There are seven miraculous “signs” in John’s Gospel. One is the healing of a boy with a death-threatening fever. “The royal official said, ‘Sir, come down before my child dies.’ ‘Go,’ Jesus replied, ‘your son will live’” (John 4:49-50). But what purpose do these signs serve? They certainly provide compassionate help! But they also confirm … Continue reading Illness has an end-date
John 2:6-7: “Nearby stood six stone water jars… each holding from twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus said to the servants, ‘Fill the jars with water’; so they filled them to the brim.” One of Jesus’ most popular miracles is turning water into wine. We like a party, don’t we! And it’s not like it was … Continue reading Disgrace, dignity and wine
In Luke 18 a blind beggar cries out to Jesus for mercy. “When he came near, Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” (verses 40-41) In response, the man asks for his sight—and gets it! He believed in who Jesus was, and trusted in his power to do something big. … Continue reading What do you want me to do for you?
It's probably clear that I believe in miracles. In Matthew 19:26 Jesus says, “with God all things are possible.” And I fully affirm that God can and does do mind-bending things. But God doesn’t just work in dramatic ways—he works in “ordinary” ways too. The reason I put “ordinary” in quotes is because what we … Continue reading “Ordinary” miracles
It’s easy to think that if you don’t see God dramatically intervening in your life that he isn’t there. If you’ve ever had those kinds of thoughts, you’re not alone. Listen to these famous voices from the Bible itself: -Gideon: “If the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us?” (Judges 6:13) … Continue reading When you feel like God isn’t there
Have you ever prayed for a miracle and it didn’t happen? Have you ever wondered why God didn’t act? Have you ever been told that you just didn’t believe enough? In these moments we can feel very alone or angry or disillusioned—as if God’s apparent silence meant (or means) that he doesn’t care… or maybe … Continue reading God sometimes uses miracles, but he often uses this
Lately I’ve been thinking about miracles. As a part of that, I’ve been looking for patterns in the New Testament stories—particularly the ones about healing. Yesterday I talked about (a) how desperate many of the people were who came to Jesus, and (b) how convinced they were that he could actually help. [You can read … Continue reading Can you trick God into a miracle?
When you read through the New Testament healing stories, you start to see some patterns. One is that the people who come to Jesus for help are desperate. Another is that they are convinced he can actually do something about their situation. For example, in Matthew 9:18 a respectable synagogue leader kneels before Jesus in … Continue reading The more prosperous and educated we are
At the church I pastor, I’m teaching a series about miracles. And one of the things I sometimes hear is this: “I don’t believe in miracles because science doesn’t allow them.” Makes sense, right? Wrong. According to Michael Ruse, a respected philosopher of science, science “deals only with the natural, the repeatable, that which is … Continue reading Are miracles anti-science?
Miracles are everywhere in the Bible: The world is created out of nothing, water is turned into wine, and dead people come back to life. But there’s a lot of skepticism, and I get that. David Friedrich Strauss once speculated that Jesus must have been walking close to shore so it only appeared like he … Continue reading Do miracles still happen?