January 11, 2013

Signs & Wonders

Miracles do not need precedents to validate them. The classical argument of the eighteenth-century deists was that we can believe strange happenings outside our experience only if we can produce something analogous to them within our experience. This 'principle of analogy', if correct, would be enough in itself to disprove many if not all of the biblical miracles, for we have experience (for example) of somebody walking on water, multiplying loaves and fishes, rising from the dead or ascending into heaven. An ascension, in particular, would defy the law of gravity, which in our experience operates always and everywhere. The principle of analogy, however, has no relevance to the resurrection and ascension of Jesus, since both were sui generis (Stott 47).

[Andy’s Note: Sui generis (of its own kind) is just a real fancy word for “one of a kind” or “in a class by themselves”]

So…as Christians…

…we are not claiming that people frequently (or even occasionally) rise from the dead and ascend into heaven, but that both events have happened once. The fact that we can produce no analogies before or since confirms their truth, rather than undermining it (Stott 47).

John had it right when he called miracles σημείων / semeion or signs. The greatest miracle, a sign that the Kingdom had arrived, was Jesus incarnate, God in the flesh. Unfortunately most people including the experts look right past this fact and continue to point to the things He supposedly couldn't have done like walk on water or multiply the loaves and fishes. Never mind the fact that a infinite and omnipotent God could come down to take on human flesh. Silly experts.

[Andy's Note: Therefore empiricists and people demanding a posteriori evidence or physical evidence after the fact are stepping outside the framework of what a miracle is to demand more proof to validate the miracle…which defeats the purpose of then calling it a miracle. They frame their argument so that they can win no matter what. Empiricists are being disingenuous or naïve, I’m not sure which. Probably the latter…

 Stott, John R. W.. The Spirit, The Church, and The World. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press, 1990. Print.

1 comment:

darrellcreswell said...

Very very good article...as always brother, you deliver the goods...Thanks Darrell

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