The Berean Expositor
Volume 51 - Page 91 of 181
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Setting the scene --- The Acts:
"Jews require a Sign".
pp. 225 - 229
In our previous studies we have seen the close relationship between the people of
Israel and God's use of miracles in dealing with them. Thus we should not be surprised
to read in an Acts period epistle:
"The Jews require a sign" (I Cor. 1: 22).
The resurrected Christ, just before His ascension, had told the disciples that they were
to be . . . . .:
". . . . . witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto
the uttermost part of the earth" (Acts 1: 8).
He had told them that . . . . .:
". . . . . repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all
nations, beginning at Jerusalem" (Luke 24: 47).
If the disciples were to start in Jerusalem, if they were to go throughout Judea, they
needed credentials. If they were to go to the Jews, they had to have confirmation of their
ministry: "the Jews require a sign". The Lord Jesus Christ knew this and for this very
reason had told them . . . . .:
"And these signs shall follow them that believe; In My name shall they cast out
devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up serpents; and if they drink
any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall
recover . . . . . And they went forth and preached everywhere, the Lord working with
them and confirming the word with signs following" (Mark 16: 17-20).
If we read the Acts of the Apostles, and the epistles written during the Acts period
(viz. all except Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, I & II Timothy, Titus, Philemon
which were written afterwards) we shall find records of all these miracles, except the
drinking of poison, taking place. The signs of Mark 16: were an important feature of
the Acts period.
"How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation; which at first began to be
spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard Him; God also
bearing them witness both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of
the Holy Spirit, according to His will?" (Heb. 2: 34).
Thus these signs, wonders, diverse miracles and gifts were a witness and testimony to
back up the ministry of those who spoke about that "great salvation". In many ways,