Paul was doing extra-ordinary miracles. I want to be doing more ordinary ones! There’s three things to note from these verses:
1) No formulae
The seven sons of Sceva thought they had found the perfect healing formula – “In the name of Jesus, whom Paul proclaims”. They got a good kicking from the demon. “Jesus I know, and Paul I recognise, but who are you?” Healing and authority over demons is not a ‘get the right formula’ thing – it’s about the authority we have because of the relationship we have! As I said on Sunday, I am a son and a saint no matter what they say! I’m with Him! I want to be as infamous in hell as Paul! I want to know Jesus even better! Demons flee because they fear Jesus: Jesus in us.
Paul had spent his 3 years in Ephesus, weeping in his prayers and serving the Lord (20:19). So you can see how his tear-stained hankies carried an anointing. I really hope you are not someone who has been sucked in by TV evangelists to send a gift and get an anointed cloth. Spend time with Jesus, get his heart and compassion instead.
3) Faith for healings and salvations
The breakthrough came in Ephesus because of the preaching of the Gospel and healing of the sick, v.20. So… let’s ask God for faith for that kind of breakthrough here. So many saved that the magic books burnt were worth £10 million in today’s money.
There are miracles on every page of Acts – ordinary miracles and extraordinary miracles. If we focus on Jesus rather than formulae and have His compassion and faith the size of a mustard seed in our great Big God, we will do the same.