• Bishop Keith Butler

Signs, Wonders, and Miracles

And this continued by the space of two years; so that all they which dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks. And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul: So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them. (Acts 19:10-12)

Paul had every intention of preaching the Gospel in Asia early in his second missionary journey, but the Holy Ghost sent him to Europe. Finally, toward the end of his second journey, Paul preached in Ephesus. “And he came to Ephesus, and left them there: but he himself entered into the synagogue, and reasoned with the Jews. When they desired him to tarry longer time with them, he consented not” (Acts 18:19-20).

Acts 19 records Paul’s third missionary journey. During this trip, he spent two years in Ephesus, and his ministry there this time started with a bang. God did extraordinary miracles through Paul. I am blessed to see "regular" miracles, let alone "special" ones, aren't you? But the power of God was so great in Ephesus that Luke says the miracles weren't ordinary; they were exceptional!

I believe Paul’s special obedience led to special miracles. He wanted to minister in Asia right out of the chute on his second journey, but the Holy Ghost told him to go a different direction. Paul could have debated with the Holy Ghost, “Jesus said to go into all the world. Ephesus is part of all the world, isn’t it? Why would you send me into the west?” But he didn’t. Paul was called to be an apostle to the Gentiles, and the west was Gentile territory.

Remember, God's "No" often means "Later," as we see in Paul's ministry in Ephesus. Miracles, signs, and wonders drew people to Paul, and Ephesus became the most prominent church of the first century.

Practical Application – Miracles, signs, and wonders happen when we follow the Holy Ghost. His direction may not make sense to our natural minds, but He demonstrates God’s power and love through those who obey Him.

Romans 8:14; Luke 4:1



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