Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Belief Precedes Miracles

This is an article that my husband, Joel, recently wrote for his newsletter at work. I had to share it!

Matthew 13:58

58 And he did not do many deeds of power there, because of their unbelief.

When I was in high school, I remember reading this verse in my study bible regarding the rejection of Jesus in Nazareth. I found it odd that Jesus would choose not to perform any miracles in a town just because people did not believe in him. Wouldn’t miracles help people to believe? Wouldn't that build their faith?

We all long for miracles. We pray for them. In seeking miracles, we hope that they will inspire our belief. But Jesus has shown us something remarkable in this passage. He does not perform miracles in the midst of unbelief. Instead, Jesus calls us to believe in him in order to witness his divinity. Belief precedes the miracle.

But it doesn’t stop there. Jesus’s message from the book of John reveals that not only will our belief allow us to witness miracles that he can perform, but it will also allow us to become the miracles that we seek. Jesus says that we will do even greater works than he.

John 14:12

12 Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father.” 

Was Jesus telling a joke here? How can we perform miracles? How could I do anything greater than God-incarnate?

Jesus did not speak this truth to make his disciples feel better.  He spoke these words to wake his disciples up to the abundance and provision of the Spirit. The Spirit of Christ has been given to You. Jesus ensured this promise during Pentecost and ever since that day we have become co-heirs and connected with the Son of God himself. God has pressed his fingerprints into your life and there is no separating the Holy One from you. This is good news! When we believe that we are one in the Spirit, then we can truly become witnesses to Christ’s living love in this world. And what’s more, we become God's love in the world, a divine miracle. 

So how do we believe? How do we build a life of faith? We must practice. 

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