Miracles and the Kingdom of God

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Miracles and the Kingdom of God

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Many medical doctors don't like to mention the intervention of God when it involves the survival of one of their patients. But I heard the opposite when my father-in-law was admitted to the hospital after collapsing from a heart attack over a year ago. He subsequently needed a quadruple bypass operation.

The story gets very emotional when, a few weeks later, after recovering from the operation his heart stopped because of incorrect medication dosages, and he was rushed to the emergency room.

After two hours of emergency procedures, the doctors finally gave up trying to revive his heart—which was only kept beating by a pacemaker inserted directly through his neck and down into his heart. When they turned it off, we watched on the ultrasound monitor as his heart went lifeless. When they turned the pacemaker back on, his heart would pump blood again, but artificially. We saw this repeated several times.

When the decision was finally made to literally "pull the plug," the coroner was notified. I anointed him as instructed in the Scriptures (James 5:14 James 5:14Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:
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) and asked God for his intervention and complete healing. The plug was pulled. And then a miracle happened. The doctors were amazed to see a few faint heartbeats. The nurses started crying. The formerly lifeless heart was feebly trying to beat.

It was a very long 24 hours while his blood pressure went from less than 24 over 40, up to 50 over 80. Still dangerously low, but it was rising. The emergency room doctor kept coming up to the intensive care unit the next day to look at the monitors, amazed that the heart was getting stronger. He kept saying, "There's the miracle man."

My father-in-law is with us today, and doing very well. We believe God intervened and brought him back from the brink of death.

Miracles and the Gospel of the Kingdom

Do miracles have anything to do with the gospel of the Kingdom of God? Miracles are also called "signs" and "wonders" in Scripture. Signs and wonders are events that cannot be explained through science or the laws of nature.

After Jesus returned to the Father, the book of Acts records the disciples of Jesus praying to God to grant that miracles be done for the purpose of showing where God was working. "Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus" (Acts 4:29-30 Acts 4:29-30 [29] And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant to your servants, that with all boldness they may speak your word, [30] By stretching forth your hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of your holy child Jesus.
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But, here is something that you may not have thought about before: God's miracles are often used to validate the power of His Kingdom—the Kingdom of God. There is a classic example of this in the book of Daniel. An evil king became convinced of the power of the Most High God and His Kingdom because of a powerful miracle:

"Nebuchadnezzar the king, to all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you. I thought it good to declare the signs and wonders that the Most High God has worked for me. How great are His signs, and how mighty His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and His dominion is from generation to generation" (Daniel 4:1-3 Daniel 4:1-3 [1] Nebuchadnezzar the king, to all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied to you. [2] I thought it good to show the signs and wonders that the high God has worked toward me. [3] How great are his signs! and how mighty are his wonders! his kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and his dominion is from generation to generation.
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Notice the direct connection of signs and wonders pointing to the Kingdom of God.

God's mighty acts are demonstrations of His rule, of His territory, of His subjects, of His Kingdom. "Signs and wonders" often reveal the present and future reality of the Kingdom of God. It's an important understanding as to why Jesus Christ, the Son of God and soon coming King of that Kingdom, also used miracles and signs.

Christ offered the present reality of the Kingdom to those who believed in Him and announced its future reality in the world when He would return to set up that Kingdom of God.

Signs and wonders break into our world and offer awesome evidence of God's rule. They guarantee its future reality as a dominion that will come to all the earth and overthrow this present evil age.

The Miracle of Personal Transformation

How many more miracles would it take for you to fully believe God? Even in the face of undeniable miracles, sin can and does deceitfully harden our hearts. The most important power for softening hard hearts is the indwelling of God's Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit allows for a personal, miraculous transformation of our life.

God's calling and the gift of the Holy Spirit is what all people ultimately need. Sure, miracles—signs and wonders—gain initial attention, but not always for positive or life-changing attention.

The answer to the needs of humankind is found in Scripture: "But the Holy Spirit also witnesses to us; for after He had said before, 'This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them'" (Hebrews 10:15-16 Hebrews 10:15-16 [15] Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that he had said before, [16] This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, said the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them;
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This is the miracle of personal transformation. Don't underestimate the power of God in your life after you are baptized and have received the gift of the Holy Spirit. After that, pray every day to be led by God's Spirit. Don't be deceived. Be transformed.

Yes, miracles still happen today. They happened in the past, and they will happen again in the future. Some of the greatest miracles are the transformed lives of God's people today. Let's not forget that. It's a validation of the power of the Kingdom of God.