ARE MIRACLES RELEVANT?
John 10:22–26; 14:8–14
What keeps you coming back to Jesus and His Church time after time? Is it the minister’s sermons, the music selection, the fellowship, comfortable seating or perhaps obligation? Some darken the doors of our church buildings with great anxiety and reservation. Others enter with great jubilation and sincerity of heart. Whatever it is that draws you to worship God should also point both you and others toward Jesus. Our worship of God may reveal more about us than about Him.
Many in Jesus’ day were followers but were not genuine in a long-term or sacrificial commitment. They were waiting for the next sign or miracle to witness or contemplate. That same danger exists today in Christianity. There are an untold number of people who are seeking Christ only with the motivation of receiving. Miracles are a good example of this scenario. While miracles still occur each day, they are not to be the sole reason for our hope and faith.
Miracles point to Jesus as God’s chosen Messiah. (10:22–26)
Jesus rebuked the crowd because their motives were not pure. He revealed to them that they were not His sheep, and He would not be forced to do their bidding whether it be miracles or some military or political position they desired for selfish reasons. Their expectations and perspective of what the Messiah should be were not in line with the redeeming purposes of Jesus. Can you imagine being disappointed in Jesus?
When we want to make Jesus in our image, we do not want true salvation; we want control. There is a danger in getting lost in the miracle and not understanding the bigger picture and reason behind the miracles. Miracles exist to point people to Jesus, not to become captivated by sensationalism.
Miracles point to the divinity of Jesus. (14:8–11)
It isn’t always unbelievers who struggle with grasping the meaning of His messiahship. It is one thing for unbelievers not to appreciate His coming, but for His disciples to continue to ask for visible signs was grounds for admonition.
The greatest opportunity we have to strengthen our faith in God is a vibrant and personal relationship with Jesus. Without that connection, everything in our lives will be unstable and out of focus.
Jesus continues to work through us for God’s glory. (14:12–14)
We are encouraged and grateful when we hear the stories of cancer that disappears, paralyzed limbs regaining strength or hearing being restored. There is no doubt that God still heals people in supernatural ways. However, each of the aforementioned occurrences pales in comparison to the greatest miracle of all — the salvation given by Jesus. He reminds His disciples — and us today — that a person’s most pressing need is not physical healing but a spiritual rebirth.
You or I may never feed thousands of people with a few pieces of bread or fish, but we can see something even more amazing and eternal when we see others come to a saving faith in Jesus. There is no greater miracle than the salvation of a soul. Jesus knew most of the original disciples would see many come to faith in Him long after He returned to the Father, and that is the “greater work” to which He is referring. If you are a Christian and feel the need to see a miracle, look in the mirror.
By Bobby McKay
Pastor of New Liberty Baptist Church in Morton, Mississippi