Maybe you've heard this same kind of thing on the radio. I heard
it again tonight. Come to our special miracle service! Miracles are gonna happen! These kinds of things always disturb me.
It's like we're putting God under our command and we've arranged for miracles to happen so they obviously will.
hearing the evangelist described. The commercial said that he had a gift in the powers of the Holy Spirit. I don't know about
you but that terminology bothers me. When I think of "powers" my mind goes to Clark Kent on Smallville and his enemies or
creatures in a video game or things of that sort.
Follow this when I get home that I turn on the radio and hear talk
about Kenneth Copeland. Copeland believes faith is a power that is tapped and used to create a reality. In fact, this was
the same power that God used when he created the world. He confessed it and by the power of the words it came to be. God did
speak and it did come to be but it wasn't because of "positive confession." It's because God is omnipotent.
raced through my gaming. I remembered when I used to play Magic:The Gathering a lot. That's the kind of terminology we used
and it's common in fantasy literature. Tapping. You perform what needs to be done and it comes. Of course for us, it was all
fantasy but there are some people that really seem to believe this.
It's common in many other religions. In Shintoism,
the worshipper approaches the shintai where a god called a kami dwells. The Shinto claps twice to summon the kami and then
goes into her prayers.
I recall also a favorite fantasy trilogy of mine was the Dragonlance: War of the Twins series.
In it, a character called the Kingpriest of a prosperous nation who is revered as a holy man goes to make his demands before
the gods. AND HE DEMANDS! He demands that they respond now and that they get rid of evil now.
The gods have a different
response altogether. Their reply is to look at his city and send down a huge fiery mountain that destroys it along with him.
Even before my in-depth study I could see him and remember myself thinking, "That's just stupid. You don't demand of someone
more powerful than you are."
Could that be what's really happened? We've lost track a lot of the power of God? There
is a difference between making requests and making demands. God is not a genie where we do the action and God responds in
such a way. Many times, he has promised he will respond such as when we confess our sins he will forgive them and purify us
from all unrighteousness.
But nowhere has God promised healing for all who ask for it. Paul's thorn in the flesh should
show that. I sometimes get leary of even using the term Revival. It looks like we are putting God on our timetable instead
of the other way around.
Friends. I am concerned we have forgotten what a powerful and holy God we serve. While miracles
are great, they are not on demand. In fact, when miracles have been the greatest in the Bible, genuine faith has been lowest.
You never read about a group grumbling more than the Israelites. No group saw more miracles than they did. Even the miracles
of Christ weren't enough to keep the crowd from crucifying him.
Our God is holy and the master of his own will. He
is not a puppet we demand of. The Jews had the problem of thinking if they did the sacrifices God should respond. No way.
Their hearts weren't towards him. When I meet people who are of the mindset of many "miracle crusades" I find they don't have
a clue about essential Christian doctrine and are willing to say it doesn't matter when the teacher makes them "feel good."
we make requests of God? Yes! Can we argue a cause befor e him? Yes! But we must all remember, we bow to him and not him to
us. We turn to him and say "Thy will be done." He doesn't turn to us and say "Thy will be done."
Are we demanding of