Today's verse is Mark 16:17: "And these signs will accompany whose who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues..." When Jesus came from heaven to earth, he inaugurated the beginning of God's kingdom on earth. His primary message was "the kingdom of God." All his parables were examples pointing people to the kingdom of God.
Jesus came to restore Eden, paradise, what God intended when he created the world in Genesis 1,2. His signs and wonders were astounding. The dead were raised. The sick were healed. The blind's eyes were opened. The lame started to walk. Jesus addressed all the results of the Fall in the lives of the people he encountered.
He passed on these extraordinary powers to the twelve. In the book of Acts, we see Peter speaking to a man and restoring his ability to walk. We see Peter also raising a young child from the dead. We see Paul performing several signs and wonders in the name of Jesus. It appears even Barnabas, who was not one of the twelve but accompanied Paul on his first missionary journey, possessed this power.
Now, in today's verse, the power to perform signs and wonders is for "those who believe." In I Corinthians 12 and 14 we see a list of spiritual gifts Paul says belong to the church of Jesus Christ. Among all of them is listed the spiritual gift of healing. Evidently, physical healing is supposed to be a normal part of the church's life and blessing to others.
Could it be that the church of Jesus Christ, and all Christians, are living beneath our privilege? At the church I help oversee, Forest Hill Church in Charlotte, we've commenced a prayer and healing service every six weeks. Regularly, we've seen remarkable healings occur. Astoundingly, we've seen people experience the power of God in their lives.
At some level, Christians are supposed to have what Jesus had. At some level, signs and wonders are supposed to accompany the lives of those who believe.
Why not give it a try in your life? If there is someone in your sphere of influence who may need a prayer for healing, go to them and offer this prayer! See if God might give you the spiritual gift of healing in this person's life. See if you might be God's instrument to perform a sign and wonder if this person's life.
Ultimately, all healing belongs to God. We must trust him, especially when the answer is not what we had hoped. Nevertheless, we still obey, hoping God may use us for this miracle to occur.
The kingdom of God will not be fully established until Jesus returns. Sin, disease, sickness and evil will continue until that day. But, until that day comes, Christians are to work to bring heaven to earth. We're to work to being God's kingdom here.
Let's not live beneath our privilege. Let's use every weapon in our arsenal given to us by Jesus.
He is the one who said, "These signs will accompany those who believe!"