A QUESTION I WAS ASKED
A lady who attends a 'Word of Faith' or, 'Positive Confession' church asked her pastor about the undue emphasis on miracles which they taught.
She said, "The pastor's wife got back to me and said, "Christ proved miracles and healing before he offered salvation." She also told me that I was , "....Debating the scriptures, which wasn't unifying in the body of believers."
Your Pastor's wife said, "Christ proved miracles and healing before he offered salvation." Actually I find that a very misleading statement .
First of all, it was within God's plan from eternity that salvation would be offered by the Son of God. Just read Revelation 13:8 where Christ is described as the 'Lamb slain from the foundation of the world'.
Secondly, Jesus performed spectacular signs and wonders in order to show just who He was! He healed sicknesses in order to show that He had the power to forgive sin. He healed sicknesses in order to prove to the masses who He was! If the ministry of Jesus and the Apostles had not been surrounded by signs and wonders nobody would ever have heard of Jesus! We must remember that there were no means of mass communication in His day. God intended that the world should learn about Jesus very quickly as a witness that the Christ had indeed come, therefore He surrounded the ministry of Jesus - and later the Apostles - with great notoriety and great wonders! Jesus did not need to "prove" miracles, but when the time was right for His ministry to start He did indeed use miracles, not in order to "prove" miracles or to "prove" healing but to indicate that the promised Messiah had come and that He had the power to forgive sin. Notice Mark 2:9-11, 17. These verses showed why Jesus performed healings!
Jesus was very soon surrounded by great crowds (Mark 3:7-10), but these folk were mostly only interested in Jesus as a miracle worker; yet it is obvious that few of these people joined the very first Christians, because Jesus separated Himself from the masses in order to give spiritual teaching to the original Apostles (Mark 3:13-14).
He then gave the original Apostles and the original 70 special power to heal the sick and to cast out demons. Notice Mark 3:13-14, Matthew 10:1, Luke 10:1,17-20, Acts 5:12-16, Acts 19:11-12 & 2 Corinthians 12:12. The original Apostles were granted special powers. The 'church fathers' who lived 100-400AD spoke of a great 'Age of Miracles' which they had witnessed but which was then passing. Why? Because the Apostles and the original 70 were leaving the scene. Of course, God still occasionally grants miracles, especially of healing, but it is in His hands. All we can do is petition Him to heal, but there is no promise of blanket healing today. We just have to accept this. The very shadow of the Apostle Peter passing over the sick was enough to heal people of any sickness in Jesus' day - that does not happen now and we just have to accept it. But don't forget that even in the age of the Apostles Paul & Timothy were not healed of their health problems because God simply did not will it. God alone decides these things.
But we should not conclude that God never heals the sick today - indeed, I myself have personally witnessed several dramatic healings after prayers have been offered for the sick. Where the 'positive confession' people are wrong is in assuming that they should adopt a dictatorial and demanding approach when petitioning God for healing and in falsely believing that their own words have some sort of magical power. This is completely unsciptural, in fact the teaching appears to be derived from the occult; from there it went into New Age and from New Age into the Word-faith movement!
Hope this helps.