I understand that one cannot prove God, but that there are many valid evidences that point to God. Most of these pointers deal with the past or how something originated: cosmology, moral argument, resurrection of Jesus, prophecies in the Bible, etc.
What about present pointers like miracles, visions of Jesus in the Arab Wolrd, NDE’s that cannot be explained from a naturalistic point of view. See this : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X8SO_aCk_sU&t=7s I have the article “Blackwell Companion Substance Dualism”
I have bought “Miracles” from C.S.Lewis and “The Case for Miracles” from Strobel, but haven’t read them yet.
I’m looking forward to your comments.
Very interesting @torsten.kugler
I believe there’s a correlation between faith and miracles, our faith is weak, therefore miracles are scarce, and when they pop, one has to carefully discern through God’s Word, otherwise we’ll be drifting away.
Since visions, specially of the nature of dreams, could be connected to natural fears, again, I believe every case should be triple-checked through God’s Word. I wouldn’t rule out dreams or visions, since both were valid in specific scenarios 2k years ago.
If I understand you inquiry, can miracles, visions, etc be used as additional evidences to prove God? I’d say the answer is no, here’s why:
Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him : for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
Hope that helps.
Thank you for that question. Here are some pointers and links that might be useful in this discussion.
1. Evidences for existence of God - There is a good link which you can use as a starting point to explore further.
2. NDEs - Gary Habermas is a good resource for this. You have already gone through his videos.
3. Dreams and visions - There are numerous visions of Jesus, not only in the Arab countries but also in places like India.
The ones that I have heard personally are from very credible sources. I have a pioneering evangelist friend who has personally related stories of people from remote settings who have had visions of Jesus. In one such story, a very primitive tribal group saw a vision of Christ as a shepherd and the entire tribe came to faith in Christ. Personally, I too came to faith after a vision.
To many of us brought up in education that emphasizes evidence that is perceivable by the naturalistic scientific method only, dreams and visions and miracles are easy to dismiss or discredit. I would not easily dismiss them; at the same time, one should be careful before accepting a testimony also. There is Biblical precedent for these and contemporary society has numerous testimonies in this regard - not many are seen in mainstream media, however.
‘More than dreams’ (youtube) is a video series on visions and dreams in Islamic countries. The ‘One for Israel’ ministry also has testimonies that include dreams and visions. Nabeel Qureshi who came to Christ from a Muslim background testifies to a vision and dreams in his testimony. Here are some links
To me however, the greatest evidence for the existence of God are the following:
1. Transformed lives - People whose lives have been transformed radically following an encounter with Christ - whether through hearing a gospel message or visions or dreams or intellectual enquiry or healing. These are only the means that ultimately lead to faith which is evidenced by a transformed life.
2. The deepest longings of man - I firmly believe in this personal maxim - "The deepest longings of man point to the loftiest truths."
Every person, whether atheist or theist or in between, longs for certain things. This includes a longing for life, justice/fairness, righteousness, beauty, truth, a better world… This applies across age groups, gender, culture etc. As a medical person, I am yet to see a person who does not wish to live (unless there is a mental sickness). It is the same for the other deep longings. To me, these are the strongest indications that there is something beyond what our senses can perceive, which will fulfill our deepest desires.
I understand what you mean. However, miracles are there to point to God (see John 20:31). They do not necessarily produce faith, but support people to believe. That’s why the preaching of the apostles was accompanied by signs and wonders. At the end, it is still faith that pleases God (Heb 11:6) and every individual needs to make a decision whether to believe or not.
Thanks, Tony, for your answer and the good links. That helps. I also support the argument about transformed lives. But to my friend who used to be a Christian, even a missionary for six years and has moved away from Christianity, this experience thing doesn’t count for him. He says, people who turn to Buddhism or to Islam or to an esoteric form of life also report of the feeling of being born again and liberated etc.
Hello @torsten.kugler. I think miracles do a great deal to strengthen the case for God’s existence. As @tonyabthomas points out, visions and other healings are driving people to Christ at this very moment in places where the gospel may be scarce.
@jboat touches on the importance of having faith regardless of whether there is miraculous proof of God’s existence. I agree completely. As Christ says, blessed are those who have not seen yet believed. However, while the bible is our sufficient standard of truth, I would have to disagree with the saying that miracles cannot be used as additional evidence to prove God.
Like Tony, I am one I guess gifted to have seen Christ in a vision to come back to faith after many years astray. For the purposes of convenience, I won’t go into too much detail. Long story short, I was involved in the occult and a vision led me back to my first love. This involved casting out a demon from my body which is another prominent proof of the supernatural/miraculous. There are multiple deliverance ministries near me who work hard to deal with supernaturally profane.
I have watched countless testimonies of lost Muslims and Jews coming to Christ via miracles: healings, visions, taking down rope after attempting to hang, and unprecedented (‘coicidences’) etc. I don’t see there any reason for them to lie. Besides, Jewish and Muslim converts quite literally risk their lives to come to Jesus; and clearly something compelled them to do so against their own worldly security.
To reiterate again on Julio’s post, I think the word of God is our ultimate standard. And we should be weary enough to treat anything miraculous with caution, not being quick to blow the whistle on something unbiblical.
However one coming to faith is a different focus: especially to those who astonishingly come to faith without being fortunate to hear or read the bible.
In general, I think miracles offer great support for God’s existence. Unfortunately, however, it seems we need a mathematical formula or a rational explanation to suffice the needs of hard-hearted unbelievers: I guess this is the role of this website and apologetics. For me anyways testimonial evidence of the miraculous is great evidence for God!
Very true @torsten.kugler, experiences do not always lead to faith. The people of Jesus’ time saw His miracles, they even heard preaching from the Son of God himself, yet did not believe. The Israelites saw astounding miracles during their flight from Egypt and through the desert and yet only 2 reached the promised land. And yes, there are similar experiences that the devil can also manifest. I am aware of miracles and talking in tongues among some mystic sects of Islam.
Ultimately it is the work of the Holy Spirit in our souls that opens our eyes and convicts us.
I was a dying Jewish atheist who thought Jesus was completely fictional. Had I wanted a god-which I did NOT-the last one I would’ve chosen would’ve been Jesus. But He healed me of pancreatic cancer, MS & a lifelong vestibular disease that had paralyzed me & made my life hell since age 7. The medical documentation is clear. There is no other explanation than the miraculous. And it was Jesus who healed me, not anything or anyone else. But this last part cant be proven because visions aren’t really testable.
My testimony is here on RZIM: “Dying Atheist Jew Meets King of The Jews and Lives to Tell About It.” if that’s helpful. We overcome by the words of our testimony and the blood of the Lamb. All praise and glory to Yeshua!
Amen; worked for me as a Jew for sure!
Just read your testimony. I cracked up laughing in joy at the bit where Alexa played Amazing Grace. Amazing indeed!
For purposes of this topic and your testimony, there’s another amazing ex-Judaism to Yeshua convert named Zev Porat (I’m sure you know him). The fact that he had one of the biggest Rabbinic heritages in Israel, but comes to be, along with One For Israel, the biggest Israeli evangelist is astonishing.
Shalom brother. Yes n Amen. God is faithful n true n His works of miracles are amazing n awesome n unfathomable. I was diagnosed with Cataract in my right eye in 2018. At that time, I was a Christian of 2 years believing in Lord totally by faith. I was a thinking Christian yet, that is why I joined RZIM.
But before 2018, in 2016, I have started to experience occasional discomfort n pain in my right eye but my eye specialist didn’t ascertain that it was actually an onset of cataract. However, the situation got worse in 2018 when my sight started to experience partial blockage at night n the pain stepped up. I was told by my doctor that I have thick cataract on my right eye n my left eye had started to have a little bit. She further explained that she would not operate on me till my left eye became thick with cataract as well. At that juncture, I was utterly disgusted with my doctor of 6 years.
I prayed n I complained to Lord n I asked Him to heal me. I refused to go back for further diagnosis which was scheduled in Dec 2018. I could not trust my doctor’s ethics n integrity anymore but I trusted n believed in Lord.
What happened was I booked an Israel trip for Dec 2018 in February 2028. In Israel, Praise Jesus, Lord started healing me. I was so excited everyday going places n I didn’t even feel the pan n the discomfort n the partial blockage in my right eye at night. After the 5th day in Israel, it dawned on me that I was healed. Praise The Lord for His mercy endures forever. All Glories to God.
Today, my right eye is sharper n clearer n I can read phone messages n emails without glasses. Hallelujah.
Thank you for reading my long story as I want to give all the praises n all the glories n all the honour to our Great God, Christ Jesus.
Nikki, I just read your story. So powerful. Thanks.