Heaven Coach

How To Get To Heaven

Miracles Healing and Prayer

February 11, 2016 By: alanpg Category: How To Get to Heaven

Miracles, Healing and Prayer
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The Wide Range Of Beliefs In Relation To Miracles Healing and Prayer

There is one God and there is one correct understanding of miracles. It is the understanding that comes from the one God.

Albert Einstein has an interesting quote (above). Certainly, he knew little of the truth, but just by observation he realized there was a God, there was a creator. He did not accept that God was as depicted in the scriptures because that God was too harsh and rule-making, and for Einstein defining morality for humankind was not acceptable.
He referred to God as the cosmic intelligence and was anxious to ask God about creation.

The Einstein quote:
“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”

Einstein did not believe that it was remotely possible that all we see and life itself just happened by random processes and thus the first part of his statement was folly to him, namely nothing is a miracle. Whereas, if there is a God then everything can be considered as a miracle – i.e. every breath we take, every baby that is born, every process we discover, all the wonders of the body and the physical creation of earth, stars, universes, and just everything is from God and thus supernatural; we might say a miracle. Einstein was clever and this quote like most of his quotes was a way to demonstrate his logic in a frivolous and unforgettable way.
God, however differentiates natural life from the miraculous things He performed. God has a purpose and to fulfill that purpose, there were some “interference’s” to be certain His ultimate purpose was achieved. One of the things that changed would occur at the beginning of the last age around the end of the first century. There would no longer be the need for God to provide these outward “miracles.” They would cease because that which was perfect had come.

Miracles, Healing and Prayer

Miracles sound like a good thing and healing could be a miracle that brings tremendous relief for the one suffering and for those who love that person. Miracles are believed to be one significant thing that results in faith, specifically faith in God. It turns out in this last age since late in the first century there have been no miracles. Instead of being a valued thing the concept of miracles and those who propagate the belief mislead many resulting in the loss of souls.
How could such an apparent good thing be so destructive to the thing that matters most in life? As usual God’s word is very clear on the subject of miracles including the specific case of healing. This is one of the most cruel of devices used by many over the centuries to gain the confidence and allegiance of those they wanted to control and often to remove the money from their pockets. It is especially cruel in providing hope where there is none. However, there is an important exception that will be discussed in relation to the prayer of the righteous. Many people have recovered from illnesses and various maladies where recovery was unexpected and therefore often deemed miraculous. Sometimes there may be someone or even a some group of people teaching “miraculous healing” and when there is recovery, “It is a miracle.” The miracle was the result of prayers or other suggested processes – again there is power in prayer, but it needs to be qualified as God so qualified it.
Now when there is a positive outcome, the ill person and or their friends or family are forever “hooked” that THEY HAD A MIRACLE. Certainly, from time to time some people will get better even when the medical community says there is no hope. It is NOT due to some interference with natural processes by God (with the exception that will be discussed).

For Some Getting A Miracle Is More Important Than Anything Else In Life
They Want SO BADLY To Believe Miracles Are Possible
They Or Their Loved Ones “Need” A Miracle – They Are Desperate
Unfortunately, This Affects Their Judgment and They Fall Prey To Unscrupulous People
What They Really Need Is The Truth And To Be On The Road To Heaven
The Tragedy Is They Accept The Religious Doctrines Of Those Promoting Miracles
In No Case Does This Help Them To Heaven, But The Opposite

A Short History OF Miracles

First, let us understand the nature of miracles as presented in the bible and compare that to what people claim are miracles today and throughout the centuries.

The place to begin is at the beginning, that is, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” This would be miraculous in the eyes of humankind as God “spoke things into existence.”

Genesis 1.3

3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light.

God in creation was designing and initiating all the processes that would come to be known as natural processes. In the view of many, the things involving the creator are all miraculous. As life goes along day to day it follows these natural processes. You are born and begin life and each day the sun rises and the sun sets. Some might say your birth and the rising and setting of the sun are miraculous things and indeed God put them in place, but are now considered part of the natural order. A person might say the miracle of birth, but after God put the “procreation system” in place it is part of the natural order and God is not interfering – thus not supernatural. Certainly in these natural processes there is great amazement and a wise person can see God in creation. Interestingly, many people today see all the amazing things, but try to explain them without crediting a creator. They will claim, “there is nothing miraculous in life, but some statistical probability related to the TIME involved and the SIZE of the universe that everything ORIGINATED from natural processes.”

Reflect On God’s Purpose For Creation

To gain a correct perspective of something spiritual like miracles it is important to understand God. Of course, we can only do this from the the things He has revealed. We see the physical outcome of God’s creation, and what we do not see is GOD’s PURPOSE for our existence. His purpose IS US. Creating the universe, light, time and all the living things (other than humankind) would be meaningless if it were not for God’s desire to ultimately share eternity with “others.” The “others” would be like Him inasmuch as they are in the image of God. They would have characteristics like God, that is each with a unique personality, an intellect and be eternal. They would be fundamentally spiritual with a living soul all locked in a physical body, in a physical universe and in a time domain. They would be able to make decisions and in their lifetimes would make decisions that would determine if they were worthy to share eternity with God. As life begins with Adam, God’s plan to achieve His purpose unfolds and His determination and love for His creation will be revealed in the cost to Him of His Son. In the creation, humankind can “see” God.

Romans 1.20

20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse

In the word of God we can understand God and God’s purpose and how humankind can succeed.

God’s Focus – Understanding What God Wants You To Know

It is fair to look at the life and death of Jesus as the central event in human history. God defined this as such in Genesis 3.15 after the the first sin. All would seem lost for humankind since all would sin and fall short of the glory of God, that is fall short of achieving God’s purpose.

Note: For clarity your sin or mine is not due to the the fact that Adam sinned, but that each person reaching the maturity of discerning good from evil choose to sin. One might say, how would God know that all will sin? Let us just say that God, not limited by time, knows all things, including future things. You can read about the human ideas of sin and original sin and total depravity in, “What Is Life All About.” God clarified that sin is not inherited, but that the soul that sins shall die (spiritual death).

Ezekiel 18.19,20

19 “Yet you say, ‘Why should the son not bear the guilt of the father?’ Because the son has done what is lawful and right, and has kept all My statutes and observed them, he shall surely live.
20 The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.

God defines sin as the thing that separates His creation from Him and then creates a remedy since all will sin. He is establishing the rules by which humankind will be judged. Life’s decisions in relation to sin will determine success or failure. The genius of God is beyond our understanding and God points out the frailty of humankind and its comparative wisdom and knowledge.

Isaiah 55.8,9

8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.

Philippians 4.7

7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Romans 11.33

33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!

So, when we question God with OUR wisdom, with the many seemingly reasonable thoughts in relation to His word we are unwise. Yet, questioning, being logical puts us on the right path because the word of God is perfectly logical and fits everything together perfectly. So, we seek God with our whole heart, spirit and body and realize that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. At the same time we realize our search will lead us to a much greater intelligence and the God of heaven as just pointed out is infinitely wiser in His thoughts, in His peace, in His judgments. There will always be a strong element of faith because the eternal things are unseen. Yet, in God’s perfect word there is certainty as a person grows in the knowledge of God and truth. The truth about a subject like miracles, healing and prayer comes from God and no matter how badly we want miracles to heal or to produce faith, this is not God’s way. As we will say many times on this page, God had a purpose for miracles in the past and now that time is past.

Note: Prayer and answers to prayer needs to be understood and are different than miracles and that is explained on this page consistent with what God has revealed.

God’s Focus Is On His Purpose
God’s Purpose Is Not Achieved Through Miracles
God’s Purpose Is What Life Is All About
Life Is About The Soul And Nothing Else
However, Miracles Were Used In Support Of God’s Purpose

God has a process to achieve His purpose for humankind. We can see in the scriptures how God will in His process get the “right souls” for eternal life. As always, He wants the best and that “best” is not how humankind would see the best. The best are those souls who meet God’s criteria. They will have certain characteristics and God establishes the rules by which humankind will be judged. They will be judged in relation to their adherence to His laws. God does all this in the FRAMEWORK OF CHOICES each person makes regarding God defined sin and God’s solution to sin. The characteristics God seeks are such that if they are not present the person will not seek God and accept His ways. Whereas if these certain characteristics are present in a person they will seek God and obey Him. Does this seem complicated? It is not difficult, because it all happens very naturally depending on the characteristics that define you. The proud, selfish person will not seek God, they already possess the answer to life and focus on their needs, wants and desires. On the other hand, God ties humility directly to salvation.

Matthew 18.3,4

3 …. “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.
4 Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

It is valuable to know God associates the characteristic of humility directly to a successful life. Many people fake humility, but God knows the heart. The humble person will search for the truth about life and be willing to follow the instructions from God.

Matthew 23.12

12 And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.

Matthew 5.3 is a verse not understood by many and even mocked by some people. Yet, it says such persons are those who will be in the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 5.3

3 Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

The poor in spirit are those persons who see their responsibility for the suffering of Christ and have the humility and courage to live a different life than they would live for themselves.

Categorizing Miracles By Events and Times

For clarity we can break up the subject of miracles into several components:
1) The miracle of creation, which we have started to discuss above
2) The miraculous events before the coming of Jesus’ ministry
3) The miracles of Jesus
4) The miracles of the first century (after the death of Jesus) in confirmation of God’s word
5) The miracles after the first century

1) The Creation

We have mentioned why God created humankind and it may be apparent that there is an evaluation, a determination regarding each person. This “grand test” for humankind will be played out on the stage of God’s creation, where the success or failure of each person is determined. These events as described in Genesis Chapter 1 are in view of humankind’s perspective, miraculous.

This is then a definition of miracles, that is events beyond the natural processes. Of course, as discussed the natural processes were all put in place by God and thus initially “miraculous.” Now, those natural processes are the things we interact with every day and are not in any way special. All the things we see on the earth, in the heavens, the birth of children, all the laws of chemistry, physics, genetics and thermodynamics and many others which we have discovered to this point in human history are just seen as very natural. Yet, they have a supernatural heritage. A wise person recognizes all things seen and unseen are from God. The miracles we are discussing here are outside the normal events of daily life, unexpected, unexplained, but more importantly clearly from God. The world is full of unexpected, unexplained things that most certainly are NOT miraculous. It would be appropriate to say, miracles are events that God chooses to occur on the stage of human existence. God will always have a reason for miracles and they are always related to His purpose.

2) The Miraculous Events Before The Coming Of Jesus Ministry

God does miracles to demonstrate who He is and that His message is true. It is the message that humankind needs and the emphasis is on the message and not on the various means (like miracles) of confirming the message.

The miracles over the period from creation to the time Jesus appears on earth are numerous and typically well known even to earth’s present generations. These miracles all have a single purpose and that is in some way related to Christ coming as promised by God in Genesis 3.15. Just as Adam and Eve enjoyed the garden of Eden prior to sin, they would now (after sin) find life difficult as God describes for both the man and the woman. This immediate change was of course not after natural means, but from God and thus beyond the natural processes He had originally put in place for humankind. There is a continual series of interactions with God that follow the promise of God in Genesis 3.15 until Christ arrives about 2000 years later. These interactions are at times directly from God or indirectly from His messengers and/or from His prophets and/or specific chosen persons. The flood in the days of Noah, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, the escape of the Children of Israel from Egypt including all the plagues and the opening of the Red Sea are all familiar events and certainly miraculous. There are hundreds of supernatural events during this period and the trail of these events leads to Christ coming through the lineage of Abraham, Issac and Jacob and so-on as promised. The miracles would include the virgin birth of Jesus, the warning to Joseph to take the Child to a different region and others. God oversaw the coming of Jesus and all to one end, namely that His purpose would be fulfilled in Jesus.

3) The Miracles Of Jesus

Jesus begins His ministry saying the kingdom of heaven is at hand. That ministry would include miracles to confirm who He was and there would be many.

Matthew 4:17

17 From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Below is a list of the miracles of Jesus, but as John 21.25 indicates the things Jesus did during His ministry are largely not recorded. These are the ones revealed by the Holy Spirit of God by inspiration to the various writers.

John 21.25

25 And there are also many other things that Jesus did, which if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written.

The Miracles Recorded From The Four “Gospels”

Jesus changed water into wine (John 2:1-11).
Jesus cured the nobleman’s son (John 4:46-47).
The great haul of fishes (Luke 5:1-11).
Jesus cast out an unclean spirit (Mark 1:23-28).
Jesus cured Peter’s mother-in-law of a fever (Mark 1:30-31).
Jesus healed a leper (Mark 1:40-45).
Jesus healed the centurion’s servant (Matthew 8:5-13).
Jesus raised the widow’s son from the dead (Luke 7:11-18).
Jesus stilled the storm (Matthew 8:23-27).
Jesus cured two demoniac persons (Matthew 8:28-34).
Jesus cured the paralytic (Matthew 9:1-8).
Jesus raised the ruler’s daughter from the dead (Matthew 9:18-26).
Jesus cured a woman of an issue of blood (Luke 8:43-48).
Jesus opened the eyes of two blind men (Matthew 9:27-31).
Jesus loosened the tongue of a man who could not speak (Matthew 9:32-33).
Jesus healed an invalid man at the pool called Bethesda (John 5:1-9).
Jesus restored a withered hand (Matthew 12:10-13).
Jesus cured a demon-possessed man (Matthew 12:22).
Jesus fed at least five thousand people (Matthew 14:15-21).
Jesus healed a woman of Canaan (Matthew 15:22-28).
Jesus cured a deaf and mute man (Mark 7:31-37).
Jesus fed at least four thousand people (Matthew 15:32-39).
Jesus opened the eyes of a blind man (Mark 8:22-26).
Jesus cured a boy who was plagued by a demon (Matthew 17:14-21).
Jesus opened the eyes of a man born blind (John 9:1-38)
Jesus cured a woman who had been afflicted eighteen years (Luke 13:10-17).
Jesus cured a man of dropsy (Luke 14:1-4).
Jesus cleansed ten lepers (Luke 17:11-19).
Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11:1-46).
Jesus opened the eyes of two blind men (Matthew 20:30-34).
Jesus caused the fig tree to wither (Matthew 21:18-22).
Jesus restored the ear of the high priest’s servant (Luke 22:50-51).
Jesus rose from the dead (Luke 24:5-6).
The second great haul of fishes (John 21:1-14).

There are certain characteristics of these miracles and the first is they were performed by Jesus and the second is they were done openly so all present could see they were supernatural. Earlier miracles were from God, usually through some person and openly seen. An example would be the things done in the time of Moses. The miracles performed after the death of Jesus during a portion of the 1st century were from God, specifically the Holy Spirit working through the Apostles or those designated by them (i.e. laying on of hands to bestow gifts) and clearly seen. In addition, to happening by designated individuals and being clearly seen they were all according to God’s purpose. They were confirming something and that may be confirming that it was God being dealt with, or Jesus was the one promised or the word of God was being confirmed. The healing that was promised, prophesied in Isaiah was not a physical healing, but a spiritual one.

Isaiah 53.3,4

4 Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted.
5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.

If there is one thing consistently wrong in how people interpret the scriptures it is looking at some verses, usually out of context and thinking there is a physical meaning. Jesus did not come to heal people physically, but to heal them spiritually. Specifically, offering a means to have their sins forgiven. In the process of confirming who He was, Jesus performed miracles and in many cases that involved the healing of individuals. The church belonging to Christ, the body of Christ consists of spiritual persons. They are spiritual because the Lord Himself added those obedient to the gospel to His body, the church. The local physical organization (church) consists of those who were added to the spiritual, universal body of Christ by the Lord (Acts 2.47).

The physical healing’s were just to show who He was, that is, from God and to support the message He was bringing. It was not until Matthew 16.16,17 that His apostles knew Jesus was the Son of God (the Messiah) and even then only these few knew His identity.

Jesus Reveals In The Two Miracles Below
The Blind Man And Raising of Lazarus From the Dead
That They Were To Reveal The Works Of God
Specifically, To Confirm Who Jesus Was and The Truth He Spoke

A man well known in his blindness receives his sight by doing what Jesus says, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam.” There was just no doubt regarding the IMMEDIATE RESULT of each miracle. Those present were just amazed. In this case the narrative of John 9.1-7 answers an important question about miracles. His disciples ask Jesus, why was this man born blind and assume it was due to sin, either his sin or that of his parents. Jesus tells them it was not sin, but that the works of God should be revealed in him. This man was blind for just this moment, for just for this miracle that Jesus was about to perform.

Note: I want to take this opportunity to suppose that some people might be angry with God for having this man live his life blind just so Jesus could perform this miracle. There is a great, great lesson here in terms of understanding God and I might suggest that that the blind man received his sight, but some 2000 years later “you” might receive spiritual insight. This might take an entire page to make the case you need to be convinced that what you see here is the love of God for humankind. So, in brevity, I will make a few points that you might consider as logical in view of God’s purpose.
> God has done what was necessary to bring about the reconciliation of humankind. In this case, it was important that there was wide knowledge of this man’s blindness making the miracle clearly understood by the people. He also taught that this calamity was not the result of sin.
> God is serious about spiritual things because they are eternal and humankind worries about the “life difficulties” of this blind man. God knows like the entirety of life itself, this man’s blindness is just like a vapor that appears and then it is gone (James 4.14).
> There is DIVINE wisdom and there is human wisdom. There is God’s way and there is your way. Here is an opportunity for you to see the blind man as part of God’s plan, OR to show your disapproval of God’s actions. The word of God will indeed separate those who love God from those who do not – sort of a characteristic of God’s perfect word and plan.
> Why should I blindly see the man without sight as part of God’s perfect plan and not as a terribly cruel act? Of course, you should never act blindly and faith itself is never blind (Romans 10.17). You see God in creation and you can see in the scriptures that God is the God of the bible. Then as you understand God and His purpose you see the blind man from the point of view of God’s plan.

This case of the blind man is just one of many places in the scriptures where people often see God as wrong and say, “This cannot be God, God is not the God of the bible.” God has carefully revealed Himself in the scriptures and when you understand God, all these “problems of apparent harshness” are really things that will make you stronger in belief. Who has the time to understand God? The answer is those who love the truth, those who want heaven badly enough, those who can see beyond this short lifetime and those who have the characteristics God desires like humility, courage, and exhibit kindness and unselfishness. They see God in His position as creator and realize their position as the created.

Blind man healed

John 9.1-7

1 Now as Jesus passed by, He saw a man who was blind from birth.
2 And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”
3 Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.
4 I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work.
5 As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
6 When He had said these things, He spat on the ground and made clay with the saliva; and He anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay.
7 And He said to him, “Go, wash in the pool of Siloam” (which is translated, Sent). So he went and washed, and came back seeing.

Jesus attributes the death of Lazarus to the same reason as the blind man namely, that the works of God should be revealed in him. In fact, Jesus did not rush to heal Lazarus before he died and even waited until Lazarus had been in a tomb for four days. In verse 21 below Martha says to Jesus, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.” Of course, Lazarus was not being raised from the dead because of Martha’s sorrow or Jesus’ love of Lazarus, but to demonstrate who Jesus was and specifically His ability to even raise one from the dead. Amazing, amazing how people extend what Jesus did and claim they can do miracles. Later some of Jesus disciples in the first century under the oversight of the Holy Spirit do miracles to confirm the word being preached. This includes at times raising persons from the dead.

Raising Lazarus From The Dead

Lazarus Raised

John 11.1-27

1 Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha.
2 It was that Mary who anointed the Lord with fragrant oil and wiped His feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick.
3 Therefore the sisters sent to Him, saying, “Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick.”
4 When Jesus heard that, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
5 Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.
6 So, when He heard that he was sick, He stayed two more days in the place where He was.
7 Then after this He said to the disciples, “Let us go to Judea again.”
8 The disciples said to Him, “Rabbi, lately the Jews sought to stone You, and are You going there again?”
9 Jesus answered, “Are there not twelve hours in the day? If anyone walks in the day, he does not stumble, because he sees the light of this world.
10 But if one walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light is not in him.”
11 These things He said, and after that He said to them, “Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up.”
12 Then His disciples said, “Lord, if he sleeps he will get well.”
13 However, Jesus spoke of his death, but they thought that He was speaking about taking rest in sleep.
14 Then Jesus said to them plainly, “Lazarus is dead.
15 And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you may believe. Nevertheless let us go to him.”
16 Then Thomas, who is called the Twin, said to his fellow disciples, “Let us also go, that we may die with Him.”
17 So when Jesus came, He found that he had already been in the tomb four days.
18 Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles away.
19 And many of the Jews had joined the women around Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother.
20 Now Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met Him, but Mary was sitting in the house.
21 Now Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.
22 But even now I know that whatever You ask of God, God will give You.”
23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”
24 Martha said to Him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”
25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.
26 And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
27 She said to Him, “Yes, Lord, I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is to come into the world.”

Again, this event with Lazarus unfolded such that Jesus could demonstrate who He was, that is, the Christ, the Son of God. Jesus, did not come to earth to work miracles for miracle’s sake, for healing’s sake. Miracles had a purpose and since the first century people see Jesus as a healer of various maladies, even raising the dead and yet God’s purpose is ultimately always spiritual, specifically spiritual healing. In spiritual healing sins are forgiven and the person is on the road to fulfilling the purpose God intended. Can you make the distinction the scriptures clearly provide that Jesus mission was spiritual and physical healing was not His purpose, but a tool used to assure the message of salvation (spiritual) was validated. The Jews never made the distinction, desiring a physical kingdom where they ruled and consequently crucified Jesus. Today, people still seek physical healing and often attribute various unexplained events to God and call them miraculous. The harm is enormous to the thing that matters most, namely to their soul and often to the souls of others.

Jesus’ first recorded miracle was the changing water to wine and it was the beginning of a ministering of God’s teaching to humankind that would be continually confirmed with miracles. Many would come to Jesus to listen and/or to be healed. They were hearing what God wanted them to know and usually about the kingdom of God. Much of what Jesus taught would later after His death be recorded accurately through the Holy Spirit as Jesus indicated the Spirit would bring back to their memories the events, teachings during His ministry.

John 14:26

26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.

Jesus would send out the twelve apostles before His death, before the kingdom of God was in place. The kingdom Jesus spoke of would come as a result of His suffering, death, burial and resurrection. In fact it was their mission to preach, “The kingdom of heaven is at hand.” The time was at hand for this central event in human history and its proximity was being announced and confirmed by miracles.

Matthew 10.5-15

5 These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans.
6 But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
7 And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
8 Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.
9 Provide neither gold nor silver nor copper in your money belts, 10 nor bag for your journey, nor two tunics, nor sandals, nor staffs; for a worker is worthy of his food.
11 “Now whatever city or town you enter, inquire who in it is worthy, and stay there till you go out.
12 And when you go into a household, greet it.
13 If the household is worthy, let your peace come upon it. But if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you.
14 And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet. 15 Assuredly, I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city!

4) The Miracles of the First Century (after the death of Jesus) in Confirmation of God’s Word

Jesus was crucified, died, was buried and rose on the third day according to the scriptures. The work of Christ was done, but now what must be done for people to take advantage of what God accomplished in Christ. Jesus told his apostles that the comforter, the Holy Spirit would guide them into all truth.

John 16.13

13 However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.

God would gradually be revealing His will throughout the first century. It would be the new covenant, the doctrine of Christ, the truth, the gospel and it is what God planned to accomplish His purpose. The message of the cross is the means by which people can be saved.

1 Corinthians 1.18

18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

Miracles are not God’s power to save, but the word of God, the message of the cross. God’s purpose for you is an eternity with Him in heaven and throughout the scriptures the gospel message is God’s power to save and this eliminates all other means of salvation.

Romans 1.16

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.

The command to obey the gospel is serious and God is not reluctant to point out the consequences of failing to do so.

2 Thessalonians 1.7-9

7 and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels,
8 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9 These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,

It is interesting how one person can look at verses like 2 Thessalonians 1.7-9 and be angered or more correctly be proud saying, “no one threatens me.” Another person realizes they are dealing with almighty God, the one who spoke everything into existence, the one who says that the fear of God is the beginning of knowledge, who says to work out your own salvation with fear and trembling and the one who loves humankind and somehow realizes God has my best interest at heart. God, being perfect is doing all He can to help you to heaven and that perfection includes the truth of what is coming and that will allow the humble person to live day to day seeing God’s power to save in the gospel. The perishing (lost) will see the preaching of the cross as foolishness and in their pride determine not to be obedient to God. It is just amazing, how God’s perfection as seen in His word results in a proud person choosing to reject God’s message, while another humble person receives the word as from God and obeys it. God’s purpose is being achieved in both persons as God will have the persons He desires for eternal life.

We are talking about miracles, but the real subject is the word of truth of the gospel and it is this message of salvation that was delivered after the death of Christ – confirmed by miracles during that time.

We are told in these last days, which is the last age for humankind, God speaks through Jesus. Jesus provided the Holy Spirit to the apostles to provide the truth to the world. Those converted would also bring the message and during this time the Holy Spirit was confirming the word of God. Sometime in the latter part of the first century, that message would be completed and confirmed – that which was perfect had arrived. Then it would be up to the obedient children of God to bring the message to the world generation after generation. This was the last age of God’s plan for humankind and now as mentioned He speaks to us through the Son. Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to guide the Apostles into all truth and bear witness to that truth with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Hebrews 1.1,2

1 God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets,
2 has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds;

Once again (below), the use of miracles is to confirm a spiritual truth. These truths are relative to God’s purpose, specifically salvation. In the past, miracles revealed God, then Christ and now miracles put the stamp of approval on the word that was being taught.

Hebrews 2.3,4

3 how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him,
4 God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?

Indeed, the apostles carried the gospel message and God affirmed that message with accompanying signs. During this time the salvation plan was revealed beginning in Acts 2 and then following with many recorded examples of people being saved. Gradually God revealed all that He intended for this last age until the word of God was completed – that is, until we had that which is perfect.

Mark 16.20

20 And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs.

The miracles of the first century were done to show that God was working with the apostles and specifically that their teachings were from God. The Holy Spirit worked with them and with those who the apostles laid hands on in that work of confirmation. So regardless, if the miracles were before Jesus, or during Jesus’ ministry or during the first century after His death, miracles were always related to God’s purpose. God’s purpose was always in some way related to the souls of humankind, particularly their salvation. You might think the teachings of the apostles were confirmed with miracles to only those who were present, but not to those down through the centuries or to us today. Miracles of course, were only observed by those present and must have been very powerful. However they were not perfect in converting the soul and in fact you can observe in God’s word they were not sufficiently convincing. People just became hungry for more miracles to fulfill their needs. The Jews were angry at God and Moses after their escape from Egypt because they had no food – they wanted more miracles. After Jesus fed the crowds listening to His message, they suddenly disappeared as the miracles stopped.

Most importantly, miracles did not provide the truth people needed for salvation. God’s plan was to provide humankind in the last age with that which is perfect in converting the soul – the completed word of God. God’s message up until the completed word had always been only in part and miracles were supporting the message. Now, around the end of the first century the entirety of God’s revelation was available. All that humankind needed for life and godliness was available. Nothing more was needed, God had revealed His plan, and it was understandable as was God and His intentions. It may be hard to believe that the completed word is more powerful than miracles because we so badly want a sign, a miracle. As you study God’s word, you can easily see the weakness of miracles and the value of God’s revelation to humankind.
As mentioned, Jesus would not be the only one to do miracles, even the raising of the dead. The purpose was always in confirmation of what was being taught. In the case below, the people would see Peter as having authority in his teaching.

Peter Raises Dorcas From The Dead

Peter raises Dorcas from the dead

Acts 9.36-40

36 At Joppa there was a certain disciple named Tabitha, which is translated Dorcas. This woman was full of good works and charitable deeds which she did. 37 But it happened in those days that she became sick and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in an upper room.
38 And since Lydda was near Joppa, and the disciples had heard that Peter was there, they sent two men to him, imploring him not to delay in coming to them.
39 Then Peter arose and went with them. When he had come, they brought him to the upper room. And all the widows stood by him weeping, showing the tunics and garments which Dorcas had made while she was with them.
40 But Peter put them all out, and knelt down and prayed. And turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up.

Here is Moses, here is Jesus, here is Peter, here is Paul, here are various others and what is being TAUGHT (and confirmed by miracles) is from God. What is important? Is it THE TEACHING or is it THE MIRACLE? The miracles had no reason to exist other than to validate the teaching. The completed word of God meant there was no longer any need of validation. You can find in scripture how God’s purpose can be fulfilled in you.

1 Peter 1.3-5

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,
5 who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

Life is about the soul and God’s focus is for you to receive an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.

1 Peter 1.9

9 receiving the end of your faith – the salvation of your souls

God’s purpose, and specifically for you is fulfilled when you receive the end of your faith – the salvation of your soul.
We are talking about miracles and healing, but the scriptures are always about your soul. The most important thing for you to differentiate is the physical from the spiritual. GOD/CHRIST DID NOT COME TO PHYSICALLY HEAL, BUT TO RESOLVE THE PROBLEM OF SIN – A SPIRITUAL MATTER. The solution is not the miracle, but the gospel message. Now in these last days, this last age you have all that is needed to be successful.

One of the very sad conclusions devised by misusing the scriptures has the Holy Spirit still active today in some miraculous way. The work of the Holy Spirit was completed and is concurrent with the completion and confirmation of God’s word. The Holy Spirit is active today inasmuch as people respond to God’s word. The work of the Holy Spirit in this sense continues, but He does not act on the person in conversion separate from God’s word.

This Is What Is Important
You Must Be “IN CHRIST” If Heaven Is In Your Future

Although Jesus and the Holy Spirit have completed their work, they both are “present” in obedient children of God in the sense defined by God. That is they are present AFTER their obedience when the Lord adds them to His spiritual body, the church. This is the kingdom that Jesus spoke of at the beginning of His ministry. A kingdom not of this world, a spiritual kingdom and it is the spiritual body of Christ – it is the church. Those obedient to the gospel are “In Christ.”

Galatians 2:20

20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

In effect, when you stop living your life for yourself and live it for Christ you have Christ living in you. Living by faith means you are living in obedience to God.

Romans 6:11

11 Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God IN CHRIST Jesus our Lord.

Romans 16:7

17 Greet Andronicus and Junia, my countrymen and my fellow prisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were IN CHRIST before me.

1 Corinthians 1.2

2 To the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who are sanctified IN CHRIST Jesus, called to be saints, with all who in every place call on the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:

1 Corinthians 1.30

30 But of Him you are IN CHRIST Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption—

2 Corinthians 5.17

17 Therefore, if anyone is IN CHRIST, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

Ephesians 1.10

10 that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things IN CHRIST, both which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him.

Colossians 1.2

2 To the saints and faithful brethren IN CHRIST who are in Colosse: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Colossians 2.6

6 As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk IN HIM,

1 Thessalonians 4.16,17

16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead IN CHRIST will rise first.
17 Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.

1 Peter 5.14

14 Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to you all who are IN CHRIST Jesus. Amen.

1 John 5.20

20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are IN HIM who is true, IN HIS SON JESUS CHRIST. This is the true God and eternal life.

Miracles in no way get a person into Christ – it will be your obedience that allows you to be in Christ or as has been said, “put on Christ.”

Note: One gets into Christ in Baptism, where sins are forgiven.

Galatians 3.26,27

26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.

Indeed, as many of you that have been baptized INTO CHRIST have PUT ON Christ.

Romans 6.3

3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST Jesus were baptized into His death?

“In Christ” or “In Him” is, as used above, signifying the relationship with Jesus as a designation held by like faithful believers. Jesus, in this very personal relationship is our intercessor, our advocate with God the Father. This is the relationship needed to be successful at the end of our lives or when Christ returns. That is, when Jesus comes in the clouds and the dead “In Christ” arise and then those who are alive at His coming and thus we (“In Christ”) shall always be with the Lord.

The Holy Spirit Dwells In The Children Of God

The Holy Spirit, whose work has been completed dwells in the children of God.

1 Corinthians 6:19

19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?

2 Timothy 1:14

14 That good thing which was committed to you, keep by the Holy Spirit who dwells in us.

The indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the children of God begins when there is obedience to the gospel (Acts 5.32, below) and is related to the work the Holy Spirit accomplished. That work is associated with the word of God, that is the accurate deliverance of the truth. The contrast between the old and new law is one of physical versus spiritual. Physical in this case being the old law written on tablets of stone versus the new covenant written on the heart. Again, there is no miraculous aspect to this indwelling, but simply the action of God’s word (delivered and confirmed by the Holy Spirit) on the hearts of obedient individuals. The driving force for such a life is obedience to God’s word that demonstrates a persons love of God.

2 Corinthians 3.2,3

2 You are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read by all men;
3 clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart.

Hebrews 10.16

“This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them”

There are many things we will not understand perfectly. The problems people have with some scripture is thus understandable. The danger is when we teach things we do not understand as truth. This is what has happened in the area of Miracles and Healing and the Holy Spirit and Prayer. The teacher bears the responsibility of teaching truth. So whether or not one understands perfectly how the Holy Spirit dwells in the child of God is not as important as knowing that indeed He does dwell there and that:
> It is not a miraculous, irresistible manner of indwelling
> It is related to the work that the Holy Spirit completed
> There is a certain “holiness” inasmuch as mentioned in 1 Corinthians 6.19 such that the child of God needs to be aware of their spiritual nature

God clearly advises how one should conduct themselves considering you are a temple of the Holy Spirit. The indwelling is not miraculous as though the Holy Spirit overpowers your decisions. Yet, it is the word of God (accurately delivered by the Holy Spirit), which you heard and obeyed and now is part of you affecting the way you live and the choices you make. God’s people search the scriptures and are encouraged to grow in the grace and knowledge of God. The things that allow you to grow, the advice that God provides are all contained in that which is perfect – God’s word provided by inspiration of the Holy Spirit to those who spoke it, recorded it.

2 Peter 1.20,21

20 knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, 
21 for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.

The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is a result of your obedience and in Acts 2.38 there is obedience for the FIRST TIME to the gospel of Christ. People receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Acts 2.38

38 Then Peter said to them, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

The Lord then adds those being saved to His spiritual body, the church.

Acts 2.47

47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.

Then in Acts 5 the apostles had been ordered by the Jews NOT to teach in the name of Jesus, but they were determined to obey God rather than men and in verse 32 below they acknowledge that God gave the Holy Spirit to those who obey Him.

Acts 5.29-32

29 But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men.
30 The God of our fathers raised up Jesus whom you murdered by hanging on a tree.
31 Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.
32 And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him.”

Shortly, we will be discussing the work done by the Holy Spirit and this can help our understanding of this indwelling. We can look at the work of the Holy Spirit as a work of Revelation, Confirmation, Conviction, Conversion and Sanctification. The work today of the Holy Spirit is definitely not in any way miraculous. Some would claim the Holy Spirit works miraculously and irresistibly on the hearts of individuals in the process of conversion. However, the scriptures would disagree as the Holy Spirit does not work independently of God’s word. One could say that the Holy Spirit convicted me of sin and then I was converted, but it would not be in any way separate from the word of God. It is because the Holy Spirit completed His work that you can know the truth and obey it. God is not a respecter of persons and does NOT act in some miraculous way on the hearts of CERTAIN individuals through the Holy Spirit.

Note: The Holy Spirit actions of revelation, confirmation, conviction, conversion and sanctification occur before you are a child of God, before the indwelling of the Spirit. You can know the word of God because the Holy Spirit accurately delivered it and confirmed the word. You were convicted (understanding the relationship between your sin and the cost of your redemption) to the point of obeying – being converted and in the process were sanctified.

Now being a child of God, “In Christ” the Spirit dwells in you because you are spiritual, in the body of Christ. You continue to grow in the grace of God as you better understand the word of God and the on-going need to obey in order to fulfill the mission. Indeed, you will need to put on the armor of God to stay on the path to heaven and God’s advice is essential. You will need to be capable of meat and not just milk in effectively carrying the word of God to others.

Today, HERE is the gospel of your salvation and HERE are those children of God preaching the word of God and HERE are people accepting or rejecting the message. It is God’s way, God’s power for your salvation as specifically mentioned earlier in Romans 1.16 and 1 Corinthians 1.18. God defines the gospel as the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. Essentially, believing in Christ as the Son of God and repenting you obey the death, burial and resurrection of Christ in baptism.


1 Corinthians 15.1-4

1 Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand,
2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.
3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures


Romans 6.3,4 and 17

3 Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?
4 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
17 But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered.

That form (the death, burial and resurrection) of doctrine you obey when you when you go into the watery grave with sin, but are resurrected coming out of the water without sin into a new life – you died to sin.


Colossians 1.5

5 because of the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, of which you heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel

Unfortunately, the gospel of your salvation is hidden not by God, who openly reveals the truth, but by the many things that people place in front of God and it is usually the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. In other words, God is NOT first in their life – but “my way” the things “I want” are all that matters.

2 Corinthians 4.3,4

3 But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, 4 whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.

God says His power is in the gospel of Christ, the preaching of that message. The Holy Spirit revealed that message and in the first century miraculously confirmed the message and now the message can convict a person of their sin and their part in the death of Christ. As a result a person can be saved in obedience to the message and in so doing they become sanctified. It is not the miraculous way people apparently desire salvation, it is simply God’s way.

1 Corinthians 6.11

11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

5) The Miracles After The First Century

The miracles past the 1st century are all invented by humankind. Exactly 100% of them are false. The modern day “healers” as all their predecessors after the first century are just devious and for various selfish reasons. Can these “healers” raise one from the dead, can they instantly cure a crippling disease, can they give sight to the blind? No, they cannot and there is no authority in the scriptures for people to do healing as it was done in the time the word of God was being confirmed during the 1st century. The many, many miracles claimed by the Catholic church are ALL frauds. We can know this for certain because such activity was completed when that which is perfect was completed. Of course, practically speaking all Catholic claims of miracles are without documentation except from within the Catholic church. That organization, born in deceit used the claim of miracles as part of controlling the minds of their followers. “Surely, Catholicism is true, look at all the miracles.” Catholicism has used their miracles as part of their system to convince generation after generation of their legitimacy. Their other tools include their apparent majesty such as buildings and elaborate ceremonies, their violent retribution of their past and their appealing hierarchical organization. However, there is no authority in the scriptures for the existence of Catholicism. Over the centuries, the methods used to control Catholics changed, for instance claimed miracles are seldom used today as it takes more than a story in some Catholic book to convince. They need fresh miracles, but they now come under scrutiny. Of course, there is an incredibly serious, infinitely grave problem to claim powers belonging only to God. Such actions negatively impact God’s purpose in misleading people in terms of what they need for salvation. Indeed, Catholicism invents a path to heaven that involves concepts totally alien to and in opposition to the scriptures.

This should be a very short section, since there are no miracles after the first century. Of course, like creation, the end of the world will be supernatural as Jesus returns in the clouds to take with Him those who are “IN CHRIST” first from the graves, then those alive at His return. Then the judgment and end of all things physical, even the works that have been done. So, the last events of humankind will be truly supernatural, but not like miracles, which were used to convince. At the end of time, everyone will personally know all the things of God’s word were true. Every knee shall bow, but nothing can be done and nothing is expected to be done – it is over. All physical things will be be destroyed and all the “works” therein and there is judgment. In the times of miracles there could be responses and the miracles were recorded and served a purpose. This final supernatural event will be open to all, it will be immediate, directly from God and serves the purpose of ending all things and bringing on the judgment.

Humankind likes to refer to just about everything unexplained as a miracle. In illness, people seek miracles. Miracles are associated with sports team that win against strong odds, with finding the perfect mate, with the birth of a child, with winning some great valued thing, with overcoming some problem and the list is never ending. They are NOT MIRACLES in the sense of the miracles God provided for specific reasons related to His purpose or are they in any way out of the normal events (we will discuss how, when and why prayer is involved further down the page). God’s miracles were clearly miracles and to confirm something God wanted to confirm. One might think that miracles are to bring faith in God, but God has provided His truth to bring faith and that eliminates ALL OTHER WAYS for faith to come.

Romans 10.17

17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

You see if faith came in other ways, people would believe anything about God. People need the truth to become children of God and even by observation one can see the varied belief’s in relation to salvation by those who claim to perform miracles. God’s children realize the time of miracles is past and are focused on living obedient lives. God’s miracles were always leading to the truth, they were spiritual in nature and always with a purpose. God differentiates between the various supernatural things being provided in the first century to confirm the word and the end of those things when that which is perfect had come. That is, miracles with their great appeal for people are not as valuable in God achieving His purpose as the word of God. Humanity it has been shown loves the signs, the miracles, but God knows they have only a temporary impact. That has been demonstrated by how quickly those wandering with Moses “forgot” the many miracles they observed. The forgetting included disobedience to the “God of miracles” and demanding of more to sustain them.

Numbers 14:11

11 Then the Lord said to Moses: “How long will these people reject Me? And how long will they not believe Me, with all the signs which I have performed among them?

Miracles have a temporary impact as seen be those who were present when Jesus miraculously provided the loaves of bread and the fish to feed those who were following and listening to Him teach. As soon as the food was missing so were the crowds. Jesus, Himself observed once they were no longer being fed their interest waned.

John 6.26-29

26 Jesus answered them and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled.
27 Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.”
28 Then they said to Him, “What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?”
29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”

Miracles Are Not Perfect In Converting The Soul

The verses below (1 Corinthians 13.8-12) compares the value of miracles and various gifts used to confirm God’s word to a child’s understanding versus that of a man. God compares things known in part to confirm (miracles, signs) to that which is coming and will be perfect when completed – God’s word. Then immediately following, compares the miracles to looking into a mirror dimly versus face to face. God is comparing knowing in part (looking into a mirror dimly) versus knowing just as I am known (face to face), that is, an accurate view. Miracles had their place, but God had something in mind, which is far better. Interestingly, it would be far better to those who love the truth, but not to an evil and adulterous generation as Jesus pointed out, nor to the proud and self seeking.

Matthew 12.39

39 An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign ……

Once again, God’s purpose will be fulfilled in terms of sorting out those who are worthy of heaven by their own free choice. A person’s true character is exposed by how they respond to God’s word. You might say, I do not believe there have been no miracles for nearly 2000 years. You might add there have been hundreds, probably thousands of people who have claimed, even experienced miracles during that time. There are 40 million Americans who say they have seen or know someone who has seen an unidentified flying object, or UFO, and a growing number believe they’ve actually met aliens. A Huff-post/You-gov poll reveals that 48 percent of adults in the United States are open to the idea that alien spacecraft are observing our planet and only 35 percent outright reject the idea. People want signs, miracles, aliens, the supernatural, ghosts and just something interesting, different, and exciting. Our subject is exceedingly more important and that is having a successful life ending in heaven. The world is full of distractions and believing in, and seeking miracles is a distraction whereas seeking God and truth will get you on the road to heaven. You have a choice, you can believe God in relation to miracles or what the many, many claim about miracles. You will respect God or men/women and most choose to follow after humankind’s ideas often because they fit with what we want to believe. You should not wonder why there is so much confusion in the world, in religion! What difference does it make if I believe in miracles today? Miracles can overwhelm a person and as a result you will likely never come in contact with the truth you need. Choose God’s way in everything, respect God as He is holy. Those who lack this respect for God, for God’s word will respect what men/women say about things spiritual. Instead, understand what you believe, test the spirits, search daily the scriptures.

In the verses below, God explains how there will be a transition from miracles (purposed, powerful) to that which when completed will be PERFECT/COMPLETE in fulfilling God’s purpose. A person who loves the truth, rightly dividing scripture will be able to see that which is perfect is God’s word. That which is perfect is abundantly clear from ALL scripture. God’s word is truth and it is what people need to be “IN Christ” and to be sustained for heaven. It was what they need to differentiate the religions of humankind from the body of Christ.

1 Corinthians 13.8-12

8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part.
10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.

When Peter proclaimed that we have all things that pertain to life and godliness, He was referring to the word of God. Finally, the revelation from God was complete and it provided everything a person needed to be successful, to achieve heaven.

2 Peter 1.2,3

2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord,
3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness

We have all things that pertain to life and godliness before the end of the first century – what more do we need than ALL things? Apparently, humankind believes we need a lot more as they have created hundreds of different organizations and millions of rules. Jude indicates the faith was once delivered to the saints.

Jude 1.3

3 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.

The faith delivered is of course the faith that comes from hearing and hearing by the word of God.

The miracles of old pointed out that here is one God, believe Him, obey Him. Pharaoh learns from Moses that God wants the children of Israel to be free of his bondage. Moses was representing God and there was a continual stream of evidence (miracles) to demonstrate that the Author of this request was God. The miracles claimed TODAY are “proud things” indicating I am special and the person believes they have a relationship with God, after all I had a miracle. They did not have a miracle! So, this person lives a confused life and likely will also confound others who now believe they need a miracle. It is the miracle or miracles that dominate their life and not the truth and Christ living in them.

Here is Jesus, believe him, obey Him. Here is the word of God, hear and obey God. There was a continual stream of miracles from the time Christ began His mission (to seek and save that which was lost) and consequentially the people knew they were dealing with God. It was an authentication of the words of Christ. There was a continual stream of miracles after the death of Christ as the Holy Spirit was delivering the the truth through certain individuals. Paul in his extensive travels preaching the gospel used miracles to confirm the word of God.

Acts 14.8-11

8 And in Lystra a certain man without strength in his feet was sitting, a cripple from his mother’s womb, who had never walked.
9 This man heard Paul speaking. Paul, observing him intently and seeing that he had faith to be healed,
10 said with a loud voice, “Stand up straight on your feet!” And he leaped and walked.

Paul healing cripple

Paul Heals The Cripple

There is a certain understanding in relation to miracles that can help you identify the truth and it is simply that if miracles (post first century) are part of the teaching of some group or individual then they teach error. You should not expect heaven if you follow their doctrine. Humanity is attracted by certain physical things like miracles, like healing and once again there is God’s way and there is man’s way. God is clear, the time of miracles is past and in its place is that which is perfect – God’s word.

Note: For clarity, God does answer prayer and the outcome can be beyond what would be naturally expected. This is different than the recorded miracles and the purpose God had for them. This will all be explained and substantiated on this page. The scriptures never refer to these responses to prayer as miracles. There are various requirements in order to have prayer answered and that is different than the miracles of the past.

Another note regarding the transition time being referred to as the first century. This is an approximate time to separate a time when God used miracles from a time when they were no longer being used.
The use of “first century” terminology is not referring to an absolute drop dead date, that is December 31, 99 AD at midnight miracles ended. It might have been before then or after this date. The word of God was completed when Peter wrote we have all things pertaining to life and godliness late in the first century. The gospel message was complete and confirmed, nothing more would be added to what a person needs for heaven. There may have been some residual writings or miracles. We can say that miracles ended when the apostles died and those who they “laid hands” on also had died. There were some authorized writings after Peter made this statement, but the message God intended for humanity that results in reconciliation was complete and was not changed by the last of the revelations from God (i.e. John’s record of the book of Revelation encouraging the early church). When the last miracle was completed and the last of God’s message was completed, the work of the Holy Spirit was done and this occurred around the end of the first century. This date might of been ten or so years before or after the actual end first century – it is not important!

Recognizing that those who teach miracles also teach error in relation to “the truth you need” is incredibly important if you want to achieve heaven. Yes, there are many who DO NOT teach “modern-day” miracles who DO NOT teach the truth people need for salvation.
Isn’t it possible that one could teach miracles today and teach the truth in relation to salvation? No one should claim God is acting in a way that He is not. This is not the pattern of one who loves the truth. Truth lovers have the greatest respect for God’s word and it is for this reason that they seek, find and obey the truth. Those who teach miracles, some even saying they can perform such, typically associate salvation or the promotion of faith as a result or outcome of miracles. Many modify/change God’s word in a way they believe is beneficial in bringing people to Christ and will not in any case be harmful. God makes it clear that adding to or taking away from His teaching is unacceptable throughout the scriptures.

Deuteronomy 4:2

2 You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you.

Galatians 1.6-9

6 I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel,
7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ.
8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.
9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.

In different places (as the verses above) God condemns adding to, taking away and changing His word. He uses such things as a person being cursed, as indicating there will be eternal consequences and makes it clear He hates lies and those who mislead others. So miracles since the first century are either truth or they are error, there is no middle ground and in no way is error harmless. By observation, error in one area leads to other errors and in carelessness (disrespect for God’s word) God’s plan of salvation is distorted.

Does this mean that God will not act supernaturally in any way since that which is perfect came? As discussed, sometime in the latter part of first century Peter wrote that humanity had all they needed for life and godliness.
God’s purpose in terms of miracles since the beginning was to get to this point and now miracles no longer served His purpose. Miracles were used to show the God of the bible was God, they were used in the process of bringing Christ, they were used to show Christ was from God and then that He was the Son of God. Finally miracles were used to confirm the word of God as the Spirit of God provided the message of truth. God always has a reason for doing what He does and clearly we understand how He used miracles. There is one more case of God’s interaction in the normal course of events, that although DIFFERENT than the miracles still exists.

God Answers Prayer And The Outcome Can Result
In Something Different Than Had He Not Responded To Prayer

The miracles of the past were always in someway confirming God, Christ, and God’s word for what they were and were always part of God’s plan to fulfill His purpose.
So does God answer prayer? Yes, but not the prayer of just anyone.

James 5.16

16 ….. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

John 9.31

31 Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him.

Proverbs 15.29

29 The Lord is far from the wicked,
But He hears the prayer of the righteous.

There is a path to God for the one (in sin) who seeks truth and in that case their prayers are “heard.” The statement of God that He is not far from us and that we should seek Him with our whole heart is true and one way would be seeking Him in prayer and in our good actions. We know in the case of Cornelius (even though having a special purpose), God “heard” and acted on his prayer. We also know that other than this situation where God is being sought sincerely and the person is not actively living a sinful life that God does not hear the world, that is sinners. The righteous person of James 5.16 is not of course, self righteous, but is the one who has been obedient to the gospel and continues living obedient to God, that is, the person is “In Christ.”

God’s children do have the means to continuously contact God and seek special, specific things. Interestingly, God’s children are not seeking the things the world seeks, like wealth, power, prestige and many others. Unlike, the open miracles of the past these events are not filled with open evidence. They are more individual in nature and are not public in any undeniable way. God’s answer to prayer does not produce faith, but is for the righteous that is, those who are already children of God. Prayer will help one “In Christ” to grow in the grace and knowledge of God.

Understanding Prayer in Relation To Miracles

Three verses that can confuse people, or really that can and are frequently used to teach miraculous healing after the first century are in James.

James 5.14-16

“Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.
15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven”
16 Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

First, the teaching here applies to the body of Christ, to those “IN Christ” and not to the world. The elders in the church, and there must be more than one and they must meet the qualifications given by God, are to pray over the sick, anointing them with oil. The anointing with oil is not some mysterious cure, but in those days it was the common medical means for healing and amounted to rubbing the body with various oils. The emphasis is on the prayers and the elders are there because they are spiritual servants to the flock and are dependable. God has always had a certain concern for the physical well-being of those who were part of bringing about His purpose. During the time the law of Moses was in effect, there were certain dietary laws and if studied these were things that helped keep God’s chosen people from the many sicknesses resulting from food. Such as pork, which needed to be carefully cooked – so pork was not allowed. The list of dietary rules played in part in the health of these chosen people in order to fulfill their purpose of bringing Christ through the seed of Abraham. In the new covenant, there is a requirement for the local church to help those of the faith, being benevolent to them and that would include doing what was needed. God’s children are the ones who carry the gospel message and their health and well being are important to fulfill God’s purpose. God is pointing out that a person should use the medical treatments that are available like the anointing with oil. God promotes the use of medical means to heal our bodies. Yet, God can use the power of prayer for the ailments that medicine cannot treat. “I believe” that the persons being discussed in James 5 are seriously ill. The context of these verses is for the physically sick and then it is mentioned, if they are spiritually sick ALSO. Again the emphasis is on the prayer for the sick – something that God can help to solve. This is not about the gift of healing that was provided to some during the 1st century as that was miraculous and had the purpose discussed throughout this page. If it were to be a miraculous healing there would NOT necessarily be a call to the elders, but to one who had the gift of healing. Some of these might have been elders, but there is no indication that all elders received this gift. Elders should be (as all “In Christ”) righteous persons and God says the effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Nonetheless, elders were given this responsibility in healing. The verses indicate the sick person use the best medical treatment and the elders will pray God for a good result.

When we minister to those who are physically ill, and pray for them, we are doing just what James 5.14-16 teaches us. And while the prayer of faith will “save” the sick, it won’t necessarily make him or her physically healthy. Saints (God’s children) still get sick and die. Just as did the apostles and their families. So, let us do what we can to restore and maintain health, pray to God for His blessing of healing, and trust in Him to do WHAT IS BEST for His people. It is also important to learn to accept whatever answer He gives us.

Understand God’s Purpose And
How God The Father, Son and Holy Spirit Each Did Their Part
It Will Help You Understand Miracles

A great deal of the misunderstanding in the area of miracles and healing comes from misunderstanding God and specifically the WORK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

The work of each person of the Godhead is in perfect agreement as all three work as one. They have a common purpose.

John 17:20-21

20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word;
21 that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.

On the other hand, the work of each person of the Godhead is different. The Father planned the great scheme of redemption; the Son executed it; the Spirit revealed it. Each member of the Godhead had a specific work to do to make the unified whole a success.

The Holy Spirit is active today, but not any longer in a miraculous manner.
The Holy Spirit in the many verses of the New Covenant may seem to be working in a miraculous manner even to this day, but is always working through the word of God, which He delivered.

The Holy Spirit continues to work through a confirmed revelation to produce conviction, conversion and sanctification. These things are naturally in place since the work of the Holy Spirit was completed. This is much like the creation, which itself was miraculous, but once completed there were natural processes in place.

Holy Spirit Work

The work of the Holy Spirit WAS clearly miraculous inasmuch as it involved inspiring people and performing signs and wonders, and enabling others to perform such things as termed the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Now, having the word of God completed and deemed that which is perfect, the need for miracles is past. The miracles were not perfect due to their brevity, due to their rarity or in their “limited (to the moment)” clarity in converting the soul, but God’s word is perfect. God’s word is not brief, but complete covering everything needed to fulfill His purpose. God’s word is not rare, but is available to everyone in its entirety. God’s word brings clarity to everything needed for humankind to be successful. God’s word has been revealed and confirmed and we read about these things in the scriptures, which were so carefully delivered by the Spirit of God. People hearing, reading God’s word are convicted of sin and are converted and in the process sanctified. However, not all and in fact few are convicted and thus few are converted to a changed life. It is God’s plan to reach those people who love the truth by His word, by that which is perfect.
Just as Jesus told the Jews who sought a sign that there would be none, to this very day people want a sign, a miracle and yet none will be given. It will not be a miracle that produces faith, but the truth from God. That is, “faith comes from hearing and hearing from the word of God.” To the proud, this is not enough, they want it to be a certain way, perhaps needing a sign, a miracle.

Matthew 12:39

39 But He answered and said to them, “An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign will be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah.

The miracle of Jonah and the whale had a purpose at that time in Jonah’s life, but the real use of that event was in what Jesus was teaching here. Just like the blind man was blind from birth and Lazarus was allowed to die and be buried before Christ came to respectively cure the blindness and raise a very dead Lazarus from the tomb, so Jonah is used to teach an important truth in relation to how God operates in relation to evidence. The evidence will be in the word of God for the world. Jonah is the sign as he was in the belly of the whale three days and three nights, so will be He who is speaking in the heart of the earth three days and three nights.

Matthew 12.40

40 For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

Those who believe will be convinced by the scriptures teaching the resurrection of Christ. It is where God says our hope lies and not in some personal experience we might call miraculous (1 Peter 1.3).

John 6:26

26 Jesus answered them and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled.

1 Corinthians 1.22-24

22 For Jews request a sign, and Greeks seek after wisdom;
23 but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness,
24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

The Holy Spirit’s work continues, but not in any miraculous way. The medium used to teach is the gospel, the word of God. Clearly each person must make choices and the first is to seek God in their lives and this begins by the recognition of God’s existence and with a love of the truth a person comes to understand God is the God of the bible. This is all possible because of the work the Holy Spirit accomplished. By the word of God we know to seek God with all our might, to seek God first, to realize God is not far from us and to know how to please Him to receive the reward. How could you possibly know these things without the Spirit of God delivering the message.

Jeremiah 29.13

13 And you will SEEK Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Matthew 6.33

33 But SEEK first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Acts 17.27

27 so that they should SEEK the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;

Hebrews 11.6

6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently SEEK Him.

If you personally seek God you can come to know that God (the God of the bible) is the only God to ever exist – One God! You can pursue the scientific findings about origins and believe them, although they will always have a fundamental problem – namely, why does ANYTHING exist. Why Does time exist? There is no answer except, “In the beginning God.” There is intelligence everywhere in the creation. I am not a proponent of what has come to be called “creationism.” To me creation and God are obvious, but to those who do not want God, especially the rule-making God of the bible not only will God not be obvious there will be “certainty of His non-existence.” Once again, this is exactly what God wants, that is, He does not want such persons for eternity with Him. The reason is, behind their rejection of God is pride and selfishness. Also a bit of pride/arrogance that could be expressed as, “no one tells me what to do, how to live.” God makes His view of this very clear in Psalms.

Psalm 14:1

1 The fool has said in his heart, “There is no God.”

God’s Gradual Revelation
Bringing An End To The Mysteries
All Is Now Known In That Which Is Perfect

One of the most compelling things in relation to achieving 100% confidence in God’s word is the impossible accuracy and consistency of the message. In a world where everyone wants answers, the evidence is in the thing right before them. The scriptures were written over a period of about 1600 years and by about forty different authors – God’s purpose remains consistent over time and over all these often unrelated authors. I say unrelated, except they had one thing in common – the Spirit of God inspiring them. Today, you can’t get a half dozen people to agree for an hour or the Congress of the United States to agree on anything – at times there can be a sufficient majority to do something. They all have different purposes driving what they do and there are bureaucracies everywhere and almost nothing gets done and it is expensive considering little or no progress. God had a purpose in the creation and a plan for reconciliation of humankind first indicated following the sin of Adam and Eve. That plan has many aspects and over a period of thousands of years it would be gradually coming together and being recorded with the Holy Spirit providing the inspiration. Everything from Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David and all the others playing a part in the fulfillment of God’s purpose. Finally, Christ would come through the linage of Abraham after 42 generations.

Matthew 1.17

17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations.

Abraham was promised that in his seed all nations would be blessed. Just as Adam and those following would not understand the meaning of Genesis 3.15, likewise Abraham did not know HOW the promised blessing would occur. That promise was key in God’s plan to fulfill His purpose. Jesus would talk about the kingdom to come and His part, but the explanation would finally be revealed by the Spirit of God and recorded after the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus. One of those places was in Galatians.

Galatians 3.26-29

26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

It is quite amazing how these authors of God’s word could write about things they did not understand, just as the prophets of God were directed by God in various ways, but did not understand God’s purpose. A purpose they longed to understand.

Ephesians 3.3-5

3 how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already,
4 by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ),
5 which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets:
6 that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel

The promise to Abraham would be for all nations to be blessed and this would occur in the gospel. The gospel of Christ is very specifically the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.

It was God’s plan that the manifold wisdom of God might be known and it would be known by the church. If we understand the church correctly it is the spiritual body of Christ, those who have the truth written on their hearts and this is God’s eternal purpose now completed and revealed in Christ Jesus. The local church was gradually being defined in the first century and it consists of those “in Christ.”

Ephesians 3.8-11

8 To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,
9 and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ;
10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places,
11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord

We know God’s purpose was related to finding the right persons to share eternity with Him. The mystery was how would He accomplish this.
We now understand the mystery of how was initially suggested in Genesis 3.15. The reconciliation would be accomplished by the gospel of Christ.

1 Peter 1.8-12

8 Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
9 receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.
10 Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you,
11 searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow.
12 To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things which angels desire to look into.

God would reveal things in their time and Jesus often spoke in parables of the kingdom largely because it was not the time certain things were to be revealed. Gradually all would be revealed by God through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and when completed, humankind would have that which is perfect. It was perfect in converting the soul, it was the accurate and final revelation from God.

God kept the progress toward His purpose moving along through time often using miracles to show who He was and to force certain things to occur to assure the plan would be realized. Jesus is central to the purpose of God, and would demonstrate He was the Messiah by the use of miracles. At the same time, He began revealing specific’s of God’s plan in the terminology of the kingdom. During Jesus time on earth there were certain prophecies previously recorded to be fulfilled. Every one of these was fulfilled before He died on the cross.
Following the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, God would reveal the final part of His plan that was now possible due to what was accomplished in Christ. This final revelation would occur in what God calls the last age for humankind. The Holy Spirit would work with the apostles and others in this final revelation as Jesus promised. Specifically, as previously discussed God’s part (the plan), Jesus part (death, burial and resurrection) were completed. Now, the Holy Spirit would complete His part by revealing humankind’s part in the reconciliation.
I think that any person who wants the truth, who wants heaven badly enough can see in the scriptures a perfection in God’s plan and how it was delivered. You can have confidence in believing and obeying the God of the bible, since everything He says will occur just as it always has occurred. You can see how the scriptures fit together perfectly in purpose, in every detail to bring YOU to a wonderful end.

This section is, “Stop To Consider” that is, consider the perfection of God’s word as found in the word of God itself. There is not only all the evidence you need, the manifold wisdom of God in relation to His purpose, but a growing confidence in God as you devote yourself to its study and as always it is your choice.

The Spirit Of Truth

Look into the scriptures to see if they are from God and to be convinced that the message is from God. Part of that process is understanding God and His love for His creation – very specifically, His love for you. This is God’s revelation to you and His care in delivering it has been meticulous. Jesus told His apostles they would be guided into all truth – John 16.13. Jesus completed His part, but without the Holy Spirit there would have been no knowledge of how to take advantage of what God did in Christ. Indeed, that knowledge has power in its truth, in its perfection as God’s revelation to humankind makes sense in every way. Consequently, a person with a good heart can see themselves in opposition to God in terms of God defined sin. They see themselves responsible for the death of Christ and their spirit is poor and unhappy. Yet, God says happy (blessed) are the poor in spirit for there is the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 5.3

3 Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Based on God’s word you know what to do and are so certain that you obey the truth and are converted. The Holy Spirit acted on YOUR heart in no special miraculous way, that is, any way different than any other person. You started the process by seeking God and truth. The truth is there because of the work of the Holy Spirit. In short, the Spirit is Truth.

1 John 5:6

6 This is He who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the SPIRIT IS TRUTH.

Jesus was very clear on various occasions to define the work of the Holy Spirit and it was to testify of Jesus.

John 15:26

26 But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the SPIRIT OF TRUTH who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.

We see the Holy Spirit by inspiration provided the revelation you need from God and in a way that it can convict the good heart. The Holy Spirit provides the means of conversion from the kingdom of Satan (sin and lies) to the kingdom of the Son of God’s love and confirmed that word in the first century by both signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit. In the process of conversion you are sanctified, set apart for God.

2 Peter 1.20,21

20 knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation,
21 for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.

2 Timothy 3.16,17

16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,
17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

It is interesting how the work of the Holy Spirit is clearly defined and is so critically important to each person – it is the truth!
Yet, people define a different work for the Holy Spirit in terms of conversion (directly acting in some mysterious, irresistible way on the heart of an individual) and even have the Holy Spirit providing healing and miracles and personal advice. Have you ever heard anyone say the Holy Spirit moved me to become a plumber or to own a flower shop or just about anything you can imagine. Then, in order to complete the self-created intervention by the Holy Spirit, the person finds something that happened to justify THEIR choice to own the flower shop. That is where (the flower shop) I met my true love or that is where I taught someone about Christ. These things are not trivial or inconsequential, but in fact usually are destructive to that which matters most – your soul. The reason is because those who go down such paths never find the truth that God delivered by the Spirit.

The Holy Spirit Did Not Bring Confusion
Humankind Brings Confusion By Defining The Holy Spirit’s Work Today As Miraculous

You become a child of God, the only way you can, namely God’s way. There is not a single thing you can learn from humankind about what you must do and how you must live. By this very fact, you can avoid all the error of humankind’s religion. What is the correct religion, well just the one that is in perfect agreement with the scriptures delivered divinely by the Holy Spirit? God is not the god of confusion, but of truth and simplicity. Anyone who wants to be successful and spend an eternity with God can do so, it is their choice to choose God’s way.

Galatians 3.26,27

26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.

In the process of conversion, you are sanctified – set aside for God that is, on the road to heaven. The Spirit of God in the scriptures tells you how to live to remain in that state and receive the crown of life.

Revelation 2.10

10 … Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life

Galatians 2.22-25

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.
25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

There is absolutely nothing that you need to know that God has not revealed. The scriptures are perfect in converting the soul. God’s plan first revealed in Genesis 3.15 was to occur in Jesus and we see that Jesus came as expected and fulfilled His part. Finally, the Holy Spirit working with certain individuals, beginning with the Apostles in the first century confirms the word. It begins in Acts 2 the way God promised in Jerusalem with the Spirit of God appearing to the Apostles in the form of fiery tongues. It would be the preaching of the gospel for the first time in a miraculous manner and finally God’s plan would be realized in those obedient on that day. After Peter preached the truth of the gospel for the first time, it was revealed what a person must do. You can do the same thing today and become a child of God. In fact, the Lord Himself, added those to His spiritual body upon their obedience and will do the same today in your obedience. If you imagine all that man has added and in some cases subtracted you can realize the magnitude of the error. Surely, if you love the truth you can leave the religions of humankind and do what God revealed.

The Holy Spirit would continue during much of the remaining first century to gradually reveal the truth and confirm it. There would be salvation for all (that is including the Gentiles) and at that time this would amaze the Apostles (all Jewish heritage). There would be a local church defined in purpose and organization. This is where those in the spiritual body would reside and work together doing God’s purpose. That local body is easily differentiated from the churches of humankind. As mentioned, the Holy Spirit via revelation would be helping those in Christ to remain faithful by the many scriptures pointing out danger and emphasizing how to live and grow in Christ. It is in this sense that the Holy Spirit’s miraculous work having been completed continues (non-miraculously) to provide revelation, confirmation, conviction, conversion and sanctification generation after generation.

The work of God, Christ and the Holy Spirit although completed as revealed in God’s word are available for all to benefit.
For example, God is available and can be reached in prayer by those “In Christ”, but only because Jesus is the one and only intercessor. His advocacy with the Father allows such a communication. We know this because of the work the Holy Spirit did in revealing the truth in this matter, specifically to God’s children by inspiration in first Timothy and first John.

1 Timothy 2:5

5 For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus,

1 John 2.1

2 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

The sanctified child of God has Christ in him/her inasmuch as they are living their life for Christ and in that sense they are IN CHRIST and He lives in them.

Galatians 2.20

20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

Likewise as previously discussed, the Holy Spirit is active inasmuch as being spiritual you are now a temple of the Holy Spirit and thus are warned not to offend God in your body.

There is an on-going participation of God with His children, but it is no longer miraculous in the sense it was in times before God’s word was completed. This should tell us the emphasis and confidence God has in His plan, in His word to deliver the souls who love Him. In fact, the whole plan of God is perfect inasmuch as it separates out those who love Him from those who love the world. God even sending strong delusion to those who choose disobedience because He does not want them. Yes, He wants all to be saved:

2 Peter 3.9

9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

Yet, it has to be HIS WAY and that means only persons with certain characteristics are worthy to spend eternity with Him. The scriptures indicate the high standard of God in this regard. The revelation from the Holy Spirit contains many things that were brought back to the memory to the Apostles of what Jesus taught. One of those many things was in relation to the number who would be willing to follow God’s way. There would unfortunately be few who travel the narrow and difficult road to eternal life, that is to heaven.

Matthew 7.13,14

13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 
14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.

Miracles, Healing and Prayer
More Help Understanding

In order to be reasonably complete on this subject, it will be necessary to cover the following subjects. Then we will summarize miracles, healing and prayer since the beginning – of time. Some apology here as most of the principles involved with miracles, healing and prayer have been discussed, yet for clarity they are presented somewhat differently as a help for some.

1.0 The witnesses of Jesus with an emphasis on miracles
2.0 More on the work of the Holy Spirit
3.0 Prayer

Who does God hear and who does He not hear, How God Answers Prayer and Prayer Questions and Answers

4.0 Preachers of miracles from the past to modern times

The trickery, deceit and eternal cost of these frauds

5.0 The love of mysticism

The ways to reject the God of the bible and feel good about it – well, as long as you are alive

6.0 Summary of Miracles

1.0 The Witnesses of Jesus – Emphasis on Miracles In This Discussion

We learn of God’s care, accuracy in everything as we search the scriptures for truth. We are beginning to understand God. It is the most wonderful of things that can happen to a human being. All the things that we might envision as just the best, the most enthralling, the most anticipated and nothing compares to understanding God and our purpose and our possibilities. Indeed, What Is Life All About? There is no happiness like knowing for certain and yet it is fearful, magnificent and serious. God describes the ultimate splendor in many verses, here are two written to CHILDREN OF GOD that compare the present difficulties to what awaits:

2 Corinthians 4.17

17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory

Romans 8.18

18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

We know these things because God in Christ using the vehicle of the Holy Spirit delivered the truth. In just a few verses, the witnesses of Jesus are explained by Jesus. Once again the purpose of miracles is clarified.

John 5.31-39

31 “If I bear witness of Myself, My witness is not true.
32 There is another who bears witness of Me, and I know that the witness which He witnesses of Me is true.
33 You have sent to John, and he has borne witness to the truth.
34 Yet I do not receive testimony from man, but I say these things that you may be saved.
35 He was the burning and shining lamp, and you were willing for a time to rejoice in his light.
36 But I have a greater witness than John’s; for the works which the Father has given Me to finish—THE VERY WORKS THAT I DO—BEAR WITNESS OF ME, that the Father has sent Me.
37 And the Father Himself, who sent Me, has testified of Me. You have neither heard His voice at any time, nor seen His form.
38 But you do not have His word abiding in you, because whom He sent, Him you do not believe.
39 You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.

One witness testifying of Jesus is the miracles He performed. As Jesus says in the verse above, “THE VERY WORKS THAT I DO—BEAR WITNESS OF ME.”
Here is the divinely affirmed reason for miracles in the time of Jesus, namely to be a witness of Jesus. Jesus did not come to bring peace on earth, but a sword. Jesus, did not come to heal the sick or the many physical infirmities of humankind. Jesus came to bring a spiritual solution for sin – a spiritual problem. He came that you might have life, eternal life. We seek miracles and signs just as those who Jesus admonished and fail to see what life is all about. Yet, those lovers of truth, humble enough, courageous enough, unselfishness enough can achieve what God so desperately wants for you – eternal life. God does not want you to “have a miracle,” but eternal life. In verse 39 above we see Jesus ties eternal life directly to the scriptures – You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. Indeed Jesus says, it is the word of God that is the witness of Him and that is your road to heaven and without that carefully and accurately defined message you would not know of Jesus and how to get on and stay on the road to heaven.

2.0 More On The WORK of The Holy Spirit – Bringing Clarity

You might think, we have already said a great deal about the work of the Holy Spirit – what more is there? There is really nothing more in terms of principles to be understood. However, what follows may help bring some clarity to what has been so confused. The Holy Spirit has defined His own work in the inspiration He provided. Many people who do not rightly divide the word of God, look to events that happened in the first century when the Holy Spirit was active confirming the word and try to bring that miraculous activity into the post-first century world.
There were various times when Paul, who was selected by Christ to be the apostle to the Gentiles was guided by the Spirit to travel to various specific regions and by the Spirit did various miracles.

Acts 19:21

21 When these things were accomplished, Paul purposed in the Spirit, when he had passed through Macedonia and Achaia, to go to Jerusalem, saying, “After I have been there, I must also see Rome.”

Others such as Phillip, who was was directed by the Spirit of God to take a certain route and then was directed to approach the Ethiopian Eunuch sitting in his chariot.

Acts 8.26-31

26 Now an angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, saying, “Arise and go toward the south along the road which goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” This is desert.
27 So he arose and went. And behold, a man of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under Candace the queen of the Ethiopians, who had charge of all her treasury, and had come to Jerusalem to worship,
28 was returning. And sitting in his chariot, he was reading Isaiah the prophet.
29 Then the Spirit said to Philip, “Go near and overtake this chariot.”
30 So Philip ran to him, and heard him reading the prophet Isaiah, and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?”
31 And he said, “How can I, unless someone guides me?” And he asked Philip to come up and sit with him.

Strangely, people today often claim they are sent by God, called by God to go to various places, or do various things. This is not true, with one exception and it explains how the Spirit works today. If you study the scriptures you will see the mission of God’s children is evangelism – then you decide to carry out that mission by going somewhere to teach, you have been led by the Holy Spirit in that sense. It is not in a miraculous way like Paul, but as a child of God you understand from that which is perfect (God’s completed word), what to do. You might say, but where do I go? As a child of God, you most definitely know from the scriptures – go into all the world – carry that which is perfect in your heart and practically speaking bring the written word of God.

So, the world looks at scripture and wrongly divides it and speaks in tongues and claims the baptism of the Holy Spirit. No one speaks in tongues today or receives the baptism of the Holy Spirit. Like all the miraculous events in the scriptures they had their purpose and speaking in tongues was speaking in known languages such that those hearing the words heard in their own language. This is not the case today, but people claiming to speak in tongues speak gibberish and no one understands, thus of no value. In view of God’s revelation it is quite ridiculous and evil to teach such a doctrine or support it.
The baptism of the Holy Spirit is a special event that occurred twice and for the same reason – that is to demonstrate salvation first to the Jews and then that Gentiles were fit subjects for the kingdom. The Spirit of God was poured out (baptism of the Holy Spirit) in Acts 2 on the apostles and the gospel was preached the first time. Those who accepted the message were Jews. As Romans 1.16 tells us the order of salvation.

Romans 1.16

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.

The Jews were the first to receive the gospel message, later Cornelius and his family (Gentiles) received the baptism of the Holy Spirit indicating that the kingdom was open to the Gentiles. This was of course, consistent with the promise to Abraham that in his seed ALL NATIONS would be blessed. Although, speaking in tongues continued in the first century until that which was perfect had come, the baptism of the Holy Spirit occurred only twice. Peter differentiated the baptism of the Holy Spirit by explaining to the other apostles the similarity to what had happened to them on the day of Pentecost.

Acts 11.15-17

15 And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, as upon us at the beginning.
16 Then I remembered the word of the Lord, how He said, ‘John indeed baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’
17 If therefore God gave them the same gift as He gave us when we believed on the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could withstand God?”

The Holy Spirit was also passed along (by the laying on of hands of the apostles) to allow for certain miraculous gifts to those children of God who the apostles chose. Whereas the baptism or full immersion in the Holy Spirit came directly from God, first as promised by Jesus in Acts 1.8 and then occurring in Acts 2. The second time as explained by Peter in Acts 11.15-17 at the house of a gentile, Cornelius.

How badly people want miracles, signs from God that validate they are in some way associated with God. People gravitate to these physical signs of God, or some outward sign that confirms their association with God and these are the very people God does not want. God wants and will have those who accept His ways and nothing is more offensive to God than those who misuse His word, and in effect disrespect God and His Son. Simply said, if you do not have the doctrine of Christ, you do not have the Father or the Son.

2 John 1.9

9 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son.

There are a number of verses that describe the work of the Holy Spirit and some are included at the bottom of this page. They are categorized by the specific purpose associated with that verse. These verses are frequently misused because the word of God is not rightly divided. The work of the Holy Spirit can be divided into the five categories mentioned previously, namely revelation, confirmation, conviction, conversion and sanctification. The misuse of the work of the Holy Spirit is due to an improper understanding of God’s purpose and plan, an improper division of the time God used miracles, the purpose of miracles, the desire for physical evidence of truth, but primarily the root cause is a disrespect for the word of God.

Healing, Post The First Century

The time of miraculous healing is past, the time of miracles is past. James 5.14-16 still applies and it includes using the medical treatments of the day and the prayers of the elders. God’s children will frequently pray for those who require healing, as the prayers of the righteous avail much. God will hear the prayers of those who are “in Christ.”
The scriptural revelation regarding miracles and miracles/healing is by my personal observation and the historical record not the answer people want. They want a miracle, they believe they MUST have a miracle and plenty of people have twisted the scriptures to assure themselves and others they can have a miracle. A person who needs a miracle to believe or perhaps for healing or perhaps for any number of things can become an easy prey. They will be anxious to believe in the person or the group offering this possibility. They believe those people and follow their teachings because they want to, because they want a miracle.

God does not act frivolously in the use of His power, but God in His perfection provided the reconciliation such that His purpose would be achieved. Miracles continued after the death of Christ and His miraculous resurrection with the answer to how a person could take advantage of what God accomplished in Christ. During this time after the death of Christ the Holy Spirit gradually delivered and confirmed the word of God until it was complete. Humankind in it laziness and greed looks at the scriptures and picks and chooses what it likes and creates something much different than the word of God. They even decide that they can offer miracles to people and have attracted large groups of people. Since the completion of God’s word these CLAIMS OF MIRACLES have infected religions and have been used to confirm the truth of THEIR doctrines. They claim miracles, but produce none.

There is one solid place to stand and it is the word of God, which has been so carefully delivered and confirmed. In the simplicity of the gospel there is an apparent lack of glamour and excitement that people crave, but God is looking for the person who loves the truth. That person looks to the scriptures and is completely trusting with God’s ways.

Prayer Answered Is Quite Different Than Miracles

An important distinction made throughout this lesson is that God’s answer to prayers does not constitute a miracle and it is much more than semantics. A bible miracle can be defined as a sudden interruption of natural events and characterized in that it is not a normal occurrence, it occurs immediately, that is, in the case of healing there is no recovery time required. Miracles were open and clear to those who observed the event and it fits the primary purpose of God. A prayer answered is quite different than the miracles of the bible. God graciously answers some prayers in the way they were requested. It may not be immediate and in fact there may be time required for the prayer to be answered and the result may even occur gradually. The answer may be very private and not observed by others, although the result may eventually be observed, its source is never quite certain. Finally, God’s miracles had a larger purpose than helping a person or a group, but were associated with His demonstrating His existence, His power and His plan for humankind. That plan has to do with your soul. There were many things that had to happen to allow Genesis 3.15 to be fulfilled. A great deal of the miracles were leading to Jesus coming through the lineage of Abraham, Issac and Jacob (Israel). Even the miracles related to Israel’s escape from Egypt were part of the trail leading to Christ. So, we see the CHARACTERISTICS and PURPOSE of God’s miracles were considerably different than the answers provided in prayer.


Prayer Remains the One Place Where God Interacts With Humanity

Of course, the exception to this is the end of the world, the end of all things. God will have this final interaction with the normal course of things and the finality of God’s creation and His purpose will account for every person. Until then we have prayer, so let’s continue to clarify prayer.

The world tends to believe that all people have access to God via prayer and yet God only hears the righteous, His children. God tells us there is only one way to Him (to God the Father) and that is through His Son.

James 5.16

16 ….. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

1 Timothy 2:5

5 For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus,

1 John 2.1

2 My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

Can ANY person bow before God and ask Him for something, something indeed very important to their life or the life of a loved one? Yes, anyone can do that and we have one example of a person “not in Christ” whose prayers came before God and received an answer. This was a special case in God’s plan with a special purpose of showing the apostles that the gospel was open to all and that Christ was not just the Messiah for the Jews, but for the whole world. Although, this is a special case, the principle of being heard by God by one not “In Christ” is established. However, in order to not go beyond that which is written and remain consistent with all scripture there is a God-specified limit on this case of Cornelius.

Acts 10. 1-4

1 There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment,
2 a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always.
3 About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God coming in and saying to him, “Cornelius!”
4 And when he observed him, he was afraid, and said, “What is it, lord?”
So he said to him, “Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God.

Cornelius was a devout man who feared God, he gave alms (assistance, charities, gifts) generously and prayed God always. He did not know God, but could tell He existed and was seeking Him. God, in His wisdom decided to use this Gentile man to demonstrate to the Apostles that Gentiles were fit for the kingdom of God. A reasonable conclusion and consistent with all scripture is that those who seek God can find Him and God makes this clear. There are many verses, here is one:

Jeremiah 29.13

13 And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.

Until there is obedience to the gospel there is no advocate, no one to intercede with God. Yet, seek God and find Him to be the God of the bible and obey Him and then you will have Jesus as your advocate. Now, it can be said that the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Men make God out to be as foolish as they are, but He is perfect in every way. God has no intention of listening to the selfish desires of individuals in what they call prayer when THEY need God. God will not respond to those of humankind who reject Him during their life being filled with the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life. Those actively pursuing and living in sin will NOT be heard. Christ came to save sinners, that is, those who can TURN FROM SIN (REPENT) and find the peace of God, which passes all understanding. During your lifetime, God is calling and He says He is not far from each one of us. So, the one thing a person not “In Christ” can ask for in prayer and receive an answer is seeking God, seeking truth. God knows the heart of a person and desires you seek Him and as Jeremiah 29.13 indicates you will be successful, “And you will seek Me AND FIND ME, when you search for Me with all your heart.” Paul emphasized this to the Athenians in Acts 17:

Acts 17.26,27

26 And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings,
27 so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;

There should be no doubt in how God looks at those who refuse Him.

Proverbs 1.24-30

24 Because I have called and you refused,
I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded,
25 Because you disdained all my counsel,
And would have none of my rebuke,
26 I also will laugh at your calamity;
I will mock when your terror comes,
27 When your terror comes like a storm,
And your destruction comes like a whirlwind,
When distress and anguish come upon you.
28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer;
They will seek me diligently, but they will not find me.
29 Because they hated knowledge
And did not choose the fear of the Lord,
30 They would have none of my counsel
And despised my every rebuke.

Do you think God hears those who reject His Son and in effect reject Him? God is not a fool and will NOT hear the desperate prayers of sinners except in relation to seeking Him, seeking truth and possessing an attitude ready to live for the creator. You need to become a child of God or as indicated below a son of God BY FAITH IN CHRIST JESUS.

Galatians 3.26-29

26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Instruction is often enhanced by answering questions and below are some simple questions in relation to prayer. That is, to answer common questions that can bring clarity to this subject of miracles, healing and prayer.

Prayer Questions

Question 1: Does God answer prayer and if so does He answer every prayer?

Answer 1: God does hear and does answer prayer. Of course, God hears everything, but the sense of the word “hear” means in a way that He will respond.

John 9:31

” 31 Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him.

God doesn’t hear the prayers of those involved in sin. Several times, I will make the distinction between the one living actively in sin and the one who has sin, but is moving away from sin, desires to abandon the sins of the past and seek God. Clearly, God will not hear those who love sin, are participating in it and even in their momentary seeking of God in prayer have every intention of returning to sin as quickly as possible. God knows the heart – God cannot be fooled and will not hear the prayer of the person dedicated to unrighteousness.

Psalm 66.18

18 If I regard iniquity in my heart,
The Lord will not hear.

Any sin, every sin, not repented of establishes a barrier between God and the sinner. David said, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear.” (Psalm 66.18.) In the New Covenant with Jesus as our advocate we see in 1 John:

1 John 1.9

9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

This is consistent with what the apostles taught Simon the sorcerer, who had recently become a child of God in Acts 8.

Acts 8.18-23

18 And when Simon saw that through the laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money,
19 saying, “Give me this power also, that anyone on whom I lay hands may receive the Holy Spirit.”
20 But Peter said to him, “Your money perish with you, because you thought that the gift of God could be purchased with money!
21 You have neither part nor portion in this matter, for your heart is not right in the sight of God.
22 Repent therefore of this your wickedness, and pray God if perhaps the thought of your heart may be forgiven you.
23 For I see that you are poisoned by bitterness and bound by iniquity.”

Note: The apostles laying on of hands imparted the gift of the Holy Spirit, not the baptism of the Holy Spirit. If you study all scripture you will see that only the apostles could bestow this power to others. Those receiving the gift from the apostles could not pass it along. So, passing along these gifts ended with the death of the last apostle.

Simon had to repent and pray God such that the thought of his heart may be forgiven.

It is your iniquities that separate you from God and that is why Christ came to reconcile you to God. Also, during your lifetime your iniquities will keep you from God inasmuch as He will not hear your prayer. The world thinks that God, who they have never “seriously considered” will suddenly hear and answer their prayer – He will not.

Isaiah 59.1,2

1 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened,
That it cannot save;
Nor His ear heavy,
That it cannot hear.
2 But your iniquities have separated you from your God;
And your sins have hidden His face from you,
So that He will not hear.

Clearly, God’s obedient children will have their prayers answered.

1 Peter 3.12

12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
And His ears are open to their prayers;
But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”

John further clarifies / supports the fact that God answers prayers of His children.

1 John 3:22

22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.

More On Why God Does Not Hear Sinners AND
The Importance Of Seeking God

The answer to why God was not listening was because the people were engaged in sins. It is the same warning James gave:

James 4.2-4

2 You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask.
3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.
4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

The solution is to seek God, humble yourself, stand on your own two feet and do not allow someone else to lead you down the path to a failed life.

James 4.7-10

7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
9 Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.
10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.

You can allow humility to cure the worldliness that may currently be leading you. James was writing to Christians here, specifically to Jewish Christians. They were obedient to the gospel message and now on the road to heaven. Nonetheless, there is much to overcome on that road to achieve heaven. The advice here for Christians is exactly the same advice needed by those in the world to get themselves on the road to heaven. If you want to be able to access God in prayer, then become a child of God, have an advocate with the Father. You can pray to God like Cornelius, if you pray seeking God, seeking truth. Examine your attitude for these characteristics:
> willingness to submit to God
> willingness to forsake sin
> willingness to humble yourself before God, to be a humble individual

For the person NOT “In Christ” God may, (He knows your heart) answer the prayer of one seeking Him, seeking truth, seeking heaven. Demonstrate this willingness, continue to pray and have an attitude to accept nothing less than the truth.
If you are a child of God replace the word willingness above in each case with the word continue, i.e. continue to submit to God.

Seeking God, Answers In Prayer

When a person seeks God, He can be found. To expect answers from God when we are not concerned about following God isn’t sensible. But when a person seeks God, He will point the sinner to the way of righteousness. Even in Cornelius’ case, God did not directly tell Cornelius what he had to do to be saved. He told him where to find the answer – In this special case He was to send for Peter. God “hears” the prayers of those “truly” seeking Him. The answers may come in the form of access to the Bible or meeting one “In Christ” who is able to teach that person the truth. The person still must respond to the message.

Let us summarize, so that those living in sin, those seeking God and wanting to abandon sin and those “in Christ” – children of God understand if God will hear them.
If a person living in sin prays, God will NOT hear that prayer. If a person in sin, but is not actively “living in sin” AND is seeking God – God knowing their good heart will help them to the truth. If a child of God lives in sin and refuses to repent, God will not hear (answer) that prayer. If a child of God is living faithfully, God will answer their prayer. If I refuse to listen to God’s word, why should God listen to my words? The truth is He will not!

Note: I would never tell a person not to pray, because I do not know their heart, but the things God has revealed regarding prayer are true. The encouragement for the one who is not a child of God would be to obey the gospel and get into a relationship with God. If a person was reading this and truly seeking God and willing to forego sin then they should start demonstrating that in their life and begin praying to God seeking truth. The admonishment to seek God from Jeremiah is that, “you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” This needs to be taken very seriously and done very aggressively/continually. In today’s world, the bible is known and readily available and this would be a good thing to investigate – always understand what you believe.

Question 2: When God answers prayer does He give the person exactly what is requested? This is a question for those “In Christ.”

Answer 2: No, the answer MAY BE NO, or it may be different than requested. On the other hand, in some cases, God may determine to provide the answer just as requested.

Answering prayer Does Not Mean The Person Gets What Is Requested

God answers our prayers in a variety of ways. God knows what we need and that may be different than what we think we need. There are many different aspects to prayer and making requests is just one aspect of prayer. We honor God in prayer, we are thankful, we recognize God correctly as Father and pray through the Son. We honor Jesus for His work of redemption and recognize the Holy Spirit as the deliverer of the word. We seek forgiveness as needed and forgive others. We recognize the difficult mission to bring the gospel to the world. We pray for opportunities to expose people to the gospel and the courage and ability needed to make the most of those opportunities. The list of things we might pray for is unlimited. We pray with respect and honor to God for who He is, for example the creator, the God of the bible, our benefactor. Generally there are some things that are serious problems for us or for our loved ones or for those of the household of God and for these things we seek help from God. Our prayer life needs to be routine and much of that is NOT related to making requests. In other words, if we only pray when we have personal need(s), what does that say about our relationship with God?

There is emphasis placed on seeking wisdom and every child of God is encouraged to seek the wisdom which God provides so graciously.

James 1.5,6

5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.
6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.

Prayer Is Of Course, Holy – You Are Interacting With God

Holy means separated for God and those will be people who have had their sins forgiven and are living faithfully. God does not hear the prayers of the unrighteous, however as mentioned the intent of the heart is known to God and if that person is actively seeking God, seeking truth, and not actively seeking sinful things God will help that person to find the truth. I am drawing certain conclusions from what God has revealed about prayer. Even though, I am trying to be careful, I am sure that I cannot correctly describe how God will respond to every situation. I know He will respond perfectly and without prejudice. So, the rules provided by God define who God will hear and how He will respond. If we think in terms of God’s purpose, He will not be answering the various wants people outside of Christ are requesting. If He did, this could be misleading and they might believe they have a relationship with God. This is not the route to God, to forgiveness of sins, but faith obeyed, that is obeying the gospel. God’s purpose has to do with people spending eternity with Him and that will not happen if they die in their sins. Thus, the prayer of one in sin having the right attitude is answered by helping that person to the truth, as the case of Cornelius. After this a person has Jesus as Advocate and the range of requests can be substantially different.

Examples Of Prayer In Relation To Healing

God’s response to prayer is at times positive (but may be different than the person asked for) and other times it would appear there is no response or no immediate response or no response is essentially the answer.
The apostle Paul wrote of the illness of Epaphroditus, his fellow-worker.

Philippians 2:25-28

25 Yet I considered it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker, and fellow soldier, but your messenger and the one who ministered to my need;
26 since he was longing for you all, and was distressed because you had heard that he was sick.
27 For indeed he was sick almost unto death; but God had mercy on him, and not only on him but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow.
28 Therefore I sent him the more eagerly, that when you see him again you may rejoice, and I may be less sorrowful.

On the other hand, the Paul wrote:

2 Timothy 4.19,20

19 Greet Prisca and Aquila, and the household of Onesiphorus. 20 Erastus stayed in Corinth, but Trophimus I have left in Miletus sick.

Surely Paul had prayed for Epaphroditus and Trophimus, but one was healed and one was left sick.

Paul refers to a physical affliction he had as a “thorn in the flesh.” We are not told what the affliction was, but he reveals his attitude toward it:

2 Corinthians 12.7-9

7 And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure.
8 Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me.
9 And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.”

Paul prayed to God three times in relation to his “thorn in the flesh” and God did answer Paul, but not in what he asked. The answer Paul received was that, “God’s grace was sufficient for him.” He revealed to Paul that God’s strength was made perfect in this weakness of Paul, his “thorn in the flesh.” It would be speculation to say what this specifically means, but it would be fair to say that this suffering kept Paul aware of his need to remain humble and that he was not special or at least should not think of himself in any exalted way. In other words, have pride get the best of him. In fact, Paul always kept an awareness of the potential for him to fail and be lost and this “thorn in the flesh” may have helped Paul maintain that awareness. God knows what we need and the first thing we need is that for which we exist, namely, the salvation of our souls. Paul, with all He was accomplishing remained concerned about his soul.

1 Corinthians 9.27

27 But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.

God often answers our prayers as He did with Paul. We don’t always get what we ask for, but God did what was ultimately best for Paul.

Question 3: What should be our attitude in relation to our prayer request?

Answer 3: The right attitude for prayer should be “God’s will” be done as opposed to “my will.”

In whatever we do our attitude is critically important. Every person who prays ought to understand Jesus’ prayer to the Father represents the right attitude.

Luke 22.42

42 saying, “Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done.”

On one hand we believe that God can do whatever we ask in prayer and we should not falter in that belief. Jesus, of course knew God the Father could remove the suffering that He was about to face, however ABOVE ALL Jesus prayed that the Father’s will be done.

James is writing to the twelve tribes of Israel scattered abroad and telling them to ask of God in faith – believing they will receive. Later in the book of James he reminds them that they ought to always be thinking in terms of, “if the Lord wills.”

James 4:15

15 Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.”

Question 4: In some cases, will God answer the prayer FOR HEALING from one who is NOT a child of God?

Answer 4: No, because God is not the author of confusion.

Note: A child of God can pray for healing for one who is not a child of God and God could answer that prayer. Although, it would be wise to pray for the soul of that person and instruct them in the gospel, also encouraging them to pray seeking God and truth.

1 Corinthians 14:33

33 For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.

If God were to answer the prayer of an unrighteous person, for instance a prayer for healing, that person might believe they had established a relationship with God through prayer. There is only one way to have a relationship with God and that is through obedience to the gospel. Faith does not come from receiving healing, but Faith comes from the word of God. The teaching by various different groups that promote prayer for healing teach many different ways to obtain salvation. Salvation often has a lesser value to people than miracles and healing. People want miracles, signs and if God were to provide such to the unrighteous (not children of God) there would be many individual different belief’s in relation to establishing a relationship with God. God would be working against His own purpose.

4.0 Preachers Of Miracles From The Past To Modern Times

The Charlatans Of Faith Healing

There are countless despicable people, who have and do parade themselves as faith healers. They often claim to have been given the power to heal and can heal those whose faith is strong enough to receive a healing. Actually, they are looking for those who have faith IN THEM and there are always monetary requirements, which to some extent they disguise. They grossly misuse scripture and do not understand miracles and healing as God has revealed them. These people in more modern times have been investigated and found to be characterized by some or all of the following:
> Wealthy from their trade, many multi-millionaires
> Without a single verifiable miracle – they are like magic acts, but this time the audience believes there is no trick involved
> Often leading immoral life’s
> Will not answer questions or demonstrate their “skills” in front of a knowledgeable audience – they need to have a very choreographed, staged performance and many times there are some audience accomplices
> They frequently admit the trickery later in life
> They do not use faith healing on themselves or families, they go to the best doctors
> If they make enough money they try to become more legitimate by leaving the faith healing “ministry”

Heaven Coach is not interested in the people who have done these terrible deeds, but in the people who have or may in the future be influenced by them. You can study this subject and will quickly find all sorts of expose’s of these evil people. One of the strangest things is that so many people suspect or even know these faith healers are bogus and still out of desperation cling to any possibility that they or their loved one may be healed. Life is short and the victory is not here on earth, but in the next life in heaven. You need the right instruction in relation to your soul and you will never get it from these faith healers.
There is a route to physical healing and as explained it is for God’s children and even then God knows what is best and healing may occur or it may not.

5.0 The Love Of Mysticism

Mysticism: The Source Of Most Mysticism

Although, Catholicism does not have some special corner on mysticism they certainly raised the bar in terms of mysticism being an integral part of religion. In the modern world, mysticism is everywhere and whether they (religious or non-religious) know it or not Catholicism usually had some connection, some influence in its existence. The Catholic church created many aspects of mysticism or borrowed some from various Roman or other ancient religious practices.
The miracles that have been claimed to occur since the first century are “fake” and thus are kindly referred to as mystical. Mystical indicating potential legitimacy since in reality there is no evidence of, or reason for their occurrence, yet since veiled in uncertainty, possible. We will define mystical or mysticism in the brief discussion that follows.

Mysticism Defined:

This subject of mysticism has become quite broad and in many cases is totally non-religious, more occult, more worldly, often less associated with God and more with the devil. Catholicism had its own special mysticism and from it various later religions kept certain portions of Catholic mysticism. MIRACLES are one aspect of mysticism contained in most religions.
The term ‘mysticism,’ comes from the Greek μυω, meaning “to conceal” i.e. a mystery. In the Hellenistic world, ‘mystical’ referred to “secret” religious rituals. In early Christianity the term came to refer to “hidden” allegorical interpretations of Scriptures and to hidden presences, such as that of Jesus at the Eucharist. Only later did the term begin to denote “mystical theology,” which included direct experience of the divine. Typically, mystics, theistic or not, see their mystical experience as part of a larger undertaking aimed at human transformation.
Mysticism in one widely held definition simply means the spirituality of the direct experience of God. Protestant religion as well as Catholicism are filled with people communicating with God, receiving personal messages as to an unending number of things. It all amounts to people not being satisfied with God’s way. Islam and Mormonism began with claimed interactions with God and/or via angels. Indeed these would be miraculous, but of course were each invented by Mohammed and Joseph Smith respectively. Instead of being miracles they are simply lies.

Catholicism: Terrorism For The Soul
A Religion Held Together By The Glue Of Mysticism
Originally Held Together By The Glue Of Physical Intimidation
Strangely, Today Held
Together More With Concern For Peace, Poverty and Environmentalism

Catholicism is not the doctrine of God, but the ideas of men and councils combined somewhat with the mysticism of the time, heathenism, and a fundamental error of mixing the Old and New Testament directives and practices.
I searched the massive religious library of Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana to try to understand Catholic beginnings, Catholic history, and found sheer absurdity. There was certainly nothing other than the ramblings of men, councils of men, and volume after volume of similarly ridiculous “miracles.” I say ridiculous because there are literally hundreds of books, and I just read portions of about seventy-five books on miracles where “very odd,” meaningless events are portrayed as factual. What was the purpose of these things? Miracles do not produce faith. During the first century, miracles had a purpose in confirming the Word. I do not understand the purpose of these Catholic “miracles.” Actually, although there is no VALID reason for the miracles, the miracles were there to provide legitimacy and influence devotion to the Catholic church.
Let me mention just a few Catholic miracles.
• Bird said, “Ave Maria” and the hawk fell dead
• The weeping statue of Syracuse in Sicily
• Picture of Mary talked
• “Saint” Raymond of Pennafort sailed for six hours on his cloak
• “Saint” Margaret talked often and long with God by means of her rosary
• Body of dead child laid on “Saint” Modwena’s tomb, child returns to life
• “Saint” Anthony preached to the fish
• Crucifix talked to “Saint Francis of Assisi”
• “Saint” Eustachius was converted by a deer
• Statue of Mary extended her hand to be kissed
• Crucifix talked to “Brother Bernard”
• “Saint” Denis carried his head in his hands after he was beheaded
• “Saint” Agatha’s veil stopped a volcano
• “Saint” Joseph of Cupertino who could levitate.

Levitating Saint Cupertino

The Catholic miracles were silly, but in the time of great superstition much of which came from Catholic teaching and practices, it must have seemed to be the truth and in those days there was no questioning by Catholics. In addition to the ridiculous nature of these miracles, there was no purpose for these “events.” That is, no VALID purpose except of course, to enhance the power of the Catholic church. It ought to wake up Catholics to the magnitude of the error in Catholic doctrine. Instead of miracles ending after that which was perfect was completed near the end of the first century, many groups especially the Catholic church promoted the idea of miracles. There was little to no concern about the viability of miracles, since the scriptures were not available to the masses and even limited within the Catholic hierarchy.

Saint Joseph of Cupertino (1608–1668), one of at least twenty-six Roman Catholic levitating saints. Image from Paul Querrin. “Les Pettites Bollandestes Vies De Saints” 1882.

The Catholic understanding of scriptures could not have been worse beginning with the creation of a “pope.” Much of Catholicism was designed to protect their “pope” invention. Miracles added to the confusion and priests became the connection point between Catholics and God. The appeal of miracles even if only in stories told to Catholics was in earlier times, powerful. Catholic mysticism, especially as related to cures and “helps” continues to this day. There are various patrons to be “invoked” for all kinds of diseases and afflictions. “Saint” Christopher is patron for travel, lightening, epilepsy, pestilence, etc., while “Saint” Odilia is patron for eyes, polio, and other bodily afflictions. There is a patron “saint” for about every malady, circumstance, or just to improve every aspect of your life. There are medals, scapulars, rosaries, holy water, special waters from places like Fatima and hundreds of other “trinkets” that play their part in the Roman Catholic Church pageantry.

Mysticism influences vulnerable minds, especially children. In Catholicism, there is great mysticism, and as those who are in some Protestant denominations speak in tongues, so eventually those observing also speak in tongues. Actually, no one speaks in tongues today, and apparently most people do not even understand that tongues were real languages spoken miraculously by those who did not know the language to those listening who did understand that language. There is a common thread behind the on-going success of religious mysticism. It consists of a scenario where a person is impressed by another’s interaction with God. God told them to do something or there was a “miracle.” Over time a person may hear of numerous such incidents, and eventually in many cases, something special occurs in their life. Just the right circumstance, and now they have a “special” experience.
In Catholicism a few people surrounded by this mysticism—some young and very impressionable, some older and very “devout,” some just troubled looking for something – believe they see something or experience something. There is a relationship between the strong expectation to experience mysticism placed on individuals and the individual eventually having the “experience.” Even to this day, mysticism exists and occasionally shows itself as someone sees a statue crying or sees Jesus’ face in a sheet. In various charismatic groups, whether Catholic or Protestant, where the pressure would be great to speak in tongues, indeed we see many, most, if not all, speaking in tongues. Actually, they are just making sounds.
The Catholic Church as well as other religious groups became a fertile ground for these mystical experiences. These people have religious experiences related to something they have heard or read. The result is that there is great similarity in their “unique” experiences. Just like another type of person with another type of life experience having heard, read, or been indoctrinated tells of being caught up by aliens and taken to their interstellar vehicle.

These Catholic so-called miracles are a distraction from the truth. Recall that the Catholic Church has no basis for their claims to be the church belonging to Christ. Miracles were a way to convert and maintain their members. Intimidation—inquisition style—was an early method and very effective. The atmosphere created by Catholicism via these early fraudulent books on miracles—the associated writings of many of the early Catholic “giants” such as Jerome, Francis of Assisi, and many others—gave support to the mysticism. This is especially true of the Catholic “mystery” surrounding Mary, the mother of Jesus. The Bible gives no special position to Mary. No person is ever given a position of homage—only God. As mentioned earlier, Catholicism presents Mary as an intercessor with God. There is absolutely no support for such a thing in scripture, but the exact opposite. Nevertheless, out of this “Mary culture,” Mary appears to various young children. At Fatima, at Lourdes, at Guadeloupe, among others, there were these “apparitions” of Mary. My belief is that Catholicism did not directly create these events, but they are associated with Catholic mysticism working on the minds of vulnerable people.

When I was very young, maybe under ten years of age, I wanted to see much of what I heard about from the nuns. At this early age, I had already seen movies depicting reenactments of various “miracles.” I was in the midst of the Catholic pageantry. I wanted to devote my life to God, which was the equivalent of devoting it to the Catholic Church. At different times, I believed I saw various things when I was alone in the church. Kneeling in the church in front of a statue, candles were flickering, the residual smell of incense, and the shiny marble floors, perhaps recalling the singing of “Ave Maria” or the ceremonial processional singing during the “stations of the cross,” I would think I saw something. All these things that people experience can be very real to them. I certainly understand how it can happen. However, the religious things that we want so badly to be true are just in our imagination. They can lead us away from the truth! Those who know the truth can be 100 percent certain regarding the validity of modern-day miracles – there are none!

Mysticism And Suffering As A Christian

Various forms of Catholic mysticism frequently bizarre and always heathen in nature are a central focus of Catholic thinking and practices. Many people believe these things to be the nature of religion, that is RELIGION IS MYSTICAL. One might conclude religion cannot be understood. Indeed, this is a common belief of the religions created by humankind. Deceit can be hidden in the mysterious and you may hear that God works in mysterious ways. The truth is NOT mysterious as God did not leave us “in the dark” in any sense. Your soul success is not a matter of chance, but there are clear choices in life. Paul cleared up this matter consistent with all scripture when he was in Athens. Yet, to this day religion most often looks like what Paul encountered in Athens despite Paul’s effort in pointing out the nature of God.

Acts 17.22-31

22 Then Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I perceive that in all things you are very religious;
23 for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription:
Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you: 24 “God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands.
25 Nor is He worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things.
26 And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings,
27 so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;
28 for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’
29 Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man’s devising.
30 Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent,
31 because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.”

The religion of Athens was very “inventive” and often included many gods, and was very much based on a “reasoning” philosophy. The religions of humankind try to be serious and honor their deities. Athens, in an effort to be thorough and not miss out on THE god or an “important god” created a statue to the unknown god – very logical. Even during this time the gospel was being delivered, various religions of humankind were appearing and the many ideas of god and how he/she was to be worshiped were evolving. Today, almost 2000 years later and the character of religions is very mystical, perhaps always in an attempt to hide the lack of authenticity. Man-devised religions are indeed mysterious and this seems to be the expectation of people. This is the opposite of the truth found in the scriptures. Indeed, there was a mystery (Ephesians 3.9-11), but in this last age has been revealed. There is no longer mystery now that we have “that which is perfect.” God has defined Himself, His purpose, how the mystery gradually was unraveled in Christ, and how Christ sent the Holy Spirit to lead the apostles into all truth. There is no mystery in what is required for a person to succeed, to gain eternal life, to achieve heaven. Today’s fraudulent teachers bring mysticism back into the picture and along with it confusion to God’s plan for the salvation of your soul.

Let us look at some of the mysterious aspects of man’s invented religions. As mentioned, Catholicism borrowed many ideas from earlier religions (often Roman worship practices) and combined them with “Old Testament” teachings and what they considered to be the teachings of Christ. Their hierarchy looked very much like the Roman organization and the character of their beliefs was physical filled with physical objects and groups of men continuously creating doctrines. Today, people have come to believe that religion is very “mystical-physical” and expect such things as relics, statues, and physical ornate buildings of worship. The relic may be a piece of bone from a “Catholic” saint or a piece of wood from the cross of Christ or a hundred other things that in some way is related to Christ or some “saint.”

Note: Every child of God is a saint, that is sanctified in the process of obedience to the gospel. Catholicism is many layers deep into error in every aspect of their religion. They have all sorts of groups of people who study the viability of sainthood for different persons and it is a great honor to be a saint. The scriptures from God have no such concept of saints except as defined for all those who are obedient. When in every aspect of a religion there is such deceit, such creativity of doctrine there must be a tendency to believe it must be true. Actually the overwhelming deceit serves as a distraction from the simple truth each person needs.

Catholicism gives those physical objects some special meaning and/or honor. Whether it is a physical object as are relics or what a physical object represents like a statue, it is an idolatrous idea. Heathen things are man-made ideas, objects, or ceremonies in honor of the god of their belief. When one understands God, it is clearly not in terms of physical objects like relics, statues, or man-made ceremonies, but it is in terms of obedience. God reveals how He views obedience, worship and suffering and when you look at the verses above from Paul in Athens. You can gain a good understanding of God from what Paul revealed in Acts 17.22-31.

1) Obedience – it is better to obey than sacrifice.

King Saul partially obeyed God, but did not utterly destroy the Amalekites and seeing his error, said the things not destroyed would be a sacrifice to the Lord.

1 Samuel 15.20-22

20 And Saul said to Samuel, “But I have obeyed the voice of the Lord, and gone on the mission on which the Lord sent me, and brought back Agag king of Amalek; I have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. 21 But the people took of the plunder, sheep and oxen, the best of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice to the Lord your God in Gilgal.”
22 So Samuel said:
“Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices,
As in obeying the voice of the Lord?
Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice,
And to heed than the fat of rams.

God is serious about His commands and expects obedience. There is right and wrong, there is truth and error and obedience means doing all God commands and for the reason He commands it. Many people unwisely judge God due to certain things He reveals that they consider harsh. It might be something like the incident above regarding the Amalekites or the eternal judgment of the unrighteous. They find these things sufficient reasons to reject God, specifically to reject the God of the bible. You might better understand God’s Apparent Harshness and God’s Severity by reading these pages with these titles.

So, you allow your judging of the God of the bible to interfere with your obedience. People will find endless excuses for rejecting God and His commands. Behind the rejection will be pride even placing yourself in a position equal to God. In your rashness, you fail to reach a reasonable understanding of God and His purpose. At the very core of God’s plan is your obedience and for many they never even learn what God requires of them. Their pride, their confidence in human wisdom derails their chances for a successful life. Jesus is the author of eternal salvation to all those who obey Him. Throughout all the scriptures it is obedience that differentiates success from failure. Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Abraham, King Saul and throughout the revelation from God there are those who will obey God and those who will not.

2) Worship – That those who worship Him must do so in spirit and truth.

John 4.23,24

23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.
24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Those who worship God do so in Spirit, that is they are spiritual beings, a child of God. They must also worship in truth or as God commands. The farthest thing from satisfying God is to create your own way to worship Him.

3) Suffering – As A Christian

Suffering for the glory of God means that suffering occurs in the process of doing God’s will.

1 Peter 4.15,16

15 But let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or as a busybody in other people’s matters.
16 Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this matter.

Suffering for Christ is not something self-inflicted (discussed below) – how strange and distant from the truth! Nor is suffering as a Christian something that happens in the normal course of life. It is suffering in the process of doing the will of God and it might be physical, emotional and frequently might involve losses suffered in terms of friends, family, finances and opportunities. In the earliest days and occasionally today the suffering can be physically torturous and even unto death. It is of no value to suffer for the religions of humankind or to think you suffer for Christ if you are not “In Christ.” Calling yourself Christian and being a Christian are entirely different things and a critical distinction you can easily make if you love the truth.

Brief Summary of Sacrifice, Worship And Suffering – God’s Way

Then as you sacrifice, worship, or suffer (in relation to pleasing God), it needs to be according to God’s way and not your way. When you fall and break your leg or if you suffer as the result of committing evil, there is no spiritual value in your suffering. If you suffer in the loss of your friendships, physically suffer or even die in the process of your walk according to the true principles of God, then you suffer as a Christian. A Christian is not predisposed to suffering, but naturally hopes it can be avoided. Worship only has meaning if it is in truth. Godly suffering only has meaning if it is in truth. God strongly tells us sacrifice is in a lesser position than obedience. So man-made religion creates its worship with its ceremonies and physical objects or representations, and all God wants is our obedience. God absolutely will not accept what man has invented. It is the very thing that differentiates those who succeed from those who fail. Specifically, the pride of your way versus the obedience to God’s way.

Catholicism In Their Fanatical Paranoia
To Protect Their Deceit
Creates All Sorts Of Mysticism

Another thing that Catholicism invented relates to suffering and contains a very bizarre twist. I will call this idea self-inflicted suffering. Catholics believe (no longer openly promote this in the modern world) that the self-infliction of pain shows one’s piety. Somehow, this self-torture is to the glory of God. It is such a sick, heathen, weird idea that it is amazing it ever received any credibility. It is just another thing that provides us with the wrong idea of God. Yet Catholic literature contains all sorts of bizarre stories of various “saints” and Catholic religious orders scourging themselves in reparation for the sins of the whole world or a variety of other reasons. The self-infliction of pain would include clergy, even popes (such as Clement VI) as well as laity (men, women, and even children of tender years). As a child in a Catholic school, the nuns would tell stories of how the Catholic saints would inflict suffering on themselves. I remember the vivid story about “Saint” Hedwiges read to our class by the nun from a book on the life of the saints. “Saint” Hedwiges never changed her clothes, but wore a rough “hair shirt,” never ate “flesh,” slept on the floor instead of on her good bed, and carried her shoes over rough terrain, leaving bloodstains where she had traveled. They were truly horrific tales of blood with mental images of pain and infection.

Saint Francis Assisi - Stigmata

There is no limit to the bizarre inventions of Catholicism that have been conceived to protect the terrible “soul destroying” deceit. Catholicism has carried much of the old law – the physical law into their practices and doctrines, such things as a priesthood. In the context of this subject of miracles and healing, they have invented Stigmata where a person miraculously receives the same wounds as Jesus. Their “holiest” saints such as Francis of Assisi and Catherine of Siena received the Stigmata. There have been more modern persons such as Padre Pio (1887-1968) who received the Stigmata and also had a life filled with bizarre, meaningless miracles. There is no doubt that these people were heavily indoctrinated to the point of believing they were in a special relationship with God.

A depiction of St. Francis of Assisi receiving the Stigmata in 1224 by Cigoli

Stigmata: Just More Confusion, Mysticism

The truly top mark of a Catholic “saint” would be to receive the “stigmata” or the wounds of Christ as a stamp on their bodies in their hands, feet, and side. The Stigmata was miraculously received. We see people to this day, especially in certain countries like in South America, Mexico, and the Philippines where Catholicism has made its mark, driving nails through their hands and feet, hanging on crosses, wearing a crown of thorns, and/or performing self-flagellation. In all kindness, it is not to the glory of God, but to the glorification of ignorance. These concepts, examples of great persons of Catholicism is placed in the minds of people as something pleasing to God. It is, in fact, an abomination to God. God is made out to be One that is pleased when you suffer self-inflicted pain. God says, “If anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed.” Suffering, in the process of doing the true will of God, is something to be expected. It is not God’s desire that you suffer. In the process of preaching the truth or living it, you may, as Christ did, end up bearing the wrath of some men and women. Stephen, in Acts 7 is a good example of one who suffered as a Christian in the process of teaching truth. Stephen delivered to the Jews the correct history of Israel, their idolatry, and eventual murder of Jesus at the hands of the Romans. This moved them to murder Stephen by stoning. Earlier, a similar message preached by Peter produced the response, “What must we do?” The things that Paul went through for the sake of the Gospel qualify for “suffering as a Christian.” Did you ever see Paul or the other apostles inflict themselves with pain? No! A hundred times no! Repeatedly, God points to obedience to His will, but man has his own ideas about God and creates in the process his own gods. Religious confusion flourishes in this mysticism and the truth remains hidden to most.

Note: Today there is likely little or no support from the Catholic Church for many of the self-inflicted tortures. However, in countries where this sort of “pageantry” or concept still works in supporting the Catholic religion, it is not condemned. These typical “third world Catholic countries” still teach the same things that I was taught as a child, namely the glorification of these practices. In fact, I still see Catholics (worldwide) honoring such practices as part of becoming a Catholic saint.

We are discussing miracles, healing and prayer, and Catholicism has been a major force promoting the mysticism, that is largely the “modern day” miracles of religions. God’s word reveals that miracles ceased sometime around the end of the first century. Nonetheless, people today still want miracles, signs just as they did during the time Jesus was on earth and then immediately following His death as the Holy Spirit confirmed the word of God.
Many religions benefit in terms of membership due to their claim of miracles or various mystical practices such as telling the future or being able to contact the dead. Mysticism and the unknown draws many people, whereas those with a love of the truth are drawn by the gospel message. Jesus Himself saying, the drawing power would be His death, burial and resurrection.

John 12.32,33

32 And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to Myself.” 33 This He said, signifying by what death He would die.

Miracles play no part in drawing a person to God through Christ.The drawing power is God’s love as shown in Jesus being lifted up from the earth, that is on the cross. Jesus used miracles to confirm who He was and the truth He spoke, but the relationship to God was not established until after His death when the New Covenant went into effect.

Hebrews 9.16,17

16 For where there is a testament, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.
17 For a testament is in force after men are dead, since it has no power at all while the testator lives.

Now with the New Covenant in force, you have that which is perfect, God’s word to understand God and His plan and therein you see how God’s love in Christ can draw you to the gospel message.

Note: The mysticism of Catholicism and their history of deceit are rather obvious to most, save those Catholics who long ago stopped thinking on their own. They stand in full “blind” support of their priests, bishops and pope. There is less obvious, but just as “soul-dangerous” bible toting healers who mislead many. I am NOT talking about the extreme faith healers who parade their highly dramatic, loud and emotional tear jerking services to rather large groups of impressionable persons. In a common performance the service leader places his/her hands on the foreheads of the stricken person and they are overcome by “the spirit” falling back into the waiting arms of the accomplices.
I am talking about the less obvious, more sophisticated “villains of the soul” who use various media to convince people to support their ministry. Their hook is something mystical, usually healing. They may pray for some unknown person who has this specific malady and if their audience is large enough there will be a number of persons who “fit the bill” and contact the “show.” Then if one of these persons “gets better/recovers,” their enhanced story will be featured. This can be pretty powerful. If the presenters working the “program” actually believe what they are doing is the truth AND are “squeaky-clean” themselves in character AND are emotionally involved in helping – then many will be convinced. If the players or the victims understood what God revealed about miracles, healing and prayer they would not be fooled. However, I am reminded about Jesus saying that the leaders and the followers both suffer the consequences of error.

Matthew 15.14

14 Let them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch.”

The Summary of Miracles, Healing and Prayer

Yes, this page could have been shorter and if we just provide the bottom line, it would be a few bullet points and a few comments (as below). However, the explanation in view of all the distortions of truth requires considerably more detail. The short summary of Miracles, Healing and Prayer – bullet points and comments could be as follows:
1) There have been no miracles since sometime around the end of the first century.
2) God responds to the prayers of certain persons and defines who He “hears” and how He answers prayer – these responses are not like the miracles of the past in terms of purpose and characteristics.
3) God does not hear sinners, those actively involved in sin, but will hear those who have sin (since all have sin), but are seeking God, truth and have a willingness to change their life. The answer to their prayer is in relation to what they seek, that is to finding God and truth.
James 4.8-10 provides valued attitudes for the person seeking truth as well as the child of God who has fallen away. Actually, even faithful children of God would be wise to think of these things daily.

1) Draw near to God
> You might ask yourself am I drawing closer to God – how am I achieving that? Certainly, prayer and seeking truth consistently is a path to bring you closer to God.
2) Avoid sin
> Am I avoiding all appearance of sin?
3) Lament/mourn in life so you can rejoice in the next life
> Am I thinking in terms of getting all that I can or living my life for Christ and the gospel?
4) Be humble, unselfish
> Am I placing my wants, myself before others. Do I try to look good at the expense of others? Am I always trying to better understand God with the intention of following His will?

This is a consistent message throughout the scriptures and worthy of your focus and your effort to achieve. You cannot fully understand the value of these things until you devote yourself to understanding God and His purpose. Lamenting and mourning is better than filling your life with wanton pleasures and shows your awareness of the seriousness of life, of sin and the cost of the reconciliation. All this is because life is about the soul and about nothing else.

James 4.8-10

8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
9 Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom.
10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.

4) Those who are children of God have an advocate with the Father in Jesus and they can reach God in prayer through Him. Those “In Christ” will receive an answer to prayer. It may be “yes or no” or different than they asked for, but it is best for them (eternally) even if they do not understand the answer. However, if God’s children are not living in accordance with God’s ways they also will not be heard.
However those children of God who “stumbled” have Jesus as their advocate with the Father (1 John 1.9, 1 John 2.1). They can repent and pray God that they can receive forgiveness and since God knows their heart, He may accept or reject their request. This of course, is exactly what happened to Simon the sorcerer (Acts 8), who sinned after becoming a child of God and was told to repent and pray God for forgiveness.

The summary above provides some basic understanding of miracles, healing and prayer. Yet, even more discussion will be helpful.

More On Miracles, Healing And Prayer
God Has Provided A Great Deal Of Information
So You Can Get It Right

People hear and believe what they want to hear and believe. God did not leave you to be manipulated by those skilled in presenting the doctrines they and others have masterfully conceived. Like all essential knowledge, God has graciously provided help for those who love the truth. As always, it is your choice to do everything your way or God’s way.

The answer to prayer might seem miraculous for instance in the case of a healing that is requested, but it is not in the sense of the miracles of the past performed by God or Christ or through the working of the Holy Spirit. In the old times, God used miracles showing His association with Israel and then when Christ was on earth miracles indicated the Messiah was present. The culture of miracles since around the END of the first century has resulted in many false doctrines regarding what people need for a successful life. So it is important to understand that miracles are past and the way to heaven involves the truth delivered by God in His word. Otherwise, people look for some special sign or miracle to confirm they are on the right track. Indeed there are many who will lead you down some miracle-laden path to gain your attention. Just as they are wrong to promote miracles, you can expect that they will not be speaking the truth you need for salvation.

There are some very basic understandings and actions to get you on the road to heaven and these are clearly and accurately provided by God – miracles play no part in your salvation.

Note:Of course, the miracles of the past confirmed God’s message and the earlier miracles expose God to be the God of the bible. Today you require no miracle or will any be available as part of your conversion. You have that which is perfect to obey.

Man-made religion has brought overwhelming confusion to the word of God. They have institutions of higher religious learning, missions around the world, miracles to encourage and endless efforts in the areas of benevolence for the needy of the world and seldom, if ever, do they teach the truth about salvation. Evil disguised as the thing you are looking for provides you a miracle. This serves to encourage you and it could be as simple as pointing out how God directed them in some personal way, maybe God talked to them. Maybe in some mysterious way God led them to do this or that. This is all contrived and damaging to the thing that matters – the truth you need – the gospel of your salvation.

Ephesians 1:13

13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise

You can make the distinction that the preaching of the cross is what you need, the gospel of your salvation OR you can believe some person who talks about miracles, about hearing from God. One way is simple and consistent and the other complicated and filled with many different messages. The latter emphasizes someones personal experience(s), their view of God, miracles and salvation. God did not leave you to the whims of some person with some story, but with that whch is perfect in converting the soul.

God Is Perfectly Logical And
God Brings Clarity And Truth Not Hidden Codes and Mysteries

This lesson on Miracles, Healing and Prayer is a good example where common sense can apply. The scriptures point to an end of miracles. That is, referring to the type of miracles that fill the scriptures. This end to miracles comes sometime around the end of the first century. Ask yourself, do you know of any miracles, does history for the last about 2000 years document any miracles? The answer is actually, NO. I suppose, there have been thousands of miracles claimed since the end of the first century, but there is no evidence. The work of God is complete, except for the “miraculous” end which can come at any time. The “end” has the characteristics of a miracle only in an extreme way, like the creation itself. It is a final revealing of God for all to see (EVERY knee will bow). There will be no doubt about Jesus as God’s Son, about God being the God of the bible, about this remaining final piece “playing out” exactly as the scriptures indicate.

What Is The Real Problem, What Is The Root Cause Of All The Confusion About Religion, About Miracles, Healing and And Prayer

The real problem is that people do not take God seriously or we might say take God’s word seriously. God is not first in their life. God’s ways, God’s thoughts are infinitely higher than humankind.

Isaiah 55.9

9 “For the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.

Humankind wants to make God their equal by questioning His judgments and His ways. Frequently, they question His apparent harshness, His fairness. God is blamed for suffering and surely He would not object to a women’s right to abort the baby, or keep two people of the same sex from loving each other. Such people are not in the race for heaven, and do not even realize there is a race. God’s standards for success are quite high. So much so that only those who can achieve holiness can be acceptable.
God has provided a means to achieve this holiness and even allowed each person to make choices to be successful. It is sheer foolishness to reject God’s way, but many, if not most will choose to do so because of pride. The choice is often the things of this world versus what God requires. The things of this world are appealing and these are the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life.

1 John 2.15-17

15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father, but is of the world.
17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

John wrote this almost 2000 years ago and said the world and the lust of it are passing away and day by day we get closer to the end. As mentioned, all the seen things will be gone including the works therein, such as your position in life, your accomplishments. God will know your works in relation to good or evil. In that twinkling of an eye the only thing that matters will be having a relationship with God’s Son, are you “In Christ?” For most people they never had time to seek the truth, find it and obey it and now God has no time for you! I used these verses earlier on this page, because they portray God’s emotion regarding those who rejected His efforts on your behalf. This is quite different than how God is frequently presented. God should always be accurately presented in terms of how He revealed Himself.

Proverbs 1.24-30

24 Because I have called and you refused,
I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded,
25 Because you disdained all my counsel,
And would have none of my rebuke,
26 I also will laugh at your calamity;
I will mock when your terror comes,
27 When your terror comes like a storm,
And your destruction comes like a whirlwind,
When distress and anguish come upon you.
28 “Then they will call on me, but I will not answer;
They will seek me diligently, but they will not find me.
29 Because they hated knowledge
And did not choose the fear of the Lord,
30 They would have none of my counsel
And despised my every rebuke.

These verses surprise some, but are consistent with God’s character throughout scripture. God’s love is often portrayed as even overwhelming all other characteristics, but in truth God’s nature is the perfect mix of love, justice and fear to achieve His purpose. In the verses above, God called and was refused, He stretched out His hand and no one regarded and thus the consequences. People rejected the preaching of Noah and thus the consequence. The loss of heaven is the final consequence of sin, we might say of sin not forgiven.

1 Corinthians 6.9-11

9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites,
10 nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.
11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

God calls people by the gospel, specifically preaching the gospel.

1 Corinthians 1.18

18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

Preaching is apparently insufficient to convince as people want miracles, signs, they want it their way. To achieve holiness, God must be taken seriously and that means taking His word seriously and to make His point God provided a fitting perfect sacrifice to allow a sinful person to be holy.

Miracles Confirm A Great Salvation Then Cease

Miracles continued after the death of Christ, performed by the apostles and certain others as part of confirming the word.

Mark 16.20

20 And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs.

Miracles, signs showed that the apostles were from God and their teaching was truth.

Hebrews 2.1-4

1 Therefore we must give the more earnest heed to the things we have heard, lest we drift away.
2 For if the word spoken through angels proved steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just reward,
3 how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him,
4 God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?

God reveals that the miraculous things would cease when that which was perfect had come. This was earlier pointed out and explained that miracles had their value in bringing Christ, in confirming who He was and confirming the word of God. As powerful as miracles were in fulfilling their purpose there was something much better coming, something perfect to bring those with good hearts to God through Christ.

1 Corinthians 13.8-13

8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part.
10 But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.
12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known.
13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

The apostles and those they laid hands on were capable of doing various different miraculous things. When the last apostle died, the miracles would end shortly thereafter. Clearly, God’s use of miracles was completed leaving humankind something better, something perfect in this last age – the word of God. As would be expected, the plan of God is perfect and the elimination of miracles was part of that plan. God’s requirement is for a person to love the truth and some will fail for this reason, that is loving their way more than God’s way. Similarly, as Jesus was no longer providing the loaves/fishes to the crowds; they largely disappeared. Jesus continued to preach the word of God to much diminished crowds and today without the miracles we are left to teach those who love the truth (John 6.26).

The healing mentioned in relation to the local church (James 5.14-16) had the elders anointing with oil and praying for the sick. It was a combination of using the medicines of the day and imploring God on the behalf of the person. This seems to be in the case of serious illness. This does not have the appearance of miracles, but just the combination of things that could lead to success for the failing person. It would be expected to follow the normal course of prayer – that is the answer may be yes or no to the request and the way God answers may be different than the request.
The miracles of God were clearly seen and happened immediately – there are no such things today. People are not raised from the dead, instantly cured, i.e. have their sight restored or be cured of a crippling disease and so on.

What Is Wrong With Believing Miracles Are For Today?

God can work supernaturally in relation to the prayers of His children. This is not an open miracle for all to see, but prayers can result in receiving things requested. Although, just about anything can be prayed for, God’s children are not frivolous seeking gain in any way from the world. Certainly, health and well being, overcoming serious problems and the like would be some things commonly requested. A child of God will frequently ask for wisdom, for knowledge, for understanding, for patience, for opportunities to teach the truth and then the courage to speak out with the truth. Perhaps the number one problem in believing in miracles today is the notion they can provide a path to heaven. “I believe in God because of my miracle or this or that miracle.” God has provided a way to come to Him and it is through His word and that eliminates all other ways. “Other” ways will not provide you with the truth and therefore will not get you on the road to heaven and eventually to heaven.

As mentioned people (not “In Christ”) will not receive an answer to their prayer (the miracle or sign they want) and may become disillusioned with God. Others will have their problem resolved and believe it was from God and believe they are on the right road. Often they will believe (the doctrine) of some person who supported or encouraged them in consideration of miracles. There are no miracle workers today, just frauds; there are no miracles today, just claims of such to entice.

A great deal can be understood simply by understanding that life is not about this life, but ABOUT THE SOUL. The deeper questions of life can be understood if you understand LIFE IS ABOUT THE SOUL. Many things in relation to pain and suffering, or the devastating occurrences in life, or the evil, cruel things that people do to each other can be properly understood if you know God’s purpose. His purpose is to have His creation spend eternity with Him in “heaven.” So the things God did were related to getting the message to humankind and miracles supported His purpose. The answers to prayer are not miraculous as there will always be some uncertainty as to the extent God was involved. This link to God, we call prayer was designed primarily for God’s children to have a means to communicate with Him. Those “In Christ” have the one and only way to God, that is through His Son. God also graciously provides a “prayer means” for those seeking God, seeking truth to find Him.

Verses On The Work of the Holy Spirit In Five Categories

Operation of the Holy Spirit

For your convenience below are the verses related to the work of the Holy Spirit in revealing God’s word

The Holy Spirit in Revelation.

The revelations from God come via the work of the Holy Spirit

2 Peter 1:19-21

19 And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts; 20 knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, 21 for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.

Ephesians 3:3-5

3 how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already, 4 by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), 5 which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets:

John 16:13

13 However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.

1 John 1:1-4

1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life— 2 the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us— 3 that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. 4 And these things we write to you that your joy may be full.

1 Corinthians 2:9-13

9 But as it is written:
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
10 But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. 11 For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.
13 These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

Revelation 22:18-19

18 For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; 19 and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

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