One popular teaching is that the age of miracles has passed. They were OK in the first century, but not today.
This teaching is based on 1 Corinthians 13, which says, "Love never fails—but where there are prophecies, they will pass away; where there are tongues, they will cease; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part; but when that which is perfect has come, then that which is partial will pass away" (1 Cor. 13:8-10).
It is taught that "that which is perfect" is referring to the Bible. Now that we have the Bible, we no longer have a need for miracles and supernatural gifts, so they have all passed away. But if you keep reading, verse 12 says, "For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face." It seems clear to me that this passage of Scripture is referring to the Messiah's return to Earth as King of kings and Lord of lords. When Yeshua returns in glory, everything will be set right on this earth. There will be no more violence, heartbreak or desperate situations, and thus no need for miracles.
The last thing I ever want to be is judgmental or harsh. But I wonder if some people do not turn to 1 Corinthians to justify their lack of faith. They do not have miracles in their own lives, so they look at Paul's words and say, "Oh, this is the reason I never see any miracles. They're not for today!"
If you do not believe in miracles, you will not get them.
Every believer should constantly be on the lookout for miracles. If we do not get them, something is wrong. Perhaps we need to ask God for more faith, or to open our eyes so we can see. (As I mentioned before, I believe many "small" miracles happen every day, but most of us miss them because we are not looking for them.) Or it could be that unconfessed sin is standing between us and God.
Now, I am not saying there is anything wrong if some of your prayers go unanswered. There are times when God says no. We may pray for someone to be healed from cancer, and he or she dies anyway. We ask Him to set us free from some difficult situation, and He does not do it. Yeshua warned us that we would go through difficult times (John 16:33). The apostle Paul prayed three times that his "thorn in the flesh" would be taken from him, but God said no (2 Cor. 12:7-10). But again, if we never see a miraculous answer to prayer, something is wrong somewhere. We cannot just throw up our hands and say, "Oh well. I guess that's just the way it is."
Jesus said, "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks, it will be opened. What man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a snake? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!" (Matt. 7:7-11).
We must learn to live in joyful expectation of what God is going to do, being willing to accept His will at all times.
Jesus taught us to pray that God's will be done on Earth as it is in heaven. Obviously, it is extremely important to seek God's will and strive to make sure our prayers line up with His will. I hear many prayers that include the phrase "if it be Your will." "Heavenly Father, please heal her, if it be Your will." "Dear God, please give me more faith, if it be Your will." And so on.
We have to be careful not to use that phrase to cover up our own lack of faith. Do we say, "If it be Your will," because we are afraid God will not respond the way we want Him to? Do we think He is not listening to us?
The preceding was excerpted from Jonathan Bernis' book, A Rabbi Looks at the Supernatural: A Revealing Look at Angels, Demons, Miracles, Heaven and Hell, Chosen Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group, copyright 2016, used by permission.
Jonathan Bernis (jewishvoice.org) is president and CEO of Jewish Voice Ministries International (JVMI) and has been a leader in Messianic Jewish ministry for more than 30 years. He hosts JVMI's syndicated television show, Jewish Voice With Jonathan Bernis, aired in nations throughout the world. JVMI's mission is to proclaim the gospel to the Jew first and also to the nations, according to Romans 1:16. He is a sought-after speaker at conferences and seminars and has written numerous books, such as his A Rabbi Looks at ... series.
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