Effect of Signs

The Varied Effect of Signs in Scripture or Do Miracles Save?


Did Miracles Work for Moses?

  • LORD      gave Moses not 1, but 3 signs to convince Israel (Ex4:8,9).
  • This      did manage to recruit the Jewish people. Of course, it was their      liberation.
  • Moses      did all miracles God gave him; still Pharaoh did not comply (Ex4:21).


Did Signs Save Israel?

  • LORD      tired of unbelieving Israel      -- in face of all the signs He gave (Num14:11).
  • All      that generation who saw the miracles DIED in the wilderness (v22).
  • Though      Moses showed mighty power, Israel      did NOT obey (Ax7:36,39).
  • Not the      signs they need, but the heart to perceive & believe (Dt29:3,4).


What Response to Jesus' Miracles?

  • Many      DID believe when they saw the signs* Jesus did (Jn2:23 / 3:2).
  • Raised      Lazarus from the dead -- and his family and friends believed (Jn11:45).
  • Others      went to report to the Jewish leaders (v46).
  • The      leaders, confessed the miracle, yet rejected Jesus (vs47ff).
  • "They could not gainsay      the premises, and yet would not grant the conclusion" -- Matthew Henry.

*semeion (69x in NT) = signal, mark, token / +dunamis (116x in NT) = power, might


Do Many Miracles Yield Much Faith?

  • Entire      towns condemned -- who received most of His miracles+ (Mt11:20,21)!
  • Jesus      was NOT impressed that we required signs in order to believe (Jn4:48).
  • "Though he had done so many signs before them, they still did not      believe in him" (John 12:37 ESV).


Which Comes First - Seeing or Believing? - Jn6

  • Jesus:      You are distracted by the loaves & do not see the signs (v26).
  • People:      What sign? We'll believe you when we see it happen (v30).
  • Jesus:      I Am Myself the 'miracle,' the life given to the world (v33).
  • Peter:      We believe You, so we see know: You are the One (vs68-69).


How did Miracles Serve the Apostles?

  • Jewish      leaders confess a notable sign but want to stop the teaching (Ax4:16,17).
  • Philip      healing the lame brought much joy to Samaria      (Ax8:6-8).
  • Signs      and wonders at Iconium, yet men wanted to stone preachers (Ax14:1-7).



Do We Need Tongues today?

  • Paul says      that inspired foreign language is a sign to Unbelievers (1Cor14:22).
  • Gifts      were distributed among the church as Spirit willed (1Cor12:4-11).
  • Apostles,      prophets, and teachers precede gifts (v28) and Love precedes all (v31f).
  • In      fact, teachers of truth ARE the gifts Christ has given to the church (Eph4.8,11).


Do we have miracles today? - IN the confirmed word (Heb2:4 / 2Pet1:19).


What IS the Purpose of Miracles?

  • Reveal      & Confirm the Word: "the Lord working with them" (Mk16:20).
  • Approve      of the Spokesman - 1st of all, Jesus (Ax2:22), then His co-workers.
  • Approve      of the Recipient: that Gentiles can be saved (Ax10:44-48 / 11:17-18).


Do Miracles Prevent Apostasy?

  • Simon      amazed at real signs & powers, yet returned to his old ways      (Ax8:13-24).
  • Paul      worked the signs of an apostle, still Corinth stumbles at him (2Cor12:12f).
  • We can      neglect this great salvation -- falling away from it (Heb2:3,4 / 3.12&16).
  • How      could 1st Century church fall, having miracle-working prophets      there?


Can Miracles Lie?

  • False      saviors work great signs and wonders~ that deceive (Mt24:24).
  • The      working of Satan: lying wonders > strong delusion (2Thess2:9-12).
  • Beware      deceiving miracles - by the Beast and false prophet (Rev13:14 / 16:14).
  • Their      end is doomed -- into the lake of fire (19:20).

~teras (16x in NT) = marvel (emphasis - effect on people)


What is Greater than Signs?

  • The      revealed will of God trumps even resurrection every time (Lk16:29-31).
  • The      confirmed word tests all things. Miracles can be rejected. False signs      lie.
  • Inspiration      records some, not all, of Jesus' works (Jn20:30); Need we more?
  • A godly      life derives from the knowledge of Him who called us (2Pet1:3).


"His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence." (2 Peter 1:3 ESV)


notes by David Teel Saturday, September 12, 2009

update Sunday, August 09, 2015