THE SERVANT GENERAL
THEME FOR 2013
1 Kings 17:17-24
works wonders, but wonders stir up faith. With faith we can
do the works of Jesus and greater ones that those. With greater
works people are led to faith in Jesus.
raised the widow’s son from the dead in Nain, and “fear
seized them all, and they glorified God” (Lk 7:16a).
The people recognized that God was acting in and through Jesus.
Elijah also raised a widow’s son (1 Kgs 17:22), and
the woman said to him, “Now indeed I know that you are
a man of God, and it is truly the word of the Lord that you
speak.” (1 Kgs 17:24). The woman recognized that God
was acting in and speaking through Elijah. God delivered David
(Ps 30:2-4), overturning his dire situation (Ps 30:12), and
David recognized his proper response: “So that my glory
may praise you and not be silent. O Lord, my God, forever
will I give you thanks.” (Ps 30:13). By God’s
amazing salvific work in his life, David had become a grateful
and zealous proclaimer of God’s glory.
turn people around. The widow at Zarephath had become bitter
against Elijah when her son died. Recognizing him as a man
of God, she would have become bitter against God as well.
“Why have you done this to me, man of God? Have you
come to me to call attention to my guilt and to kill my son?”
(1 Kgs 17:18). But because of the wonder of Elijah bringing
her son back to life, she then affirmed, “Now indeed
I know that you are a man of God” (1 Kgs 17:24a), and
she became open to God’s words through him (1 Kgs 17:24b).
the case of Saul, God directly and dramatically intervened
in his life, and totally turned him around. He became Paul.
He was totally transformed, from his “former way of
life in Judaism, how (he) persecuted the church of God beyond
measure and tried to destroy it” (Gal 1:13), to the
zealous apostle who would “proclaim him to the Gentiles”
(Gal 1:16b). The greatest persecutor of Christians had become
the greatest proclaimer of Christ.
Today, with a secular society and a disbelieving world, signs
and wonders are even more important in bringing people to
God. So how about you? We might not be called on to raise
the dead, but we certainly can do wonders as God acts in and
through us. Jesus himself has assured us, that our faith will
work wonders (Jn 14:12).
wonders that can help bring people to faith in God would be
such things as our total transformation in Christ, which many
people, especially those who know us, could consider miraculous,
a transition from death to life. People need to be able to
conclude that “God has visited his people.” (Lk
7:16c). People can then become more open to the gospel, revealed
through us. “A great prophet has arisen in our midst”
must know that God has commissioned us, and so will empower
us. We are just His instruments. We go not on our own strength
but on God’s. We do God’s work, and “the
gospel preached by (us) is not of human origin.” (Gal
1:11). Thus we need to be intimately connected with God. We
pray, knowing that what we ask for in Jesus’ name will
be granted. Then we, and those we are trying to reach, can
experience the wonders of God. “The Lord heard the prayer
of Elijah; the life breath returned to the child’s body
and he lived.” (1 Kgs 17:22).
Faith works wonders, and such wonders stir up faith. Let the
gospel of salvation in Jesus be proclaimed to all, and let
all be awed by the glorious wonders of God. “This report
about him spread through the whole of Judea and in all the
surrounding region.” (Lk 7:17).