When John, who was in prison, heard about the deeds of the Messiah, he sent his disciples to ask him, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?’ Jesus replied, ‘Go back and report to John what you hear and see: the blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.’ (Matthew 11: 2-6)

Tough Questions demand Straight Answers. And, right from the get-go, we declare that as His followers, His disciples, we KNOW that the answer to any-and-all of these questions is…JESUS! As the old song says, “Jesus is the answer for the world today”. And He is the answer because He HAS all the answers and they are all there for us to access at a time of information overload and societal pressure and confusion. And these answers are accessed in two places:

  • Through the Word (the Holy Bible)
  • Through the Spirit (The Holy Spirit who is God with us, in us, our Counsellor in all situations, our Comforter in all difficulties, the One who teaches us all things)

And how does this work or “look” in practice?

Well, just today I was reading a disturbing report from the Rowntree Foundation that declared that today there are at least 14 million people living below the “poverty line” in our country. The Tough Question is “what do we do about this?”. Society has increasingly been saying that many of these “poor” are lazy and need to get “on their bike” and back to work; that benefits need to be reduced in our “nanny state” to force them – and their families – to do something about it. BUT… the Spirit says within us that this is wrong – that we must care for them, provide for them and support them out of poverty – whatever their own mistakes and misuses might have been that got them in this predicament in the first place. AND the Word says that we must feed the hungry, clothe the naked and visit the sick (Matthew 25: 35-37).

Yes! Jesus IS the answer to all the Tough Questions.

And so we begin our series by looking at Jesus Himself, Immanuel, the God-Man who came down from Heaven to live with us and die for us that we might live with Him, forever, in Paradise.

“Many people today say that they ‘believe’ in Jesus. What they really mean is that they believe He existed and they believe some of His teaching. Look up the dictionary definition of the word ‘belief’ and you’ll find that that isn’t it. You can believe a chair will hold you up but unless you sit on it, your ‘belief’ isn’t worth much, nor is it real belief. So if real belief means putting your trust in something, what should we really believe about Jesus? Well one thing is certain: the one thing you can’t believe about Him is that he was a ‘good man’. It was CS Lewis who once said that when we look at the facts about Jesus, there are only three beliefs we can honestly hold: that He was mad, that He was bad or that He was God. With all the good things He did, it’s impossible to believe that He was bad. Similarly, with all the good sense He taught, it’s impossible to believe that He could have been mad. But these aren’t the crucial issues: the main reason we know He was God is that His teaching leaves us no other option. He clearly stated over and over again that He was God. If He lied about this, then He must have been either bad (ie pretending to be something that He wasn’t) or mad (ie pretending to be something that He wasn’t because He was off His head).

Sorry: you can’t sit on the fence on this one.

And if you conclude that Jesus Christ was God? Well, it means a great deal.

Responding will require a radical change from within your heart, to turn from your ways and fully embrace God’s.” (from the article: “Christianity: Exploding the myths” – no author cited)

Others – such as Josh McDowell have challenged us to make a decision based on this:

That Jesus was either “Lord, lunatic or liar”.

Which is it going to be for you? He can’t be all three! He can only be one of these.

And what might be some of the evidence that He is LORD?…

…the miracles that the Bible claims He performed.

Jesus Himself recognised the importance of the sign of His miracles in answering the most important question of the day (and possibly the greatest question of all time):

‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?’ (John the Baptist, cited in Matthew 11: 2)

His answer was telling:

‘Go back and report to John what you hear and see: the blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor.’ Matthew 11: 4-6)

And that leads on to an incredible claim He made: that we would do even GREATER things than these!

“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these” (John 14: 12)

What is a “miracle”? A definition that I find helpful is that a miracle is a supernatural event – that is a “happening” that cannot occur naturally – that takes place in one of two areas – the physical body or the physical world. Jesus amazingly operated in the miraculous in both these areas: for example He raised Lazarus from the dead – naturally this cannot be done; and he turned water into wine – now I WISH this was a natural occurrence…but it isn’t!

The world, we are told, claims that there are no such things as miracles: that they are false claims, lies, deceptions. Or that so-called miracles have rational, logical, earthly, scientific explanations…a person who gets well from a terminal illness after prayer becomes “mind-over-matter” or the body’s wonderful capacity to restore itself; stories of rockets fired at Ukraine by Russian artillery that fly off course become “terrible Russian technology” rather than the hand of God; a dead man  breathes and lives again after prayer from Gavin Calver and friends becomes a medical triumph rather than a raising from the dead.

Or…Jesus is the miracle-worker who works miracles today.

Do you have your own story of miracles from God in your life or in the lives of your loved ones?

I believe that what Jesus promised is true. I believe in miracles. I believe that when God’s people pray supernatural things happen. I heard recently David Pawson tell of a lady travelling by air from Australia to New Zealand in 1962 – the plane entered a violent electric storm over the Tasman sea. The plane was being thrown about and passengers were screaming. She noticed a lady praying by a window. Together they prayed that God still the storm outside and inside. In 2 minutes all people in the plane stopped screaming and were at peace. This lady took a photo out of the window hoping to get a picture of the storm – immediately the storm stopped. The photo shop asked her to come in person to collect the photos – asking her how she got this photo. She told them what had happened, and the photographer and his family became Christians that very day…seeing a figure in the turbulent sky in perfect peace and in control of the situation and protecting the plane and calming the storm. Jesus continues to cry out “don’t be afraid – I was dead but am alive forevermore”!

So many tough questions here:

  • Is Jesus Lord, lunatic or liar?
  • Is Jesus the miracle worker?
  • Do you believe in a God of miracles TODAY?

The American, Lee Strobel commissioned the prestigious and respected Barna Research company, in 2022, to ask the question whether people believed in miracles:

67% of Americans said “yes”, 15% said “no”, the rest were undecided. Yet in the same year the “Pew Research Centre” said that 64% of Americans identified as Christians (the number of true disciples will be far less). Even a 3% difference between those who say they believe in God and those who say they believe in miracles adds up to about 10 million Americans! How can they believe in miracles but not believe in God!!!

In a 2018 BBC sponsored research, 62% of British people said that they believed in miracles. The 2021 census reported that 46.2% describe themselves as Christian in England. Even accounting for followers of other faiths who believe in miracles (maybe as many as 10%), there are still an incredible number of people who believe in miracles but do not follow the God of miracles.


The apostle John speaks of 7 “signs” in his Gospel – all of which were miracles and all of which were signs that Jesus was the Messiah [The Wedding at Cana (John 2:1-12). Cure of the Official’s Son (John 4:46-54). Cure on a Sabbath (John 5:1-47). Multiplication of Loaves (John 6:1-14). Walking on Water (John 6:16-24). Cure of a Man Born Blind (John 9:1-41). Raising of Lazarus (John 11:1-44)].

J John (“The Life” chapter 9) states that these “signs” show Jesus’

  1. Identity – as Prophet, Messiah, and God-made-flesh
  • His Kingdom – seen, for example, in the casting out of demons (Luke 11: 20)
  • His coming reign – seen in His victory over sickness and death (which shall pass away)
  • His character – compassionate and merciful

And the final sign that miracles show – the need that we have to have faith in Him.

John finishes his Gospel with these words:

Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. (John 20: 30-31)

Jesus IS the answer to all the tough questions of life. Jesus PROVES this through the “signs” of His miracles. Jesus SAYS that WE shall do even greater things than these. So….are we?

And if YOU believe in miracles, then why don’t YOU follow the “miracle maker” today?