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Miracles and the Messiah
How do we know that Jesus is the Messiah? How do we really know? In Matthew 11:5-6 we see that it is from Jesus’ miracles. The Messiah is the one who God had promised who would be the King and would save people from sin and death. As we look at this passage, we’ll see what claim Jesus thinks he has on the title.
This is all set in Judea, so the majority of people where Jews. Basically this means they were either from the tribe of Judah or Benjamin. These Jews were waiting for their Messiah, and Jesus comes along and goes, “Hey, guys, it’s me, I’m the Messiah!”
And to confirm that Jesus wasn’t just some random crazy dude, fresh out of an ancient mental hospital, John decides to just ask him “are you the Messiah?” And what was Jesus’ response? To point to his miracles:
“The blind receive sight, the lame walk, leprosy is cleansed, deaf hear, dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor.”
Jesus’ miracles acted as sort of his ID card, or even a VIP card. It’s like Jesus walks up to a bouncer at a party and the bouncer says, “Whoa, stop right there, only Messiah’s are allowed through here sir.” And Jesus flashes his miracles at him and the bouncer lets him in.
Or perhaps – you know those horrible little guest ID’s that visitors have to wear when walking around a school? It’s like one of those, but it can take him places only teachers are allowed. Or even better, places only the principal can go. Or even one step better – where even the principal isn’t allowed. Jesus’ VIP card gets him into anything basically, it tells everyone around him that “Yes, he is the Messiah. The Messiah has come.”
Because we know that his miracles were of divine nature; not just anyone could calm a storm; we know that he is the Messiah. Another way of looking at this is that Jesus’ miracles are a window which give us glimpses of what his kingdom is and will be like. In each of his miracles we’re looking through a window, and on the other side you can see the Kingdom of Heaven.
In Acts 2:22 we learn that miracles, wonders and signs were a symbol that Jesus was from God, “Fellow Israelites, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know.”
Furthermore, Isaiah 35:4 prophesies that Jesus will in fact do this, “Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert.”
So now we know that Jesus definitely is the Messiah, because he did all those things. There is also more evidence all throughout the gospels where you can find references to Jesus and his miracles
So now what?
The application for us today is to trust Jesus. But there are other things to think about too. How do we put that trust into practice? Look at verse 4: “Go back and report to John what you hear and see.” If Jesus tells John’s disciples to tell John what they see and hear about Jesus’ miracles, then we should tell people as well. We should tell others about Jesus’ miracles which prove that he is the Messiah, and as Jesus says in the end of verse 5, “The good news is proclaimed to the poor.”
So, when you’re out and about doing your daily activities, how is knowing that Jesus is the Messiah going to help you?
Well, when you see a friend who you know may be a little sceptical as to why they should trust Jesus, you can point them towards this: Jesus’ miracles, as prophesied in the Old Testament, were later carried out by Jesus when he walked the earth. No one else has been able to do those sorts of miracles except Jesus’ disciples after he himself gave them the power to do so.
So how will this truth affect you?
Written by Julia Damtoft.