Where Are All The Miracles?
In the book of Judges, we have a cycle where the Israelites sin, a marauding army invades and enslaves Israel, the people cry out for a deliverer, and God sends a judge to destroy the enemy.
In chapter 6 of this book, another cycle takes place where the Midianites have come in and devastate the land due to Israel’s sin. This continues for seven years until one day an angel from God appears, talks with a man named Gideon and tells him the Lord is with him. Gideon’s reply is what all of us say at one time. “…if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us? And where are all the miracles our ancestors told us about?” (Verse 13).
Lately I have been asking the same question. Where are all the miracles I read in the Bible? I mean those amazing, jaw dropping miracles. Examples that come to mind are the parting of the Red Sea, a baby born to a couple beyond the age of conceiving, the sun standing still for a whole day, fire coming down from heaven to burn up a sacrifice, people raised from the dead, rain withheld for 3 plus years because of the prayer of one man.
Now don’t get me wrong. A miracle is a miracle. If someone gives their heart to Christ and becomes born again with the Holy Spirit living inside of them, that is a wonderful life altering miracle for that person. What I am talking about is the type of miracle where physical things are altered, like weather, or unusual phenomena occur, like people preaching in one place one minute, and then transported to another place to preach there. You think Star Trek invented this! Beam me up Scotty is nothing new to what the Bible shows as transporting someone from one place to another.
So as I was saying, the question of why don’t we see miracles as more commonplace in our society? As I have pondered this question and done some Bible searching, I believe I have come up with two key principles that give us some understanding.
The two key principles I have discovered are Unshakeable Faith and Fervent Persevering Prayer.
As a starting point on faith I share Hebrews 11:6 which teach us that without faith it is impossible to please God. Jesus also said that if we had enough faith in Him that we could speak to mountains and those mountains would move (see Mark 11:22-24).
But let’s be real. You can have all the faith in the world and might not see the miracle you believe for. That is absolutely true. But I also know this: if I don’t have faith, I can guarantee that a miracle will never happen. How do I know? Look what happened to Jesus, while in Nazareth his home town, when people didn’t believe in him. “And because of their unbelief, he couldn’t do any mighty miracles among them except to place his hands on a few sick people and heal them.” (Mark 6:5).
The second principle of fervent, persevering prayer exemplifies in the story of Jesus’ disciples unable to cast out a demon. Jesus has just come down from the Mountain of Transfiguration, where he meets a crowd. A man steps forward and says that he brought his ill son to be healed by the nine disciples who were waiting for Jesus and the other three to return from the mountain.
Jesus then rebukes the demon and the boy is healed. The nine disciples privately ask Jesus why they couldn’t cast out the demon. Jesus’ answer is that some things cannot be accomplished without prayer and fasting. The implication being the level of fervency and persevering prayer wasn’t there. (See Matthew 17:14-21).
When we jump over to James 5:16-18 we find this reference to an Old Testament story about Elijah the prophet. The Scriptures declare, “The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and wonderful results. Elijah was as human as we are, and yet when he prayed earnestly that no rain would fall, none fell for the next three and a half years! Then he prayed for rain, and down it poured.”
Now again we can pray and pray and many times nothing happens. But just like unbelief, a lack of earnest praying will produce very little.
A few years ago a Christian sociologist by the name of George Otis Jr. asked the question of why God moved in certain regions in the world and didn’t in others. Otis went all over the world to search for answers. He discovered five commonalities, but one was extremely supreme. It was fervent, united prayer of Christians living in the same geographical area.
Otis documented miracles like what I was referencing earlier. He published these results in a video series called Transformations. It has been viewed by over 250 million people and I am pleased to say that I have seen this video evidence.
So where are all the miracles? God is ready to make it happen. Maybe, he is waiting for us to have unshakeable faith and fervent, persevering prayer.