Concerning the Miraculous #1
The laying on of Hands

A. Fierce battles now loom and rage relentlessly relative to the availability of modern day miracles and modern day revelations
1. In reality the two go hand-in-hand
2. Contenders for one will sooner or later contend for the other
B. Sadly, there is even misconceptions and false doctrines taught in the Lord’s church concerning the influence of the Holy Spirit

1. The battle would end quickly and cease forever if there were a scriptural understanding of the matter concerning the Holy Spirit, the apostles, and the laying on of hands
2. It is important to realize that from Pentecost onward (Acts 2) the Father and Christ have imparted miracle working ability only the Holy Spirit baptism recipients (we will discuss this more in another lesson), and those whom the apostles laid their hands on
a. Since we have neither group around today, it is a foregone conclusion that men are not now presently endowed with miracle-working powers
b. There is no need for such … in another lesson we will speak more on this issue as we study 1 Corinthians 13:8-13
3. These miraculous powers were given for the revelation of truth and its conformation
a. All truth has been revealed…
1) 2 Timothy 3:16-17
2) 2 Peter 1:3
3) No new revelation from God has been given since John penned Revelation (AD 96)
b. Miracles in the first century were also used to conform the word of truth
1) Mark 16:19-20
2) Hebrews 2:3-4
3) There is no need for a new conformation of an old message fully conformed in the first century
4) We have the Bible today and no longer need miracles – as we will prove in our next lesson

1. While Jesus ministered here on earth in the flesh, he could only be in one place at any given time. He selected disciples and apostles to help Him.
a. As great as the apostles (13) were they could only be in 13 places at one time
b. Therefore the Lord provided them a miraculously endowed helpers
2. The church began in AD 33 on the first Pentecost following the resurrection of Jesus
a. It would be close to 20 years before any of the New Testament books were penned
b. It would be some 63 years before the New Testament was complete
c. So, inspiration was in men before it was placed in a book – the Holy Bible
3. Through the laying of the apostles’ hands, miraculously endowed men could join hands with the apostles for the furtherance of their worthy and wonderful work
4. There are several instances of this in the book of Acts and in the epistles…

1. Stephen and Philip are mentioned initially among the 7 men selected to serve tables in Acts 6:2-7. Later both of these preformed miracles
a. Stephen preformed miracles… Acts 6:8
b. Philip preformed miracles in Samaria… Note Acts 8:6-12
c. The implication is that they received such power by the laying on of the apostles’ hands in Acts 6:6

2. Stephen not Philip had received Holy Spirit baptism as the 12 had in Acts 2 or that Paul received in Acts 9

3. Philip, called the evangelist (Acts 21:8), enjoyed phenomenal preaching success in Samaria
a. Miracles and signs were done by him
b. Philip could and did perform miracles and signs:
1) But he could not transmit miraculous powers to others
2) This exclusively belonged to the apostles
c. Listen carefully to the word of the Holy Spirit through the pen of Luke… Acts 8:14-17

4. Peter and John could do something Philip was unable to do
a. Simon realized this… Acts 8:18
b. They could and did transmit miraculous power to the newly baptized Samaritans – they traveled some 70 miles to do so
c. Peter and John prayed, but it took more than their prayers to transmit these powers
d. It required the laying on of “the apostles’ hands”

5. Remember, Simon saw this to be true (Acts 8:18)
a. The blessed Samaritans received the miraculous measure of the Holy Spirit as a result of the laying on of the apostles’ hands – not prior to it
b. The apostles did not lay their hands on Simon because his heart was not right

6. Acts 19 is another occurrence of this phenomenon
a. Acts 19:1-5
b. Paul helped 12 men at Ephesus to realize that their baptism was not valid – they know only John’s baptism
c. When they received the valid baptism of the great commission… Acts 19:6

7. In every one of these instances in Acts, there had to be personal contact between the transmitting apostles and the receiving beneficiaries

8. The power could not be carried through a third party or by means of a literary document such as an epistle

1. Romans 1:11
a. He desire was to go to Rome that he might lay hands on them that they might received the miraculous measure of the Holy Spirit
b. He could not send this transmitted power through a 3rd party, or by the epistle he was writing
c. Paul alluded to these powers in Romans 12:6-8
1) The possessor of these powers received them from direct contact with an apostle
2) Acts 2:10 reveals that sojourners from Rome were present at Pentecost
3) Paul also knew many at Rome, and gave personal salutations (Rom. 16:3-15)
4) He may have also conferred upon this power when they were with him in other places

2. Both the Corinthians and the Galatians had received powers, and Paul surely had ample opportunities to transmit such while laboring in Achaia and in Galatia.

3. Three chapters in Corinthians (12-14) are devoted to spiritual gifts.

4. Galatians 3:5… In Galatia, Paul had ministered to them the Spirit, and had worked miraciles among them personally

5. The Ephesians possessed miraculous powers as we learn in Acts 19:1-7 and Ephesians 4:7-13
a. The Ephesians elders who met with Paul in Acts 20:17-38 may well have possessed miraculous ability
b. Paul worked 3 years in Ephesus and likely conferred such powers to them

6. Notice what Paul wrote to Timothy… 2 Timothy 1:6 and 1 Timothy 4:14
a. Who conferred these gifts to Timothy? The elders, Paul, or both?
b. The elders herein may have been miraculously endowed ten themselves with prophetic powers
c. The presbytery (elders) did not, could not transfer the gift to Timothy
1) It was done through the laying on of the hands of Paul
2) The presbytery merely sanctioned the action

A. With no Holy Spirit baptism recipients now living and with no one old enough to had had their hands laid on them by the apostles – miracles have obviously ceased
B. Again, if you do not know what the Bible says about the Holy Spirit then you do not know anything at all about the Holy Spirit

Tom Moore
Park Heights church of Christ
P. O. Box 107
Hamilton, Texas 76531

About from the Preachers PC

Gospel Preacher for the Park Heights church of Christ in Hamilton, TX. I stand for and defend the truth of God's word. All other degrees and diplomas mean very little in comparison.
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