Friday, 6 May 2011

Biblical Miracles

Christianity and Miracles 
Miracles in the Old Testament 
  • Acts of God
For example the flood in Genesis, where God told Noah to build an ark.
Miracles in the New Testament
  • Acts of Jesus and can be split into 3 categories
  1. Healing - Mark - Jesus heals blind man
  2. Exorcism - Matthew -Jesus heals a boy who is possessed by a demon when the father says he believes
  3. Natural - Mark - Jesus Calms the storm
Four Purposes of Miracles according to Christian belief
  1. Demonstrate love and compassion and faith by answering prayers.
  2. Demonstrates God’s power
  3. God is continually involved and active in his creation
  4. Signs pointing towards the divine
Three interpretations of miracles
  1. Literal
  2. Conservative
  3. Liberal 
Form critics such as Gunkel [German theological scholar] interpret miracles by examining what form was the original text used in. 
Bultmann is a extreme example of a liberal interpreter, he says we need to demythologize miracles to fully understand them. By this he meant remove the myth and supernatural elements to understand fully what the message of God is. Bultmann and other similar scholars who interpret miracles like this leave the question that is the resurrection then a purely symbolic event? The bishop of Durham Dr David Jenkins agrees saying it is merely a ‘conjuring trick with bones’. 
Form Criticism
Inconsistent Triad
Maurice Wiles - Arbitrary God 
Hume’s inductive argument

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