Before I proceed further, just to give readers a background, the Church I go to (Victory) do topical services and in the previous series, it was coined Hotspot – 3 topics were discussed: Source, Sync, and Share and this series was aimed to cover principles about discipleship.
Which I also plan to cover here with a version I worked on for our Small Group (some refer to it as Bible Study Group).
Coming out of that series, it was inspiring to follow on reading from the Book of John (where most part of the scriptures I quoted sharing in our previous study) with the following verses:
12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.
AND I call it discipleship Unlimited. We’ll see that in a moment 🙂 Now, let’s put the magnifying glass first in the phrases use in verse 12 of the passage:
“I tell you” – if you believe that Jesus himself is God, and, possesses all the qualities of the Father, therefore, He cannot lie. And by these, what He said in the next set of verses mention here must be true.
“Whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing” – there is the use of “will do”: Another quality of God is that He is all knowing, Jesus is Alpha and Omega (the beginning and the end), and in this set of verses, He was predicting the future. Think about that.
To whom is this promise directed to? “Whoever believes in me” He says… to those who has been reconciled by the blood of Christ. You cannot say that you are a believer if you haven’t been reconciled (and I shared about that when we did the “Sync” part of the series, more on this as I blog about that). But to my point, this promise is addressed to every believer of Christ and it will be activated to you if you believe truly.
What promise? “the works I have been doing”. Now, think about this for a second – what kind of work? The saving part? The healing of the sick? Feeding the 5000 with a few loaves of bread and fish? Making the blind see again? Or making the cripple walk? or what about raising people from the dead (Lazarus and a girl who was terribly sick and died). What?
Well, He says “works”? Didn’t that mean all of it? Or just because it didn’t say “all works”, sure, how about some of that then for starters? Do you believe you can do that?
Let us move further in this verse for a moment and circle back – not only we’re promise to do His works, He continued “and they will do even greater things than these” 🙂 what now? first we enumerated His works, and then Jesus said greater than those, (someone would ask, can anyone exceed the work of Christ?) and He closes with, “because I go to the father”. If we have heard the story of Jesus one too many times, we know that later in this gospel He gave His life, take that for a fortune teller, He knew what was going to happen, and certainly, He knows, what is to happen even after His death and resurrection. He said “because I go” not “if I go”, and so, He knew.
Now, let’s take a look at Acts for a moment, at the time of the Pentecost:
38 Peter replied, “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. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
Wow! 3000 on that Day was saved through the preaching of Peter, that many number was added to the Church in a period of time. When Jesus talked about suffering, death and resurrection, some people who were following them (because of the miracles He was performing) leaves, they couldn’t take it… at one point, Jesus even told the disciples “are you all leaving too?”
“greater things than this” He said, couldn’t be more clear… take this, Paul, afterwards built churches, after churches, after churches including Asia. Think about Jesus’ time where the focus was with the Jews, but here, the promise has been fulfilled through Paul — “making disciple of ALL nations”.
Well, what about the miracles? Let me ask you, what is better than ‘healing a sick person’? isn’t getting right with Christ the best kind of healing a person could have? it heals your soul…
What is better than feeding the 5000? Isn’t giving them the knowledge of Christ, which He said one time when He spoke to the Samaritan Woman in the well, “I give water that will not make you thirsty again” a better gift than a meal?
What is better than making the blind see? Isn’t showing them the truth about the Gospel more eye opening?
What is better than making the cripple walk? Isn’t guiding them to walk with God in the faith of being save the best experience a man can have?
What about raising people from the dead? What is better than making known to them the gift of eternal life through Christ, our Lord.
Now let us circle back to the last part of that verse before moving to the next… He said “because I am going to the Father”, and He certainly meant that all these greater things you are able to do, because – “I am going to die for you”, “and I will have paid the debt in full”, “that you, my disciples will become witnesses of my fate” – remember, these was happening during the time that Jesus has already announce that He knew the time is coming.
And then He concluded in verses 13 and 14:
“And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”
Friends, the power of His promises are only activated through prayer, and these prayers needed to be through Jesus.
“I am the way, the truth, and the life.”
“Nothing comes through the Father except through the Son”, which is Jesus.
This is why we say “In Jesus name I (or we) pray. Amen”.
Remember, it doesn’t come if you don’t believe, and by believe, I mean, your life wrapped in the person of Jesus Christ. That you believe in His Lordship and have repented of your sins. You can’t come to God through Jesus and expect a promise to be answered when you’re in Sin… it doesn’t operate that way. The more so ask of anyone to pray for you or pray for anyone, you are wasting your time. “Whoever believes in me” He said “and I will do”. But this can be a separate discussion on itself, so, this is it for now… and I pray, that this make sense to you and may God bless you!