Friday, July 25, 2008

Has there been even one miracle?

“I don’t believe in miracles.”
“You mean you believe miracles don’t happen or that miracles can’t happen.”
“Don’t happen. Can’t happen. Both. There’s no such thing as a miracle.”
“Like Jesus rising from the dead.”
“Right. Can’t happen. Didn’t happen. Either He didn’t die and somehow escaped from the guarded tomb without being noticed, which itself is impossible, or the people who wrote the Bible were lying about what they claim to have seen.”
“Which doesn’t seem likely either. I mean, people don’t allow themselves to be tortured to death for a lie that they themselves invented.”
“True, er, whatever.”
“So what is a miracle? What’s your definition of a miracle?”
“I told you. There’s no such thing as a miracle. If something has happened then it has a natural explanation.”
“Meaning, it’s happened according to natural laws, scientific laws, the laws of physics.”
“So if something happened outside of those laws . .”
“That can’t happen.”
“Ya, but for the sake of argument, if something did happen outside the laws of physics, like Jesus turning water into wine . .”
“Jesus didn’t turn any water into wine, and he didn’t command diseases to leave people and he didn’t . . .”
“Let me finish. If He did turn water into wine or if He did walk on water, that would have been something that was outside of the laws of physics and therefore it could / would fit the definition of a miracle. ”
“Yes, but miracles don’t happen and Jesus didn’t do any of the stuff that are called miracles.”
“No miracles - ever.”
“That’s right.”
“But if there could be miracles, no wait, if there could be one miracle, if it was possible for even one miracle to take place then there might very well be bzillions of miracles.”
“I suppose but miracles are understood as out of the ordinary events so a bzillion of anything would make it ordinary, therefore it wouldn’t be a miracle.”
“Good point. Let me try again. If there could be one miracle then there is no reason why there couldn’t be two miracles or three miracles or whatever.”
“I guess. If there’s been one miracle then any number of miracles are possible but there hasn’t been nor will there ever be even one miracle.”
“Nothing outside the laws of physics has or ever will take place.”
“You got it. Can we talk about something interesting?”
“So what was there before the laws of physics?”
“What do you mean?”
“The laws of physics came into being with the Big Bang. What was there before the Big Bang that caused the Big Bang and the laws of physics to come into being?”
“There wasn’t anything there before the Big Bang. It just happened.”
“Matter just created itself.”
“I didn’t say that.”
“I think you did.”
“ I . .:”
“Look, whatever caused the universe and the laws of physics and time for that matter existed outside of time and the universe and outside of and above or over the laws of physics. Whatever created the laws of physics, whatever controlled the laws of physics whatever brought the laws of physics into being has to be greater than the laws of physics. Therefore the bringing into being or the Creating of the universe or the Creating of the Big Bang is a working definition of a miracle. And, you yourself just said, if there can be one miracle there can be any number of miracles. If Something from outside the laws of physics can make and manipulate energy and matter once, there is no reason It can’t do it any number of times. If we call the Cause of the universe, if we call the Cause of the Big Bang God, then God is the only one who is capable of causing a miracle.
“Yes but we don’t . . .”
“Wait! Just let me finish this thought and then you can reply. Jesus said to the people that were checking Him out, “You don’t have to believe Me when I say that I Am God just because that’s what I tell you. But your should believe that I Am God because of what I do.” Why would He say that?”
“I don’t know. Why are you asking me? I don’t even read the stupid Bible. Why do you think He said it?”
“I think that Jesus made that statement because He was doing things that were clearly outside of or contrary to the laws of physics as they/we understand them. Those people knew that a disease doesn’t respond to someone talking to it. Those people knew that water doesn’t just turn into wine at someone’s command. Those people knew beyond a shadow of doubt that normal people don’t calm a storm or forgive those who are unjustly killing them and those people for sure knew that dead people don’t come to life again.

Neither could they just toss these events aside. People were healed. The wine was real. Storms were calmed, people were forgiven, the blind were made to see, the lame were walking, people's lives were renewed and changed and Jesus was seen to be alive in ways that disallowed the idea of hallucinations. Those are things that only a God can do. Jesus was saying that He was doing these things in real space and real time and He was doing it for their benefit. And as it turns out He was doing it for our benefit as well. He did those things so that we could know that He was and is the real deal.

A guy named John, who was an eyewitness to the ministry of Jesus describes Jesus’ manipulations of matter and energy as “signs.” They were signs that Jesus has mastery over the natural elements of our universe. That kind of manipulation that kind of power is only possible in the Being who brought into reality the elements and laws that govern those elements in the first place. Those demonstrations by Jesus were signs that He used to show that something from another dimension had physically and visibly entered into our dimension. Something totally “other” happened when Jesus walked the earth and the Christian faith, the body of believers the Church, even with all it's faults, is an ongoing evidentiary miracle in it’s own right. There is no reason for the Christian faith to exist let alone be the driving force beyond virtually all we know as good for the human race if Jesus was and is not God incarnate. Sorry, I’ve talked too much. It’s your turn.
“Um, well, let me think about this.”
“Fair enough. Just one more point. All I know is that there is no basis upon which a person can unequivocally claim that miracles can’t or haven’t happened. Jesus, who is the Logos, the Word, the Mind, the First Cause, the Creator of the universe has proved that miracles can and do happen.”
“Well, maybe.”

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