I have noticed that the Lord tends to talk to me a lot about resurrection and immortality when I am praying for the dead to resurrect. It shouldn’t be surprising, I suppose, as God is interested in teaching us in any and every situation, but this particular time I was praying for an older chicken of ours who had died, God decided to speak to me about His nature, and how our perspective and understanding about God’s nature has EVERYTHING to do with success in consistently raising the dead.
Any follower of Jesus Christ can raise the dead; its not a special thing that only special people do. However, while anyone CAN raise the dead, few people will do it on a consistent, ongoing basis with any notable level of success. It comes down to our mindsets and beliefs primarily about God–who He is and what He is like. Hebrews 11:6 says, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” It is of utmost importance to our faith that we believe God is a rewarder. Ultimately, this verse speaks about God’s nature, in that He gives good gifts. Matthew 7:11 juxtaposes that concept of God’s goodness with evil saying, “If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” In other words, if evil people know how to give rewards and nice presents, then God who is imminently good is far better even than that! If we want to receive good things from God, then we need to believe that He is good!
The next thing the Lord showed me was about his kindness. Think about how absolutely, stunningly kind God is to allow us to raise the dead. Death is a horrible, terrible thing–and while there are streams of thought that talk about it as a transition and “passing through” to another phase of life, let’s be honest–death is horrible. There is often physical pain, not to mention regret, grief, loss, and heartache. There are a lot of terrible things that surround death, and it was never God’s plan for us to die to begin with!! There’s a reason he told Adam and Eve not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil–so they wouldn’t die. Death isn’t just a phase or a step or a bump or whatever. It is an abomination against God’s plan for us because God has plans for hope and a future and for long life and blessings (Jeremiah 29:11), not death–it’s not on HIS plan for our lives. On the other hand, this kind, good, gracious God gives us power over death to destroy it’s works and to bring those who have died back to life. When I thought about that–about God’s kindness, I was brought to tears. There simply aren’t words enough to describe how incredibly good God is. How kind God is. How loving He is toward us.
I asked God while he was showing me this how we go about raising the dead, and you know what He said to me? He said,
“Anyone who wants to learn how to raise the dead must first be convinced of my goodness.”
How can faith for resurrection be built on anything less? If we don’t believe God is good, and that He rewards us, then how can we expect to receive anything from Him? That is being double-minded, and as James 1:6-7 says, “But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.” We all have doubts, but God is trying to bring us to a place where we never doubt His goodness–because when we doubt, it’s not that God doesn’t want to give us anything any longer, but doubt is putting our faith in what God WON’T do–and what we believe and ask for, we can have. This is why we so often don’t receive what we think we are requesting because our doubt actually asks God NOT to give us what we want. As we become convinced in the deepest parts of our soul that God is kind, good, loving, and that “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” God isn’t good one moment and evil or hard or bad or angry or anything else the next. The Bible says that He gives good gifts, and is the Father of light, which is synonymous with all blessings and good things, and that He doesn’t change. If he doesn’t change, then evil and darkness and anything less than complete goodness simply doesn’t come from Him.
What’s more, in addition to being kind and good, our heavenly Father is all about life–and not just the kind where we just barely get by, but abundant life. If we can’t grasp even the vaguest of essence of understanding of God’s desire for us to live long, prosperous lives, do we really understand the good news that Jesus paid for our sins and defeated death so that we could live? John 3:16 [paraphrased] says, “God loved the world so much that he gave his only heir, his son Jesus, so that instead of dying we would live forever, immortal and unable for death to touch us.” God is passionate about life. He burns for it. He bled and died for it. For us. For you. God can’t be anything other than who HE is, and getting a revelation of His nature is the first step to raising the dead.
God has formed and purposed YOU to raise the dead. He has designed you to transform the world with your love and to step out in big and small ways without fear to remove the blight of darkness from this earth and instead to extend His light. You are the emissary that God has sent to be the solution to the darkness and pain in front of you. You are the solution to the deaths that happen around you. In fact, you may be the ONLY solution because many even in the church perish for lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6), not realizing that God can and will raise the dead. I’ve witnessed it happen. You are salt and light–you are the qualified resurrectionist and God wants to take you to a deeper level, where you are so convinced of His goodness that not even death can stand up in front of you. Go forward and be the game-changer you already are inside.
If you want to learn more about how you can be a resurrectionist, check out the resources below. If you want to grow quickly in this area, I highly recommend five things:
1. Sign up for our Raise the Dead Initiative mailing list here to receive updates, and connect further.
2. Get some books. I have written two books on the subject: Practical Keys to Raise the Dead and Faith to Raise the Dead. Tyler’s books are How to Raise the Dead and The Dead Are Raised, and be sure to check out Father Hebert’s book Saints Who Raised The Dead
3. Join the RDI on Facebook: Raise the Dead Initiative The Raise the Dead Initiative is a group I started to help grow the Body of Christ in this area, and I will eventually develop an RDI teaching curriculum to train believers to pray for and raise the dead.
5. Look at how you can host or attend a Resurrection School in your area. Contact Tyler Johnson via his website at http://www.oneglance.org/ to arrange the event. Tyler is an awesome man of God and good friend who regularly teaches Resurrection Schools to help transform our understanding on the subject of resurrection life. He has Dead Raising Teams around the world who are ready to mobilize in their area to release the abundant life of Jesus Christ.
6. Look for and actively engage opportunities to raise the dead in your area by reaching out to friends when you hear that someone has died.