Bound to Follow
He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all 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 drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”
I remember when Neja and I first started going to the nations and preaching the gospel. It was an amazing experience. Our first missionary journey was to the nation of Costa Rica. One day, when Neja and I were praying over the trip in the Holy Ghost, out of my mouth came these words, “Signs and wonders are bound to follow the preaching of the gospel.” For weeks, these words kept rising out of my spirit.
At that time, I thought that these words meant that if I preached the gospel, then surely signs would eventually follow. When I would say the word “bound,” I interpreted it to mean that it might happen or we might get lucky. Back then, it was like saying, “If you keep trying, you’re bound to eventually succeed.” So even though these words were coming out of my inner man, they didn’t do much to help me.
Our first missionary trip changed all of that. Back then, I didn’t know much, but I certainly could tell the story of Jesus’ death, burial and resurrection. I just did what I thought every preacher did. I shared the full story and asked people if they wanted to receive Jesus. To my surprise, hundreds did during that first trip. Then, I just did what I thought every good Christian would do. I prayed for the sick.
Do you know what happened? In every single service where I preached the gospel message, miracles flowed. A deaf ear opened here and a blind eye was restored there. It was amazing! Then I got a little cocky. I tried preaching one of those messages I had heard about faith, without sharing the story of Jesus’ powerful resurrection from the dead. Some people got saved, but we didn’t see a single miracle. Not even one headache left.
That’s when I got it. Miracles, signs and wonders are bound to follow the gospel. They don’t have a choice in the matter. They are spiritually bound to the preaching of Jesus’ resurrection. Like a conjoined twin, the miraculous is intertwined and intimately connected to the proclamation of the good news. Wherever the gospel is proclaimed, miracles are pulled right along with it.
Do you want to see miracles in your life and ministry? Then start telling the wonderful story of Christ conquering the grave. You won’t have to work yourself and your listeners up emotionally in order to see God’s hand move, because miracles, signs and wonders are bound to the preaching of the gospel.
Then the disciples went out and preached
everywhere, and the Lord worked with them and
confirmed his word by the signs that accompanied
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.”…Everyone
was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous
signs were done by the apostles.
I will not venture to speak of anything
except what Christ has accomplished through
me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what
I have said and done—by the power of signs
and miracles, through the power of the Spirit.
So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum,
I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ.
…This salvation, which was first
announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by
those who heard him. God also testified to it
by signs, wonders and various miracles, and
gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according
to his will.