very hour. b. To convert Saul (Paul) Acts 22:6-8 8 So I answered, `Who are You, Lord? And He said to me, `I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.