The events that God called “miracles” in the Scripture are things that 1) could only be done thru the aid of the Holy Spirit, 2) were instantaneous and complete, and 3) were done as a witness of the gospel (Heb. 2:3-4). We need to be careful to use words and definitions which the Holy Ghost teaches, and not the ones that men invent. To do anything else is to add to the words of God, and can cause heresy.
The works of the Lord are great, sought out of all them that have pleasure therein (Psa. 111:2).
O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! (Rom. 11:33).
The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge (Psa. 19:1-2).
- The singular purpose of miracles was to bear witness to God Himself (e.g. on Mt Sinai), a prophet or an apostle. (Heb. 2:3-4).
- The definition of a miracle is a work that no man could possibly do—above natural ability (John 3:1-2).
- God foretold future events through the prophet to bear witness that the prophet was from God (Eccl. 8:7; 10:14; James 4:13-14).
- In opposition to a miracle is God’s work where His hand is not seen (Luke 23:44; 1 Chron. 14:15; Psa. 108:10-13; Matt. 10:29 and Acts 5:1-11).
In this study, we want to distinguish between the miracles (witness of God) and His ordinary work in the world (John 15:23-24). Study each of the following scriptural accounts very carefully (making notes as you go). The following questions can be asked to discern God’s ‘unseen’ work.
- What did the people actually see? Was a prophet or an apostle seen doing some miracle? Did the participants see a prophet or apostle do a “miracle,” which was and action beyond man’s natural ability to do?
- Did God foretell (through a prophet or an apostle) that certain events would take place which appeared to be from “natural causes?”
- Keep in mind:
- Take each event in scripture separately and try not to confuse two accounts.
- These are plain statements by God about how He works and yet man does not see anything with his naked (physical) eye. The events may appear to be from natural causes to those looking on, but God shows in these accounts that He does them.