Faithlife Sermons

PS-A 01 Miracles and Supernatural Gifts from God


Introduction to Miracles

There are a great many differing opinions when it comes to how Christians ought to view miracles. From the two extremes of the spectrum, many miracles to none. Some believe we should see miracles everyday, everywhere, and supernatural power is at our fingertips with just enough faith. On the other side of the spectrum, you have people who deny supernatural power altogether, and believe the miracles in the Bible are allegories or stories to help us see a point.
Perhaps, the truth lies somewhere in the middle.
What does the Bible say?

Defining Terms

Principle: When using Bible language, regarding Bible themes or ideas, we should define and use them as the Bible does.

dunamis (δύναμις-G1411) refers to “power”; the context often suggests whether this is supernatural or otherwise (this is where we get our word “dynamic”)
Spiritual Gifts
A combination of two terms:
pneumatikos (πνευματικός-G4152) means “spiritual”; something that is other worldly and not of the physical things we experience
Paul uses this term almost exclusively ~24 times in the New Testament, while Peter uses it only twice to describe our being a spiritual house and those who offer spiritual sacrifices, as opposed to the literal and physical sacrifices (1 Peter 2:5)
charisma (χάρισμα-G5486) means “gift”; sometimes a supernatural gift from God; sometimes a natural gift from God; sometimes a gift in general (this is where we get the term “charismatic” to describe people who try to speak in tongues and perform modern day miracles)

Purpose of Power

Do miracles have a purpose? (Hebrews 2:1-4)

Hebrews 2:1–4 NASB95
For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, so that we do not drift away from it. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.

Miracles are God’s way of testifying with those bringing a new message. (Hebrews 2:4)

This is God’s way of “proving” the validity of a message.
He did this with

There are various types or forms of miracles, and included in this would be the gifts of the Holy Spirit. (Hebrews 2:4)

Why would this be necessary? (Acts 1:4-8)

Acts 1:4–8 NASB95
Gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, “Which,” He said, “you heard of from Me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” So when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.”

Jesus promised something to these apostles shortly after He left: the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4)

What was the purpose of this Holy Spirit?

Jesus had given the apostles a mission: to be Jesus’ witnesses, starting locally and expanding to the remotest part of the earth... (Acts 1:8)

How would they do this? Jesus equipped them with special power from the Holy Spirit. (Acts 1:8)

Task of an Apostle (Acts 14:19-24)

Acts 14:19–24 NASB95
But Jews came from Antioch and Iconium, and having won over the crowds, they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing him to be dead. But while the disciples stood around him, he got up and entered the city. The next day he went away with Barnabas to Derbe. After they had preached the gospel to that city and had made many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch, strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying, “Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.” When they had appointed elders for them in every church, having prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed. They passed through Pisidia and came into Pamphylia.

Apostles’ Tasks

Preach the gospel (Acts 14:21)

Make disciples (Acts 14:21)

Continue in the faith (Acts 14:22)

Face tribulation (Acts 14:22)

Appoint elders (Acts 14:23)

Head to the next town (rinse and repeat) (Acts 14:24)

Problems They Might Have

What to teach?

How will they remember what Jesus taught them?
What if Jesus didn’t teach on a particular subject?

Transmission of Power

Types of Power

Timeline for Power

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