Saturday, August 12, 2017

Signs and Wonders

It's a strange world when the pagans believe in signs and wonders but the Christians are not "allowed" to by their religious leaders. I can even show you in the Bible where pagans had this bent, and for a good reason: they had actually seen them. And they weren't "demonic" signs and wonders. They came from the God of Heaven!
Check it out. These guys are both in the book of Daniel.
Nebuchadnezzar is in Daniel's chapter 4, among other places. He's the king of the mighty Babylonian Empire. Babylon was surely full of miraculous things. Man-made stuff. A whole litany of false gods no doubt showed themselves from time to time. This Emperor understood the unusual. One night he had a frightening dream. The interpretation given by resident prophet Daniel was that he, the Emperor, was to lose everything for awhile, including his sanity. He'd grow claws, be sent outside to the fields, eat grass. Be humbled.
It all happened, and when it was finished, the now-wise man sent a letter to the world. You can do that when you're emperor. In it he bragged about the signs and wonders that God worked in him. "How great are His signs, and how mighty His wonders!"
Fortunately, Nebuchadnezzar's theology did not allow for the cessation of the miraculous.
Then there was Darius. Poor guy. He liked his faithful servant Daniel, who had managed to survive the Babylonian demise and was now one of the Persian chiefs! But Daniel's religion almost got in the way of his continued favor, and some of his peers got him in trouble with the new King. Darius stayed up all night worrying about the man that he had had to sentence to death by devouring. Lion-style. You know the story. He couldn't sleep. Daniel did. He spent the night fasting. By God's grace, so did the lions. In the morning, Darius too wrote a letter to the world. (It's a king thing.) He talks about a living God who delivers and rescues, and works signs and wonders!
Two pagans, two letters to the world. The fact is established. God is a God of signs and wonders.
In another letter written to the world, we call it the book of Acts, the same phrase is used quite a few times. Author Luke must agree with Nebucadnezzar and Darius that our God has not changed. Randomly I pick Acts 14:3, where God is "bearing witness to the word of His grace, granting signs and wonders to be done" at the hands of the apostles.
700 years of this. From Babylon to Persia to the Roman days. I heard it's happening today too. Unless your group doesn't think so. Then it's not happening in your church, probably. But where people believe in this living God, signs and wonders still live. And why not? Jesus said, Nothing shall be impossible to you, right?

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