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I’m Preparing for My Next Miracle by Josh Herring

The miracles recorded in the Bible fall into several categories. The following examples are illustrative, though certainly not exhaustive:

First, there are supernatural acts of creation. Certain creation activities were accomplished by the word of God (Hebrews 11:3); he merely spoke, and it was done (Psalm 33:9). Obviously, this type of divine action is not being duplicated today since the creation process of the material universe was concluded at the end of the initial week of earth’s history (Genesis 2:1-2).

Second, there were miracles which involved a temporary and localized suspension of laws regulating nature. Jesus calmed a ferocious storm on the Sea of Galilee (Matthew 8:23-27), and, on another occasion, he walked upon the waters of the lake (John 6:16-21).

Third, there were signs which involved the healing of man’s physical body. The blind were made to see (John 9:1-7), and the lame to walk (Acts 3:1-10).

Fourth, there were signs demonstrating divine power over death. Lazarus, dead four days, was raised (John 11:43-44), and, of course, the resurrection of Christ is the very foundation of the Christian system (1 Corinthians 15:16-19).

Fifth, some of the wonders of the New Testament age had to do with the expulsion of demons that had entered into human bodies (Matthew 12:22ff). This was evidence of the fact that the Savior’s power was superior to that of Satan.

Sixth, the exhibition of divine authority was seen in the manipulation of certain material things. Christ turned water into wine (John 2:1-11), and multiplied a lad’s loaves and fishes, so that thousands were fed (John 6:1-14).

Seventh, miraculous power was demonstrated in both the plant and animal kingdoms. Balaam’s donkey spoke with a man’s voice (Numbers 22:28), and the Lord Jesus, in an object lesson relative to the impending destruction of Jerusalem, destroyed a fig tree with but a word from his mouth (Matthew 21:19). In this study, we will limit ourselves mostly to a consideration of miracles recorded in the New Testament record.

In biblical times, miracles always had a worthy motive. Signs were not done for the purpose of personal aggrandizement. Though Jesus’ miracles established the validity of his claim of being the Son of God, that designation was not assumed out of personal interest. Rather, the documented claim was motivated by a love for man’s salvation.

Those performing wonders in the first century did not do so for the purpose of enhancing themselves financially—unlike the wealthy “faith-healers” of today. When Peter encountered the lame man of Acts 3, he had no money (v. 6).

As a general rule, the miracles of the Bible era were done in the presence of a multitude of credible witnesses—even hostile observers. When the Lord multiplied the loaves and fishes, possibly some ten thousand or more people were present (cf. John 6:10ff). Truly, the signs validating Christianity were not “done in a corner” (Acts 26:26).