“Jesus answered him, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God’” (John 3:3).
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (1 Peter 1:3).
“Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 3:21).
“It [baptism] brings salvation through the resurrection of Jesus Christ’). Understood in this manner, baptism is clearly not the agent but the instrument of salvation (for example, NEB ‘water of baptism through which you are now brought to safety’), and the implicit agent of salvation is God (compare 1:3–5).”
Daniel C. Arichea and Eugene Albert Nida, A Handbook on the First Letter from Peter, UBS Handbook Series (New York: United Bible Societies, 1980), 121.
“Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:3–4).
“In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead” (Colossians 2:11–12).
“He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:5).
“For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:27).
“Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:16).
“‘He who believes and is baptized’: the single definite article governing both participles joins the two verbs together in describing the man who will be saved; the clause could be translated, ‘the baptized believer.’”
Robert G. Bratcher and Eugene Albert Nida, A Handbook on the Gospel of Mark, UBS Handbook Series (New York: United Bible Societies, 1993), 511.
“And he said to them, ‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?’ And they said, ‘No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.’ And he said, ‘Into what then were you baptized?’ They said, ‘Into John’s baptism.’ And Paul said, ‘John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus.’ On hearing this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they began speaking in tongues and prophesying” (Acts 19:2–6).
“The believers are willing, and so they permit themselves to be baptized. It is doubtful this is referred to as a rebaptism, since from the point of view of Luke these people were never really baptized in the Christian sense up to this time.”
Barclay Moon Newman and Eugene Albert Nida, A Handbook on the Acts of the Apostles, UBS Handbook Series (New York: United Bible Societies, 1972), 363.
“Does Paul’s first question about receiving the Holy Spirit indicate that he sees none of the Spirit’s fruit or giftings in their lives? The combination of questions certainly tells us that Paul assumes that saving faith, the reception of the Spirit and Christian baptism converge at conversion.”
William J. Larkin Jr., Acts, vol. 5, The IVP New Testament Commentary Series (Downers, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1995), Ac 18:23.
“Paul’s corrective is to preach the gospel to the twelve by pointing out the preparatory and therefore partial nature of the baptism of repentance and of John’s message pointing to the Messiah who was to come. Though the Gospels never explicitly state that John called for faith in Christ, the status and role he gave to Jesus certainly imply it (Lk 3:16–17; Jn 1:27; 3:23–30). Paul makes the point that Jesus is this ‘coming one.’ To receive the gospel qualifies one to be baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus, and this is what the twelve do (Acts 2:38–39). This is no ‘rebaptism,’ for after the triumph of Easter and the provision of full salvation blessings at Pentecost, a preparatory baptism of repentance is more than incomplete—it is obsolete (Lk 16:16; Eph 4:5).”
William J. Larkin Jr., Acts, vol. 5, The IVP New Testament Commentary Series (Downers, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1995), Ac 18:23.
“So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls” (Acts 2:41).
“But when they believed Philip as he preached good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women” (Acts 8:12).
“See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?” (Acts 8:36).
“‘Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus who appeared to you on the road by which you came has sent me so that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.’ And immediately something like scales fell from his eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he rose and was baptized” (Acts 9:17–18).
“And he said, ‘The God of our fathers appointed you to know his will, to see the Righteous One and to hear a voice from his mouth; for you will be a witness for him to everyone of what you have seen and heard. And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name’” (Acts 22:14–16).
“the one who endures to the end will be saved” (Matthew 24:13).
“I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts.”
“And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.”
“He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power” (Hebrews 1:3).
We all have to start somewhere. I realize that professional video equipment has become more affordable and accessible, but I felt the importance of this message outweighed the time it would take to purchase and learn the use of such equipment. I hope you can forgive the quality of this and future videos as I learn more about the art of making them.
This is a simple explanation of the gospel of Jesus Christ, an opportunity to respond, and prayer for healing and deliverance. If you need physical healing, do not be afraid to fast forward to the end of the video and receive the prayer. Healing is one way that Jesus shows people that He is alive and that He loves them. Included is also prayer for deliverance for any of you who suspect that you have any sort of demonic oppression in your life. In ministry, we have experienced people receiving healing from Jesus Christ over Facebook Messenger and Skype. Recently a friend prayed through Skype for someone to receive deliverance. Jesus is not bound by time, space, or the medium by which we present Him. Hear, receive, believe and experience the freedom that is found in Jesus, the Christ. The kingdom of God has come near you today.
Read this aloud, you and your spouse, your children, alone or with a friend. Lord Jesus, we ask Your Holy Spirit to speak to each of us where we are, right now, and reveal to us the meaning of Your Word, and how it relates to each of us. Lord, speak to us about our freedom found in You, and teach us our identity as children of God, brothers and co-heirs with You. May Your name be glorified in all the earth, and may every captive be set free. Amen.
Romans 10:16b-17 – “’Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?’ So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.”
Numbers 23:19 – “God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?”
Hebrews 6:17-18 – “So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us.”
Romans 11:29 – “For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.”
Read Acts 17:22-34 – Notice that, though the speech sounds impressive, verse 33 and 34 say that Paul left their midst and “some men joined him and believed.”
Acts 18:8 – When reading chapter 18, we can see that when Paul preached there, that many believed: “Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with his entire household. And many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized.”
1 Corinthians 2:1–5 – And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.”
Mark 16:19–20 – “So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by accompanying signs.”
Did the disciples found in the Bible go everywhere? No, we are still going everywhere. Not every nation is reached yet, therefore, this verse is describing every disciple of Christ.
Acts 4:24, 29-31 – “And when they heard it, they lifted their voices together to God and said. . . And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” And when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness.”
It is clear in this verse that all the believers prayed with one voice to continue to preach the Gospel as healing and other signs and wonders were performed. Their request was granted – more boldness. They did not need to pray for the rest, because they knew that if they preached boldly the Lord would do His part allowing signs and wonders.
Hebrews 2:3-4 – “It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.”
Acts 14:3 – “So they remained for a long time, speaking boldly for the Lord, who bore witness to the word of his grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands.”
Acts 9:10 – “Now there was a disciple at Damascus named Ananias.”
Ananias was just a regular old believer. Just a simple dispel of Christ. In Acts 9:10-19 we get to see a single even in this man’s Christian life. It is amazing, and every bit as amazing as every story about Paul found in Acts. As you read this story, consider Ananias’ response to the Lord. Does it not reveal a familiarity with speaking to the Lord? He is not surprised by His vision, nor by the voice of the Lord. He actually has a regular conversation with Christ, making sure the Jesus knows whom He is sending Ananias to and what the current situation is. It confirms that this is regular for Ananias, “But Ananias answered, ‘Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints at Jerusalem. And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on your name.’” (Acts 9:13–14). In one single day Ananias receives a vision of the Lord, has a conversation with Him, receives words of knowledge about Saul (Paul) and his vision and his being blind, receives a prophesy concerning Saul (Paul’s) coming suffering that he will endure, goes and lays hands on Saul (Paul) and heals him, baptizes him, and lays his hands on him that he would receive the Holy Spirit. This regular believer launched Paul, whom we declare as the greatest missionary on earth.
Mark 16:17-18 – “And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
Does the Father answer the prayers of Jesus?
John 17:5 – “I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.”
Luke 10:18-19 – “And he [Jesus] said to them, ‘I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you.” All and nothing mean exactly as you would define them in English. Authority over all of the power of the enemy and nothing, not one thing, will harm you.
Isaiah 53:4-5 – “Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed.”
Is the author speaking of spiritual healing? Not according to the Holy Spirit: Matthew 8:14-17 – “And when Jesus entered Peter’s house, he saw his mother-in-law lying sick with a fever. He touched her hand, and the fever left her, and she rose and began to serve him. That evening they brought to him many who were oppressed by demons, and he cast out the spirits with a word and healed all who were sick. This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah: ‘He took our illnesses and bore our diseases [Isaiah 53:4].’”
The context of the story is physical healing of Peter’s mother-in-law and many who came to Him. He healed them all, because “He took our illnesses and bore our diseases.” Why, because He bore our sins and all of the consequences of that sin; of which sickness is one. Why would Christ make a sick and broken, diseased, and sinful container into the temple of the Holy Spirit? He would not, He would make in new again.
Psalm 103:2-5 – “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
We all believe that the Lord takes our iniquity and redeems our life from the pit. What about the promise sandwiched between those two?
Matthew 4:23 – “And he went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people.”
Matthew 9:35 – “And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction.”
Matthew 10:1 – “And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction.”
Matthew 10:7-8 – “And proclaim as you go, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons. You received without paying; give without pay.”
Luke 9:1-2 – “And he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal.”
Luke 9:6 – “And they departed and went through the villages, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.”
Luke 10:1, 3, 7-9 – “After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of him, two by two, into every town and place where he himself was about to go… Go your way; behold, I am sending you out as lambs in the midst of wolves…And remain in the same house, eating and drinking what they provide, for the laborer deserves his wages. Do not go from house to house. Whenever you enter a town and they receive you, eat what is set before you. Heal the sick in it and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’”
More important perhaps is the way in which the command to heal the sick (ἀσθενεῖς diff. Mt. ἀσθενοῦντας may be Lucan) precedes the command to preach. This suggests that the healings are to be regarded as a sign of the presence of the kingdom (cf. 11:20; Schulz, 417).
Howard Marshall, The Gospel of Luke: A Commentary on the Greek Text, New International Greek Testament Commentary (Exeter: Paternoster Press, 1978), 421.
The purpose of the mission was not in any way to further the personal faith of those who were sent (Hase, p. 200; Krabbe, p. 306), but, as is evident from the commission itself (see especially ver. 9), to prepare, by miraculous cures and by preaching, for the imminent advent of the Messiah.
Heinrich August Wilhelm Meyer, Critical and Exegetical Handbook to the Gospels of Mark and Luke, ed. William P. Dickson, trans. Robert Ernest Wallis, vol. 2, Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1883), 113–114.
Luke 10:17-20 – “The seventy-two returned with joy, saying, ‘Lord, even the demons are subject to us in your name!’ And he said to them, ‘I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.'”
Matthew 28:18-20 – “And Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.’”
Jesus has literally just defeated death. All things are in His control and under His authority. He says that as we go we should make disciples for Him. In other words, we need to make more disciples of Christ. We, meaning you and I, must baptize them. We have misunderstood the phrase “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,” and we say it during baptism as some sort of formula. However, there is no record in any of the baptisms in the Bible of anyone saying this phrase. In water baptism it was “into Christ Jesus” that they were baptized. It is because the early disciples understood the fuller meaning of the expression. This meaning is captured and shared by Peter in Acts 10:38 – “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Repent is to change your mind and to turn back. To whom do they turn? The Father; repent, turning back to God (the Father). Having repented, bring that repentance with you to water baptism and be baptized into the death of Christ, “in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins,” and receive the free gift of the Holy Spirit the baptism with the Holy Spirit. It is not one thing, but three events: spent, be baptized in water into Christ, receive the Holy Spirit. This person is now a proper disciple of Jesus Christ, so we then must teach them to observe, or to do all those things that Christ commanded His disciples to do; namely, to go and preach the gospel of the Kingdom, heal the sick, and cast out demons, living in fellowship with one another in brotherly love. When we do this, He is with us always. Having read this last promise, we must go back to the beginning and revisit the Great Commission. Jesus is actually saying, “Let’s, you and I, go together. As we go, let’s make new disciples for me. I ask you to lead them to repentance in word as I work in their hearts. When they respond and repent, I want you to baptize them into me, then for you to lay your hands on them so that they may receive my Holy Spirit. Then, we will teach them, together, to observe all I have commanded; you by teaching from the Scriptures, and I by ministering to their heart with my Holy Spirit. As they begin to go as you have gone with me, I will work through them also, allowing signs and wonders to be done through their hands in My name.
Mark 16:15-20 – “’Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.’ So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by accompanying signs.”
Freedom from Sin:
Romans 6:7 – “For one who has died has been set free from sin.”
Freedom from sickness:
Matthew 8:17 – “’He took our illnesses and bore our diseases.’”
Freedom from condemnation and the law:
Romans 8:2 – “For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.”
Freedom from bondage:
Act 10:38b – “He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.”
More about freedom:
John 8:31-32 – “’If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’”
John 8:36 – “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”
Romans 8:19-21 – “For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.”
2 Corinthians 3:17 – “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”
Galatians 5:1 – “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.”
Hebrews 6:1-2 – “Therefore let us leave the elementary doctrine of Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, and of instruction about washings, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment.”
As can be seen from this verse in Hebrews, the things discussed here are the elementary doctrines of Christ. This activity constitutes the normal Christian life. Until we are doing these things we cannot move on to maturity.
Fan into flame that spark which lies within you. Determine yourselves to simply obey what Christ has directed. At that time, you shall experience the power of Christ through His gospel. Determine yourselves; do it and do not stop no matter what you see. For our experience is not the truth, the Word of God is the truth. In due time He will lift you up. Determine ourselves to preach and to pray no matter what. Just do it for Him. Do it because you love Him and He has sent you to. Trust Him to do His part through you. Pray for the sick no matter what. If you encounter demons, bring that person into the presence of the Almighty and that unclean Sprit cannot stand. Worship God, give testimonies to encourage, baptize immediately, lay hands on this baptized as soon as they come out of the water and pray for deliverance and for the Holy Spirit to come. Stand on the promises of God. Stand firm and believe, and you will see the glory of God (John 11:40).
How Jesus Defines Belief
“You believe that God is one, you do well – even the demons believe and shudder.” Jesus says that you must believe to be saved. I didn’t say that, He did. So, what is belief? How do you know you believe correctly? “And these signs follow those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.” If you look at this the other way, it says that if these signs do not follow you then you do not believe. If a man looks at his life and compares it to this scripture, what does Jesus say to him about his belief. He either says, great you believe, or He says son, you do not yet believe?
Is the Word of God Trustworthy?
Before I continue, I want to remind you that “All Scripture is breathed out by God and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” The writings of a man are not Scripture. Devotionals are not Scripture. A man will starve spiritually if that is all he feeds on. Only Scripture is held up as the source for equipping a man for every good work.
How do you recognize a disciple (believer, Christian) of Christ?
How are those that have salvation recognized? Not everyone who says that they know God is a disciple of Jesus Christ. For “Whoever says, ‘I know Him’ but does not keep His commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” How does Jesus recognize those with salvation? “Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and their testimony of Jesus.” “Here is a call for the endurance of the saints, those who keep the commandments of God and their faith in Jesus.” “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on Him.” This is what Jesus calls belief, and “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.” This belief is in accordance with the definition Jesus provides.
What must we understand so that we may obey?
How does Jesus say we should behave? It is best to state the greatest commandments and the new commandment; the two sum up all the laws and the prophets: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and all your soul and all your mind; secondly, love your neighbor as yourself.” A new command He has given is to “love one another; as I have loved you, love one another,” and by this all will know that you are His disciple. Jesus says that the greatest love for your brother is to lay your life down for him. Let me just review the command in another way. “And this commandment we have from Him: whoever loves God must also love His brother.”
So what is love according to Jesus. What does His Word say about love?
Love defined by Jesus: “And this is love, that we walk according to His commandments; this is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, so that you should walk in.” “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey His commandments.” “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome.” “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” “Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” “And by this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments.” “If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Fathers commandments and abide in His love.” “You are my friends if you do what I command you.”
What are these commandments that we must follow if we really believe and we really love God?
What, then, has He commanded? “And He commanded us to preach the gospel to the people and to testify that He is the One appointed by God to be judge of the living and the dead.” “For so the Lord has commanded us saying, ‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.” “The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now He commands all people everywhere to repent.”
God came as one man, Jesus Christ. “From that time Jesus began to preach saying, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.’” “And He went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction among the people.” “And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction.”
Then He called together twelve guys that had been following Him. The One has been replicated into twelve others. “And He called His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits to cast them out and to heal every disease and every affliction.” (A command here) “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, cast out demons; You received without paying, give without pay.” “And they cast out many demons and anointed with oil many who were sick and they healed them.” “And they departed and went through the villages healing everywhere.”
Then the One, that had replicated Himself into twelve continued into 72 others. (Another command exactly the same as the rest, and the same as His life, the true, and only example) “Heal the sick in it and say to them ‘the kingdom of God has come near to you.'”
Then Jesus was crucified and resurrected, but He gave another command about communion, “Do this as often as possible in remembrance of me.” Upon His resurrection, Jesus met two disciples on the road and explained, from Moses and the prophets, all the Word revealed about Him, but they did not recognize Him; not until they partook of the bread He had broken and given to them. That seems pretty significant. Their eyes were opened through communion.
Then He appeared to all of His disciples at the time (numbering at least 120 – The One became twelve more, then 72, then 120) “All authority in Heaven and earth has been given to me. (A four-part command) 1Go therefore and 2make disciples (not disciple people, but make disciples of Jesus, to follow Him – meaning, the discipling occurs through you, but is done by the Holy Spirit, not you – they are not your disciples), 4baptize them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit (note, that when the disciples baptized they only did it into Christ Jesus, because baptism into the Father is repentance, baptism into the Son is water baptism, and baptism into the Sprit is being baptized with the Spirit), 4 and teach them to observe (do, be obedient to) all that I have commanded you, and low, I will be with you until the end of the age.” Therefore, He is saying, let’s go together, make disciples for me, baptize them, and teach them to be obedient. He also said, “Go into all the world and proclaim (shout it out) the gospel to the whole creation.”
There are quite a few gifts of the Spirit, why did Jesus give focus to healing and casting out of demons?
Why did Jesus always couple preaching the gospel with healing and casting out of demons? “The Spirit of the Lord is on Me, because He has anointed Me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim deliverance to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to release the oppressed.” “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” “For you were called to freedom, brothers.” “’What do you think, Simon? From whom do kings of the earth take toll or tax? From their sons or from others?’ And when he said, ‘From others,’ Jesus said to him, ‘Then the sons are free.’” “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” There are many, many more verses, too numerous to list here. It is about freedom.
What does it mean that Jesus is with us?
As we go, how exactly is Jesus with us? “And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by accompanying signs.” “It was declared at first by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those that heard, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to His will.” “So they remained for a long time, speaking boldly for the Lord, who bore witness to the word of His grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands.” “And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, while You stretch out Your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
Test the spirits?
Do not see enemies in men. See the enemy. Anything not born of the truth is a lie. This does not mean that the brethren are liars. It does mean that if something is said that is not born of the truth, the Word, the Holy Spirit, then it is a lie. Do not receive lies, even when mixed with truth. “If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greetings, for whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.”
I am not telling anyone whether they are saved or condemned or anything else, for I am not the judge, and nothing will be judged before its time. I am only sharing the Word so that all may compare their life to it, and not to their own conscience or to other men. The Word is the only standard and the only truth. As the book of John says, Jesus is the Word. “This is He who comes by water and blood – Jesus Christ; not by the water only, but by the water and the blood. And the Spirit is the One Who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. For there are three that testify: The Spirit and the water and the blood; and these three agree.”
I confess that the Lord is still at work in me, and will be until the day I meet Him. “For this reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.”