miracles

Why are there no more miracles?

#toughquestionfriday: Why are there no more grand miracles?

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Most Christians say that the reason God performed such evident miracles in the past (stopping the sun, sending fire from the sky, splitting the sea, walking on water, raising the dead, etc) was to prove to everyone that his messengers were speaking the truth, and that his message (the Bible) was a supernaturally inspired book.

If that is true, why would God stop performing miracles today, in a time when billions don’t believe his message, specifically because they have never seen a miracle to authenticate it? Christians say that God doesn’t change, yet, what explains the change in God plan to use of miracles to authenticate his message?

Why did God stop now? If the stories are true, he performed miracles during both the Old and New Testament periods, so why stop now when we need it most?

POSSIBLE ANSWER #1 – God only did it during the writing of the Bible.
If this is true, how does that help us who don’t live during the writing of the Bible. God proved something to people in the past, but not to us. They knew for a fact it was authentic, we don’t. Now we are stuck with just having to blindly believe in the writings of some ancient people we haven’t met. Why should we be punished for simply being born at the wrong time?

POSSIBLE ANSWER #2 – The Bible has already been validated by miracles, it doesn’t need any more.
Not so fast. How can we know that its been validated? Because it says so? If the only “proof” that the Bible is true, is found inside the Bible, that is like trying to pick yourself up by pulling on your ears. If the only proof of superman is found inside a book about superman, would you believe it? Or would you require superman to fly by above you, before you believed?

POSSIBLE ANSWER #3 – If God proved it, then we can’t have faith, and that would be harmful
So then why did God authenticate it to everyone in the past? This still makes things unfair, but just means we are the lucky ones. Why did God treat everyone in history so poorly by proving his existence to them? Why did Jesus hate his disciples so much that he proved his powers to them? Why be so cruel to Thomas by showing him proof of the Resurrection??

POSSIBLE ANSWER #4 – God does prove it, there are miracles everywhere, your heart is just too hard to see.
If there are miracles that prove it, where are they? In the biblical story of Joshua, God purportedly “stops the sun” to give the earth an extra day. How in the world can someones heart be so stubborn that they will not notice an extra day? Besides, in the biblical stories, people with heard hearts frequently see the miracles of God and believe, for example, in the story of Elijah, when fire fell from the sky “all the people saw it, they fell on their faces and said, “The LORD, he is God; the LORD, he is God.” So why did miracles change minds back then, but don’t anymore?

POSSIBLE ANSWER #5 – God doesn’t prove it because there would be no free will to reject him then.
In the biblical stories of biblical miracles, people almost always accept that the miracles are real, but still reject God. For example in the Bible story of the Exodus, the Pharaoh had his heart hardened by God (and God didn’t seem to care much about free will, was able to both (a) believe in the existence of the Hebrew God and (b) reject him.

POSSIBLE ANSWER #6 – Because God gave us the Holy Spirit, and now we don’t need miracles.
This is unfaithful to the Biblical narrative which states that during the first half-century of the church they had (a) both the Holy Spirit and (b) the clearly evident supernatural miracles, like sick people being raised from simply being in Paul’s shadow.

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Why doesnt God heal amputees just headaches?

Why doesn’t God heal amputees?

There are many people who claim to have been healed by God, they say they were healed from things like headaches, high blood pressure, unknown pain, psychological issues, and even cancer. (see notes below)

But it’s *never* something utterly clear, indubitable, undeniable like an amputated leg visibly growing out in front of eyewitnesses. Surely with billions of people who own a camera phone, we would have at least one video of such a miracle?

Why don’t we?

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a. There are cases where people who are not praying for a miracle, or don’t even believe, go into spontaneous remission from their disease. Our bodies heal themselves, many diseases have a % remission rate, which means some people will just recover naturally. Sure it *could* be a miracle, but it could also be the body healing itself.

b. There are cases where doctors think something is cancer, and a few months later exams show no cancer, the patient thinks he is healed. Sure it *could* be a miracle, but it *could* also be misdiagnosis, doctors aren’t always right, they occasionally do make the wrong diagnosis.

c. There are cases where peoples psychosis affects their body (for example there is even a girl who became paralyzed because of emotional trauma), later regained her ability to move after counseling -reported by Dr. Josef Breuer). This *could* be a miracle, but it could also be psychosomatic/placebo related “healing”.

d. There are cases where people have a low chance of survival, like with certain cancers (notice low does not equal zero % chance) then they undergo many surgeries, treatments, and because of the hard work of people, they survive. This *could* be a miracle, but it could also be the medical treatment working.

All of these kinds of events *could* be miracles, or they *could* be completely natural. There is no way to prove for certain, you still have to take it on pure faith, but with an amputated limb that grows out in front of witnesses, it would be hard evidence for miracles.

Why would the quality, visibility, and magnitude of supernatural miracles decrease over time?

In the era when 99% of people couldn’t read, write, and didn’t have camera-phones, we had miracles that could were undeniably supernatural, like oceans opening up to make a tunnel.

Today, when such things would be quickly instagramed, we have miracles like: getting a good job and headache relief. Why?

Why would the quality, visibility, and magnitude of supernatural miracles decrease over time?

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95% of the people living two centuries ago believed in fairies

As an illustration of the potent superstitious thinking prevalent for most of human history, consider that just a century or two ago, many people held a genuine belief in fairies. To put it more correctly, nasty little fairies who could attack your home or kill your cattle.

In fact, as many as 95% of people in Scotland believed in fairies even up to the 19th century! (According to an article in The Scotsman by Dr Lizanne Henderson, a lecturer of history at the University of Glasgow)

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the author who invented the Sherlock Holmes stories once wrote an article about fairies, in which he expressed sincere belief in them, and for evidence used the attached photo of the “Cottingley Fairies.” (The series of photos had been faked, but kept circulating as evidence of fairies for quite some time.)

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Even C.S. Lewis, the famed Christian apologist once wrote about hearing of a cottage that was feared because it was purportedly possessed by fairies.