“Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” —John 20:30-31
It is intriguing and interesting to read the miracles of Jesus and be impressed, yet completely miss the point. When Jesus healed the man with the shriveled hand, the Pharisees were more concerned about Him performing a miracle on the Sabbath than the message to which it pointed. When Jesus healed the man at the pool of Bethesda, paralyzed for 38 years, He was actually healing him from settling into the status quo of his comfort zone. When Jesus healed the man born blind, the disciples argued about who caused his blindness—the man’s sin or his parents’ sin.
Like the disciples and the Pharisees, we can miss the message of the miracles. We can be content with the status quo of our comfort zones, but that will inhibit our spiritual growth, preventing all that God would do in our lives. The miracles of Jesus were not performed to get people out of a fix, wonderful as that is, but that we might know who He is. In John 10:10, He said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full,” or as some translations say, “have it more abundantly.” This life is not just something to be received, but to be lived in the boundless energy of the life Christ imparts to us. His miracles are signs that point to the quality of life which can only be experienced in Him.
The great danger with the miracles of Jesus is that we stop at the signs. We see them, but fail to understand where they lead. In Jesus’ day, the miracles had become an end in themselves. It was a theatre for those who witnessed it; something to observe, enjoy, admire, applaud and talk about. The point of the miracles was not to entertain the people by Jesus showing them what He could do, but to demonstrate who He is—the Christ, the Son of God, the Giver of life.
The One who turned water into wine still turns the ordinary into extraordinary. The One who fed 5,000 with a meagre portion of food still takes the little we have and makes it fruitful. The One who healed the man born blind is still the light of the world. The One who sustains us is still the Bread of Life and the One who raised Lazarus from the dead is still the resurrection and the Life. If we stop at the signs, we miss the message, but follow them, and we become recipients of all that God has to give us in Jesus Christ.