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Ask the Pastor

† Theological musings and answers to selected questions by a confessional Lutheran pastor.

08 March 2007

More on Signs and Wonders

Q: Does God speak to man with signs?

Signs and SeasonsA: He does, at times, use signs. From the time of creation, Genesis 1:14 tells us that one of the reasons God set the sun, moon, and stars I the heavens was that they would be “for signs and for seasons.” The best illustration of this was after Jesus’ birth, when the Wise Men saw “saw his star ... and [came] to worship him. (Matthew 2:2)”

However, the signs we crave aren’t always the signs we receive. An excellent example is that when pressured for a sign of His divine authority, Jesus offered the “sign of Jonah” and then added other difficult, even harsh, signs to it (see Matthew 12:38-42). We must remember that the Devil often paints a more glowing picture for our everyday lives than does God. After all, 2 Corinthians 11:14 warns us that “Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.”

Angel of Light?Never should any contemporary signs replace faith in God’s Word and the testimony of the witnesses of the Resurrection. For example, Paul spoke unflatteringly because “Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom” instead of focusing on“Christ crucified. (1 Corinthians 1:22-23)” Meanwhile, Christ warned that after His ascension, “false christs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. (Matthew 24:24)”

Remember that unless we have a clear word from the Lord, we always risk misinterpreting any sign. Even the signs of Christ’s death and resurrection are misunderstood or ignored by non-Christians.

Scripture quoted from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version™, © 2001 by Crossway Bibles.

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Walter Snyder is the pastor of Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Emma, Missouri and coauthor of the book What Do Lutherans Believe.

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22 April, 2010 08:34  

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