Denominational Doctrines – Part 6 - Miraculous Powers Today

John 3.1-2

Introduction:
A. Several groups (Church of God, Assembly of God, Pentecostal Holiness, Nazarene, etc.) have this as a center piece of their religion.
B. But this doctrine has filtered through to most denominations to some degree.  Even members of the Lord's church can be heard claiming them.
C. Miracle has a clear sign on it that says "No man can do it, only God."
D. An act of providence is just as much from God, but it does not have clear sign.
    1. It could have been "by chance". (Lk. 10:31).
    2. It could have been natural event or phenomenon.
    3. It could have been an "act of God".
E. Both Miracles and acts of providence are acts of God - but both not signs.
    1. Birth of Jesus and births of Isaac and John the Baptist.
        a. Birth of Jesus was a sign. (Isa. 7:14).
        b. Births of Isaac and John the Baptist were neither chance nor sign.
    2. Draught and Rain were acts of God in Elijah's day, but not a sign. (Jas. 5:17,18)
    3. Importance to trust providence of God, but important not to attribute every event to that or miracles - will begin trusting something other than word.

Discussion:

I. The working of miracles was not for all believers.
   1. Samaritans (Acts 8:12-16)
   2. Romans (Rom. 1:11)
   3. Mark 16:17-18 not for all believers. (Cf. vv. 14, 19-20).
       a. Why limit to healing? (vv. 17-18)
       b. Why limit recipients to believers (Acts 28:8)
   4. “Signs of an apostle.” (2 Cor. 12:12)

II. Bible Miracles And Their Purpose
   A. It cannot be denied that they served immediate needs.
       1. Hungry needed food.
       2. Blind needed sight, etc.
       3. Men needed help miraculously furnished
       4. But, if satisfaction of immediate need was all that was seen then the point of the miracle was missed. (John 6:26).
   B. In O.T. God communicated with man by various miraculous interventions. (Cf. Heb. 1:1), but in N.T. miracles centered around Son and His revelation. - Confirmed and aided.
   C. The purpose of N. T. miracles was to confirm certain claims.
       1. Jesus claimed deity. Miracles validated that Claim. (Matt. 9:1-8; John 10:36-38; John 20:30,31).
       2. Apostles & prophets claimed revelation and inspiration from God. Miracles validated them. (Mark 16:19-20; Heb. 2:3).
           a. Additional miracles superfluous to producing faith. (cf. Luke 17:31).
           b. Miraculous repetition not necessary to our faith. (Rom. 10:6-17).

III. Miracles ceased
   1. 1 Cor. 13:8-13.
   2. Means ceased – laying on of apostles hands (Rom. 1:11; Acts 8:14-19; Acts 19:6).
   3. Purpose ceased – word confirmed. (Cf. Heb. 2:3,4).

Conclusion:

A. A miracle is something "no man can do" - only God.
B. A miracle is not needed today to produce faith -- we have complete revelation. (Jude 3).
C. If miracles and tongues today, do not need New Testament.
D. If complete revelation, do not need miracles.