- Wayne Grudem
Thomas Jefferson said they can't happen ever. This is why he took a razor blade and cut out all the miracles and references to supernatural occurrences in the Bible and republished it as The Jefferson Bible. For those who don?t believe in miracles, their reasoning basically boils down to this: ?I?ve never seen a miracle. Miracles defy the laws of nature, so there must never have been a miracle. And therefore there must be a natural explanation for all miraculous claims.? Or you can simplify their reasoning further as: ?Miracles don?t happen because they can?t happen.?
But what really affects your conclusion is what you believe about God. If there is an all-powerful (omnipotent), all-knowing (omniscient) God who is present everywhere (omnipresent) and it is He who created the universe, then miracles are possible.
A miracle is when God temporarily and as an exception, suspends or supersedes the laws of nature which He as the creator put in place, to accomplish his will. But when God works through natural processes to accomplish his will, that is providence.
Let?s take healing as an example. When God works through medicine, doctors and the body's natural healing process to heal, that is an example of providence. When God supersedes what normally and naturally occurs to heal, that is an example of a miracle. Either way, God gets the credit.
So should we pray for a miracle? Sure. After all
?You do not have, because you do not ask God? (James 4:2c).However, we should be careful to remember the very next sentence.
?When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with the wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures?(James 4:3).God answers when it is HIS will, not ours.
?This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us? (I John 5:14).However, just because miracles can happen doesn?t mean they do every time someone wants one. In fact, miracles are the exception not the rule. Some people expect miracles everyday. Or they get mad at God when something bad happens and God did not perform a miracle to prevent it. Think about this: God created the laws of nature and physics and put them in place. If he went around suspending them all the time, life would be chaos. For the most part, God allows things to take their natural course, although nothing is outside of his divine providence.
There are two important characteristics of every miracle in the Bible:
1. They are the exception, not the rule. The Bible is the record of God's intervention into human history. By definition, the Bible's mission is to record miracles. That's why the Bible is full of them, not because they happened every day.
2. Each miracle points people to God.
God chooses when and how he will answer prayer. Providence or miracle, God is no less sovereign in either case. We should want what brings honor and glory to God, and we should check our own motives when we pray for a miracle.