Why Not Now ?
THERE was a time when the servants of God had power with Him, and prevailed. In the first century, when the disciples of Jesus prayed, the earth trembled (Acts 4 : 31), and the Holy Spirit, like a flaming tongue of fire, rested upon them. Acts 2:3. When they preached a risen Saviour, men’s hard hearts melted, and they inquired, “Men and brethren, what shall we do ?” Acts 2:37.
There was a time when those who were diseased sought unto the Mighty Healer, instead of sending for the vender of pills and powders; and when a humble fisherman could stand by the side of the lifeless form and say, “Tabitha, arise,” and the dead would live again. Acts 9:40.
These things were common once; why not now ? Where does the Bible tell us that they must cease to be? —Nowhere. On the contrary. Jesus tells us that “these signs shall follow them that believe.” He says, “In My name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take up* (loose the hold of) serpents; and if they shall drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them.” Mark 16:17-18.
Again: “He that believeth on Me (the Word of God), the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do, because I go unto My Father . . . !” John 14:12
These promises are sure to them that believe. Brethren, the trouble with many of us is that we do not have faith. We ought to be thankful that God in his infinite mercy has bestowed upon us as a people some of the precious gifts of his Spirit; but He is willing to bestow upon us all the gifts of His Spirit just as soon as we place ourselves in a position where He can consistently do so. Let us search our hearts in the light of His Word and the testimonies of His Spirit, and let us return unto God, and see if He will not return unto us. The work is fast closing up. Soon the night cometh, wherein no man can work. We mean to be whole-hearted sometime; why not now ?
– The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, Nov. 28, 1882