"Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached Christ to them. And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. And there was great joy in that city" (Acts 8:5-8).
Demons entice sinners by entertaining them with the sweet bait of lustful play and sinful pleasure. The bland and the boring are identified with God while the dainty and delightful are unknowingly credited to Satan. The master of deception has majored in distracting the multitudes.
Secular artists are in alliance with evil to accomplish hell's top mission: activate and accelerate the minds of the masses and make them too busy to stop, too unsettled to stand, too noisy to hear and too numb to feel the conviction of the Spirit.
Hell's carefully planned distractions are always designed to keep the multitudes free from viewing and knowing Christ, the main attraction. Hell's fulfillment of this, their highest purpose, can only be halted when a sinner's mind is assaulted and his heart attacked by the Spirit's thunderous blast.
Mighty miracles point the barrel of the gun at the sinner's back and declare: "Stop. Stand still. Don't move. Put your hands on your head. You're under arrest." Now his rights can be read, and he can be guided and led to repair and repent.
Where are the sharp-shooting gunmen whose wonders place people under arrest and whose words do more than just caress? Where are the feared miracle ministries and marshals?
Philip was one of those miracle marshals and sharpshooters from out west. He traveled east to Samaria looking for criminals to arrest. Philip's miracles arrested and his message was convincing and uncontested.
Try to imagine a place like Samaria. This wicked city was completely under the rule of sorcery whose main operation came through one man. These Samarians were astonished at this man's magical powers, and they listened to him. His false miracles produced a false arrest of an entire city. The inhabitants exclaimed this sorcerer as the great power of God.
This ruling principality and power of sorcery had occupied this city for a long time. It would take real Holy Ghost muscle to move this territorial tycoon out of Samaria.
When a man and a ministry of miracles come to an occupied demonic territory, he comes immaculately dressed with an armor of authority which reflects in the know-so confidence he possesses. He knows when Christ comes to a city He doesn't come to compromise or negotiate. There are no terms for any sort of agreement.
In the Old Testament Israel's enemies would either surrender and live or oppose and die. Satan's power is no match for God. Under a miracle ministry, his weapons of deception are brought to naught every single time.
To be harassed and embarrassed by already-defeated demon power only means you are the one who's deceived. Like Pharaoh's magicians challenged Moses, Satan may challenge a man or a ministry who show any bit of hesitation and doubt.
But a man with a mantle, and a ministry with a mandate, Satan can never intimidate.
A man with an assignment will not be subject to confinement. He knows Satan has been stripped and spoiled of all his power. Satan lost. Christ is boss.
That is why a humble man endued with this knowledge and power can appear bossy. He cannot afford to be anything less than that. His very attitude speaks.
When he steps up to the plate, he points to the grandstands, a la Babe Ruth. Such a man knows the score. He comes to town with might and miracles to hit a home run.
"Win. Conquer. Take over. That is the language of miracles."
Demons were cast out under Philip's anointed proclamation and power. Christ's authority in Philip made demons cry. Today they often sigh. They're relieved because there are so few with divine authority to make them leave.
There are so few miracle ministries who have a knockout punch. And there are even less that possess the lethal combination jab and hook of potent preaching and mighty miracles.
The greatest crime in many ungodly nations is anti-Christ governments who won't let preachers preach. But the greatest crime in many nations who do allow for freedom of speech are so-called preachers who deny the power of God. Which crime is greater, I wonder?
Stephen was full of faith and power and performed great wonders and signs among the people (Acts 6:8). "Great" and "among" describe the power and the place for miracles. Miracles are to be notable and undeniable in the face of a world whose analysis and data are skeptical and unreliable.
Where are the modern-day miracles that really make us shout and leave the world no doubt?
The doubters couldn't dispute Stephen's miracles so they tried to dispute his message (Acts 6:9-10), but their efforts were futile because Stephen's words were as great as his wonders.
Like hordes of creeping crawlers under a large rock, entire cities are infested with demons who sit comfortably under their cloak of darkness. But see what happens when somebody lifts that rock, and allows a laser of bright light to expose those creatures of darkness. They are sent scurrying.
I hear a call for those miracle marshals to come forth. I see mantles of might falling from heaven upon God's chosen vessels. I see beaming lasers of lightning piercing the gross darkness in cities and towns across the world. I hear the booming voice of Jesus Christ calling for the resurrection of the manifold miraculous.
Philip, come forth! Stephen, come forth! Be loosed in the earth! Holy Spirit, give birth! It's time! It's time! It's time to pray and bring forth the miraculous!
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Bert M. Farias, revivalist and founder of Holy Fire Ministries, is the author of several books including The Real Spirit of Revival and the newly released My Son, My Son—a beautiful father-son book co-written with his son Daniel for the purpose of training up a holy generation. He and his wife also host The Holy Ghost Forum—a school of the Spirit. Follow him at Bert Farias and Holy Fire Ministries on Facebook or @Bertfarias1 on Twitter.
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