031 Healing, deliverance, and miracles 1

The Great Commission

14 Later He appeared to the eleven as they sat at the table; and He rebuked their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they did not believe those who had seen Him after He had risen. 15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; 18 they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

Christ Ascends to God’s Right Hand

19 So then, after the Lord had spoken to them, He was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God. 20 And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen (Mark 16:14-20)

This is Mark’s description of Jesus giving the Great Commission. Some things to notice:

  1. The disciples were not “Supermen”! They were ordinary people like you and me who Jesus had to rebuke because of their initial unbelief. We can take a warning from this to beware of unbelief. Even though they had been with Him 3 years, it took some time to get their head around the resurrection. We must be careful to believe the scriptures, and the great move of the Holy Spirit around the world today. But we can also take encouragement – in spite of their failure to meet Jesus’ standard and slowness to believe, Jesus still used them. He will use us even in spite of all our faults.
  2. They were told to preach the Gospel. This is part of the recipe for healing today – we must preach the Gospel and baptise those who believe! Some Christians go praying for the sick but don’t get the results they want. One reason for this is that they don’t preach the Gospel, perhaps not wanting to create arguments. But the recipe is quite clear here: preach the Gospel and baptise the believers – then you will see the signs following if you believe.
  3. Some people seem to think that verse 17 should read “these signs shall follow the bishops and the pastors”. But it doesn’t say that. The signs follow “those that believe (that the signs will follow)”. God will deal with us according to our faith. Every believer can expect to see deliverance from demons, healing and miraculous signs in their ministry if they actively believe for them.  
  4. Some believe that these signs of casting out demons, speaking in tongues and healing of the sick are not for today, but were only for the early church. This is incomprehensible in my opinion – if we believe healing and deliverance are not for today, how do we know that the Great Commission and salvation are for today? But people who believe this will not see the signs in their ministries, because they are not believing for them.
  5. Note that it is the Lord who does the signs. Our part is to be filled with the Holy Spirit (Luke 24:46-49), listen to Him and obey His promptings (Rom 8:14). Then the Lord will do the work – we don’t need to be anxious (John 14:12-14).



  1. Why did the Lord rebuke the disciples?
  2. Where were they expected to preach the Gospel?
  3. Who can expect healings and miraculous signs to be part of their ministry?
  4. What are the 5 signs listed in this passage?
  5. What will happen to those who believe the message of the Gospel?
  6. What will happen to those who will not believe?
  7. Where is the Lord living now?
  8. How does He work with us?

Practical exercise

Ask your trainer if you can accompany them in a visit to someone who is demonised, and learn by experience how to set people free from demons.

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