You Will Do Greater Works

Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it. — John 14:12-14

Jesus is saying that all believers will do the same "works" Jesus did with every increasing impact because of the indwelling Holy Spirit given after he has returned to the Father. But the question we always want an answer to when we read this text is what are these "works?" We ask this because we want to do them, which is the proper response.

When we think of Jesus's "works," we often recall his miracles—walking on water, feeding the five thousand, and raising Lazarus from the dead. However, throughout the Gospel of John, the primary work Jesus came to do was to convey the message of truth, leading people to believe in Him for eternal life (John 3:16-17; John 6:38-40; John 10:10; John 12:46; John 18:37; John 20:31). Miracles were a part of His work, confirming His identity as the Savior, but they were not the main focus until His final miracle—the resurrection and atoning sacrifice for our sins, providing life in Him.

So can we do "more spectacular miraculous works" than Jesus did? The answer is "no." I don't know of any recorded person in history who has walked on water, fed five thousand, and also raised someone from the dead. And, of course, I don't know anyone who has raised themselves from the dead.

But we can do "greater works" in that we act in belief in the shadow of the already crucified, risen, and reigning Savior who indwells us through the Holy Spirit. Remember, salvation wasn't realized at this point in the Gospel story. But on the dawn of Jesus's resurrection and ascension, our belief would be realized "greater" than it was at this moment in time. So yes, the disciples (the audience of this context) would do "greater works" that they had seen to this point in time. And this means so will we.

So if you are a believer indwelled by the Holy Spirit, do "greater works" today. Believe in Jesus and let the Holy Spirit do works that direct other people to believe in a way that was not possible before the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus. And if God uses you to perform a miracle of hope or healing, point to Jesus, who will do the "greater works" through you so that others may believe in Jesus and make great of his name.


1. When Jesus talks about doing "works" like Him and even "greater works," what do you think these "works" mean in your life? How can you live out this calling in your daily actions and interactions?

2. While we may not perform the same spectacular miracles as Jesus, how can we still do "greater works" by living in the power of the Holy Spirit? How can our lives be a testimony to the truth of Jesus and lead others to believe in Him?

DO THIS: A greater work guiding others to believe in Jesus.

PRAY THIS: Dear Lord, I come before you with a humble heart, seeking to live out the calling to do "greater works" in your name, empowered by the indwelling Holy Spirit. Help me be a living testimony of your truth, leading others to believe in you and bringing glory to your name. Amen.

PLAY THIS: Greater.

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Read through the Bible daily with Vince Miller.

7 thoughts on “You Will Do Greater Works

  1. Eddie Ackerman says:

    I can’t remember the name of the worship song, but the intro to the chorus goes “still the miracle that I just can’t get over, my name is registered in Heaven, my praise belongs to You forever. This is my testimony, from death to life, ’cause grace rewrote my story, I’ll testify. By Jesus Christ the righteous, I’m justified. This is my testimony.” No greater work will ANY believer do than to take a spiritually dead and condemned person and bring them back to life, ETERNAL life, thanks to the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ who is “THE way, THE truth, and THE life. NO ONE can come to The Father, except through Him.” (quoting Jesus, emphasis added) Thank You God for sending Jesus down to earth as the least intimidating thing anyone can be, a baby, and allowing Him to experience life from beginning to end, all the temptations included, but still He always and ONLY followed Your will. Thank You God for bringing this dead and condemned sinner out from ETERNAL death into eternal LIFE and I pray that I never take that for granted and am always willing and able to share my personal testimony to those You urge me to share with via the Holy Spirit indwelled in me. Amen.

  2. gonzalo correa says:

    Awesome Word Brother Vince!

    I think we read this verse to often, too fast, and do not really meditate on it as you have it has been explained here. We really need to understand and also differentiate that fact that some “works” from Jesus were only God and the loving others as He asked us is a human thing.
    Jesus prayed often that “they will be one as You and I are one”… Do you think God can just make us one at His command? Yet He prayed this. It was not until the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, at Pentecost that they started to behave as one. The greater work they did as one brought 3,000 to believe in Jesus in that single sermon, the Greater Work is to point people to Jesus via Holy Spirit.

    Let’s get to Work men!!! Let’s fill all those rooms Jesus is building for His people.

  3. trent says:

    Wow. I never have seen it that way. The “greater works” part has always been an uncomfortable bit for me. When explained this way, it makes very good sense. Thank you for this devotional. I know for a fact that I, as well as others, read it daily and discuss the topics and comments and are blessed as a result. Strength and perseverance to you.

  4. Tom Fredericks Sr. says:

    With God’s help, may I first humbly model “great” through uninhibited service to Him! – (Matthew 20:26)

  5. Scott E. Lockwood says:

    I struggle with this all the time….How do you do greater works???? It seems impossible, BUT HE said it so it is true! I work in a public school half of the time and public schools are so hard to convey that message. Actions speak louder than words though. I have found that you will be sought out if you show up and love. The other problem I have is do I do enough and is this for God or is it for me…. Can it be both??? At the end of the day It should always be for Him, about Him, and through Him. One of my favorite songs by Casting Crowns is Only Jesus… “And I, I don’t want to leave a legacy, I don’t care if they remember me, Only Jesus” Everything we do should point to him… Sometimes I struggle with that because I find myself trying to prove that I am worthy to others, Its a struggle when it really shouldn’t be because He approves of me

    • trent says:

      Thank you for serving community and pouring into our children by living out your faith in our school system and not just “working” there or even showing up and dropping Jesus name there, but actually seeking him and living it out. Like you said, actions can speak louder than words, and we need Godly people influencing our children. I do not know you, even your name. I am thankful and encouraged this morning by your life and testimony of God’s work in your life/heart. So take comfort in your question of “is this for God or me?” The only name I know or will remember to praise for this blessing this morning is Jesus. You have succeeded, this morning, in bringing glory to God through your life. Keep the faith and keep fighting your fight. Hat is off to you. May you be blessed.

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