The Compact Oxford English Dictionary defines
a miracle as “an extraordinary and welcome event attributed to a divine
agency”. In truth, we constantly see God’s extraordinary deeds around us in nature
and throughout the universe. But every now and then, we come across special
miracles that add to our understanding of His almighty power.
Q2 Can we view all natural phenomena as miracles?
Paul says, “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are
clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal
power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Rom 1:20). Everything in
the universe originates with God, and what we often take for granted as natural
phenomena are in fact His gracious miracles. They testify to the fact that He
is both real and omnipotent.
But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you;
And the birds of the air, and they will tell you;
Or speak to the earth, and it will teach you;
And the fish of the sea will explain to you.
Who among all these does not know
That the hand of the Lord has done this,
In whose hand is the life of every living thing,
And the breath of all mankind?
Q3 What do miracles reveal about God?
reveal the glory, power and compassion of God and of Jesus Christ, His Son:
the Israelites turned aside to idols during the time of Elijah, God performed a
miracle to demonstrate His power and to show that He was the true God: He sent
fire down from heaven to burn up a sacrifice prepared by the prophet. As a
result, the people fell on their faces, crying, “The Lord, He is God! The Lord,
He is God!” (1 Kgs 18:39).
His ministry, Jesus revealed His compassion through miracles that targeted the
physical and spiritual needs of the people. For example, He cast out demons,
healed the sick, cleansed lepers, raised the dead, made the blind to see and
fed five thousand people.
miracles that revealed the glory of God included Jesus turning water into wine
in Cana (Jn 2:11); Jesus raising Lazarus (Jn 11:40); Peter healing a lame man
Q4 Do all Christians believe in them?
there are some Christians who accept the teachings of Jesus, but doubt that He
actually performed miracles. Such a stance has a number of problematic
implications. The first is the denial of Jesus’ divinity and power. The Gospels
clearly show that, aside from being an authoritative teacher, He also had the
power to cast out demons, heal the sick and control nature. The second
implication is a disregard for the Lord’s promise to give signs to confirm the true gospel
(Mk 16:17–18, 20). The third implication is the denial of the greatest miracle
of all—His resurrection. Jesus Himself spoke of this miracle as “the sign of Jonah” (Lk 11:29). It
demonstrated His power over death and the fact that He is justifiably the Saviour of mankind. To all those who disbelieve His
resurrection, Paul has this to say:
And if Christ is not risen, your faith is
futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in
Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of
all men the most pitiable.
1 Corinthians 15:17–19
Q5 Are they relevant to the church today?
testify to God’s glory, power and mercy. Therefore, they have a rightful place
in His church. It is significant that when Jesus sent His disciples out to
preach, He gave them the power to cast out demons and to heal the sick (Lk
9:1–2). Also, before His ascension, Jesus said, “And these signs will follow
those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with
new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly,
it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they
will recover” (Mk 16:17–18). The fact is, signs and miracles confirm the
authenticity of the gospel and prove that the church belongs to God (Mk 16:20).
Q6 What purpose do they serve?
play an important part in God’s ministry. They:
that Jesus is from God (Mt 14:22–33; Jn 3:2; 5:36; 10:37–38).
of true apostleship (2 Cor 12:12).
the authenticity of the gospel (Mk 16:20; Acts 14:3; Heb 2:3–4).
people to believe in the Lord (Ex 4:30–31; Jn 4:48; 12:9–11; Acts 5:12–14;
9:36–42; 13:6–12; Rom 15:18–19).
doubt (Mt 11:2–5).
the power to confound those who oppose the gospel (Acts 4:14–16).
God’s glory, power and goodness (Mk 2:1–12; Jn 9:1–3; 11:1–4; Acts 10:38).
God’s name (1 Chron 17:21; Isa 63:12; Jer 32:20; Mk 1:27–28; Acts 19:16–17).
that Jesus has forgiven a person’s sin (Mk 2:9–12).
convince people to depart from wrongdoing (Acts 19: 13–20).
cause the unrepentant to be judged (Mt 11:20–24).
frustrate the work of the devil (Ex 7:8–12; Acts 8:9–13; 13:8–12).
important purpose of miracles is to bring people to Christ. Unfortunately, not
everyone will respond in a positive way, as Jesus Himself discovered when He
performed mighty miracles in certain cities (Mt 11:20–24). However, anyone who
fails to repent despite witnessing the power of God faces judgment, because there
is no excuse for their unbelief.
Q7 Apart from the workers of God, can anyone else
warned His disciples, “For false christs and false
prophets will arise and show great signs and wonders, so as to deceive, if
possible, even the elect” (Mt 24:24). These words came true not long after the
early church was established, for we learn of people like Simon the sorcerer
who attracted a great following in Samaria and was acclaimed as “the great
power of God” (Acts 8:10). However, even Simon converted to Christ and was baptized;
then, it was his turn to be amazed by the power of God (Acts 8:13).
prophets and christs make use of the power of Satan
to perform “signs and lying wonders” to deceive and confuse people (2 Thess
2:9). However, these false miracles will not stand the test of time and will be
revealed for what they are. God’s power always triumphs—just as it did when
Moses prevailed over Pharaoh’s magicians (Ex 7:8–12) and when Elijah defeated
the prophets of Baal (1 Kgs 18:20–39).
Q8 Why are they seldom seen nowadays?
will only occur when two conditions are fulfilled. Firstly, the church must
have the abidance of God’s Spirit. We see the importance of this condition from
Peter’s testimony about Jesus: “How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the
Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were
oppressed by the devil, for God was with
Him” (Acts 10:38). Secondly, the church needs to have the authority of God,
in the same way that the disciples had the authority of Jesus, enabling them to
heal the sick and to cast out unclean spirits (Mt 10:1; Lk 10:19). Today, God
has given this authority to the church that preaches according to the Bible,
because miracles confirm the gospel of salvation (Mk 16:15–18).
© 2012 True Jesus Church.