by Janet Denison
Thursday, August 09, 2012
People have always been skeptical of God’s miracles. Thomas Jefferson deleted the New Testament miracles out of his book, The Jefferson Bible. He believed that Matthew, Mark, Luke and John had added them as misinterpretations to the life of Christ. I saw a story on the news this week that prompted this post. I believe in miracles. I believe that God told Moses to stretch out his hand and the waters of the Red Sea were parted (Exodus 14). I believe that God stopped the Jordan River when Joshua sent the priests, carrying the ark, into its waters (Joshua 3). I believe that Jesus Christ was the Son of God and that he performed many miracles during his lifetime. And I believe Hebrews 13:8: “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.” So why do I struggle when I see stories about miracles, like the story I saw on the news this week?
A local news station ran a story about The Cross at Kerrville. Kerrville is a small town located near San Antonio, Texas and sits at the same latitude as Israel. This 77.7 foot cross is located on Interstate 10, in a prayer garden, where people come free of charge to spend quiet time with God. “The Empty Cross” is a sculpture built by Max Greiner, a Texas sculptor, and symbolizes the resurrection of Jesus. It is an impressive sculpture, but that is not what the news story was about. The cross was erected in 2010 and since that time The Coming King Foundation has documented many people who have said they experienced God’s presence and even God’s healing while there. People have seen angels, small orbs of light and have talked about gold dust which has fallen on them while at the cross. I was drawn to the news story out of curiosity in the beginning, and out of a sense of call by its end. Is The Cross at Kerrville a place where God is doing miracles? A lot of people sincerely believe it is.
The Cross at Kerrville, a close-up of 77 feet of cor-ten steel glowing blood red in the setting sun (Credit: The Coming King Foundation)I googled “Modern Day Miracles” and enjoyed reading several articles that I found. I especially enjoyed an article from the Christian Post about a doctor who suffered a heart attack, was considered dead, and then miraculously, “came back from the dead.” The article goes on to say that many doctors have seen miracles and because doctors are considered “credible witnesses,” a convention was convened to gather their stories. I realized after reading that article, I was more likely to trust the doctor’s experience than those I had seen in the news report about the Kerrville Cross. And then I quickly wondered why. There is nothing in Scripture that suggests that position. In fact, the most credible witnesses of Jesus’ day would have been the Pharisees and they opposed his miracles constantly. The Pharisees, the ones with the greatest knowledge, missed the miracles. Could that be true of God’s people today?
Missionaries come home to the United States with amazing stories of what God is doing in other countries. Many Muslims report visions of Jesus, and dreams that have led them to become Christians. Other missionaries tell stories of healing and experiences with people they later come to believe were angels. We marvel at their stories and most of us have no problem accepting them as reality. So why do we doubt the experiences of the people down the street, or from a church unlike ours? Are we missing God’s miracles?
People have always counterfeited the work of God. The priests of Baal had their tricks (1 Kings 18) and the Witch of Endor was convincing to King Saul (1 Samuel 28). Paul and John cautioned the churches to be careful of people who imitated the work of Christ, but were false teachers. Our news broadcasts are quick to reveal ministries that have been caught trying to dupe people into offering support, when the ministry lacked integrity. Have those who counterfeited the work of God caused us to stop believing in his miracles?
If Moses didn’t believe in miracles, two million people would have been recaptured by the Egyptians and remained slaves. If the disciples didn’t believe in miracles they would never have continued walking with Jesus, and never preached a resurrected Savior. If Paul didn’t believe in miracles he might have remained a blind, ruined Pharisee. If you don’t believe in miracles, you won’t trust your life to a resurrected Christ.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. He is still doing miracles in this world. I am still praying through all that I have read this week. I don’t want to miss the miracles that Jesus is doing right now. I will probably find a time to go to Kerrville, sit in that prayer garden and ask for God’s presence. I would love to open my eyes and see that gold dust on my arms – but if it isn’t there, I will still believe in my Savior. I believe in miracles – I don’t want to miss even one.