By H.G. Dr Geevarghese Mar Osthathios
The first thing to be noted is that Jesus refused to perform miracles as a means of having people believe in Him. At the very beginning of His public ministry he overcame the feeling to jump from the pinnacle of the temple of Jerusalem and to make the people believe in Him by such a feat. Whenever He performed any miracle he told the healed person not to tell anyone about it (Mt. 8: 4; Mk. 8: 26, 30; 9: 9; Lk. 5: 14; 8: 56). Christ chastised the people who followed Him to eat the bread that he increased miraculously. He wanted the people to know that His ability to provide is constant (Mk. 8: 14-21).
The next point is that all the miracles of Jesus were miracles of overflowing Love, which He revealed as the very nature of God. Does he not supply food in the desert for His followers even today, out of His bounteous love? Any Mother Theresa of history would still bear witness to the fact that he continues to increase five loaves and two Fishes to feed five thousands even today. The story of Dr. Ida Scudder and the Christian Medical College, Vellore, is the story of God's miraculous feeding and healing of thousands out of very little.
Thirdly, science magazines are now describing miracles they see and cannot explain. Albert Einstein was right in pointing out that the more we know of the physical universe we are convinced that there is yet more to be known. After all, how limited is our knowledge of God's activities in the billions of stars and planets? Science is not scientific when it says that there is no God or no miracles as science can only say something positive about the known facts and nothing negative about the unknown universe and mysteries. A scientist who casts a net of one inch holes in the sea and catches one inch size fish can only say that there are one inch size fishes in that sea and not that there is no smaller fishes in it because a later scientist might make a smaller sized net and catch smaller fishes. From what we know of science, it is not yet scientific to say that miracles are impossible. That which is miracles in one generation may not be miracle in the next and yet miracle as such remains as long as we are finite.
Fourthly, if we believe in an Almighty God, under Whom are the laws of nature, we should not limit God under the laws He created and say He cannot end it or mend it. He who fixed the laws of nature for the good of man will have the right, freedom, and power to over-rule it at any given situation to show His love of His children. The virgin birth and the resurrection must be seen in such a light. He who fixed a modus operandi for procreation is free to enter His world through a virgin and also to rise again on the third day to His pre-existent glory. Belief in miracles is belief in the power of God over the created nature.
Fifthly, Bultmann's 'demythologization' is an aid to the interpretation of the miracles of the Bible to an age of Science. There is something behind each of Christ's miracles which is more miraculous than the physical miracles. If a German mind sees the change of heart of the people to part with their hidden bread and fishes when the small boy gave all his bread, and also as a result of listening to the preaching of Christ, there is still a miracle Christ effected in the hearts of the people, which is deeper than the increase of bread and fishes by a supernatural action of Christ. I am not saying that all miracles must be demythologized, but that there are physical and psychological miracles.
Finally, there is a qualitative distinction between the two incarnational miracles of virgin conception and resurrection and other miracles and that these two miracles are necessary to explain the supreme miracle of God-Man.
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