Intimacy, the miraculous and power
I have seen the accusation thrown out, that people who believe in the gifts think that intimacy with God is somehow not as good for those that don't believe in the gifts. Personally, I don't believe this to be true at all! Nor do I believe that folks that are cessationist cannot walk in the power of God. Not sure why some think others accuse them of this, or why some do make the point that there is power lacking.
Here are a couple of thoughts for us to consider.
First, John the Baptist was called by Jesus the greatest prophet. Yet, he never worked 1 miracle. Not 1 miracle. Was he intimate with God? Oh yea! He heard God tell him about the Spirit landing on Jesus! That's intimacy.
Next, take a look at this passage.
1 Cor 10:1-5
For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea; 2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea; 3 and all ate the same spiritual food; 4 and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ. 5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not well-pleased; for they were laid low in the wilderness.
Israel had miracle after miracle occur in their midst. Yet, God wasn't pleased with them! Miracles, IMO, are not a sign that God is pleased with someone!
We have examples of great men who didn't believe in the gifts like tongues that have worked in great revivals. Jonathan Edwards comes to mind. (I don't think he believed in the all the gifts.)
Are there things we need to be aware of? Well, let me say this, if I need prayer for healing, I want to be around folks that are seeing people get healed! I've seen more people healed miraculously in groups that believe in the gifts than the other way around. However, I have heard some awesome messages on the gospel that were spoke in power by those that believe the gifts are no longer available.
I guess the main point of this thread is just to point out that miracles are not a sign of God's pleasure. We seem to think that when people get saved, it's because the preacher is right with God or the church is holy. Yet we forget that Noah pleased God and was a man of great faith, who made the "hall of faith" in Hebrews but only saw 8 souls saved. Jonah preached the greatest revival in the OT but had sin in his life.
Want intimacy with God? Embrace the cross daily. That is the ultimate key. Be obedient in all things.
21 " He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and willdisclose Myself to him."
Jesus discloses himself to those that are obedient to Him. That is true intimacy; when Jesus explains himself to us personally.
Grace and peace,
13 "But go and learn what this means: ' I DESIRE COMPASSION,AND NOT SACRIFICE,' for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners."