"He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father" (John 14:12).
What possible works might followers of the Lord do which even supersede His works? For assistance, we turn to John 5. The Lord Jesus healed a man who had "had an infirmity thirty and eight years" (v.5). Responding to some who objected, the Lord affirmed that the Father would "shew him greater works than these," that those who objected might marvel. He continued, "For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and quickeneth them; even so the Son quickeneth whom He will" (cf. John 5:20-21). How could followers of Christ do greater works than raising the dead?
In verse 24 of the same chapter, the Lord said, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on Him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life." Passing from spiritual death unto spiritual life is greater, in the Lord's estimation, than being raised from physical death.
There was only a small group of followers of Jesus following His ascension. But as our text affirms, He was able to send the Holy Spirit to empower His followers (Acts 2:33). Peter saw "added unto them about three thousand" in one day (Acts 2:41)--a significant work, and the church has been growing ever since. There may be approximately half a billion believers on earth today and many more who at least outwardly identify with Christianity.
Rescuing sinners from spiritual death and bringing them to a saving knowledge of the sovereign Lord is far greater than healing people physically or raising them from physical death. To be sure, this is ultimately the Lord's doing, but He does choose the foolishness of preaching to win people to Himself (I Corinthians 1:21)! PGH