There is a popular false teaching that the gifts of the Spirit were only for the transitional age of Apostolic leadership 2000 years ago. Yet, the contemporary occurrence of miraculous signs and wonders, particularly in revivals in East Asia, India, Africa and South America, is well documented by scholarly research. Wherever the Holy Spirit is significantly present, powerful “stuff happens.”
In the New Covenant, there is a universal offer of the Spirit, which is characterized by supernatural manifestations that “show the Spirit.” This is seen in Peter’s preaching in Acts 2, “And it shall be in the last days, God says, that I will pour forth of My Spirit upon all mankind, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions…” This is not something for only the first disciples of Yeshua. The immersion (baptism) in the Spirit is a definite experience to be sought until attained—for all times.
Mark says, “And these signs will accompany those who have believed, in My name they shall cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues… they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” Some have said that this is a disputed text. However, it is so early that it certainly gives us a summary of what the earliest believers thought and understood to be the teaching of Yeshua.
We cannot pick and choose what we like from the New Covenant Scriptures. The Scriptures are in full agreement on these issues. Yeshua says, “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do shall he do also, and greater works than these shall he do.” This does not mean that every individual believer will do more, but that the potential is there. It also shows that the Body of the Messiah will do more, for the indwelling of the Spirit makes the presence and power unlimited in time and space.
In Luke 9, Yeshua sends out the twelve disciples and then in Luke 10, the seventy. The instructions in both chapters are the same. They are to go into the towns of Israel, heal the sick and announce that the Kingdom of God has come near (become available). Healing and deliverance show that the powers of darkness are overcome by the power of the Kingdom. I have too many experiences of accurate prophecy, healing, and deliverance to ever turn back. I know that we need to grow in maturity, wisdom and governing, but the price is worth it. “Messiness” with life is better than order with death.