1. Miracles are not providence, but are frequently confused with it.

Providence is the highly unlikely working of natural laws by God. A miracle is the violation or suspending of natural laws by God.

Providentially, a man survived his motorcycle going off a mountain road and falling 200 feet. Miraculously, a man had his arm severed off in a motorcycle accident, he reattached the bloody arm and it immediately healed and functioned. It is silly nonsense to say, “God gave me a miracle today — He provided me with an empty parking space right in front of the store during the Christmas holiday rush!” The resurrection of Jesus Christ is whole different category than close proximity parking.

2. Miracles have a divine purpose and are not meaningless events.

God allows and performs them directly and indirectly through others to point to him and his desires. The moving pillars of fire by night and cloud/smoke by day provided divine miraculous guidance for the Israelites in the wilderness. The six-day daily manna revealed God’s miraculous provision of food in that wilderness. Jesus’ miracles were a validation of his divine Messiahship. Miracles by the the apostles were done in Jesus’ name, not theirs, and were signs these men were Christ’s apostles with their message to believe was from God.

3. Miracles’ purposes are not always positive welcomed events.

Many miracles are obvious blessings, like the parting of the Red Sea offering an escape route for the Israelites. Sometimes miracles involve God’s judgment, like the closing of the Red Sea on the Egyptian army pursuing the Israelites, or the earlier ten plagues God inflicted upon the Egyptians for not releasing the Israelites. Apostles raised the dead, but also caused Ananias & Sapphira to drop dead.

4. Miracles are generally rare, otherwise they would be seen as mere commonplace parts of natural laws.

If people rose from the dead after three days every week everywhere, it would be a natural part of life. If everyone saw someone walking on water when at the lake, it would be considered normal, even if not yet fully explained by science (or given some scientific theoretical explanation, like quantum mechanics).

5. Miracles may be rooted in the original divine supernatural creative “design” or may be a more recent divine intervention of a supernatural “doing.”

Every baby born is an amazing miracle of God’s original creative design. The virgin conception of Jesus was a one-time miraculous violation of that original creative design that involved divine intervention and excluded a human biological father. Millions of human babies are born every year by the uniting of a man’s sperm and woman’s egg resulting a mind-boggling complex human being. The original design of the conception and gestation process was miraculous, but not the everyday natural working of that process. So in one sense, to call every birth a miracle robs the term miracle of its biblical and scientific* meaning that a miracle is a supernatural intervention, not a natural process. On the other hand, to fail to see the miraculous design of human life and all life from the flower to the apple tree, the butterfly to the eagle, the octopus to the porpoise, the ant to the elephant, is to put on presuppositional blinders to avoid facing the implications of a creator God.

* though many scientists may reject the possibility of miracles and any deity.