In “3 Miracles Jesus Didn’t Do” there’s good reasons why Christ didn’t perform these 3 miracles. Besides these, I need to point out more. There were many people at the Bethesda Pool that all needed healing, but Jesus only healed the paralytic (John 5:2-9). There were doubtless many people Jesus knew who died throughout his life, but he rose from the dead only a few (Mark 5:21-43; Luke 7:11-17; John 11:38-44). And what about the leper colonies? Or even the sick in the heathen nations around them? Why wouldn’t he heal all of them? Would the Gospel writers tell us if Jesus did all that? I think so.
In Matthew 15:24, “He answered, I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.” This tested the Canaanite woman’s faith, but it also shows a deliberate, selective process, similar to our election and predestination. After the 5,000 were fed, a desire to eat again was rebuked as an unworthy reason to hope for another miracle (John 6:26-27, cp. James 4:3). Unbelief was another reason Jesus didn’t perform miracles in the above-referenced article. But I believe unbelief is different from limited faith.
Limited faith was also a problem to Christ performing miracles (cp. Matthew 21:21-22, Luke 7:50, 8:48 and 17:19). But to me, it seems unbelief is not wanting to believe instead of wanting to believe. Jesus did reassure that even faith like a mustard seed grain was good enough (Luke 17:6). So many things in life can attack faith, especially if one is far from God. Also, we all struggle as Christians with wanting what we want versus what God knows is best. Christ had a reason to keep bringing up weak faith as a significant problem.
His miracles were primarily meant to prove he was the Son of God, that he cares (Matthew 6:26), and that he’s able to do abundantly above all we ask or think (Ephesians 3:20). Jesus knew our limited faith could interfere with all of this. Christ gives an example of an ideal prayer in Matthew 6. In it he mentions concerning our needs, “your Father knows what you need before you ask him” (verse 8). He told us to pray in Matthew 9:35-38 that the Lord would send laborers into his harvest. In Luke 18:1-8 Jesus concluded his parable of the unjust judge with a doubt as to whether he’d even find faith in the earth.
I think he wanted us to pray for bigger things especially if they were things God clearly desires, like global missions and revival. Of course, since God is good, he often wants for us what we want. He also cares for those loved ones you’re closest to, and most burdened about. But do you ever remember God doesn’t always give us what we pray for because he loves us? If so, do you ever think further, that we should redirect much of our prayers and focus towards God’s mission for the world?
Proverbs 29:18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.” Our progress never advances beyond our vision. If we don’t set for ourselves the most God-honoring vision there is, we’ll limit what God has for us. John 16:24 says, “Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.”
Jesus wanted us to think big, pray big, and pray lots for what God clearly cares about: global missions. How better to do that than to accept his challenge, proving that he can and will “find faith in the earth”?
The above pictures were scanned from Jerusalem in the Year 30 A.D.