Prince of Peace: From the Cradle to the Crown and Beyond
Jesus' Miracles Part 3
In Part 1 of Jesus' Miracles, we considered the the unreliability of eyewitness testimony in relation to a reason for the differences in the Apostles' accounts of Jesus' miracles. Another possibility could be differences in their viewpoint. In Part 2 we explored the classification of Jesus' miracles, noting that they are usually grouped by cures, exorcisms, resurection of the dead, and control over nature. We also examined some of the reasons for the miracles, including: they demonstrated His Divinity, revealed God's love for His people, and to bring some people to repentance and faith in Christ. In this 3rd part, we will examine the idea that many believe (i.e., that miracles were only for Jesus' times and the days of the Early Church).
Did Miracles Cease After the Early Church?
No! Nor were the miracles intended to only be accounts in the Scriptures. There are miracles recorded in both the Old and New Testaments, and not all of them were performed by Jesus. In fact, Jesus stated, “The person who trusts me will not only do what I’m doing but even greater things, because I, on my way to the Father, am giving you the same work to do that I’ve been doing. (Jn. 14: 12, MSG).
In fact, miracles have been witnessed and recorded throughout the ages. One of the difficulties in terms of these noted miracles is deterimining the veracity of these anecdotal claims, because there was little medical proof, (e.g., verifying an individual was seriously ill and actually cured). However, the Catholic Church has stringent requirements for an event to be considered a miracle. There is an excellent article on this subject, “Medical Historians Agree Lourdes Cures are Unexplainable”.
Futhermore, miracles were not limited to the Catholic Church. Many supernatual events were also recorded in the early days of The Salvation Army. In fact The Salvation Army publication, “Salvationist” has an article on this subject, “Signs and Wonders,” by Lt.-Colonel Max Ryan (retired), March 21, 2011. Ryan asks, “Do we belong to a charismatic Salvation Army? Or have we moved away from such expressions of faith, such as speaking in tongues, slaying in the Spirit, words of knowledge, prophecy and faith healing?” In his article, Lt.-Col. Ryan also reveals, “Apart from church historians, few people today are aware that the Army, in its early days, was considered to be among the most flamboyant of religious movements. Speaking in tongues, slaying in the Spirit, words of knowledge, prophecy, faith healing and ecstatic behaviour are part of the story of the Church from earliest times.” [The entire article can be read at http://salvationist.ca/2011/03/signs-and-wonders/]
Tomorrow we will conclude the series, “Jesus' Miracles", with "Do Miracles Still Happen?
Blessings & Peace
Elizabeth Hogan Hayduk
Former Salvation Army Officer