by Rex Rouis
We all know that only God can do miracles. How then did Jesus accomplish His miracles in the Gospels? Yes, Jesus was and is God, but it is clear from scripture that when He was born of a virgin (in His Incarnation) He emptied Himself of His inherent divine outward powers, and surrendered His divine will to that of the Father. He was still fully God, but now He was also fully man. He ministered by the working of the Holy Spirit (Philippians 2:5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11). The scriptures are clear that He, thus acting as a man, could do no miracles.
Therefore Jesus answered and was saying to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.” John 5:19
If only God can do miracles, Jesus would have had to momentarily transcend His humanity to accomplish them, and the above verse would not be true. If Jesus remained human during the miraculous, then there is a way for other humans to do the miraculous. Either this is true or the humanity of Jesus was somehow different from our humanity. In the Incarnation, He took on everything but our sin, and that He took on at the cross. He is both our example and our substitute, and as our example, He showed us how to walk in the supernatural. This is exactly what Jesus meant when he said:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father.” John 14:12
God is pleased to work through non-divine individuals, and He does this through the work of the Holy Spirit. Jesus actually told His disciples that it was more advantageous for the Holy Spirit to be in them than for Him, Jesus, to be with them and next to them.
“But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper (Holy Spirit) will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. John 16:7
This empowerment started on the Day of Pentecost and continued on through the rest of the New Testament. A believer’s work in the miraculous is the work of the Holy Spirit within them. We can now say what Jesus said during His walk on earth – “We can do nothing of ourselves, it is the Holy Spirit at work within us, He does the miracles.” Our walk of faith is intended to reproduce His walk of faith. Yes, only God can do miracles, but God does them through us.