Supreme Ambition Ministries

To Know Christ and to Make Him Known – Philippians 3:10

Greater Works

The following is a response to a question by a young Christian asking for clarification on the passage of scripture from John 14:12 where Jesus predicts that the disciples will do greater works than he has done. The question has to do with the apparent lack of “greater works” in 21st Century Church.

This certainly is an interesting passage and one that can bring conviction upon a Church that appears to be Christian in name only. However, let me say first that it would be impossible for mere humans to do greater miracles than Jesus did when he was on the earth. To interpret this passage correctly one has to keep it in the context of the moment it was spoken. Jesus was attempting to bring comfort to disciples who had just been told that he was going away. Their fear was that they would be orphaned. His comfort was that He was going to the Father and because he was going to the Father He would send another comforter (the Holy Spirit – Christ within us). The term “greater” can also be translated as “larger”. The works that they would do and that we have the opportunity to do would have a larger scope and therefore be “greater”. Reading the book of Acts it is easy to see how Jesus’ words were fulfilled. Peter’s first sermon gained 3000 converts, then later there were a few thousand more and on and on. By the end of the 3rd Century the world was effectively evangelized, not all of it was perfect but the influence of Christ had “exploded” throughout the world. Unfortunately, religiosity entered in, Church and State became one and the Dark Ages brought in a millennium of spiritual tragedy. But that is another story…Notice in John that Jesus told the disciples that anything they asked in his name he would do. The key is “in his name”, “according to his will”.

A significant part of Jesus’ ‘greater works’ has to do with the fact of his living in the heart of each believer and among the Church. In a real sense when we do his will on earth it is Christ doing his own will. We are each portions of Him, connected to Him by a scarlet thread of Fellowship. While He was in human flesh he was bound by time and space, but now living in us he can be thousands of places at one time and throughout the ages. Having said that I agree that the power of the Church is lying dormant. We have the resurrection power abiding in us but it lies powerless because of a lack of surrender both individually and corporately. The latter being the most important. In a religious culture where we have symbols, icons, liturgy, ministry, preaching, ordinances, affluence, talents, gifts, callings, men of God and women of God, missions and money we cannot say “Silver and Gold have I none” but neither can we say, “Rise, take up thy bed and walk”. My observation is that we have lost our passion, our connection with our Lord. A husband and wife can perfunctorily make love but when there is a deep fellowship obtained the love overflows and is deepened. Very possibly the best picture of “greater works” is in ‘the dance’. There is a leader and a follower. The observer cannot tell who is leading and who is following. The participants each have surrendered their personal desires to the beauty of the dance. There is little that compares to the power of two people in the unity of the dance. The gliding, the soaring of the couple is transferred to the observers and the “greater work” is done. In the Church of the 21st Century we must concentrate on knowing Christ intimately, surrendering our wills to Him. The first Christians got it and Luke recorded some of it in Acts. Throughout history their have been flickers of His light and moments of greater works. The untold millions of people born again certainly are greater works. But Christ’s desire is the Fellowship of love and the beauty of the dance…

August 4th, 2007 Posted by | Spiritual Gifts | 2 comments

2 Responses to “Greater Works”

  1. Uncle Brother, You have great thoughts!

  2. Hello My Brother,
    I am always interested in what you have to say, your thoughts and dreams. God bless you and keep up the great work.