Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Encountering the miraculous

On Sunday morning as we returned to Dromara from the Easter services, there was a discussion on Radio Ulster's Sunday Sequence. The question was whether miracles ever happened, and if they can still happen today. The reason I'm writing about it is because as I was thinking about it earlier, several threads came together in my brain.

The first was a discussion of Bultmann's hermeneutics in class today. Bultmann's approach to the Bible (greatly paraphrased, and maybe not strictly accurate), seems to me that he thought the truth contained within was lost within a mass of culturally-bound details. The message had to be reinterpreted for the modern generation, with all references to supernatural, or to the pre-modern worldview. So things like demon possession, angels and such like all had to go. So too, did miracles. They weren't compatible with modern life at all, according to Bultmann.

The second thread was a discussion I had with a few friends the other week. We were talking about driving and such like, when we came on to near misses. I'm not going to name names, but each of us had stories of times when, naturally speaking, we should have been gonners. Scary situations, yet our lives were preserved. God is obviously not finished with us yet. So for our tiny miracles, when humanly speaking, disaster should have happened, but God intervened in his mercy, we gave thanks and praised his glorious name!

Did miracles occur in Jesus' day? Yes, I absolutely affirm it. God showed his power to announce the kingdom, and to authenticate the message of his apostles. Do miracles happen now? Yes, in small, and sometimes even big ways, miracles happen. Should we always expect them? Maybe not - if we're out for the big miraculous thing all the time, our faith can fail - if we're looking for things that God has not promised. But God does break in on our world, and show his power in supernatural, amazing ways. I know it, or I wouldn't be sitting here right now, in Dublin, typing this blog posting!

1 comment :

  1. would near misses not have more to do with God's providence? and yes God does break into this world in super natural ways! he did that by sending Jesus surely? the Word became Flesh. as for miricles well the conversion of soul to Christ surely counts as a miricle! after all it has nothing to do with us!