Why does God not perform spectacular miracles and prove that He exists?
Question: “Why are there no clear miracles today that show everyone in the world beyond a doubt that there is a God?”
Our answer: Many people want strong, overwhelming reasons to believe in God.
Some people believe in the existence of God on the basis of facts or philosophical considerations (some of which are depicted in the God? section).Others believe in God because they have experienced a prayer hearing, because He has given them a direction in their lives, or because God has brought change in their lives.
Why is N.Y. not so convincing and unambiguous that we human beings really NEED to believe in Him?Philip Yancey gives a good answer in his book “The Unknown Jesus”.
Yancey particularly highlights that God has given us the freedom to believe in Him or not.He writes: “My faith suffers from too much freedom and too many temptations not to believe. There are times when I want God to overwhelm me, to eliminate my doubts through ultimate certainty, and for him to prove his existence once and for all. I want a God without ambiguity, a God to which I can point for the sake of my doubting friends.” But then he writes, “The more I get to know Jesus, the more I am impressed by what Dostoyevsky calls the miracle of restraint.”
Jesus could have performed such great, spectacular miracles that people should have believed in Him.He could have healed entire cities with a single word. He could have made all of today’s Hollywood Boulevard appear in front of them right now. Or he could have performed a whole host of other breathtaking miracles that would have forced people to believe in him. But God does not touch the free will that He gave us in creation.
Yancey writes: “His refusal to represent himself and thereby force us to believe is very surprising.God’s terrible existence on the free human will is so absolute that it even guarantees us the possibility to live as if it did not exist, to spit in his face and crucify him. I believe that God is sticking to this self-restraint, because no pyrotechnic representation of his omnipotence would provoke the response from us that he expects from us. Power can force obedience, but only love can produce an answer of love. And this answer out of love is what God wants from us, and that is why He created us.”
If God had truly demonstrated His power in a convincing manner, He could force us to believe in Him.It’s easy for him because he can command whatever he wants. But God wants something completely different. He wants us to know him as our father, friend, comforter, counselor, and lord – voluntarily, not out of compulsion.
He has given us more than enough reasons to believe in Him (see No BlindFaith), but He does not force us to know Him.And when Jesus says, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will go in to him…” (Revelation 3:20) thus means that He enters into our lives only if we allow him to do so. And if we honestly look for whether and who he really is, then he will allow us to find and get to know him.