187. Jesus Christ in the eyes of a non-Christian. Part three
We were discussing the miracles performed by Jesus Christ
- One of the most spectacular events was his transfiguration. His appearance changed and his clothes became dazzling white. He talked with mighty prophets like Moses and Elijah, and a voice was heard from the cloud. All this happened in front of three witnesses, Peter, James and John. Here is the account: “After six days Jesus took Peter, James and John with him and led them up a high mountain, where they were all alone. There he was transfigured before them. 3 His clothes became dazzling white, whiter than anyone in the world could bleach them. 4 And there appeared before them Elijah and Moses, who were talking with Jesus” (9:2-4). Then a cloud appeared and covered them, and a voice came from the cloud: “This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!”
This event is described in all three synoptic Gospels and in a letter by Peter: 17 He received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”[a] 18 We ourselves heard this voice that came from heaven when we were with him on the sacred mountain.(2. Peter: 17-18 )
When a modern reader like yourself, reads all that which I have written above, if he or she is not an unquestioning devout Christian, one of following reactions arise in him/her:
- It is not true. Such things don’t happen. Bible should not be taken literally. Why don’t these miracles happen now? Not one miracle has been recorded in recent times.
- There may be some truth in these tales; rest is all exaggeration, carried out by an army of authors, over two thousand years.
You don’t want to appear gullible and superstitious, so you deny the miracles. In a discussion with your scientific-minded friends, you are apologetic about miracles recorded in Bible..
There is no need to be apologetic. It is they who are close-minded. They fail to appreciate that Divine power can cause miracles by using as yet undiscovered laws of nature. The known laws are not suspended but other undiscovered laws are brought into action which make it appear supernatural.
But what about the argument that why don’t miracles happen now?
The answer is that miracles happen now also. The same Source from which prophets derived their power still exists. Men of God (mystics) appear in all times and go to the same Source where prophets had gone and got powers, though not in the same order of magnitude as prophets possessed. We see glimpses of such powers. Here are some examples:
Jesus cured sicknesses. My brother suffered from incurable sickness. He went to the Great Mystic of Khyber Pass, who sealed his disease (see blog 104 ).
He suffered from a chronic illness for years, which affected his daily life. He had surgery, but that did not help. Soon he started vomiting blood. He fell down in streets couple of times and was taken to hospital. He was diagnosed with cancer (although that part is not documented). One day he met a dervish. The dervish said that in a far flung area a Qalander lives; only he has the ability to cure him. That man took that difficult journey, (considering his sickness). He met the Qalander the following day. The Qalander heard his story. He gave that man some goat milk to drink, and told him, “I have sealed your disease. It won’t progress. You won’t have vomiting any more. All your symptoms will gradually get better, and you will be alright in a month”. That is exactly what happened. Several years have since passed
St Augustine narrated the miracle of restoration of vision of a blind man (blog 163). Let me repeat it for the sake of continuity:
- “While the bodies were being carried, on the way, several people who were tormented by evil spirits were cured. There was also a man who had been blind for many years, a well known figure in the city. He asked why the crowd was running wild with joy, and when they told him the reason, he leaped to his feet and begged his guide to lead him where the bodies lay. When he reached the place, he asked to be allowed to touch the bier with his handkerchief. No sooner had he done this and put the handkerchief to his eyes, his eyesight was restored. The news spread”.St. Augustine was there in the city of Milan. He would not have recounted it unless it was authentic. He may even have witnessed it. Augustine was a highly rational man, as is clear from his struggle to understand time, astrology, and how prophets could see future. He was not likely to suffer from what Hume called ‘superstitious delusion’.St Teresa of Avilla narrates in her book, how she prayed for vision (blog 78). Here is the account from my blog:“Once she was earnestly begging Jesus to restore vision to a totally blind man. The Lord appeared and talked to her. Then He said that He would always grant her anything she asked, because she won’t ask Him anything which did not tend to His glory. The vision was restored within a week.”
To be continued