Saturday, September 15, 2018

The glory of miracles

Jesus turns water into  wine - Artist unknown
Jesus turns water into  wine - Artist unknown
TODAY'S SPECIAL: John 1-2; Psalm 103

"This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee and manifested His glory; and His disciples believed in Him." John 2:11

The glory Jesus showed the people around Him was not always what we think of as glory, i.e. a bright, white, shining visual phenomenon. Rather it was the glory of signs, wonders, miracles and healing. And when we examine the Bible's telling of some of these events, we see that Jesus' glory shown in these ways accomplished different things in different people.

The glory of miracles, signs and wonders:

  • Caused people to believe in Jesus.
    • The disciples believed after the miracle in today's reading- John 2:11.
    • When Jesus was going to meet Mary and Martha after Lazarus' death, He said, to His disciples, that He was glad it had come to this "that you may believe?" Onlookers as well as disciples believed on Him after He brought Lazarus back to life - John 11:15, 45,48.

  • Caused people to ponder His identity and come to various conclusions about Him.
    • Nicodemus concluded He was a "...teacher come from God" - John 3:2.
    • The nobleman and His household believed Jesus was as good as His word - John 4:50,53.
    • The scribes, Pharisees, and Jewish leaders saw a threat to their power in His miracles and teachings and pronounced Jesus and his works demonic - John 10:20,21.
    • After Jesus fed the multitude, His disciples and those who had eaten believed He was the fulfillment of prophecy - John 6:14.

  • Convicted and challenged His disciples.
    • The great abundance of fish the disciples caught after following Jesus' instructions caused Peter to be aware of His sin - Luke 5:8.
    • John the Baptist's faith was stretched when Jesus continued performing miracles while he, John, was stuck in prison (Matthew 11:2-6). It was an imprisonment that eventually led to his death. Like him we may sometimes have our faith stretched in this way when, no matter how great our need and how hard we pray, God doesn't perform a miracle for us. I take this as a lesson that these glory works are for God's purposes, not ours; we can't manipulate them. 
    • Jesus' feeding of the multitude was proof that Jesus could care for the disciples' physical needs - Mark 8:16-21.
    • Miracles performed in Jesus' name continued on in the church past His death and resurrection, causing the disciples to get into all kinds of trouble - Acts 2:22; 4:30; 8:5,6.
    • Are a means of drawing people to Jesus for salvation - Hebrews 2:2-4.

The Greek word "glory" used John 2:11 is doxa  "The NT doxa becomes splendour, radiance and majesty centred in Jesus. Here doxa is the majestic absolute perfection residing in Christ and evidenced by the miracles He performed" - Dick Mills, Word Wealth, New Spirit-Filled Life Bible, p. 1446.

This is the same glory (doxa) Jesus prayed would carry on in us, His disciples:
"And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one" - John 17:22 (emphasis added).

May His glory touch us and flow through us in signs, wonders, and miracles!

PRAYER: Dear Jesus, thank You for coming to Earth to show us God's glory through miracles. Thank You for still performing miracles today. Help me to believe even when you don't answer My prayer with a miracle. 

PSALM TO PRAY: Psalm 103

The Bible Project VIDEO: John - Part 1 of 2 (Read Scripture Series)

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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