Steve and Sandra Long have been pastors at ...
Erald van de Ridder, a pastor in Le Hague, Netherlands recently gave me his definition of “anointing.” He said, “The anointing is the supernatural ability to do supernatural stuff.”
In Acts 10:37-38, Peter described Jesus to the Gentiles this way, “You know what has happened throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John preached how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power, and how He went around doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil, because God was with Him.”
Let’s take a closer look at the passage. First, Peter says that the anointing is connected with the person of Holy Spirit. “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit.” When we say that someone has “the anointing,” we are also saying that the Holy Spirit is with him or her.
Second, Peter said the words “...with the Holy Spirit and power.” So when things happen when we minister, it is because the Holy Spirit has come and is working powerfully through us. The Greek word for power is dunamis, which literally means “force or miraculous power.” It is the same word from which we get the English word, “dynamite.” When the anointing comes into a situation, there is an explosion of the Holy Spirit’s power.
The Holy Spirit’s power is not for destruction. Jesus’ anointing was for “doing good and healing all who were under the power of the devil.” Before Jesus came, the Jews rarely saw miraculous healing and never saw deliverance from evil spirits. There are no stories of deliverance in the Old Testament. However, Isaiah prophesied that the “anointed one,” the Messiah, would be able to bring freedom. (Isaiah 61:1-2) So when Peter pointed out to Cornelius, a devout man who knew the Hebrew Scriptures, that Jesus performed healing and deliverance, he was showing them that Jesus was the Messiah.
As Peter was declaring the gospel to them, the Holy Spirit exploded in the situation, falling upon the Gentiles with power, which convinced them of the truth and also filled them with the Holy Spirit. God also wanted to save them from their sins and to have the power to set others free.
When someone receives healing, this explosion of God’s authority and power quickly invades the sick person’s body so that they are either instantly healed or healed sooner than usual. When an evil spirit leaves a person, it is because God’s desire for a person to be free overwhelms the authority of a demon.
When we are anointed, we are able also to do good because as Peter said in verse 38, “God is with us.” When God through the person of the Holy Spirit is with you, you have anointing. He knows that in ourselves, we have nothing to give to people, but He also knows that when His Holy Spirit flows in us, then we are capable of doing extremely good things for others. That is His desire and hope.
One significant verse about the anointing is Luke 5:17. “One day as He (Jesus) was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law, who had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem, where sitting there. And the power of the Lord was present for Him to heal the sick.” Four men let a paralyzed friend through a hole they made in the roof of the home where Jesus was meeting. Jesus not only forgave the man his sins but also healed him. He got up and left walking.
The power of the Lord was present and healings could take place because an anointed person was in the house. Jesus was always anointed of the Holy Spirit and healing was always possible wherever He was. If Jesus was able to heal because of the anointing that He carried, you and I are also able to minister healing because of the anointing in us. Everywhere we go, we should be able to minister healing to those who are sick or in pain!
Although Luke, a medical doctor, wrote this gospel, when he talks about the healing ministry of Jesus, he never employs the scientific or medical jargon of that era. What he talks about is Jesus healing everyone everywhere every time because of the anointing He carried.
"God is with us." When God through the person of the Holy Spirit is with you, YOU HAVE ANNOINTING!
I love the fact that this healing took place in a house full of “...Pharisees and teachers of the law who had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem.” This was not a room full of faith. It appears that this was a prearranged meeting where select Jewish leaders from the sect of Pharisees and teachers of the law from all across Israel were gathered to meet with Jesus. These were His foremost critics and scoffers.
Did a having a house full of doubters affect the anointing in the life of Jesus? No, the anointing, the presence and power of the Holy Spirit in Jesus was much greater. Did having a surprise intruder who happened to be paralyzed decrease the anointing in any way? Absolutely not! In fact, the anointing is for situations just like this one, to do good for someone in need!
Jesus carried the anointing in His physical body yet it was not outwardly visible, rather the Holy Spirit was on and in Jesus and at His disposal.
Several years ago, I was ministering in Timmins, Ontario, a city in northern Canada. The weekend was fun with several churches gathering for meetings. The Holy Spirit showed up at every meeting, and my approach to leading meetings was quite a bit more casual than the people had experienced before.
Before my flight home, we had a meal together in someone’s home. I changed before I ate, took out my running shoes for the flight home and set them by the front door ready for my departure. After the meal, I put the shoes on and rode to the airport. Once on the plane, I realized that these were not my shoes. They were exactly the same brand as mine, but an older version and slightly larger. I had taken the wrong pair.
Back at the house, the man whose shoes I had taken realized what had happened and decided to have some fun with my shoes. He wore them to the Sunday evening meeting; and when ministry time came, he took them off and began to place my shoes on the shoulders of those who wanted prayer.
Stories came back to me of the anointing that my shoes carried. They said that my shoes were an instrument for healing people and helping people to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Apparently, this man tapped many people on the shoulders with my shoes and almost all of them had an experience with God.
Friends, if my shoes can carry the anointing of God, why not you? Far too often we downplay the level at which God can use us. We do not expect the Holy Spirit in us to accomplish anything and so nothing happens. We meet our low expectations. My friend in Timmins thought my shoes would carry an anointing because I had been wearing them, so they did.
Jesus knew that He also walked in the anointing. Each time a sick person confronted Him, He expected to heal them, because He knew He was carrying the Holy Spirit!
The anointing was not only for Jesus. The twelve apostles also flowed in powerful anointing as these verses relate. Read Acts 4:33, “With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all.” Acts 5:12 also says, “The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people.”
Acts 4:33 follows Peter and John healing a lame man who had been paralyzed for his entire life. He was forty years old. These two passages sum up the general theme of what was happening in Jerusalem through the church leaders. Great anointing and power was with each of them. Did you notice the phrase, “Upon them all...”?
Acts 5:15 says, “People brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by. Crowds gathered also from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by evil spirits, and all of them were healed.”
The anointing of God is as transferable as a highly contagious virus.
What started with Jesus spread to His twelve disciples. Later Stephen and Philip, two of the seven men who served the Greek widows, also began to flow in this same powerful anointing.
That is the way it is supposed to be. The Holy Spirit no longer confines Himself to one person. I dislike it when meetings focus on one “man” or “woman of God.” Yes, they do have an anointing, but so do many others.
I love how these passages in Acts 3 and 5 read. It is as if there was so much anointing and so many incredible stories that Luke had to summarize them by saying, “The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people.” (Acts 5:12)
Are you operating in your anointing? If not, why not? Jesus expected that His disciples would be able to minister without any training. He sent them out before He had taught them how to do any of the things He released them to do. (See Luke 9) He wanted them to learn to rely on Holy Spirit and not on their own previous experience or personal charisma.
So what are you waiting for? Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you. When you meet those who are in pain or in need, ask if you may pray for them. When they say “yes,” lay your hand on them and pray a prayer of faith. When the Holy Spirit moves through you and touches them, lead them to Jesus. We want to hear testimonies of how the Lord touched others through you.
At TACF we have always believed that team ministry is the best model. We have had prayer ministry teams since the inception of our church in 1988. On any given night, there will be men, women, youth and sometimes children who carry the anointing to minister. One of the ways TACF has sustained revival since January 20, 1994, is through our ministry team. If it were up to one man of God to preach and do “the stuff,” we would have closed down long ago from exhaustion.
Just as people flocked to get close to Peter, lining up along the roads where he walked, so people have always sought out anointed men and women. In the late 90’s and into the 21st century we have both seen and heard of huge lines of people cued to get into the Brownsville Revival, the Smithton Outpouring and here in Toronto to name a few “hot” spots.
I am so glad that the anointing didn’t stop with Jesus. It didn’t stop with the twelve, and it didn’t stop when the last apostle died. In fact, if the anointing is the Holy Spirit on us and in us, there will never be an end to God’s great power as long as there are believers in Jesus willing to let God use them. Jesus promised that Christians would minister in “great power.” Great anointing should be the norm for every single follower of Jesus.
This archived article was written by Steve Long for release in Jan, 2006. Circumstances and situations may have changed regarding the author, locations and ministries. This content may therefore be outdated or misinformed.
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