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The workings of miracles. Now that’s what we’re going to major on this morning—the workings of miracles. And I want to point out to you that there’s a very real place for this in the church today. 1 Corinthians 12 verse 28, 1 Corinthians 12:28:
“And God hath set some in the church ...”
And I think here the church in these chapters of 1 Corinthians could be rendered the public assembly of God’s people. You see, without being controversial and I just use this as an example, Paul says, “It is not permitted for your women to speak in the church.” Well, if it meant the church as the total body of Jesus Christ, any person who’s in the church is in the church all the time. So, in that case, women would not be allowed to speak at all which might be a good reform, but it’s not obviously, obviously not what Paul intended. So I just use that as an example to draw the inference that when Paul is speaking in 1 Corinthians 11, 12, 14 about “the church,” he’s talking about the official public assembly of God’s people. So he says “God has set some in the church…” and he gives a specific order. He mentions eight ministries and the first five are given in a specific order.
“… first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers…”
Those are the top three ministries in authority in the assembly. And I think the essential point about them is that they are ministries of the Word, and bear in mind the Word is the supreme authority in the assembly of God’s people All else is subject to the authority of the Word and must be judged by the standards of the Word. So the three senior ministries in the assembly are all ministries of the Word.
Then we come—incidentally, do you notice just by way of illustration and comment—well, I suppose you’re familiar with the five ministries stated in Ephesians 4:11—the five main ministry gifts. “He gave some apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors [or shepherds] and teachers.” Five gifts, ministry gifts, not spiritual gifts, but ministry gifts—apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, teachers. Now it’s very interesting to notice that neither pastors nor evangelists are mentioned here in
1 Corinthians 12:28. And you say, “Why?” And I’ll offer you my opinion. First of all, why are the evangelists not mentioned? What is the ministry of the evangelist? To bring the sinner to Christ. But we’re talking about God’s people. There are no sinners, no unconverted. So the ministry of the evangelist is not needed there. The evangelist himself may be present, but not in his ministry as an evangelist. He may have other ministries. He may exercise the gifts of healings or the working of miracles, but as an evangelist he is not needed in the church. See this really pinpoints something that our accepted methods of evangelism today are very contrary to the New Testament. We get all the believers together, line up the back row with unconverted and turn the evangelist loose and hope that a few of the unconverted will get converted. That is not the New Testament pattern of evangelism the least bit.
There’s only one pattern evangelist in the New Testament and his name is Philip. And Philip didn’t sit in the temple in Jerusalem and wait for the people of Samaria to make their way there—which would never have happened. But he went down where the sinners were, without a committee, without a program and just taught them about Christ, and they came to the Lord. Now that is New Testament evangelism. It’s not getting a lot of saints together and hoping a few unbelievers will come in. It’s going out in the power of the Holy Spirit right where the unbelievers are. And let me say the young people today have grasped this truth, and they when they go evangelizing, they go out to the streets, the shopping centers, the drug hangouts and all these places. That is New Testament evangelism. It’s a waste of the time of God’s people to get ninety percent converted people listening to a sermon for the unconverted night after night every week. And anybody knows that eighty percent of the unconverted will never come into the church building anyhow. And of those that do come, many of those are already gospel hardened. So you’re making the worse investment of time and ministry that you can think of by doing it that way.
Now as to the pastor, why he’s not in that list, my opinion is that he’s there in his teaching ministry. The teacher there includes the pastor. But the pastoral ministry, the actual shepherd ministry, is conducted outside of the public assembly where the straying sheep are, where the sick are, where the wounded and so on. That’s just—I say all this just to kind of give you a picture of what Paul had in mind. In the official assembly, apostle, prophet, teacher, then the next two are “the workings of miracles and the gifts of healing.” I believe that if we’re in New Testament order every assembly of God’s people, properly constituted, will have in it those who exercise the gifts of the working of miracles and those who exercise the gifts of healings. They’re part of the total provision of God in the assembly of God’s people. The New Testament anticipates they’ll always be there.
Now I want to go on to Galatians chapter 3 and I want to read only one verse—though it would be good if we had time to read more. But we’ll just read Galatians 3 verse 5, Galatians 3:5:
“He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit [capital “s” the Holy Spirit], and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?”
You see, Paul assumed that in that assembly there would be at least one who would do two things— minister the Spirit (capital “s”) minister the Holy Spirit. Enable God’s people to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Now this is a valid ministry and I think we greatly need it. I meet people who’ve been in Pentecostal churches five and ten years and they tell me they’ve been seeking the Holy Spirit. Why? Because there isn’t anyone who knows how to minister the Holy Spirit. You shouldn’t need to seek ten minutes if you’re properly instructed. It’s a gift taken off the tree just like you’d take a Christmas gift off the Christmas tree.
One of our problems again being we started wrong. And I’m saying “we Pentecostals.” It’s not a criticism; it’s just an assessment. You see, I know the accepted method of getting people baptized in the Spirit. It’s: you preach a rather excited emotional type of sermon and you build up an atmosphere, and then you call people forward to the altar and they come and they kneel there and start praying without any instruction, and for every person kneeling there’s about three or four persons behind them squeezing them and laying hands on them and pumping the Holy Spirit into them, and after a while amidst the babble of voices you hear somebody speaking in tongues. You say, “Praise the Lord. He got it.” And in that way after a while people do get it. But it’s not the divine pattern. The divine pattern is to minister the Spirit through the hearing of faith. In other words, you instruct people of the nature of the gifts, the requirements for receiving it, how to receive it, and then—if you’re in my case—you lead them in a prayer, they drink in and they receive it. I very rarely spend more than five minutes praying with people to receive the Holy Spirit. I say, “If you’re not ready then, come back when you are.” But it’s not an endurance test.
Now the other thing here that Paul speaks about is “he that worketh miracles.” And he assumes that in their assembly there is someone who works miracles. And he says he does it just like ministering the Spirit, by the hearing of faith. That’s what I’m going to try to do for you this morning—work miracles by the hearing of faith.
Let me show you one other rather fascinating phrase in the book of Acts. Acts chapter 19 and verse 11. Just a very simple statement, Acts 19:11.
“God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul.”
You know the word that fascinates me? Special. You think of the implications of that word. Miracles were normal in the church, but some miracles were special miracles. And that always prompts me to ask, In your church, how normal are miracles? Miracles were taken for granted in the early church, but the ones recorded here were somewhat special, they went beyond the normal.
Now I think this morning by the grace of God I can promise ordinary miracles. Whether we get special miracles will depend on how far we cooperate with the Holy Spirit. That depends as much on you as it does on me. I’ll start you off, I’ll trigger the operation, and from then on we move together. And according to how sensitive we are to the Holy Spirit, that sets the level on which God will work.
Now I’m going to give you some personal testimony, because what I’m going to propose to do is so extraordinary to most of you that if I don’t explain it a little bit first you won’t be with me. And I know where I’m going and I can get there. But if I don’t get you with me, when we get to the end you’ll not be with it. So I’m going to take time to get you with me. And I’m not bragging, but I will give some personal testimony for the purpose of building your faith so that when the time comes you’ll be mentally prepared to latch on to what God will do for you, because a gift when it comes, just comes and you either take it or leave it. It’s one thing for God to give you a gift, it’s another thing for you to receive it. And you’ve got to be mentally conditioned and alert and know how to receive what God gives, otherwise God gives it but you miss it. As they say in America you muffed the ball.
I gave you some of my background earlier and I just touched briefly yesterday on the fact that at one time in my life I lay in hospital for one year on end. And apparently in that climate and those conditions doctors were not able to heal me. Eventually, I turned to the Word of God and I saw that I could claim healing by faith in the written Word of God. As a child of God it was part of my inheritance. And I acted on that. I particularly acted on the promise of God in Proverbs chapter 4 verses 20, 21, 22.
“My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings.
Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart. For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.”
God is speaking to you and to me as His child. He says, “My child, My son, if you’ll take My words and My sayings the right way, then they are life to you and health to all your flesh.” And if you have health in all your flesh you cannot have any sickness in you. That’s God’s basic provision—Proverbs 4:20, 21, 22 is God’s medicine bottle. The cure is guaranteed by Almighty God. The directions are on the bottle. Proverbs 4—attend, direction number one. Number two, incline thine ear, bow down that stiff neck of yours and be teachable. Number three, let them not depart from thine eyes—focus your eyes on the promises of the Word of God. Number four, keep them in the midst of thine heart. Those are the four directions. If you take God’s Word that way according to the directions, God guarantees you health.
Now that’s the basic provision of God. That’s something you must work out for yourself. We cannot do that in a meeting. I’ll leave the truth with you. It’s up to you to decide whether you’ll go away and take the medicine—it may take weeks, it may take months, but if you take it faithfully God has pledged Himself to make you well.
However, this morning, we’re going to go another way. But I want to emphasize this—this is basic. And if I’m able to pray for fifty people here this morning that will be a great many. And since there are about six hundred people, it’s obvious that there are many that I will not be able to pray for. And in any case God does not normally heal everybody by miracles. It’s only one of the ways that the Holy Spirit administers what Christ has made available. So if you leave here this morning without being prayed for, or if you’re prayed for and you don’t receive a miracle, don’t give up. God loves you. He’s on your side but you have to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit as to how the Holy Spirit is going to administer what you need to you. He may administer it to the person next to you by an instantaneous, dramatic miracle, and you may sit there and receive nothing miraculous. That doesn’t mean that God has written you off or forgotten about you. It just means that you’ve got to take your healing by another route, and God is sovereign. Nobody twists God’s arm, do you know that? We don’t tell God how to do it. We try to be sensitive and submissive to the Holy Spirit and let Him do it. But if you see half a dozen visible miracles here this morning it will change the whole level of your faith. That it will do for you. Now that’s trying to be as fair to you as I can.
So from the year 1943 onwards I believed in divine healing, I believed in divine health, and by the grace of God basically, for ninety-five percent of the time I’ve enjoyed both. And today as far as I know I’m a totally fit person. To God be all the glory. So this is basic.
Then I have a wife who has a tremendous ministry in prayer, and she brought up a family of children taken in from other people’s homes. And during the years very rarely did they ever have recourse to the doctor. Now I’m not against doctors. I thank God for doctors, nurses, hospitals and so on. But most times when the children were sick they would come to my wife, say, “Pray for me.” She would pray, they would be healed. The children had tremendous faith. They expected to be healed, they got what they expected. And for many years when my wife and I traveled and ministered, I would say to her, “Now listen. I’ll do the preaching; you pray for the sick.” That’s a fair division of labor.
Then we came to the United States in 1962–63, and ’62, towards the end of the year, we were out on the West Coast in Oregon in meetings conducted by Brother Gerald Derstine, who is of Mennonite background. And we went up and talked to Brother Derstine and his wife at the end of the meeting, had a little personal fellowship with them, and my wife said, “Brother Derstine, would pray for me?” And he did. And when he prayed he said, “Sister Prince, I have a feeling that God is going to do something new for you very soon.” And my wife said, “Yes, I have that feeling too.” We did not know what it was.
Then we moved to Minneapolis where I became associate pastor of an Assembly of God Church in the city of Minneapolis. And one morning my wife and I were praying together as we normally do at the beginning of the day, and it seemed that the presence of God moved into that room and we both had our arms up in the air praising God. And when we had finished my wife turned to me and she said, “God has just given me the gift of healing. He put it in my hand.” And I said, “You don’t need to tell me. I know it already.” How I knew it I cannot tell you, but I did.
So we went down to the morning prayer meeting in the church, which went from ten o’clock in the morning until twelve noon. At the end of the prayer meeting a little sister came up to my wife and said, “Sister Prince, I’m not feeling well. Would you pray for me?” Without meditating or reflecting on what had taken place earlier, my wife put out her hand and the little woman went down flat on the floor and stayed there for ten minutes. Then she got up rather apologetically and said, “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to do that, but there was such power I just couldn’t stand up.” So then we concluded that something new had taken place.
And after that my wife began to pray for people and I’m telling it to you the way it is, I believe myself that God has got a sense of humor. I can’t come to any other conclusion. But the funny thing was that many of the people at that time for whom my wife prayed, when the healing gift came, and she said, “It’s not I who do it.” She said, “I stand back and I wait for God to direct the gift through me. And when the gift comes, the person either receives it or doesn’t receive it. But it’s given.” But when the gift came in those days, many times the person who got the gift would start to jump up and down—just straight up and down like that. And you know they don’t do things like that in the Assemblies of God, and it was almost embarrassing. But the people that jumped up and down got healed. So it’s worth jumping up and down to get healed, isn’t it? I say it’s worth being a fool if you get what you came for. Some people are so dignified they don’t become foolish and they don’t get what they come for.
Well, there was in that church an elderly, heavy-set, German sister who had a heart condition and she wanted to be prayed for, but she didn’t want to be seen jumping up and down. So she thought she would sneak up on the Lord, which is a very dangerous thing to try. So she waited one day until we were out on the parking lot ready to go home and she said, “Sister Prince, would you pray for me?” My wife put out her hand and this heavy German sister went up and down on the parking lot. She was standing at the door of the car and the husband couldn’t get her into the car and he got really flustered. He said, “What are you doing? If you go on like this the police will come.” She got a double dose.
Well, this went on and after a while this jumping up and down more or less ceased, and it would be replaced by a kind of—the best thing to say is an explosion. There would be just a sometimes a very modified explosion and sometimes quite a loud explosion. And my wife and I got to know when the explosion took place, the gift was given. And the person, if they received it, was healed. And my wife says to people regularly when they come to her for prayer she says, “Now listen. I’ll ask one thing of you. Stop praying. You’ve prayed a long while and nothing has happened. Pleased be quiet and let me pray. And when you get healed, then thank God for it.” And I’ve seen scores and scores of people healed through my wife’s ministry in that way.
As a matter of fact, you may be rather shocked to know that many people pray themselves out of the things they come for. You can pray yourself out of the baptism in the Spirit. You can pray yourself out of deliverance, and you can pray yourself out of healing. Praying is not receiving. Praying is one thing— receiving is another. There’s a great spiritual art of receiving. If I go on and on praying, that’s sufficient evidence I haven’t received. Because if I’ve received I don’t have to go on praying. And if you could stop praying, you might begin receiving. You see, God isn’t deaf. When you tell Him you need to be healed, He heard you the first time. And Jesus said, “Don’t use vain repetition,” like to heal. It’s really evidence of unbelief going on and on praying.
Well, this worked all right. But I saw that though the gift of healing was wonderful, the church needed the gift of the working of miracles—the church of Jesus Christ collectively. I saw that the open dramatic visible manifestation of God’s power would do things that wouldn’t be done in any other way. So I began to pray that God would restore to the church as He intended it the gift of the working of miracles.
Now I’m going to tell you how I got involved. If you pray, you’d better be prepared to get involved in what you pray for, because sooner or later it will come back to you. And what I’m going to tell you will sound extraordinary to some of you, but I’m going to tell it like it is. In 1970 in June, I had the privilege of being the Bible teacher at the World Conference of the Full Gospel Businessmen’s Fellowship, which was conducted in Chicago in the Conrad Hilton Hotel. The last night but one of the convention, those of us taking part were invited up the top floor to the suite of the Shakarian family.
Well we went up, my wife and I, to the top floor and there were most of the international directors of the Full Gospel Businessmen’s Fellowship there, the Shakarian family and many others, many of whom I know personally. And there was a little man there from Oklahoma City I think named Joe Pappell (?). And when we arrived he was in the middle of explaining to people that God lengthens legs, and that this happened through his ministry. And so I stood and listened, and I’m fairly detached. I’m not prejudiced, I decided I’d be open minded about this thing and I’d see if there was something to it or not.
He was a quiet, unassuming little man, very gentle in his demeanor. He took a lot of time preparing these people and then he got people seated in a chair and he did things in a very orderly method. He had a ruler and he held their legs up and he measured the difference between their legs down to an eighth of an inch, and if it was a lady he draped a towel across her knees. I mean the whole thing was done decently and in order. And I watched and somebody’s leg grew out in front of my eyes and then somebody else’s leg grew out.
So I said to wife, “I think you’d better get into that chair.” So she got in the chair and they held her legs up, measured them, and her left leg was one inch and an eighth shorter than the right, and she didn’t know there was any difference in her legs. So I always smile when people tell me, “I know my legs are equal.” I say, “How do you know?”
And I watched my wife’s left leg grow out in front of my eyes in a few seconds, one inch and an eighth. Well then she got out of the chair and she said to me, “You’d better get into that chair.” I said, “Oh, no. There’s nothing wrong with me. I don’t need to get in the chair.” She said, “You do.” I said, “I don’t.” She said, “You do.” So I got in the chair. They measured my legs very carefully and my left leg was a quarter of an inch shorter than my right. And as I sat in the chair I suddenly remembered that my mother had told me that when I was eighteen months old the doctor had told her that my legs were unequal. So I suddenly began to see that this was credible. Brother Poppel held my feet and I felt my left leg grow out. It didn’t grow out gradually, it moved out in one single movement, and what was particularly noticeable it moved from the hip, not from the foot. And I knew it had nothing to do with Brother Poppel. It was like a hand pushed my hip down a quarter of an inch.
Now I had thought at that time that I was a fit, healthy person. But, you know, you can get so used to certain things that you live with and don’t reckon them to be abnormal. At that time if I would stand, as I’m doing now, and preach for one hour I would get a kind of burning sensation across the small of my back. Since my leg grew out—unfortunately for my congregations—I can stand for three hours without getting the pain.
Now I’m just relating the results of this objectively. My wife and I had been married then about twenty-five years and we’d never been able to walk together, because her stride was so short I could not accommodate myself to it. So I’d walk ahead, walk back, walk ahead and people would say, “What’s the matter with you? Have you quarreled?”
The next day when we walked, her stride was fifty percent longer than it had ever been. Not as a result of reason or thinking, but without her realizing it. Secondly, she was so used to having to have to push her left leg down an inch and one eighth, that when it was lengthened she still went on pushing and bruised the heel in that foot. This is just to show you how absolutely objective, how unconnected it is with reasoning processes.
Well, while I stood there that particular night and watched this happening, something inside me said, “You can do that!” And I blurted it out. I said, “You know, I think I can do that.” And I remember Brother Demos Shakarian turned and said, “Of course, you can do that Brother Prince.” And I thought it’s not so obvious. However, something started moving in me.
Well, earlier that year I had received a letter from a friend of mine in Elyria, Ohio, whose name is John Beckett, who’s a very successful businessman. He’s the president of his own corporation and he’s a graduate in engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In other words, he’s no kook. And he related that in a weekend convention something like sixty or seventy people had had legs grow out, and in many cases this had been associated with healing of other things like arthritis and so on. So I was already somewhat mentally conditioned.
Well, then in August of 1970 I was one of three or four teachers in a Layman’s Training Institute in the island of Jamaica. Brother Charles Simpson was one of the others. Brother Don Basham was one of the others. John Beckett was one of the laymen who came down to be trained. He hadn’t been there twenty-four hours before legs were growing out right and left. And this was very true. I mean I watched again and again, people who didn’t believe it was going to happen. Like the lady proprietress of the hotel sat down in the chair and gasped with amazement when her own leg grew out. And this came— became quite—it almost spread like an epidemic. John Beckett went down into Montego Bay, the city, to get his hair cut and ended up with the barber in the chair having his leg lengthened. So after this had been going on for a while, John Beckett said to me, he said, “If you’re going to start doing this,” he said, “you’d better start while we’ve got any customers left because we’re running out of patients.” And really we were. It was difficult to find anybody in that area who had unequal legs left.
So he found one woman and seated her in the chair and he said, “Now the real tricky thing is how to hold the people’s feet. When you’ve got that, the rest follows. So I hoped he was right and I held the woman’s feet the prescribed way and sort of knelt there sweating, and rather slowly and stubbornly the woman’s leg grew out about a half an inch. So I knew I’d got it, but rather uncertainly.
Well, then I had to go home to England. My mother died and I had a certain personal crisis that I’d passed through, and I came back just in time to be one of the teachers at a big Charismatic camp in Eatonton, Georgia, the Tennessee CFO. And I was there the first morning and I felt inadequate. I didn’t feel ready to minister to people. I felt that I needed to be ministered to. So I went out in the forest by myself and got alone with God and prostrated myself on the ground on my face before the Lord, and I asked God to search me and to cleanse me and to renew me and to make me fit to minister to those people. And I asked God if there was anything in me that would be a hindrance to His work to reveal it to me. And a very, very strange thing happened. As I lay there before the Lord one very clear word formed in my mind and it was embarrassment.
Now I’d been in the ministry of deliverance for a good many years and I realized that it was the name of a spirit. And I thought to myself, “Embarrassment? I don’t have embarrassment.” And then I remembered how all my life I’d always been afraid of any kind of public scene. Even when I was about six or seven years old, if my mother went into a store to argue with a shopkeeper I’d say, “You go in, but I’m staying outside. I won’t get involved in that.” And looking back over my life by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, I saw how actually I’d charted my course to avoid public embarrassment and confrontation. And really when you’re a preacher that’s quite a lot of pressure on you, because a preacher is normally right out in public.
“Well,” I said, “Lord, if there is this spirit of embarrassment in me, I don’t want it,” and I felt it leave me. I knew I had been released from it. And then I felt an assurance of cleansing and renewal and empowering from God. I got up and went back to the camp and I was ready.
Now I said to God about this ministry, I said, “God, if You want me to get into this, You’ve got to show me where to begin. I’m not going to begin until I have direct guidance from You.” I sat at the table at lunch next to a young man who I know quite well called Paul Petrie who’s in full-time ministry, maybe known to some of you here. And I was telling him about all this and he said, “Well, Brother Prince, you’d better begin with me.” So I said, “What’s the matter with you?” “Well,” he said, “I’m crooked all over. One leg is shorter than the other, one arm is shorter than the other,” and then he said, “There’s my teeth too.” And I said, “What’s the matter with your teeth?” And he pulled his lower lip down and said, “You can see the lower row are uneven. Some up, some down, some forward, some back.”
Well that really wasn’t very welcome to me. I said, “Well, let’s begin with your leg anyhow.” So I seated him in a chair in the middle of the dining room, lifted up his legs and there was more than an inch difference, and the short leg grew out instantly. So I said, “Now, we’ll try your arms.” I stood him against a post in the middle of the dining hall, got him straight, got him to swing his arms and there was over an inch difference between his arms. The short arm grew out instantly.
Well, I would have been quite content to stop there, but he said, “What about my teeth?” So I thought, Well, I can’t say no. So I said, “Close your mouth,” then I put my hand on his cheeks an I prayed until I felt somehow I’d prayed as much as I could, and I thought to myself, I’d better strengthen his faith. So I said, “Did you feel anything in your mouth? Did it feel kind of full?” He said, “Yes, it did.” “Well,” I said, “maybe God is doing something.”
Well, by that time people were coming from everywhere. They were lined up and I spent the next twenty minutes with people in and out of that chair, arms and legs growing out just as quick as they could. Then I had to go off to an appointment and I was on my way there, and Paul Petrie’s wife, Becky, came running after me all out of breath. She said, “Do you want to see Paul’s teeth?” I said, “Why, what’s happened to them?” She said, “They’re straight.” Then I said, “I definitely do.” And I went back and looked and his lower row of teeth were completely even, neither up nor down, nor forward nor back. Then he said to me, “They still need capping.” So I said, “I think we’ll leave that to the Lord.”
So then I was launched. I mean, at that one camp I must have prayed for over two hundred people and arms and legs grew out. And other things happened. Deaf ears were opened. But then some of my well- meaning friends said to me in so many words, they said, “You know, for a rather well-known Bible teacher to go round kneeling on the floor holding people’s legs isn’t exactly very dignified. And how do you know you’re not getting off on a tangent? How do you know this is from God?”
So that rather disturbed me. So I thought I’ll take this a little slowly, I’ll play it a little cool and see how it will work out. And I began to seek God and God answered me very clearly. I want to say again I did not hear an audible voice, but He said to me, “I’ve given you a gift and you can do two things with it. You can use it and it will increase, or you can fail to use it and lose it.” And He gave that Scripture, “To him that hath shall be given and he shall have more abundantly. But from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.” I said, “Lord, I’ll use it. I don’t care what people think. I’ve been controversial before, I may be controversial again, but I’ll use it.” And I did. And gradually God has honored His promise. He’s given me more and more. The more I use it, the more I testify of it, the bolder I am, the more I put God on the spot, the more God comes up with the answer.
So now I’m going to just give you a few basic principles and we’ll go into action. Now these principles are very important. Be patient and listen carefully. I understand it this way. The faith of the Christian church for many centuries has been on such a pathetically low level that God had to come to our help. You know I’ve been with Pentecostals who’ve been members of Pentecostal churches twenty years and never in their lives witnessed one visible miracle. Well, I call this God’s Faith Booster. When the NASA want to send a satellite into orbit, they have to have a booster to get it out of earth’s atmosphere and the field of gravity. And once it’s in orbit it just goes on circling as long as they want.
Well this simple, visible miracle that you can see and feel in your own body is God’s booster for your faith. It will get you out of the pull of gravity and into orbit. Now that God will do for you. Frequently I pray for people who say, “I don’t believe.” I say, “It doesn’t matter, I do. It’ll happen.” But I say, “When it happens, when you’re in orbit, then it’s your responsibility.” And I say, “Don’t come back in re-entry too soon. Stay in orbit until you’ve got all you need.” You may have fifteen different ailments. That’s the time to get healed. If you stay in orbit long enough you’ll come back whole. If you came back in re-entry too soon you’ll only get a little.
It’s rather laughable, but people come up to me and they say, “You know, Brother Prince, my leg grew out an inch but I didn’t get healed of my eyesight.” Well, to me it’s amusing that people say my leg just grew out an inch, because nobody would have talked that way five years ago. They’d have said, “You know what happened to me? My leg grew out an inch!!!”
Let me explain it another way. When this miracle takes place in your body, you are plugged in to the power outlet. Now you know the power is flowing, all right. Now my advice is stay plugged in till you’ve got all you need. Don’t take the plug out too soon.
Now you say, “How do I stay plugged in?” My answer is not by praying but by thanking. All you have to do is relax. Don’t try. You can’t do it by trying. Relax, let God do it, and keep on thanking Him. All of us here owe God half a billion thanks. Let’s start paying it off. Much more is received by thanking than by praying. Now I’ll give you just a few examples to show you what I mean. In 1970 in September I was the Bible teacher in the regional convention of the Full Gospel Businessmen’s Fellowship in Charlotte, North Carolina. Katherine Kuhlman had been there the previous day and the meeting in the hotel was packed. There were six or seven hundred people—the place was absolutely packed. And I was conducting the last service and I got up and accidentally, without planning it, I began to talk about people’s legs growing out. Well, then it didn’t matter what I talked about. That’s what people wanted. So at the end I was surrounded by a horde of people asking me to pray for them and I sat down and began to pray.
Now I was with Brother Demos Shakarian last month in Chicago and he told me this, I didn’t know it before. He said, “The same meeting, I saw that you would never be able to pray for all the people that were waiting for prayer.” And he said, “Somebody came up to me and said, ‘Do you lengthen legs, Brother Shakarian?’” And he said, “That was the one thing I never wanted to get involved in, but the man forced me to take his legs and pray and the leg grew out.” And he said, “Brother Prince, you didn’t know it, but I was there in that ballroom from 10 p.m. to 1 a.m. praying for people’s legs.” The ballroom was so crowded and so much was going on that it was impossible to keep track.
Well, I was there from 10 p.m. till midnight. By then I was out in the foyer of the hotel. And there was still a line of people, but I said, “Midnight, shop closed, I’m going to bed.” And a lady standing right behind me, beside me, got very indignant. She said, “I’ve stood here waiting one hour to be prayed for. Are you going to bed without praying for me?” So I said, “Sit down and don’t talk.” She sat down, I picked her legs up, one was shorter than the other, it grew out, I said, “Good night, I’m going to bed,” and vanished.
About a month later I got a letter from this lady. She said, “You don’t remember me,” but she described herself and the situation until I knew who it was. She said, “You never gave me time to tell you, but when you prayed for me I had a severe double curvature of the spine. After my leg grew out I was on God’s operating table for forty-eight hours. I was continuously under the power of God. At the end of that time my spine was absolutely straight.” There’s a perfect example of staying plugged in, and she didn’t do because I instructed her. Because I was tired of the business by then. Well, I’ll give you a few other examples. The next year I was in the Spring Tennessee CFO Camp, the same place, and I got involved every night in praying for people—legs grew out, arms grew out, and then on the basis of that other miracles followed. There was in that camp a lady who had had one kneecap removed by surgery. She saw what was happening, I never prayed for her, she went back to her cabin and the other three ladies in her cabin prayed for her. Twenty-four hours later she had a complete new kneecap. It was rather comical. She normally wore her dresses a little longer than the average to conceal the missing kneecap. When the Lord gave her a new kneecap she was so proud of it she turned the hem of her dress up.
She was in a meeting I was in later that year in Arlington, Virginia, in an Episcopal church. She came forward and gave her testimony in person and let everybody look at the kneecap. Now I’m telling you this for a purpose. I said to her, “What happened when those ladies prayed for your kneecap?” I said, “Did you get any immediate results?” She said, “I just felt a beautiful warm glow in the knee.” But she said, “I went on praising God and twenty-four hours later I had the kneecap.”
Now, you see, that was spiritually minded. Many people would have felt a warm glow, looked down, seen the knee the same and said, “Nothing happened,” taken the plug out and got no more. You follow what I mean? It’s staying plugged in. It’s setting your mind that when the power of God begins to work then you can get what you need.
I was with Brother Demos in the Businessmen’s regional convention in Chicago at the beginning of October. I was the banquet speaker at the last night, and I had a message all prepared on praying for the government. I mean, I was really going to give it to them. I mean, it was just a month before the election and I’d got it all lined up. I started to speak about legs and once I get on to it there’s no turning back. You just can’t go any other direction. So in the middle of my message Demos got up and he told the incident about the scene in the ballroom in Charlotte and that was the first time I heard it. So at the end I said, “Now we’ll do it.” I said, “Demos, you take one chair over there and I’ll take one chair on this side.” Well, the more nerve you have, the more God backs you up. The first person Demos prayed for was a chiropractor, and his leg grew out. From then on he was our cheerleader. I mean, he would stand up there and he’d say, “It’s growing out, the ankle’s turning, I can see it.” So after some while the chiropractor’s wife came and got in my chair for prayer. And I don’t know what was wrong with her. I just held her legs and whatever happened, she needed. So when she knew she was healed and the chiropractor was watching all the time, she got up and she pointed at her husband and said, “You’re fired from now on.”
Well, that’s an example of what God will do. I’ll give one or two other examples and then we’ll come to action. In a Methodist Church in Falls Church, Virginia, I was ministering and a lady came up to me who is a lady judge. In fact, she’s a member of the Supreme Court of the State of Virginia. And she said to me, “Brother Prince, can you help me? I have been in continual pain for ten years, night and day. I’ve never been without pain and no pain reliever touches my condition.” I said, “What’s wrong with you?” And she started to give me a list of things. I said, “Just leave it. You need the package deal.”
So I said, “When we start praying don’t get in the chair immediately. Stand there and watch what God is doing until your faith is built up. And when you feel ready, step in the chair.” So after about twenty minutes I said, “Are you ready?” She said, “I am.” I said, “This is it. You’re going to get the package deal.” I lifted up her legs and fortunately they were unequal. I’m really stymied when I meet people with equal legs, so I don’t have any jumping off point. Though I usually find a way around it. But anyhow her legs were unequal, the short leg grew out, and I stepped back and for ten or fifteen minutes a small group of us stood around and watched God operate on that body. And you could actually see the part of her body that was being affected by the Holy Spirit. He went over area by area. And under her clothing you could see where the Spirit was moving. At the end of about fifteen minutes she was apparently completely healed. She was out of pain for the first time in ten years. And she’s a very bold person and a very well- known personality in that area, she tells the story everywhere. I met her last September in Ardmore, Oklahoma. She said, “Brother Prince, you can tell my story anywhere and you can give my name.” Her name is Helen Dodge. My wife said to her, “What was it like when God healed you?” She’s got a very vivid form of speech. She said, “It was just as if fifteen plumbers moved into my stomach and started joining up the pipes.”
I’d just come back from Spain where I was speaking to a mixed community of Scandinavians, Dutch, English and all sorts, and most of them not by any means Charismatic. And it took me three mornings to get to this. I had to take them very, very slowly. But the third morning God moved in and zapped them. And one lady was a matron from an English hospital. She’d been forty years a nurse, crippled with arthritis, unable to bend, and I just held her leg and it grew out. And God completely healed her. She bent over and touched her toes, moved her back. Well, one testimony from a person like that and you’re made, you see. I mean, that breaks down the reserve and the uncertainty and the doubt. God did some amazing miracles there.
Nothing fascinates me more than to see God operating on a body. There was one lady, an English lady, she had her hair done in a sort of fringe that came down, and she slightly reminded you of one of these dolls you see. She was about forty years old I would say. I don’t know what was wrong with her. She started telling me everything. I said, “You need the package deal. Let’s leave it at that.” And I prayed for her, her leg grew out, and I knew something was going to happen. So I stepped back—and she had spinal curvature among other things, and spinal curvature also affects your rib cage, see, because your ribs are hung on your shoulders which is affected by your spine. And it was really comical. She was like a doll. You know you can pull and the arm will jerk, and then you pull and the leg will jerk. She was sitting there for ten minutes—like that. And we just stood and watched. Nobody touched her. At the end of that time, she told us the next day, she was completely healed. Her spine was straight, her ribs were straight, everything.
So that’s the last story I’m going to tell you. Now you should be ready and if you’re not, come back when you are. So now what I want you to do is cooperate with me. Now I’m going to ask you to give me two chairs. There’s one there. If you put that one there, this way, and we’ll have one there, the opposite way, a little closer here. Thank you. That’s fine. All right. Now the more people that witness from close quarters, the better pleased I am. I particularly enjoy having children there. I’ve had children with their noses about half an inch from somebody’s heel when it grew out, because I reckon that when a child sees a few legs grow out, it doesn’t matter what the teacher in school says, that child will know forever there’s a God. All right, now the ground rules. One thing I ask for is discipline. The Holy Spirit is not the author of confusion and if we get confused and undisciplined, He lifts, and without Him we get nothing. We’ve got to be cooperative with the Holy Spirit.
The second thing is that I ask you to allow me to have the absolute prerogative of who sits in the chair. I want no one to come and sit in the chair unless I personally invite them to come, because it’s important that I begin with the right people. My faith begins on a certain level. When I start I have faith for some things and not for others, so I begin with the easy cases. And when those are working, then faith mounts in people and in me. But if I pick a lemon to start with, then we’re all back. It takes a long while to get over a bad start. I did it once in a Presbyterian church in Pittsburgh—and, well, we won’t go into that, but it taught me a lesson.
Now, the other thing is the behavior of the congregation. As I said before, I want you to understand this is not one-person ministry. It’s the body ministering to the body. And I want everybody that’s a believer here to be prayerful and worshipful and thankful. The more we can have an atmosphere of praise and worship and thankfulness, the more the Holy Spirit will work. This is always a step into the unknown. I never know what will happen. I just step out and hope that God’s there to catch me. As a matter of fact, He may let you get about two inches from the concrete, but He does catch you. Let me say also, I am no medical practitioner. I’m a preacher of the gospel. I respect chiropractors, physicians, surgeons, dentists. And I’ve had the privilege of praying for at least half a dozen chiropractors, and every one of them has acknowledged a real miracle. So I want you to understand I’m not in competition. We’re all on the same team but we’re working in different places.
Now I would like to begin with somebody that has a medically diagnosed inequality of the legs and doesn’t want it any longer. You have a medically diagnosed inequality—who diagnosed it? How much is it? You are a good one to start with. You want to get rid of it? Good. All right. Which leg is it? Right leg. Hold on a moment. You’re right leg is short. Is that right? Yes sir.
Okay. Sit down. Now I’ve put him there because hopefully you can see the leg grow. Now if you’ve got fifteen other ailments settle for the package deal. Okay? I’ll hold your legs up. You’re right. It’s about an inch and a half. Thank you, Lord. Can you feel that growing now? Yes sir.
Okay. Let’s give the Lord a praise offering. Hallelujah! Glory to God. Thank You, Lord. Thank You, Jesus. Glory to Your name, Lord. We praise You and thank you. Bless Your name. Amen. Hallelujah. Glory to God.
God will do something more for you, brother, just sit there. You’re getting an overall treatment. Now this is where we just worship the Lord quietly, because we’re cooperating with the Lord.
Thank You, Jesus. We give You the praise, Lord. We give You the glory. All right.
Do we have anybody else with a similar type complaint, unequal legs. That man there. You’re just praising the Lord. Well that’s a good thing to do. We don’t want to quench that. There must be several other people. You have unequal legs? How do you know? You don’t have a build up, a support. No. All right. You’re the one we want. Could you come up and sit in this chair please? You have back problems continually? Now, when the leg grows out, settle for it, your back problems are finished. You need a package deal? You’ll get it too.
Now I want to say something else. All this I’ve learned by experience. It’s not medical theory. But frequently the short leg will grow out beyond the long one, sometimes as much as half an inch or an inch. Then the other leg will grow out to equalize. Now, I understand that it’s not really the legs that are growing, but the adjustment is taking place in the spine and it’s visible in the legs. And if you have spinal curvature, this is normal. The way the healing will take place, the short leg will grow out beyond the long one, the long will then catch up to the short leg and sometimes it will go on maybe three or four times. This is not a gimmick, and it’s not necessarily any change in the real length of the legs, but it’s the manifestation of what’s taking place in the spine. You see, the two main ways that we can see what’s happened in the spine is through the legs and through the arms. And when those change without you doing it, it’s your spine that’s being adjusted.
Okay. Can you scoot back in the chair? Well, this is your right leg and it’s a good inch short. You see that? Do you feel it growing now? All right. Stay there and get the package deal. Praise the Lord. That’s right. It’s coming. Just move around. The Holy Spirit is going to move your spine for you. Just yield to it. Don’t fight it. Well, I think He hasn’t finished. You said you wanted the package deal; you’d better get it. Just fix your mind on the Lord, keep praising Him and thanking Him.
Thank You, Jesus, praise Your name.
You don’t have—that’s it—something’s happening now. That’s right. I told you. Don’t fight against it. That’s the Holy Spirit. He’s the best chiropractor in the world. That’s right. Thank You, Lord. Thank You, Jesus. Let’s all worship the Lord. It’s not altogether easy for somebody to let go in front of everybody. Hallelujah. Thank You, Jesus. That’s right. Glory to God. Hallelujah. You’re going to have a straight spine when you’re finished.
See what I mean by the Lord operating? It’s got nothing to do with me. I’m not there, I’m not touching her, but God is doing it. Amen. Thank You, God. Praise Your wonderful name. Glory to God. We give You the praise and the glory in the name of Jesus.
She says she’s burning up. You see, that’s God’s healing power. Many people talk about a burning feeling, and that is the healing presence of God. Now let’s rejoice but let’s also keep reverent because this is a very precious and wonderful thing that God is doing. Amen. Now do you think you’re ready to go back? You just need to stay plugged in. I think in a little while you won’t have the deformity.
Okay. All right. We’ll get somebody else in your chair. What’s your problem? Your left leg is quarter inch shorter than the other. How do you know? Okay. Do you want to be changed? It’s too late once it’s happened. There was one man who didn’t want it to happen because it would mean readjusting the legs of all his pants, and he didn’t want that. Okay. Can you scoot back in the chair? It’s your left leg that’s short about a half an inch and growing rapidly. Amen, well beyond. You’re getting a back adjustment of some kind. Thank You, Lord. Just sit there and thank Him. We thank You, Lord, we praise You, hallelujah. We praise Your name, thank You, Lord, Amen.