2 occurrences in 2 dictionaries

Reference: Miracle


Also called a sign, wonder, or mighty work, Ac 2:32; a work so superseding in its higher forms the established laws of nature as to evince the special interposition of God. A miracle is to be distinguished from wonders wrought by designing men through artful deceptions, occult sciences, or laws of nature unknown except to adepts. The miracles wrought by Christ, for example, were such as God only could perform; were wrought in public, before numerous witnesses, both friends and foes; were open to the most perfect scrutiny; had an end in view worthy of divine sanction; were attested by witnesses whose character and conduct establish their claim to our belief; and are further confirmed by institutions still existing, intended to commemorate them, and dating from the period of the miracles. Christ appealed to his mighty works as undeniable proofs of his divinity and Messiahship, Mt 9:6; 11:4-5,23-24; Joh 10:24-27; 20:29,31. The deceptions of the magicians in Egypt, and of false prophets in ancient and in modern times, De 13:1; Mt 24:24; 2Th 2:9; Re 13:13-14, would not bear the above tests. By granting to any man the power to work a miracle, God gave the highest attestation to the truth he should teach and the message he should bring, 1Ki 18:38-39; this is God's own seal, not to be affixed to false hoods; and though the lying wonders of Satan and his agents were so plausible as to "deceive if possible the very elect," no one who truly sought to know and do the will of God could be deluded by them.

The chief object of miracles having been to authenticate the revelation God has made of his will, these mighty words ceased when the Scripture canon was completed and settled, and Christianity was fairly established. Since the close of the first century from the ascension of Christ, few or no undoubted miracles have been wrought; and whether a sufficient occasion for new miracles will ever arise is known only to God.

The following list comprises most of the miracles on record in the Bible, not including the supernatural visions and revelations of himself which God vouch-safed to his ancient servants, nor those numerous wonders of his providence which manifest his hand almost as indisputable as miracles themselves. See also PROPHECY.

Old Testament Miracles

The creation of all things, Ge 1.

The deluge, comprising many miracles, Ge 6.

The destruction of Sodom, etc., Ge 19.

The healing of Abimelech, Ge 20:17-18.

The burning bush, Ex 3:2-4.

Moses' rod made a serpent, and restored, Ex 4:3-4; 7:10.

Moses' hand made leprous, and healed, Ex 4.6-7.

Water turned into blood, Ex 4:9,30.

The Nile turned to blood, Ex 7:20.

Frogs brought and removed, Ex 8:6,13.

Lice brought, Ex 8:17.

Flies brought, and removed, Ex 8:21-31.

Murrain of beasts, Ex 9:3-6.

Boils and blains brought, Ex 9:10-11.

Hail brought, and removed, Ex 9:23,33.

Locusts brought, and removed, Ex 10:13,19.

Darkness brought, Ex 10:22.

First-born destroyed, Ex 10:29.

The Red Sea divided, Ex 14:21-22.

Egyptians overwhelmed, Ex 14:26-28.

Waters of Marah sweetened, Ex 15:27.

Quails and manna sent, Ex 16.

Water from the rock, in Horeb, Ex 17:6.

Amalek vanquished, Ex 17:11-13.

Pillar of cloud and fire, Nu 9:15-23.

Leprosy of Miriam, Nu 12:10.

Destruction of Korah, etc., Nu 16:28-35,46-50.

Aaron's rod budding, Nu 17:8.

Water from the rock, in Kadesh, Nu 20:11.

Healing by the brazen serpent, Nu 21:8-9.

Balaam's ass speaks, Nu 22:28.

Plague in the desert, Nu 25:1,9.

Water of Jordan divided, Jos 3:10-17.

Jordan restored to its course, Jos 4:18.

Jericho taken, Jos 6:6-20.

Achan discovered, Jos 7:14-21.

Sun and moon stand still, Jos 10:12-14.

Gideon's fleece wet, Jg 6:36-40.

Midianites destroyed, Jg 7:16-22.

Exploits of Samson, Jg 14-16.

House of Dagon destroyed, Jg 16:30.

Dagon falls before the ark, etc., 1Sa 5.

Return of the ark, 1Sa 6:12.

Thunder and rain in harvest, 1Sa 12:18.

Jeroboam's hand withered, etc., 1Ki 13:4,6.

The altar rent, 1Ki 13:5.

Drought caused, 1Ki 17:6.

Elijah fed by ravens, 1Ki 17:6.

Meal and oil supplied, 1Ki 17:14-16.

Child restored to life, 1Ki 17:22-23.

Sacrifice consumed by fire, 1Ki 18:36,38.

Rain brought, 1Ki 18:41-45.

Men destroyed by fire, 2Ki 1:10-12.

Waters of Jordan divided, 2Ki 2:14.

Oil supplied, 2Ki 4:1-7.

Child restored to life, 2Ki 4:32-35.

Naaman healed, 2Ki 5:10,14.

Gehazi's leprosy, 2Ki 5:27.

Iron caused to swim, 2Ki 6:6.

Syrians smitten blind, etc., 2Ki 19:35.

Hezekiah healed, 2Ki 20:7.

Shadow put back, 2Ki 20:11.

Pestilence in Israel, 1Ch 21:14.

Jonah preserved by a fish, Jon 1:17; 2:10.

New Testament Miracles.

The star in the east, Mt 2:3.

The Spirit like a dove, Mt 3:16.

Christ's fast and temptations, Mt 4:1-11.

Many miracles of Christ, Mt 4:23-24; 8:16; 14:14,36; 15:30; Mr 1:34; Lu 6:17-19.

Lepers cleansed, Mt 8:3-4; Lu 17:14.

Centurion's servant healed, Mt 8:5-13.

Peter's wife's mother healed, Mt 8:14.

Tempests stilled, Mt 8:23-26; 14:32.

Devils cast out, Mt 8:28-32; 9:32-33; 15:22-28; 17:14-18.

Paralytics healed, Mt 9:2-6; Mr 2:3-12.

Issue of blood healed, Mt 9:20-22.

Jairus' daughter raised to life, Mt 9:18,25.

Sight given to the blind, Mt 9:27-30; 20:34; Mr 8:22-25; Joh 9:1-7.

The dumb restored, Mt 9:32-33; 12:22; Mr 7:33-35.

Miracles by the disciples, Mt 10:1-8.

Multitudes fed, Mt 14:15-21; 15:35-38.

Christ walking on the sea, Mt 14:25-27.

Peter walking on the sea, Mt 14:29.

Christ's transfiguration, etc., Mt 17:1-8.

Tribute from a fish's mouth, Mt 17:27.

The fig tree withered, Mt 21:19.

Miracles at the crucifixion, Mt 27:51-53.

Miracles at the resurrection, Mt 28:1-7; Lu 24:6.

Draught of fishes, Lu 5:4-6; Joh 21:6.

Widow's son raised to life, Lu 7:14-15.

Miracles before John's messengers, Lu 7:21-22.

Miracles by the seventy, Lu 10:9,17.

Woman healed of infirmity, Lu 13:11-13.

Dropsy cured, Lu 14:2-4.

Malchus' ear restored, Lu 22:50-51.

Water turned to wine, Joh 2:6-10.

Nobleman's son healed, Joh 4:46-53.

Impotent man healed, Joh 5:5-9.

Sudden crossing of the sea, Joh 6:21.

Lazarus raised from the dead, Joh 11:43-44.

Christ's coming to his disciples, Joh 20:19,26.

Wonders at the Pentecost, Ac 2:1-11.

Miracles by the apostles, Ac 2:43; 5:12.

Lame man cured, Ac 3:7.

Death of Ananias and Sapphira, Ac 5:5,10.

Many sick healed, Ac 5:15-16.

Apostles delivered from prison, Ac 5:19.

Miracles by Stephen, Ac 6:8.

Miracles by Philip, Ac 8:6-7,13.

Eneas made whole, Ac 9:34.

Dorcas restored to life, Ac 9:40.

Peter delivered from prison, Ac 12:6-10.

Elymas struck blind, Ac 13:11.

Miracles by Paul and Barnabas, Ac 14:3.

Lame man cured, Ac 14:10.

Unclean spirit cast out, Ac 16:18.

Paul and Silas delivered, Ac 16:25-26.

Special miracles, Ac 19:11-12.

Eutchus restored to life, Ac 20:10-12.

Viper's bite made harmless, Ac 28:5.

Father of Publius, etc., healed, Ac 28:8-9.

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an event in the external world brought about by the immediate agency or the simple volition of God, operating without the use of means capable of being discerned by the senses, and designed to authenticate the divine commission of a religious teacher and the truth of his message (Joh 2:18; Mt 12:38). It is an occurrence at once above nature and above man. It shows the intervention of a power that is not limited by the laws either of matter or of mind, a power interrupting the fixed laws which govern their movements, a supernatural power.

The suspension or violation of the laws of nature involved in miracles is nothing more than is constantly taking place around us. One force counteracts another: vital force keeps the chemical laws of matter in abeyance; and muscular force can control the action of physical force. When a man raises a weight from the ground, the law of gravity is neither suspended nor violated, but counteracted by a stronger force. The same is true as to the walking of Christ on the water and the swimming of iron at the command of the prophet. The simple and grand truth that the universe is not under the exclusive control of physical forces, but that everywhere and always there is above, separate from and superior to all else, an infinite personal will, not superseding, but directing and controlling all physical causes, acting with or without them. God ordinarily effects his purpose through the agency of second causes; but he has the power also of effecting his purpose immediately and without the intervention of second causes, i.e., of invading the fixed order, and thus of working miracles. Thus we affirm the possibility of miracles, the possibility of a higher hand intervening to control or reverse nature's ordinary movements.

In the New Testament these four Greek words are principally used to designate miracles: (1.) Semeion, a "sign", i.e., an evidence of a divine commission; an attestation of a divine message (Mt 12:38-39; 16:1,4; Mr 8:11; Lu 11:16; 23:8; Joh 2:11,18,23; Ac 6:8, etc.); a token of the presence and working of God; the seal of a higher power.

(2.) Terata, "wonders;" wonder-causing events; portents; producing astonishment in the beholder (Ac 2:19).

(3.) Dunameis, "might works;" works of superhuman power (Ac 2:22; Ro 15:19; 2Th 2:9); of a new and higher power.

(4.) Erga, "works;" the works of Him who is "wonderful in working" (Joh 5:20,36).

Miracles are seals of a divine mission. The sacred writers appealed to them as proofs that they were messengers of God. Our Lord also appealed to miracles as a conclusive proof of his divine mission (Joh 5:20,36; 10:25,38). Thus, being out of the common course of nature and beyond the power of man, they are fitted to convey the impression of the presence and power of God. Where miracles are there certainly God is. The man, therefore, who works a miracle affords thereby clear proof that he comes with the authority of God; they are his credentials that he is God's messenger. The teacher points to these credentials, and they are a proof that he speaks with the authority of God. He boldly says, "God bears me witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles."

The credibility of miracles is established by the evidence of the senses on the part of those who are witnesses of them, and to all others by the testimony of such witnesses. The witnesses were competent, and their testimony is trustworthy. Unbelievers, following Hume, deny that any testimony can prove a miracle, because they say miracles are impossible. We have shown that miracles are possible, and surely they can be borne witness to. Surely they are credible when we have abundant and trustworthy evidence of their occurrence. They are credible just as any facts of history well authenticated are credible. Miracles, it is said, are contrary to experience. Of course they are contrary to our experience, but that does not prove that they were contrary to the experience of those who witnessed them. We believe a thousand facts, both of history and of science, that are contrary to our experience, but we believe them on the ground of competent testimony. An atheist or a pantheist must, as a matter of course, deny the possibility of miracles; but to one who believes in a personal God, who in his wisdom may see fit to interfere with the ordinary processes of nature, miracles are not impossible, nor are they incredible.

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