“But Peter put them all forth and knelt down and prayed.  And turning to the body said ‘Tabitha, arise.’  And she opened her eyes—and when she saw Peter, she sat up.”

Acts 9:40

We make it so hard, forgetting Jesus simply said “Follow Me.”

W.W.J.D.

Several years ago this acronym, which stands for “What Would Jesus Do,” became quite popular.  Rooted in the 1896 Christian class, In His Steps, by Charles Sheldon, the question is one we’d do well to continue grappling with each day—particularly as it deals with our faith and obedience.

That day, when Peter arrived in Joppa and the local disciples heard he was coming and quickly took him to the chamber where Dorcas’ lifeless body lay (Acts 9:36-38), it’s clear he was “walking in the Spirit” in light of what happened.

Although he’d experienced Christ’s Resurrection Power in some pretty miraculous ways since the Day of Pentecost. . .seeing 3,000 souls added to the church in one day (Acts 2:41). . . witnessed the healing of the lame man at the Beautiful Gate (3:1-11). . .seen another 5,000 believe on Christ after he preached Jesus and Him crucified (3:12-4:4). . .felt “the place shaken” as the saints rejoiced and prayed” (4:23-31). . .seen a multitude of folks healed of diseases and unclean spirits (5:16), etc. . .he’d not yet seen God raise someone from the dead through his personal ministry.

Thus, we can well imagine that this was a daunting task indeed.

Or, it would have been if he’d felt raising Dorcas was up to him.

However, his “putting them all out, praying and saying ‘Tabitha, arise’,” was basically the same thing Jesus did that day when he raised up the dead daughter of the ruler of the synagogue (Mk. 5:35-41).  Yet, he was simply following Jesus’ example in faith, not resorting to some religious formula or type of spiritual hocus-pocus.

Too often we read a passage like this and attempt to copycat it, substituting “what happened” for the One “Who is” (Heb. 11:6). It’s Jesus’ Presence and Power—not our carnal, contrived duplication—that releases His Spirit in our lives.  It’s our saying to Him, “Jesus, I want to loose You and let You go, i.e., let You be Lord” that enables Him to say to satan and our strongholds, “Loose him/her and let him/her go” (Jn. 11:44).

That’s why we should never be content with living powerless or mediocre lives; neither should we go around unconcerned when lukewarmness has become the norm in our lives, instead of red-hot love for our Lord (Rev. 3:15-16).

O, dear Pilgrim, the Lord Jesus didn’t die a terrible death on the Cross so we could wink at our sins and point to Grace.  God forbid!  Instead, He died so we could be freed from our sins and serve Him as the King of kings and Lord of lords (Rom. 6:1-23).  Therefore, let us not rest until He is Lord of all.  Only then will we be able to experience what Peter did and see His Resurrection Power unleashed in our lives and churches.

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated July 9, 2010

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