Andrew Fountain - The Gospel 7: The Power of the Spirit


The Power of the Spirit in Acts

  • I have been through the book of Acts, making a note of every supernatural event, every miracle
  • Let’s look first of all at healing
  • Acts 8:5-13 - Philip at Samaria
    • This was an impossibly hard situation
      • The Samaritans had been hostile to the Jews for generations
    • Here he was going to the main city (not the small town Jesus visited)
  • Acts 14:1-3 - Paul and Barnabas doing miraculous signs and wonders
    • Note the reason why the signs and wonders came—it was to bear witness to the gospel message
  • Acts 28:7-10 - Paul heals governor’s father
    • video 01_4 — 10:44 (Acts 27:36f)
    • This is a very interesting example because the healing of this man was the key that opened up the island of Malta to the gospel
  • Conclusion:
    • most of the times (almost all) there are signs and wonders, it is for evangelism
    • They are what the message is about (Kingdom)
    • They caused a breakthrough in Malta, and Samaria
      • got attention
      • bore witness to the truth
    • Kinds of miracles
      • most common is healing
      • also prophecy 1 Corinthians 14:24-25
        1. But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or uninformed person enters, he will be convicted by all, he will be called to account by all.
        2. The secrets of his heart are disclosed, and in this way he will fall down with his face to the ground and worship God, declaring, “God is really among you.”
  • Paul came not in word only. (Power virtually always means supernatural)
    • Romans 15:18 For I will not dare to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in order to bring about the obedience of the Gentiles, by word and deed, 19in the power of signs and wonders, in the power of the Spirit of God. So from Jerusalem even as far as Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.
    • 1 Thessalonians 1:5 in that our gospel did not come to you merely in words, but in power and in the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction (surely you recall the character we displayed when we came among you to help you).

What should we do?

  1. Offer to pray for the sick
    • A sick person will rarely refuse prayer, particularly if they are in pain
    • Most of our praying is for believers, but in the New Testament it is the other way around
    • There are 22 places in Acts where there is either direct or indirect healing yet in only three cases it is a believer who is healed
      • Now two of those are actually Christians being raised from the dead, so that is not insignificant!
      • Lydia and the young man who fell from a window
    • So we need to be praying for more non-Christians!
      • How should we do that?
    • Anne prayed for Cecil, and for neighbour
  2. Supernatural Guidance
    • The largest category of supernatural in the book of Acts is prophetic words (44%)
    • But nearly half of that is guidance in evangelism
      • e.g. Pierre & the hitchhiker
      • makes up 20% of the supernatural in the whole of Acts
      • Acts 8:26-31 - Philip and the Ethiopian
      • Acts 10:17-20 - Peter told by the Spirit to go with the visitors
      • Romans 15:17-19 - “Fully” Preaching involved signs and wonders
    • Example of Rosalind Goforth Climbing p.23
    • We should constantly be sensitive to the Spirit’s leadings
      • e.g. girl on streetcar
    • example from Share the Fire
  • Response:
    • Any one here need healing?
    • Anyone want to hear from God better for guidance in evangelism?
    • Anyone here want more courage and boldness in praying for the sick and

Updated on 2009-06-28 (r.19) by Andrew Fountain