‘Miracles 101’ or ‘Miracles and Magic’

980736‘Miracles 101’ or ‘Miracles and Magic’
Presented by Helen Joynt at the ISCAST Vic Intensive 2010


Helen Joynt, B Sc, B Ed, B D(Hons), MA, Ph D, was a secondary school Physics and Maths teacher nearly 50 years ago, being loosely connected with the Research Scientists’ Christian Fellowship, and then moved into theological and biblical studies.  



The aim of this very introductory session is to investigate what is commonly meant by “miracle” and compare this with the biblical meaning and significance of “miracle”. This will lead into a discussion of proposals regarding how we can understand the nature of God’s working in the world, and the impact this can have on pastoral care.

The following issues will form the focus of our thinking:

In all the argumentation about cessationism and continuationism, or naturalism and supernaturalism, are we in danger of missing the point of “miracle” in the Bible? 

How do we define “miracle”, and how does this compare with the scriptural terms for “miracle”? 

What role do miracles play in the Gospel? And how does this compare with our reason for seeking them today?

This raises the question of how we understand God’s action in the world. Why do we speak about God “intervening” in the world? Can there be any restrictions to God’s action in the world? 

And how can our answers to these questions guide us in our prayers?

The proposals of Dennis Edwards including those in his recently published How God Acts: Creation, Redemption, and Special Divine Action (Fortress Press, 2010, ISBN: 978-0-8006-9700-6) will be considered.




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