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The Persecuted Church




Why can’t all believers do signs and wonders today just like the apostles did in the early church?


 We are NOT to listen to those who promote their opinion that we can do anything the apostles or Jesus did. And neither should we listen to those who claim that miracles no longer take place. What we need to hear is the word of God, the apostles teaching on this and what took place in the early church history and subsequently after.


Any Scripture we may find has to agree with the actual events otherwise it must mean something other than what you may think it means. We are to believe it as it is written to be in the truth.  What the apostles did is seen in the book of Acts as recorded history and doctrine. What the apostles taught the church is in the epistles. Believers are not given the supernatural ability cart blanche to do miracles at the drop of hat. Otherwise they would not have had to call Peter to raise Tabitha - they would have done it themselves.


Acts 9:36-10:1: “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.   But it happened in those days that she became sick and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in an upper room.  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.   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. 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.  Then he gave her his hand and lifted her up; and when he had called the saints and widows, he presented her alive.   And it became known throughout all Joppa, and many believed on the Lord.”  


Acts 6:5-8: “And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas, a proselyte from Antioch, whom they set before the apostles; and when they had prayed, they laid hands on them. Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith 

We also see Acts 6:8-9 “And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people.”  


Stephen was specifically chosen by the apostles, again this proves the point of what is seen as an apostolic legate, a chosen representative of the apostles under their leadership.  If we go back a few verses we can understand what took place and see that Stephen and Philip also did a miracle are a specific group chosen out of the church to be evangelists especially to the Jews.


Acts 8:5-7: “Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them. And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed.”

He was able to deliver people from demons and heal the sick. What we notice is that there were just a few not the many, not the majority of believers.


Acts 2:43 “…and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles”


Acts 5:12: “And through the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people. And they were all with one accord in Solomon's Porch."


 Acts 14:3: “therefore they stayed there a long time, speaking boldly in the Lord, who was bearing witness to the word of His grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands


 If all the church could do it miracles like the apostles and this was normal, then this would be meaningless for Paul say in 2 Corinthians 12:13 “Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds


Throughout the book of Acts (actually called the Acts of the Apostles) we see the apostles doing the signs and wonders. There are only two specifically mentioned that did these miracles and they were appointed by the apostles.


The writer of Hebrews 2:3-4: “how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him, God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders , with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?”


I believe in God’s power and we can pray and He can still do mighty things; heal and do miracles. He can do beyond all that we ask (Eph.3:20) but to promise an absolute recovery by supernatural healing, or resurrection of dead people is not faith but presumption, God does not have to obey what you ask or command, instead we are to obey him.  


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