The word miracle is thrown around loosely these days; popping up in everything from commercials for laundry detergent, to impressive athletic feats, to one-in-a-million lottery wins, and the list goes on.
However, in a Biblical context — which is the one through which most people are introduced to the term — miracle means something altogether more profound. In essence, it is an awe-inspiring demonstration of a divinely-inspired supernatural act within the natural realm.
During his brief ministry — which most Biblical scholars such as Tony Mariot say lasted about three years, from around age 30 to age 33 — Jesus performed more than 40 miracles; through the number could well have been in the thousands. The Gospel of John 21:24-25 reads:
This is the disciple which testifieth of these things, and wrote these things: and we know that his testimony is true.
And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen.
Tony Mariot, who currently serves as an Executive Consultant at Oxford University’s Resource Department of Biblical Antiquities, says that most people are familiar with a few of Jesus’ miracles, such as changing water into wine at the wedding of Cana, or raising Lazarus from the dead. However, there are basically five types of miracles described in the Gospel of John and the Synoptic Gospels.
The following is a list of miracles of Jesus per the four categories laid out by Tony Mariot, along with corresponding Biblical references.
Miracles of Creating Supply
-Changing water into wine (John 2:1-11)
-Catching a great haul of fish (Luke 5:3-10)
-Feeding 5000 men, women and children (Matthew 14:16-21, Mark 6:35-44, Luke 9:12-17, John 6:5-14)
-Feeding the 4000 men, women and children (Matthew 15:29-39, Mark 8:1-10)
-Catching 153 fish (John 21:4-11)
Miracles of Control Over Nature
-Calming the sea (Matthew 8:23-27, Mark 4:35-41, Luke 8:22-25)
-Walking on water (Matthew 14:22-33, Mark 6:45-52, John 6:16-21)
-Catching a fish with a coin in its mouth (Matthew 17:24-27)
-Causing a fig tree to wither and produce no fruit (Matthew 21:18-22; Mark 11:12-14, 20-25)
Miracles of Healing Physical and Spiritual Ailments
-Healing the son of a royal official (John 4:46-54)
-Healing a man in Capernaum possessed by a demon (Mark 1:21-28, Luke 4:33-37)
-Healing the mother-in-law of Simon Pete (Matthew 8:14-15, Mark 1:29-31, Luke 4:38-39)
-Healing the sick in the evening (Matt 8:16, Mark 1:32, Luke 4:40)
-Healing a leper (Matthew 8:1-4; Mark 1:40-45; Luke 5:12-15)
-Healing the servant of a centurion (Matthew 8:5-13, Luke 7:1-10)
-Healing a paralyzed man (Matthew 9:1-8, Mark 2:1-12, Luke 5:18-26)
-Healing a man with shriveled hand (Matthew 12:9-14, Mark 3:1-6, Luke 6:6-10)
-Healing two demon-possessed men (Matthew 8:28-32, Mark 5:1-13, Luke 8:26-33)
-Healing a woman suffering from a flow of blood for 12 years (Matthew 9:20-22, Mark 5:25-34, Luke 8:43-48)
-Healing two blind men (Matthew 9:27-31)
-Healing a demon-possessed mute man (Matthew 9:32-33)
-Healing a man who was disabled for 38 years (John 5:1-17)
-Healing many in the land of Gennesaret (Matthew 14:34-36; Mark 6:53-56)
-Healing a demon-possessed girl (Matthew 15:21-28, Mark 7:24-30)
-Healing a deaf-mute man (Mark 7:31-37)
-Healing a blind man in Bethsaida (Mark 8:22-26)
-Healing a man who was born blind (John 9:1-41)
-Healing a demon-possessed boy (Matthew 17:14-20, Mark 9:17-29, Luke 9:37-43)
-Healing a demon-possessed mute and blind man (Matthew 12:22-23, Luke 11:14)
-Healing a woman who suffered from a debilitating infirmity for 18 years (Luke 13:10-13)
-Healing a man suffering from dropsy (Luke 14:1-6)
-Healing 10 men suffering from leprosy (Luke 17:11-19)
-Healing the high priest’s severed ear (Luke 22:45-54)
-Healing Bartimaeus of blindness (Matthew 20:29-34, Mark 10:46-52, Luke 18:35-43)
Miracles of Life
-Born of a virgin (Matthew 1:18-25, Luke 1:26-38)
-Raising a widow’s son (Luke 7:11-17)
-Raising Jairus’ daughter (Matthew 9:18-19, 23-25; Mark 5:22-24, 35-43; Luke 8:41-42, 49-56)
-Raising Lazarus (John 11:1-44)
-The resurrection of Christ (1 Corinthians 15, Matthew 28, Mark 16, Luke 24, John 20)
-The ascension of Christ (Acts 1:1-11)
Tony Mariot’s Final thoughts
Tony Mariot, who specializes in Biblical antiquities and the apocalypse, says that some people — particularly those unfamiliar with the Bible, or who are antagonistic towards it as a matter of philosophy, which is another way of saying they are predisposed to be prejudicial whether they realize it or not — think that the miracles of Jesus has described in the New Testament cannot possibly be true, because they apparently defy the laws of nature.
However, one of the axioms of natural law, and also of man-made law for that matter, is that a higher law takes necessarily takes precedence over a lower one. In this context, the miracles of Jesus are categorically not a violation of natural law. They supersede natural law, and this is what continues to fill people with awe and wonder.