by Neil Anderson
By this all men will know that you are My disciples if you have love for one another
Signs and wonders validated the ministry of Jesus and the apostles. After quoting from the prophet Joel and demonstrating that the outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost was biblical, Peter preached about Jesus of Nazareth as “a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst” (Acts 2:22). Of the apostles, Paul said, “the signs of a true apostle were performed among you with all perseverance, by signs and wonders and miracles” (2 Corinthians 12:12).
However, signs and wonders would also accompany false teachers and false prophets (Matthew 7:21-23; 2 Peter 2:1-22). In fact, biblical references to signs and wonders in the last days are nearly all credited to false teachers, false prophets and false Christs (Matthew 24:11, 24). The false prophet in the tribulation “deceives those who dwell on the earth because of the signs which it was given him to perform” (Revelation 13:14).
Jesus is no longer with us in the flesh and there are no more apostles. Jesus identified the sign of a disciple as markedly different: “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” (John 13:35).
Does this mean that signs and wonders have ceased? I certainly don’t want to be identified with an evil generation that seeks only after a sign, but I also don’t want to be associated with the powerless, anti-supernaturalism evidenced in Western rationalism. Both the power of God and the wisdom of God are expressed in Christ. Paul said, “For indeed Jews ask for signs, and Greeks search for wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block, and to Gentiles foolishness, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God” (1 Corinthians 1:22-24).
Prayer: Lord, reveal to me the true source of my spiritual experiences. If they are not from You, I renounce them and command Satan to leave my presence.