Lee Strobel is best known for his book The Case for Christ, which details his immense effort to prove Jesus was not the Son of God.
He failed. And he failed for the best reason there is: you cannot prove false that which is true. Strobel began his investigations as an atheist and ended as a convinced Christian.
Strobel has a new work, this time with the happy goal of providing evidence of the miraculous. The book is entitled (sticking with what works) The Case for Miracles. On Wednesday night, Strobel held a simulcast at the World Outreach Church in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, launching the book.
He summarized his findings:
1. God is still in the miracle business;
2. Miracles happen a lot more often than people think;
3. Many miracles are far better documented than skeptics claim.
Strobel promised his audience that “by the end of tonight, you will witness a miracle.” More about this miracle (a real one) below.
What Miracles Are
He asked four important questions about the nature of miracles.
Question One: How to define miracle? There are varying opinions, but Strobel prefers the definition by philosopher Richard Purtill. “A miracle is an event brought about by the power of God that is a temporary exception to the ordinary course of nature for the purpose of showing that God has acted in history.”
Question Two: Aren’t miracles impossible because they violate the laws of nature? That’s what the (in)famous skeptic David Hume thought. Miracles are not, however, a violation of the laws of nature. They are instead interventions by God. Strobel used the analogy of him dropping an apple which you intercept before it hits the ground. You intervened. You did not violate the law of gravity.
Strobel also explained that whatever begins to exist has a cause. God, of course, never began: He always was and necessarily is. But there is certain scientific evidence that the universe started with the Big Bang; if so, this event was caused by God.
Where Miracles Happen
Question Three: How common are miracles today? Strobel discovered (by a poll) that nearly 40% of Americans said had they experiences that can only be explained as miracles from God. Suppose 99.9% of these accounts “are wrong and speak of merely coincidences.” That “still leaves nearly a million miracles in USA” alone.
Skeptic magazine said that “only the uneducated and the uncivilized believe in miracles.” But 55% of educated and civilized physicians say they have seen results that can only be described as miraculous.
Question Four: How can we know if a miracle is genuine? The placebo effect is real. Mistaken diagnoses happen. Fakery and fraud are ever with us; charlatans do exist. There are faulty memories and spontaneous remissions. But many healings are inexplicable except as miracles.
Some skeptics are dogmatic. They say “Miracles are impossible. Period.” Other atheists, like Jerry Coyne, admit this is not a very scientific attitude and so allow possibility of miracles. But Coyne insists on scientific evidence for miracles. Yet “scientific experiments must be repeatable. So if someone comes back from the dead, what do you do, shoot them?”
And what about the “massive, well-documented and either replicated or independently corroborated evidence from multiple sources” about Jesus rising from the dead?
Get Up And Walk
Consider the case of clicking here to read the rest.