29 January 2002

"For they considered not the miracle of the loaves: for their heart was hardened"-Mark 6:52. Today, our message centers around the spiritual subject of miracles. I say spiritual, because that is what a miracle is. It has to do with Jesus Christ. A miracle is a Holy Hand in an unholy world. It is when the Lord performs or achieves something that man can not do; when He reaches in and changes things, alters the normal course of nature, makes things happen that naturally would never have happened. It is not luck, chance or accidental. It is on purpose, for a purpose, the answer of a prayer, mercy performed for one of His children, a rescuing angel sent unawares, a gift bestowed by grace, or something done to bring about a predicted historical event predetermined of God. Though God is actively involved in every aspect of creation, a miracle is above and beyond what is normally and usually expected and seen. I believe in miracles and I believe miracles are performed by the Lord every day by the billions. Yet, we are like the disciples. We consider not the miracles, because our hearts are hardened. Yes, even the disciples, who had just witnessed the miracle of Jesus feeding over 5,000 with five loaves and two fishes had forgotten His miraculous power. In less than twenty-four hours they needed another miracle as their ship was sinking in the storm. Here comes Jesus, walking on the water and they knew Him not. When He calmed their storm they were amazed beyond measure, and wondered. Why did they wonder, why were they amazed? Because their heart was hardened, the world had already crept in. Jesus and the spiritual realm was all but forgotten and they saw the world void of Jesus and His miracles. Today, let us consider His miracles! As we do I must confess that I am not an expert on miracles. I also know that many of His miracles are unseen and unknown. Like the car that could have swerved, but didn't; the timing changed to alter our course; the weather that changed the outcome of a battle; good advice given in the nick of time; the encouragement given when our ship was ready to sink; the love bestowed when our hopes were near gone; the job opening; the things lost for the best; even unanswered prayers that would have resulted in our own ruin are all found in this category hidden by a blanket of worldliness. If the Lord had not informed us by His word, we would have attributed the calming of the disciples storm to mere chance. Daniel's rescue from the lions would have been the result of some sick lions and the parting of the Red Sea was a freak accident of nature. Miracles are revealed in the Bible to expose God's care for His people and remind the hard heart that He is a miracle worker and in control. Now, what about us? Have we enjoyed miracles in our lives? Every child of God will experience at least one miracle and that is the new birth. As Paul wrote, "If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature." Do you enjoy good preaching and are you hungry and thirsty for spiritual things? This is an evidence of spiritual life, you have had an experience with the Holy Ghost. This is truly a miracle. As Paul wrote, "Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God. For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance." This is a gift, a desire given from above that not every mortal enjoys. It is a miracle just to understand who Jesus is and have a desire to be with Him. Life itself is a great miracle. All life emanates from God and the fact that you are alive is a miracle of His grace. You are not a chance, an accident, an animal without a purpose, you are created of God, a miracle. As the spiritual hymn goes: "Here it is I find my heaven, while upon the Lamb I gaze; Love I much? I've much forgiven; I'm a miracle of grace". Sin forgiven is a miracle. The work of Christ was the greatest miracle this world has ever seen. Love bestowed upon undeserving sinners is a miracle. Creation itself, is a miracle. It is not an accident of evolution, it is a creative miracle of God, just like your life. When I hear a bird sing or a hummingbird zip from flower to flower, when I see the sun rise and the beautiful sunset I see a miracle from God. If it is not so, let man paint his own sky and raise his own sun. All of these miracles glorify God. Let us consider them today! Come and worship with us at Harmony Primitive Baptist Church. Singing begins at 10:30 each Sunday morning followed by preaching at 11:00. By His mercy and grace, Neil Phelan, Jr., Pastor.