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“Miracles, Signs and Wonders”

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A Circus Or A Place Of Worship

What is the purpose of miracles, signs and wonders in the bible? Were there false signs and wonders in the bible? How do you tell the difference between a real sign and wonder and a lying sign and wonder?

Miracles, signs and wonders were evident in the old testament as well as the new testament. There were the miracles that were done through Christ, by and through God's servants as well as miracles done through evil agents. There will always be a counterfeit for every real sign and wonder. Satan hates competition, but he can only use sleight of hand or deceptive practices to lead God's people astray.How many times have you looked at a sign and a wonder and questioned it and said "Hmmm, I wonder if that's God"? The bible tells us not to judge people, but it tells us to test EVERY spirit and see if it's of God. When we learn to test the spirit we will be able to line it up with God's word and know the difference between the real and the counterfeit.

It has greatly grieved me to see what the enemy is calling signs and wonders these days. He has lead many people astray in the Body of Christ chasing after signs and a wonders. Let's look at a similar story in the bible called "Aaron's Miraculous Rod" and see how the enemy can use his evil agents to perform a sign and a wonder.

"Aaron's Miraculous Rod" (Exodus 7:8-13)

8 Then the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, 9"When Pharaoh speaks to you, saying, "Show a miracle for yourselves,' then you shall say to Aaron, "Take your rod and cast it before Pharaoh, and let it become a serpent."' 10So Moses and Aaron went in to Pharaoh and they did so, just as the LORD commanded. And Aaron cast down his rod before Pharaoh and before his servants, and it became a serpent. 11But Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerer's; so the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments. 12For every man threw down his rod and they became serpents. But Aaron's rod swallowed up their rods. 13And Pharaoh's heart grew hard, and he did not heed them, as the LORD had said.

As we read this story we realize that there was a competition going on. God gave Moses and Aaron a command. He told them to go to Pharaoh and this is what he will say to you "show a miracle for yourselves". He then gave Aaron an instruction: "Take your rod and cast it before Pharaoh, and let it become a serpent." However, God did not tell them how Pharaoh would respond. Can you imagine what Aaron and Moses thought when they saw Pharaoh's wise men and sorcerers do the same thing? I bet they were scratching their heads thinking "OK God, now what"? However, we soon see that Aaron's rod swallowed up their rods. It was then that Pharaoh's heart grew hard, and he did not heed them, as the Lord had said.

What happened when the counterfeit showed up? The real exposed and triumph over the counterfeit. What happen to Pharaoh's magicians and their so called miracles, they were consumed by Aaron's rod. Aaron's rod then became a serpent and ate the other rods. One snake looks at the other and said…DINNER! The real will always expose the deceptive practices of the devil.

If you know the story you know that many trips were made to Pharaoh to free the Israelites. However, each time, Pharaoh promised to let the people go, he changed his mind. It took many plagues and curses before Pharaoh would let the Israelites go, and even then he changed his mind and chased after them.

How do we tell the difference between the real and the counterfeit? When you study the truth (the word of God) you will recognize when the counterfeit is present. Miracles, signs and wonders were designed to reveal God's character and purposes. If we can understand God's character and purposes we will understand the purpose for miracles, signs and wonders that occurred.

I find it interesting that people that identify counterfeit money study the real money more than they do the counterfeit. So what can we learn about the miracles that were done in the bible? Is the miracle, sign or wonder drawing others into a closer relationship with Jesus? Jesus does creative miracles. If there is no eye in the socket, then a creative miracle would create a new eye. If you had cancer, you would totally be healed of cancer. If you are oppressed of the devil than you would be set free. Ask yourself as you look at the sign and wonder that is being presented to you, for what purpose is this? Is it drawing people to repentance and salvation or is it just wowing them with a slight of hand or spectacular event taking place. Was anyone saved, anyone healed, anyone delivered or set free? The presence of God is manifested so that people can receive salvation, healing, and deliverance. When you look at money, there are certain marks on money that prove that it is real. Just as there are certain marks on real money to say it's the real thing there are certain marks of a true miracle, sign or wonder.

Does it reveal God's character? What purpose does it have? We must use the word of God as our measuring stick. The bible says that when we lift up the name of Jesus all men will be drawn to him. Whose name is being lifted up? Are people being drawn to Jesus or are they more in awe of the gift in operation? Who is getting the glory? Is one thing being spoken and yet another thing seen? If the so called miracle, sign or wonder is nothing more than entertainment, hype or sensationalism then it brings no glory to God. Is it drawing other people into a closer relationship with Jesus? When God's presence is ushered in it is to save, deliver and set free. If no word of God has been spoken, then what does God have to work with? He promises that his word will not return to him void. If the miracle, sign or wonder performed doesn't bring people to repentance and a closer relationship to Jesus, then what was its purpose? Was it to entertain and make us comfortable in our sin, instead of having freedom from that sin? The enemy does not want you to be free of sin. Therefore he must create a diversion, something that will keep you entertained so that you will forget about your sin.

What does a magician do when he wants to wow his audience? He performs a trick, a slight of hand. He gets you to focus on something so that you pay no attention to the man behind the curtain controlling the entire light show. Magicians in the bible were no different, they were to deceive and lead God's people astray to follow after other gods. Counterfeit signs and wonders were to support false religions, false Christ's and false prophets. In the last days there will be a mark of Apostasy. Apostasy (is the act of rebelling against, forsaking, abandoning, or falling away from what one has believed). The New Testament the English word "apostasy" is derived from a Greek word (apostasia) that means, "To stand away from." The Greek noun occurs twice in the New Testament. When we try to perform miracles and signs and wonders without the word of God, we will produce nothing more than hype, sensationalism and entertainment.

The disciples went around doing miracles to show the goodness of God. It was so that people could be healed, saved, delivered and set free. Isa 61: 1-2 THE SPIRIT of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed and qualified me to preach the Gospel of good tidings to the meek, the poor, and afflicted; He has sent me to bind up and heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the [physical and spiritual] captives and the opening of the prison and of the eyes to those who are bound, To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord [the year of His favor] ‡1 and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, †2 3To grant [consolation and joy] to those who mourn in Zion–to give them an ornament (a garland or diadem) of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, the garment [expressive] of praise instead of a heavy, burdened, and failing spirit–that they may be called oaks of righteousness [lofty, strong, and magnificent, distinguished for uprightness, justice, and right standing with God], the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.

The spirit of the Lord came upon you when you accepted him as your Lord and savior. Then at that point you became anointed and qualified to do everything it says in Isaiah 61. However, you have a choice to step out in obedience or to shrink back in fear.

Here is a short story that describes a day at the circus.

"A day at the Circus"

By M. Cadwell

It was a warm summer's day as she reached the top of hill. She could hear the music playing, people laughing and her legs wouldn't carry her fast enough to get there. She could smell the funnel cakes as they saturated the air. Her stomach growled as her nostrils started twitching from the smell of hotdogs as they were roasting. Her eyes watered as she drew closer to the Smokey bbq pits as they were emitting the sweet smell of pork roasting on an open pit. She had her little change purse tucked in her pocket and she had saved all her chore money to buy herself a ticket. She was going to see the magic show.

She was now standing at the ticket booth and she reached in her pocket for her change purse to purchase her ticket. "One, she exclaimed" hardly able to contain herself. She slipped past the ticket booth and met a man at the tent entrance. He took the ticket from her and tore it in half and handed her the other half. She quickly took the half of ticket and tucked it in her pocket. As she walked away she heard the man say "enjoy the show".

She found herself a seat and waited for the show to begin. Soon a man appeared dressed in a black cape. He introduced himself as she kept her eyes glued on him as he spoke. He called out his assistant and she came out with a pink feather scarf and a sparkling gown. She lay on the table as he commanded her and her body to rise off the table and float in the air. The audience gasped as they watched her body float up and up, then he took a plastic circular hoop and let her body go through the hoop. The audience clapped again, and then he commanded her body to come down slowly. The show ended shortly after that and the little girl walked out of the tent and continued to look at everything else that the circus had to offer her. She kept wondering to herself, how did that woman rise up like that? Oh, that's right, it's magic!

Do you recognize that the devil works with magic? His magic is to lead you astray to follow after lying signs and wonders and deceiving and lying spirits. Are you at a circus or are you at a place of worship? Circus's will always be there to take your money and wow you with magic tricks, it serves you food that taste good but is not good for you. The circus will leave you in awe and you will seek to go to the circus often to get your fix of bad food & magic potions. The snake oil salesman will sell you a fix-all elixir that will only cover up the symptoms. However, when you leave the circus, you are filled up with junk food and you have very little energy and you just want to go home and go to sleep.

It's time for God's people to stand up and say "I'm not interested in going to a circus anymore". If I'm going to a place of worship God will be given honor in worship and his word. The bible says that his true worshippers will worship him in spirit and in truth. I am going to a place where I will hear the word, receive the word and then able to walk out the word. I want to hear examples read from the bible not man's great theology or an excerpt from the next New York Times best sellers list.

A place with God's presence will honor God and his word. A place of God's presence is more interested in your eternal destiny then your trip to the amusement park. A place of God's presence will bring the word for the purpose of exhorting, rebuking and correcting. A place of God's presence has a shepherd with a shepherd's heart. One who spots the wolves and chases them off so they don't destroy the sheep fold. A place of God's presence will not only disciple but makes disciples. A place of God's presence lifts up the name of Jesus so that all can be drawn to salvation. A Place where God's presence resides is one that will honor Him, glorify Him, and prepare the Body of Christ for his return. It's called the Great commission and if the Body of Christ doesn't wake up and realize that Jesus appearing will be very soon, there are many who will be left behind.

Body of Christ, it is up to us, to make a decision, to lay down our will, for the will of the Father's in this hour. Let's stop going to the circus and start kicking the devil out of our places of worship. Let's start praying using the sword of the spirit instead of breath prayers, soaking prayers or any contemplative nonsense. Let's not tolerate the things that God hates and start pressing into the things that will grow our character and produce integrity in our lives. Let's start looking at what kinds of programs, books and teaching are being taught in our churches. Let's start asking questions and testing the spirits that are operating to see if they are of God.

Let's start getting a back bone and standing up to the enemy and saying "You've invaded God's places of worship long enough; we are kicking you out once and for all. We will not tolerate or allow teachings or programs that will lead God's people astray. We know and recognize the difference between something that is spiritual and the word of God. We will no longer eat from the defiled table of Jezebel. We will not sit by and be circumcised and become spiritual eunuchs. We will not allow ourselves to become spiritually brain washed and set up for the rule of the anti-christ.

God will honor those that obey his word and separate themselves and no longer want to sit among the ungodly. It's your choice will you settle for a day at the circus, or will you put your foot on the devil's neck and say "You've been exposed and now you must leave devil, I will not tolerate you or your teachings in the house of God. You will no longer seduce and lead God's people astray with your counterfeit signs and wonders . As of this day God's house will be a place of Prayer, Praise and Worship, restored to God's people so that many will receive salvation, healing and deliverance".!

Psalm 1

The Way of the Righteous and the End of the Ungodly
1 Blessed is the man
Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly,
Nor stands in the path of sinners,
Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
2But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
And in His law he meditates day and night.
3He shall be like a tree
Planted by the rivers of water,
That brings forth its fruit in its season,
Whose leaf also shall not wither;
And whatever he does shall prosper.

4The ungodly are not so,
But are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
5Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment,
Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.

6For the LORD knows the way of the righteous,
But the way of the ungodly shall perish.