In 2004 Hurricane Charlie came through Florida and revealed a sign that had previously been placed next to the interstate. If nothing else it is a subtle reminder.
Does God send signs today? Or maybe a better question would be should we ask God for signs to lead, guide, and direct us in following Him? Or another question, what are we to think if a person can perform a sign of some kind?
Here are a few things to consider…
In Scripture signs confirmed that God was acting, directing, and leading. One of the first signs found in the Bible was the rainbow that God would never destroy the earth by water again (Genesis 9:13-17).
In Exodus 4:1-7 Moses was told that signs would confirm that he was called by God and that they would be used to show Pharaoh that Jehovah alone was God.
Then it is recorded that Gideon sought affirmation of God’s blessing before he went into battle in Judges 6:36-40. He asked God to make fleece wet with the surrounding ground dry, then the ground wet with the fleece dry on successive nights. And God did. Thus confirming God would be with Gideon in battle.
When Hezekiah wanted to know for sure he would be healed, he asked for a sign. He asked for the shadow of the sun to retreat 10 steps as found in 2 Kings 20:8-11. This means the earth reversed it’s spin on it’s axis. And God did it!
When Christians read things like this, we’re tempted to ask for God to give us a sign. Sometimes they’re outlandish things like “God, if you want me to do ‘X’ then have cousin Bill call me tomorrow between 1:00 and 3:00 PM…” I suggest that such things expose a possible lack of faith in God for the future.
Here are some things to think about regarding signs for your edification and meditation…
Jesus said signs were requested by an evil and adulterous generation. Read Matthew 12:38-41 and specially Matthew 16:4.
Signs can be counterfeited. Pharaoh’s magicians copied Moses’ signs (Exodus 7:10-11). Since we know that Satan can appear as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14) and thus can easily fool us because we tend to be subjective people, it is not wise to ask for… look for… or put our faith in signs.
Satan uses signs to decieve people. This is a further explanation of the point above. Read 2 Thessalonians 2:9-11 (And Revelation 13). The Deceiver uses signs… miraculous unexplanable signs… to lead people away from God and to himself. Thus trusting in signs or those who perform them is not wise.
Signs don’t prove, or disprove, a person is from God. The greatest man who ever lived (According to Jesus)… John the Baptist… never perfromed a sign of any kind (John 10:41). And since we now understand that signs will be performed by the Anti-christ we can deduce that signs presence… or lack of signs… does not prove whether or not a person is from God.
Signs don’t insure a person will believe. Abraham told the Rich Man in hell (Luke 16:27-31) that even if someone came back from the dead they wouldn’t believe (A reference to Jesus’ own resurrection). He further told the Rich Man that they had the Bible (Moses and The Prophets) and that they should believe them. Lesson: Signs won’t cause a person to believe in Jesus (Many in Jesus’ day knew of his resurrection yet they didn’t believe!).
While signs are given to affirm God’s activity (Gospels and Acts), never once in the New Testament do believers ask for a sign from God for direction or to affirm their faith. The only people who ask for a sign are unbelievers (Pharisees).
There is one sign given by God and that is Jesus… the resurrected one. Christians have God’s Word and the Holy Spirit to guide us. So I’d like to conclude with something I’ve written before about how to make decisions…
First… Gather all the avalible information. Second… Talk to Christians more mature and wise than yourself. Third… Seek God through prayer (James 1:5). Fourth… Make a decision. Fifth… leave the results in God’s hands without regret (Ephesians 3:20).
Thanks for the work you put into this. The point is well made.