1160 West Georgia Street Vancouver, BC, V6E 3H7
Why Does God Perform Miracles?
The Book of Acts is filled with miracles and supernatural signs and wonders. In Chapter 3, we read about a lame man sitting by the temple gate called Beautiful. As Peter and John were about to enter the temple, the man asked them for money. This is what follows:
“Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then Peter said, “Look at us!” So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them.
Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” Acts 3:4-6 (NIV)
The lame man received a miraculous healing, even though he did not ask specifically for the ability to walk. The initial request for money was not necessarily ignored, but God (through Peter) opted to bless the man with something far greater than financial provision, and even beyond physical healing. The main point in Acts 3 goes beyond the miracle that Peter & John performed for the lame man – it was an opportunity for them to preach about Jesus and the miraculous blessings that God is making available to ALL through their faith in Him!
To bring God glory
The point of the story is not about the lame man. Maybe that is why the man is not even named in the account. The emphasis of the story is really about God being the miracle-Maker and His desire to give us more than what we can even ask or desire. We all have needs that we are very aware of personally, but God can often respond to voids in our lives that are hidden from us. Pride or fear usually prevent us from asking God to meet those needs – either out of ignorance or insecurity.
I believe that the key to see more miracles in your life is when you stop focusing on yourself but start to think about how God can receive glory when miraculous start to happen in you.
To draw others to Jesus
“When all the people saw him walking and praising God, they recognized him as the same man who used to sit begging at the temple gate called Beautiful, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.” Acts 3:9-10 (NIV)
Noticed that there were other people who knew the man before he was healed. Others knew that he was the one who ‘used to’ sit begging at the temple gate. When the transformation occurred in the lame man, others who used to know him began to be filled with wonder and amazement. Transformation was also occurring in the people who witnessed the change in the healed person.
When God performs a miracle in you (your commitment to Jesus for example), those that witness your change are often filled with wonder and amazement as well. The folks that knew who you used to be, what you used to say, and how you used to act, before becoming a Christian should be filled with wonder and amazement too. God is not trying to just impress a few people with your miracle, He wants others who know you to be drawn to Jesus and be convicted of their own needs.
This is exactly the message that Peter shares (vv 12-13, 16):
“When Peter saw this, he said to them: “Fellow Israelites, why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus.
By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.”
To bring people to repentance
Jesus denounced the cities in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent.
He said, “Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes” Matthew 11:21 (NIV)
The setup in Acts 3 for the miracle to take place occurred in front of the Jewish temple where the religious people frequent. The message that Peter gave in Acts 3 was directed at many in this same religious group whom rejected Jesus and asked for His execution. There was a spiritual blindness and lameness in religiosity that prevented them from receiving God’s blessings.
However, they were convicted by Peter’s message of grace after witnessing the miracle of a lame man receiving a faith healing.
“When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways.” Acts 3:26
God is very likely to set you up in a place around people that have rejected faith in order to perform His miracle. This could be in your home, your workplace, your school, and your city. And just as Peter and John were prepared to offer hope to those that have rejected Jesus, so must we be ready to pray for God’s blessings to those around us that would repent as a result.
God wants to perform miracles in your life because He wants those around you to receive the blessing that faith in Jesus brings as well!