Spirit or Spectacle?

The news about [Jesus’] miracles had spread far and wide, and vast numbers of people came to see him. Mark 3:8

Also Read: Mark 3: 1-30; Mat 13: 57-58; 2 Cor 2:16 -17

“Thousands of people “hungry” for healing, salvation and spiritual deliverance of some kind, filled the Wildey Gymnasium of the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex last night to [see] American televangelist Benny Hinn”.

Those were the opening lines of an article published in the local online newspaper following the arrival of the prominent Christian minister who came to Barbados for a two-day crusade in June of 2014.

His visit, both within and without Christian circles, was marred with controversy.

From the revelation that it had cost in excess of US$150, 000 for organisers to stage the event, to speculations of another enormous sum of money to retain the services of the world traveled preacher, the airwaves were flooded with more musings from naysayers than with excitement of people in anticipation of a great move of God.

Months proceeding Hinn’s visit, German evangelist Reinhard Bonnke also came to our shores to preach what turned out to be the simple and timeless gospel message.

Jesus saves.

It was not good enough however… a big “disappointment” to some who mockingly said they would attend the crusade just to see someone raised from the dead!

Not surprisingly, no great miracles were publicly recorded.

I do believe that persons who went believing God for a breakthrough, received their healing and deliverance according to their level of faith, as was the case in several accounts of Jesus’ acts of miracles recorded in the four gospels.

But what was also recorded clearly was that Jesus did not do many miracles in Nazareth because of their unbelief. They rejected and took offense of Him and His message.

Why did those thousands of persons attend the Hinn and Bonnke crusades? What drew them? Was it to see Jesus? Was it to glorify man? Or was it to get a front row seat at a spectacle?

Now, within our weekly church meetings, we must ask ourselves. Are we preaching the simple gospel, allowing the Holy Spirit to empower us to perform miracles of healing and deliverance that witness to the unbeliever? Or are we selling and promoting the spiritual gifts like prime realty or a brand new car? “Miss out on this deal and you will regret it!”

The Holy Spirit knows the truth. He responds accordingly.

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