Mark 16:14-18 (NLT) Still later he appeared to the eleven disciples as they were eating together. He rebuked them for their stubborn unbelief because they refused to believe those who had seen him after he had been raised from the dead. And then he told them, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone. Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved. But anyone who refuses to believe will be condemned. These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak in new languages. They will be able to handle snakes with safety, and if they drink anything poisonous, it won’t hurt them. They will be able to place their hands on the sick, and they will be healed.”
Where are the modern day miracles? Signs? Wonders? Why is the church not experiencing an outpouring of Heaven and revival like Jesus promised? It says clearly, “these miraculous signs will accompany those who believe…” Do you ever find religion boring? I do. The Lord is shaking his church hoping to reach the people today. I feel it. Do you? Mediocrity grows bitter in our midst and it is time for breakthrough. How does one experience breakthrough? What does it feel like, sound like, or look like?
Breakthrough in Jesus Christ is like the mighty wall of Jericho falling flat. I had been praying for breakthrough in a relationship for almost two years. Offense had become opposition building a wall between two people. I continued to press into God’s Presence. Something had to give. In praying one day, the Lord showed me an image of the Great Wall of Jericho and as the people watched it fell flat before them. No one was harmed and everyone crossed over safely into the Promise. The Lord is ready to blow over some walls of oppression surrounding you today. The very ones you have agonized over and been tormented by for a long time. They will fall flat. No one will be harmed. All will cross over. Shortly after that vision came to me – the Lord did just that in the situation I was facing and praying about. The issue literally dissolved at the altar of God and reconciliation was instantaneous. Crazy huh? No – God desires to save us, heal us, deliver us, bless and prosper His People. He is waiting on us.
Still later he appeared to the eleven disciples as they were eating together. He rebuked them for their stubborn unbelief because they refused to believe those who had seen him after he had been raised from the dead.
Oh my goodness, how many times do the Children of God dwell in “still later”? Like tasting something new and then mulling it over in our mouth until it loses its flavor and is tasteless and lukewarm. Rather than swallowing it and absorbing the nutrients hidden inside, it is quickly discarded as tasteless and no good. The Word of God is the Truth for our life. It is the very essence of God’s Plan laid out like a fine meal to be savored yet packed with powerful nutrients for our soul to prosper. Jesus is the Word who came in flesh. He was dining with the original 11 remaining disciples reprimanding them for stubborn unbelief.
Faith is not possible outside of believing yet it is claimed every single day. How can I believe in Jesus to be saved and not allow it to carry over into my life? The reality of salvation, if truly believed, is life changing and miraculous. It is not anything I do but the fact that I become a conduit to Christ in me. I must exercise my faith to expand the foundation of hope in my life. Jesus goes on to tell them that those who believe WILL experience a miraculous life and ministry. Yes, ministry. The Great Commission has ordained each of us who believe to “go into all the world and preach Good News to everyone.” The problem is our belief is left inside the four walls of the church, or small group, or special conference along with the hype and social group. It is not for the world, but something to rev us up and send us out to live the same mundane and mediocre life from the day before. Still later…
Today is “still later” for the church and Body of Christ limping around powerlessly vulnerable to every lie the enemy lobs over the fence at us. We sit sick and bound in every kind of sin not because the Blood has lost its power but because we don’t believe in the full potential of His Name. The Blood of Jesus has the power to save, heal, deliver and set free. If these are not characteristic in our life, there is more to our salvation yet to be discovered. God is shaking His Church with a wakeup call. Christ is offering a rebuke to those living in the days of old. It is the last great awakening.
Hebrews 12:25-29 (NLT) Be careful that you do not refuse to listen to the One who is speaking. For if the people of Israel did not escape when they refused to listen to Moses, the earthly messenger, we will certainly not escape if we reject the One who speaks to us from heaven! When God spoke from Mount Sinai his voice shook the earth, but now he makes another promise: “Once again I will shake not only the earth but the heavens also.” This means that all of creation will be shaken and removed, so that only unshakable things will remain. Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear and awe. For our God is a devouring fire.
The attack of the enemy is subtle. He quietly builds walls of doubt and disbelief grouted with insecurity to keep God’s People from the promise of fulfillment. The rich and satisfying life promised to us by Jesus are just on the other side. It is not within our personal power to make things happen but completely possible through confidence in Christ. The Christ in us is always enough to live a miraculous life full of signs and wonders if only we would discard stubborn disbelief allowing faith to become the foundation of our life. The Faithfulness of God in His Son, Jesus is demonstrated in “still later”. His Lovingkindness and Patience towards us revealed. It doesn’t matter if you have loved Jesus a day or a decade or even more than that – there is still more for you and me on the other side of disbelief.
I speak to the walls in my life – you must come down in Jesus Name. I speak to the borders and boundaries of faith in your life as well – you also must come down in the Name of Jesus. Lord, we want every miracle, sign and wonder promised to us. Help us Lord to believe. The atmosphere of your life is changing right now along with mine. Do not be afraid of shaking or earth moving – it’s just walls coming down because we believe!
Mark 9:23-24 (NLT) “What do you mean, ‘If I can’?” Jesus asked. “Anything is possible if a person believes.” The father instantly cried out, “I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!”