The Transforming Power of Jesus

Excerpt from a longer message on Acts 3, here


...we might not have contemporary examples of supernatural healing as with the crippled man in Acts 3 (although some might), but if we are Christians we absolutely have plenty of other examples of God’s supernatural working in our lives.

The church is a supernatural community. It’s a beacon of the gospel in a dark world. When you are ill or you’ve just had a baby and your neighbour says “how come so many people have been round to bring meals? Nobody does that for me.” We say “Its not just that we have a lot of friends, its that God has adopted us into his new community which the world is amazed at.” “How come you find it so easy to get babysitters?” You say “Well that’s God’s church. We love and care for each other because we are God’s people.” We are very different, but we all belong to Jesus so we belong to each other.

And we live supernatural lives because of the indwelling Spirit. When people say “how come you work more conscientiously than others? How come you don’t get involved in office politics and gossip?” Its not just that you don’t like that kind of thing. Its “I belong to Jesus. I’ve repented and been given the Holy Spirit who makes me alive to God.”

Or when its “you don’t get drunk every night and sleep around like the others at work” – what do you say? You say “by my own inclination I probably would, but I belong to the author of life and he has done a supernatural work in my heart which makes me want to live for him, not for evil.”

God’s given us loads of examples of the supernatural activity of the Holy Spirit in our lives to lead into testimony. He is teaching us about community, principles for Godly marriage, for bringing up children, for working to honour our employees. For our ambitions and the way we use our money. For the things we watch on TV. For relationships and sex. These aren’t natural things, we wouldn’t do them except for the work of God in us. And other people find it really surprising. It says in 1 Peter that they are amazed that you don’t plunge into a flood of unrighteousness with them.

And so we tell them. “I don’t act this way because I am a good person. I act this way because Jesus is my King and my righteousness.” And you will be laughed at and you will get despised and scorned but you will be doing Acts 3. And some, gloriously, will see the miraculous work God has done in us and will hear the explanation and they will repent and turn to him just as we have done.