The source of division and disunity between evangelical and charismatic believers is not difficult to single out. At one time evangelicals said that charismatics were extreme and unbalanced in some of their teachings and practices while charismatics felt that evangelicals were weak and lacked the demonstration of God’s power. While in some quarters of the body of Christ this disunity is gradually being overcome, many evangelical believers are still wary of anything having to do with “signs and wonders” and miraculous healing since these are generally labeled as charismatic and therefore considered by them in some way extreme. But we are in the end times, and the Lord will have His way—He is restoring unity to His Church. He has revealed a scriptural way by which miraculous healings can take place without the accompanying charismatic manifestations such as people falling down and speaking in unknown tongues.
If we study the healing ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples in the gospels and in Acts, we see that when they ministered healing to the sick no one fell down and no one spoke in tongues. (By this we are not at all saying that these manifestations are not from God, but simply that according to Scripture they did not accompany the miraculous healings.) Rather, the sick were most often healed when Jesus or His disciples exercised their authority over disease and demons. They rebuked the infirmities and gave authoritative commands to them to be healed; they rebuked demons and commanded them to leave. They gave these commands with mountain-moving faith and without doubt. Since diseases and demons were under the authority of Jesus and His disciples, they were forced to obey the commands with the result that people were healed miraculously.
This authority over disease and demons to be used in the context of proclaiming the Kingdom of God to the lost has never been taken away from the Church. It is in effect whenever disciples of Christ are sent out to proclaim the Kingdom of God (Luke 9:1-2, Luke 10:1, 9). However, most believers—whether evangelical or charismatic—either do not know that they have been given this authority or they have never been taught how to exercise it. But when they are properly taught according to Scripture, we will see them perform miracles of healing in the name of Jesus as the gospel is being proclaimed. And these miracles take place without any accompanying “charismatic” manifestations. The miracles done in Jesus’ name demonstrate to the lost that our God is the true God and that Jesus Christ is the only way to Him.
This approach opens the way for evangelicals and charismatics to work together in proclaiming the gospel to the lost and the eventual fulfillment of the Great Commission in these end times.
Walls of disunity fall in San Jose, California