my names Ty Bolen. I’m currently a sophomore in college at Florida Southwestern State. Next Semester, I will be transferring to either Wheaton College or the University of Washington to pursue a masters in psychology and possibly apologetics. As to what I hope to gain I am not quite sure… My beliefs are shaky at best. Some parts of the scripture seem almost too good to be true and some just see down right impossible. Anyways, I hope to gain knowledge and insight in this forum and also hope to help others the best I can. As we should always put others above us ( I know, easier said than done. ). Looking forward to chatting with you guys!
@tbolen9 Welcome to Connect! So glad you are joining us here and praying that the Lord Jesus might grant you wisdom as you make decisions regarding your future. Wheaton is a great place to get grounded in your faith.
What parts of the Bible do you struggle with the most?
Thanks for the welcome!
I guess I struggle with some on my stories in the bible. For instance, I came across a passage today in ACTS that talks of a man dying after lying to the holy spirit about what percentage of his earnings he gave to the church. This story, as do countless others, seem too metaphorical. Don’t get me wrong, I love analogies, I’m just unsure if we are actually supposed to believe a man dropped dead on sight because he lied to the holy spirit. Especially since there is no evidence of this happening in our day and age.
@tbolen9 Indeed - glad you are joining us.
If we read Scripture, there were certain times in history when God worked in a more obviously miraculous way than others - like during the Exodus or the life of Elijah or the life of Jesus. But what we often don’t think about is that there were also times where, while God was still active, there were not as many obvious miracles. For example, the 400 years between the end of the Old Testament and the life of Jesus. God moves powerfully at certain pivotal times in history in ways He does not always move on a daily basis.
So I would say that, yes, we are meant to believe that Ananias and Saphira were indeed struck dead for lying to the Holy Spirit. But that does not mean that such supernatural events must happen with the same frequency to day as they did then. However, some missionaries who go to unreached people report that miracles do happen there more often as signs of the truth of their message.
A book by Eric Metaxas on miracles:
C. S. Lewis - Prince Caspian
C. S. Lewis understood the Biblical narrative well and so when he wrote his Narnia series, he has one book where people doubt the existence of Aslan (the deity in this fictional world) because it has been generations since any obvious miracles happened. But there are a faithful remnant who still hold to the ‘old ways’. Sure enough, Aslan does make an appearance at the appointed time.
All of that to say that Lewis understood that God works differently at different times in history.
A book by Lewis on miracles:
Hope that is helpful
Thanks brother Sean!
I actually have Caspian and Miracles and although I have yet to read either, I will be reading miracles soon! My story is one of many trials and I know this period of darkness I am experiencing is not for no reason. I am hoping my god will use this suffering of mine for his ultimate purpose in my life and the lives of others.
@tbolen9 Sure thing brother! May the Lord Jesus Shepherd you through this season of trial and strengthen you by His vast strength that you may know the joy of perseverance in the Lord.
Romans 5:1-5 - Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
I love your question… thanks for raising it!
This is an interesting statement:
Especially since there is no evidence of this happening in our day and age.
How do we know that there is no evidence of miracles happening in our day and age?
For instance, here’s a quote from Lee Strobel regarding a study he had conducted:
Nearly two out of five US adults (38%) said they’re convinced that God has performed at least one miracle for them personally. This is an eye-popping 94,792,000 Americans who are convinced that God has performed at least one miracle for them personally. That’s an astonishing number! Even weeding out instances that were actually “coincidences”—as many of those undoubtedly would be—that still leaves a surprising number of seemingly supernatural events.
Unless we assume that naturalism is true, and therefore all of the millions of claims to have experienced a miracle are false, I would suggest that the frequency of these claims suggests that we should be a bit more open-minded about whether or not miracles continue to happen today.