The world longs to see this display of God's power.
The world longs to see this display of God's power. (Cristina Gottardi)

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While praying for people's needs in an out-of-town church service, breakthrough ensued. I got excited and started broadcasting what God was doing. My intention was to see more people impacted.

There was a lot of unbridled energy and excitement. Loud exclamations could be heard throughout the room. Many were elated about what was transpiring.

However, one older man was concerned about what was happening. He said, "You're taking attention from God. Get back to the gospel. It's supposed to be about giving Him glory, not all this commotion."

I understood what he was saying and why he thought that way. In many ways, this was a natural response. Religious people can often be unbending in their assertions. Sadly, most are uncomfortable with unusual displays.

They don't realize that this is precisely what the Lord intends.

Jesus once said, "Truly, truly I say to you, he who believes in Me will do the works that I do also. And he will do greater works than these, because I am going to My Father. I will do whatever you ask in My name, that the Father may be glorified in the Son" (John 14:12-13).

In this remarkable passage, Jesus reveals that God wants the marvelous things of the first century to continue. All of us are being invited to actively emulate Jesus. In the midst of everything going on, we cannot forget that the heavenly Father receives honor and renown through public displays of power.

Many are convinced that an emphasis on signs and wonders devalues God, but the Bible makes the opposite argument. As Christians display the inexplicable, it actually brings glory to the Heavenly Father. 

Within the same extended sermon, Jesus goes on to proclaim, "My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples" (John 15:8).

The "fruit" that He is talking about isn't the moralism and service projects emphasized in North American churches. Jesus is indirectly referencing healing, exorcism, prophetic utterances and other signs of the kingdom. These are to be on display for the glory of Father.

Contrary to popular religious assumptions, Jesus has never been bothered about signs and wonders. He certainly doesn't believe that they're a frivolous distraction to the gospel.

In fact, Jesus has the audacity to suggest that miraculous works provide proof that one is actually a disciple. I honestly don't think that Christians in the West are ready to process that challenging admonition.

Perhaps we all need to really rethink what it means to give glory to God.

J.D. King, director of the World Revival Network and co-pastor at World Revival Church, is writing Regeneration: Healing in the History of Christianity. King is a sought-after speaker, writer and author

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