You Are For Signs And Wonder, by Brother Edikan Jerry Akpan
Definition of a signs and wonder:
Point to note: You are born for signs and wonders means that because you have accepted Jesus as your lord and personal savior, you have been singled out to bring rejoicing to heaven. This point will be understood more as we go into the word.
Memory verse: Isiah 8:18
Reading: Mark 16: 15-18
Message Division: God has a purpose for your life* He has equipped you* He has asked you to go!
Right from time in the bible, from the creation story, we see that God is the creator of everything, He never creates any being without a purpose, and ultimately all His creations stretch beyond the human understanding of man.
On the first day of creation, it was recorded in Genesis 1:1-4 that the earth was without form and void, and darkness was all over the face of the deep, God created light, and this purpose was to separate light from darkness. This separation of light from darkness can be viewed physically and spiritually, the separation signifies God’s power as He is the light, and no darkness is in him at all 1 John 1:5. From this illustration, we see that God’s purpose for creating light stretched beyond the normal human understanding.
Outside the creation story, we see in the life of Jeremiah, Jeremiah 1:4-5, that the lord said, ‘before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations. Just as the lord said for Jeremiah, so is the case in our life, Before He formed you, He knew you, and before you were born He set you a part to be the light! Just as He is the light! And be his Ambassador to the people.
Having established that God always has a purpose, even for bringing you to this earth, as to his human creations, what has He sent you to address? What is His instruction to you? From the life of Moses, Isaiah and Jesus as our case study, one key point to note is that God cares and loves his people, and whenever their hearts go astray from Him, He raises leaders, ambassadors of his kingdom to guide and lead their heart back to Him.
Moses: The birth of Moses- Exodus 2:1-24, Reconciliation- Exodus 32:7 ‘Then the lord said to Moses, Go down, because your people, whom you have brought out of Egypt have become corrupt. –Go down and reconcile their heart back to me, their heart is going astray, worshiping other gods.
Isaiah: Isiah was one of the prophets in the bible, who came before Jesus Christ, and foretold his coming. Read Isaiah 7,8,9 for better understanding on the situation of the Israelites around that time, Their hearts were far away from God, so Isiah was sent to be a sign and wonder: Reconcile their hearts back to Him. Isaiah 8:18. ‘Here am I, and the children the Lord has given. We are for signs and symbols in Israel from the Lord Almighty, who dwells on mount Zion’.
Jesus Christ: The life of Jesus Christ was a sign and wonder. From his birth, death and resurrection. Because of the Love God had for the world, he sent his only son to the world so as to reconcile our hearts back to him. As the world was going astray. John 3:16-17 ‘For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. (17) For God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
What is this ‘reconciliation’? Reconciliation in this context simply means to draw the heart of men to God. Those who have gone astray, those acting contrary to the instructions of God.
Just as He gave these great men of God the duty to reconcile hearts back to him, we have also been instructed in this line.
God is the Master planner and an architect, before He builds He draws plan. Before He created you, He knew your purpose. Luke 1:13-17: Before John the Baptist was conceived, God said he shall be great.
God has created you for a purpose! He has already said you will be great! Therefore, in order to reap the encompassing benefits of greatness, there is need for you as a believer, to work in line with His purpose for your Life. Mark 16:15: ‘He said to them, Go into the world and preach the gospel to every creature. In doing so, you reconcile the heart of sinners to God; make them see the light in His mightiness. So He’s telling you, Go! Go into your class rooms, your place of work! All social gatherings and preach the gospel to every creature! Both the people you know and don’t know. Tell them about the coming, death and resurrection of Jesus; let them be saved as they believe in him.
How do we go about reconciling these hearts? Jesus has done most of the work really.
He gave us the means to do this: 2 Corinthians 5:18 ‘All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us ministry of reconciliation. As believers, once you have been saved, you are given this ministry of reconciliation. This ministry of reconciliation is the power to minister to people about the good news. Simply talking about Christ! Birth, death, resurrection, Purpose for coming.
Jesus left earth so that he sends the Advocate to come and assist us. Jesus said in the book of John, it is for our benefit he goes away. First is that Jesus needed to depart the earth, so that through him the world will be saved. John 16:7- But I tell you the truth, it is for your benefit that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. Who is this advocate? John 14:26 –But the advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you
There is only one purpose that is common to all believers worldwide. The only one Shared Ministry given to all children of God is the ministry of reconciliation. No one is exempted and everyone is given this ministry immediately he or she receives Jesus and becomes born again. So also are we given the advocate (Holy Spirit) to come and be our Helper.
We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors. 2 Corinthian 5 vs 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: be reconciled to God. (This was the Holy Spirit speaking through Paul). We are Christ ambassadors. To spread this good news!
Quick illustration of an ambassador: You, as a believer, you are Christ’s ambassador. Perform your duties. And reconcile sinners to Christ and strengthen other believers.
So how does this all add up to being born for signs and wonders?
It simply means that God has created you for a purpose, Purpose of being ambassadors, reconciling hearts of sinners back to his kingdom. This purpose of God for your life stretches beyond human understanding, the purpose to become a sign and wonder who causes the kingdom of God to rejoice! Luke 15:7.
‘I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who do not need to repent. This is simply an evidence that the greatest sign and wonder a person can be is to bring celebration to the heavens.
So, Go out and talk about Christ! You aren’t asked to open a church first before you do this, just go and talk, spread the good news, let sinner be saved that they may be reconciled to the father! Talk about him to your friends at school! Colleagues at work! Your bosses! Even strangers! Give the example of Overload etc., economy is hard, But! My Jesus is seeing me through. Makes them wonder, who is this your Jesus? How does he help you? And that’s it.
Conclusion: Why should you be a sign and wonder that will cause the heavens to rejoice?
If your ways are pure and by the grace of God, you make heaven, you will still be judged and rewarded in heaven based on the work you do on earth. 2 Chronicles 15:7 ‘But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded. Therefore, if every time heaven is rejoicing because of you, then on judgement your rewards wouldn’t even be quantified!!
Pray that God will strengthen and give you the confidence to carry out his task!
The sermon, You Are For Sign And Wonder, by Brother Edikan Jerry Akpan, was deliverd on November 13th 2016 on the occasion of 2016 Children and Teens Special Service.