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Jesus: His Miracles

John 10:37-38 

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"If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; [38] but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father." 

Today, as we explore the miracles of Jesus, I am taking something for granted. I am assuming that there is general agreement among our congregation that Jesus was capable of and did perform miraculous works. By and large, we are a conservative bunch who take the inspiration of scripture seriously and believe that Jesus performed the miracles that the New Testament ascribes to Him. Since I believe it is safe to assume that we do not question the authenticity of His miracles, I want to concentrate on one question today: Why did Jesus do the miracles He did?

John uses a different word to reference miracles than the Synoptic writers used, he called them "signs." As you know, John did not write a chronological gospel, he wrote a theological gospel. In other words, he arranged the events of his book around a single purpose, which he spells out in John 20:31. "but these have been written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name." He wrote for one reason, so his contemporaries would accept that Jesus is the son of God and to believe that Jesus was the long awaited Messiah. When they came to believe in Jesus as the Son of God and the Messiah, then they would be ready to experience eternal life through His name.

Because of John's purpose, he selected 7 of Jesus' miracles that proved Jesus' divinity and messiahship. Knowing how John used them is one thing, knowing why Jesus performed them is another. Did Jesus perform miracles so that people would believe He was the Messiah?

Our text today seems to indicate that the answer could be yes. In John 10:37-38, Jesus said, "If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; [38] but if I do them, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I in the Father." Certainly He is saying that actions speak louder than words. He said that His works show that He is in the Father and the Father is in Him.

But does that mean that his motives were to prove his divinity and Messiahship through the works, or is that just a byproduct of the miracles? Though we won't study all the miracles today, we will read enough of them to learn four reasons why Jesus did miracles.

ONE REASON WAS OUT OF NECESSITY. Remember when Mary and Jesus were at the wedding feast at Cana and the hosts ran out of wine? Mary asked Jesus to do something about it. Listen to His reply to her: "And Jesus said to her, 'Woman, what do I have to do with you? My hour has not yet come.' [5] His mother said to the servants, 'Whatever He says to you, do it.'" (John 2:4-5) Jesus evidenced some hesitation here, because He said His time hadn't come yet, but Mary had faith in Him to do something about the situation and told the servants to do whatever Jesus told them to do. The end result was that Jesus turned the dirty water from the purification pots into the best wine the crowd had ever tasted. Why did Jesus perform the miracle? It was out of necessity and because His mother asked Him to.

OTHER TIMES, JESUS USED HIS MIRACLES TO TEACH. Like the time he calmed the storm tossed sea. "And when He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him. [24] And behold, there arose a great storm in the sea, so that the boat was covered with the waves; but He Himself was asleep. [25] And they came to Him, and awoke Him, saying, 'Save us, Lord; we are perishing!' [26] And He said to them, 'Why are you timid, you men of little faith?' Then He arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and it became perfectly calm. [27] And the men marveled, saying, 'What kind of a man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?'" (Matthew 8:23-27 ) Certainly this miracle pointed to His divine powers, but it did more than that, it taught the disciples a lesson about faith.
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