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GCSE: Miracles

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  1. Assess Hume's reasons for rejecting miracles

    That observation, repeated many times, confirms our understanding of the law of gravity. If then, an account is heard of the heavy object floating upwards of its own accord, you can ask yourself, which is the more likely: that the report is mistaken or that it actually happened. However, Hume talks of laws of nature as if set in stone implying that Natural Law can never be shown to be false. The possibility for laws of nature to be false must be left open. Hume claims that, if we balance on one hand the improbability of miracles occurring and on the other hand the evidence that they have occurred, we will always come to the conclusion that it is more likely that natural laws occurred rather than miracles.

    • Word count: 1077
  2. What is a miracle?

    For example, in Christianity it is believed that Jesus has and still does perform miracles. Some of the Miracles that Jesus is believed to have performed in the bible are; Jesus heals ten men, Luke 17:11-19 and Jesus heals a paralysed man, Luke 5:17-26. - Many Chritistians believe that the miracle of the resurrection of Jesus validated his claim to be the only way to God, John 14:6. To most Christians, miracles are proof of the existence of God, most will claim that a miracle has occurred in either their own lives, or the lives of someone close to them.

    • Word count: 1390
  3. The Nature of God

    The very reason that these things were recorded is because they were unusual occurrences of supernatural or miraculous activity. The miracles of Jesus have an extra significance; they are evidence of a messiah ship, and his special role on earth. They show Gods power at work, not by him, but through him. This was shown when a woman in a crowd touched Jesus' cape and he felt the power drain out of him. Jesus performed miracles to teach people as well as show God's power, there are four main points of teaching to be learned from the miracles. He taught that people should "see the light of God" he showed this by giving sight back to the blind, such as blind Bartimaeus.

    • Word count: 1615
  4. Miracles coursework

    To the person that invented them or to a heart surgeon they are just simple. Today there are still some people who are thought to be miracle workers who God works through. Padre Pio is an example of a miracle worker. Padre Pio was born on May 25, 1887. He was baptised Francis. Even as a child he had extraordinary gifts. While his brothers and sisters played, he prayed. When he was a teenager he received a present of chestnuts wrapped in a bag. He returned the bag to woman who sent it to him.

    • Word count: 2889
  5. Luke's Gospel - Miracles

    Their prayers for that person's health have been answered so they look upon this as a miracle. Now whether this is technically correct is debateable. By some definitions a miracle must 'be an event with religious significance'. This fits that meaning, but even though it a religious occurrence, it does not usually 'breach natural laws' as it is not uncommon for people to be cured. A relieving and happy event, yes, but a miracle? This is questionable. Christians may also argue the case for physiological/mental healing miracles.

    • Word count: 1274
  6. Search for martyrdom

    He was given permission soon after by his Augustine Superior to join the Franciscan Friars where he was given the name Anthony. He was called this after the Patron of the Friary at Coimbra who was "St Anthony of the Olives". He probably took vows immediately and within a few months he was sailing for Morocco to achieve his life dream of martyrdom. Expectations were high for St Anthony but God wasn't going to make them as straight forward as they may have seemed.

    • Word count: 1541
  7. To what extend is faith a legitimate basis for knowledge claims, in religion and different areas of knowledge.

    Yet the question remains; If God is written in the hearts of men, why do men deny God's existence? Is this existence based on faith or reason? Some people might argue that not all humans are religious; this is due to imbalances in their lives. For humans to attempt perfection they must have a threesome balance between their mind, body and spirit. The mind is in charge of the reasoning, the body is the strength (in many cases strength is used without reasoning) and the sprit is religion. Those who don't feed the spirit suffer from imbalances, they wish to take decisions only using the two elements remaining, reasoning and strength, which do not generate complete satisfaction.

    • Word count: 1376
  8. Healing Miracles do Not Happen Today. Do you agree? Give reasons to support your answer and show that you have thought about different points of view. You must refer to Christianity in your answer.

    A miracle is in the eye of the beholder. Saint Augustan of Hippo once stated that: "The multiplication of corn in a corn field is just as much a miracle as the multiplication of the loaves in the desert." He is telling us that in each scenario, the person being fed at the end of it is a miracle in itself. When Jesus worked miracles, people saw him as a very powerful figure. These people didn't have to see the miracle first hand to know that Jesus was a special man, just as today, we do not have to know the miracle to believe in its authenticity.

    • Word count: 794
  9. How can one differentiate between fate and faith? Are these concepts or moral mantras?

    We cannot opt for anything else to happen since there is only one outcome available. This essence of fatalism is that the will can make no difference in the outcome. (Collier's Encyclopedia 608) We are domed to follow whatever is happening in our lives as if we were forever stuck on a merry-go-round. Faith is the ability to believe in something that is a concept, but you may not be able to se it or touch it, ect. I have faith, when making a telephone call that this process will result in a positive experience.

    • Word count: 1033
  10. Examine what is meant by the concept of a miracle.

    Instead, Grushenka puts Alyosha together spiritually - the transformation in her is quite remarkable. It is transfrmations such as this, in possibly the most unlikely situations. Grushenka who had perhaps been an oppurtunist and lives a life with low morals has an oppurtunity to exploit Alyosha who is vunreable because his faith has been tested. Instead of taking advantage of this situation this Grushenka turned away from her old ways and offeredcomfory and support to Alyosha who is in distress. Grushenka is the person whose life has been fundamentally changed by the situation. This profound change can be seen as a miracle.

    • Word count: 1351
  11. Thomas Cranmer's Theology of the Eucharist

    However, his condemnation of Frith seemed a little half-hearted, which in turn has led to certain scholars asserting that he was at this time sympathetic to the cause of the Reformation on the Continent.3 Indeed his knowledge of the work of the Continental Reformers was vast, and on no account did he remain uninfluenced by what he had read. Indeed, his friendship with the Lutheran Osiander, who gave his niece to Cranmer in marriage, is highly significant in determining Cranmer's theological development, for the marriage would never have taken place if Cranmer at this time still maintained the 'papist's doctrine' of Transubstantiation against that proclaimed by the Lutherans.

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  12. What is a miracle?

    We are told about his beginnings in Bethlehem and his experiences in Jerusalem when he was thirteen.St.luke concentrated on Jesus' mercy and forgiveness, his call especially to the poor and under -privileged. Inviting both Jew and Gentile to salvation (being saved and entering the kingdom of god). St.Luke highlights Jesus teaching on individual immorality (goodness), possessions and the dangers of material wealth.St.Luke also highlight the importance of prayer, joy and praising god and he stresses the importance of the role of the Holy Spirit.

    • Word count: 3138
  13. Miracles essay.

    The brakes of the train are applied and it comes to rest a few feet from the child. The mother thanks God for the miracle which she never ceases to think of as such although, as she in due course learns, there was nothing supernatural about the manner in which the brakes of the train came to be applied. The driver had fainted, for a reason which had nothing to do with the child on the line, and the brakes were applied automatically as his hand ceased to exert pressure on the control lever.'

    • Word count: 1274
  14. 'Miracles are based on fact, not faith' - Discuss.

    David Hume interprets a miracle as being 'a transgression of a law of nature by a particular volition of the deity or by the interposition of some invisible agent.'1 Hume set certain criteria which events had to meet before they could be called miraculous. He thought that miracles were highly improbable events - 'No testimony is sufficient to establish a miracle unless if as a falsehood it is more miraculous then being true'.2 Hume is a realist and seems to say not that miracles are impossible but that it is impossible for us to prove that they actually happened.

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  15. 'Miracles are a matter of faith, not fact', discuss.

    Without evidence atoms are ridiculous, but in proportioning belief to the evidence available, they become a near certainty. Following from this Hume asserts we have past uniform experience which establishes scientific laws. These are based on massive numbers of past observation, thus our pure rationality can easily persuade us that these are infallible. As Vardy phrases it, 'all our experience tells us that when people walk on water they sink, that the molecular structure of water cannot change into that of wine'.6 A miracle by definition must contravene scientific laws, the infinite evidence which proves the existence of these laws

    • Word count: 3790
  16. What is a miracle?

    He defined a miracle as "a transgression of a law of nature by a particular violation of Deity, or by the intervention of some invisible agent", which exposed his belief that miracles transgress the laws of nature. Hume claimed that "Nothing is esteemed a miracle if it ever happens in the common course of nature" and in Hume's opinion, the highest court of appeal was probability and he believed that all knowledge of a matter of fact is based on past experiences and customs.

    • Word count: 2083
  17. Miracles.There are hundreds of claimed miracles, but certainly the most significant was Christs miracles as described in the Gospel where Jesus performs signs

    The most famous of these miracles is Christ walking on water, there are many different theories of the significance of these, some say they were to prove to the world he was indeed the son of God. Others feel his miracles are proof that God, thousands of years after creation still acts on this earth. The Old Testament is also home to various miracles, the Ten Plagues for instance. Hume in 'An enquiry concerning human understanding' sought to find the definition, and indeed reason for a miracle.

    • Word count: 789
  18. The issue of whether it is reasonable or not to believe in miracles is a complex and divided matter. There are many varied opinions on what a miracle actually is so each need to be assessed and a reasonable evaluation given.

    He refers to Aquinas who stated things could be miraculous because they are thought to be impossible in nature. These events are unlikely to have happened in a particular way in a particular time. Thompson therefore concludes that miracles are a matter for interpretation. David Hume, who argued that any claim of a miraculous event should be measured against available evidence. As miracles are a violation of a law by a supernatural being these laws of nature are based on past human experience.

    • Word count: 904
  19. Do Accounts of Miracles Support The Belief in God?

    On the other hand, McKinnon's argument presupposes the exclusivity of naturalistic explanations and there is no a priori reason as to why a presupposition should be accepted, unless one can prove that supernatural causal activity is impossible. Also, one cannot assume that the law in question is inadequate if there is a violation of a natural law, all that is inadequate is the belief that everything must have a naturalistic explanation. David Hume argues that one cannot prove the existence of miracles because the evidence for miracles is less than that of established laws; he suggests we should always look at things in a naturalistic way and should favour the naturalistic explanations as opposed to supernatural explanations.

    • Word count: 670
  20. Miracles are about faith, not fact. Discuss.

    As people cannot agree on a definition, it is difficult to discuss miracles. What one person sees as miraculous may not be so to another. Most definitions agree that a miracle goes against the laws of nature, so it is necessary to explore this point. Hume believes that our experience of the world has shown the laws of nature to be very reliable. For example, if you drop a ball from a height, it will always without fail fall to the ground.

    • Word count: 3759
  21. Why did Luke write about Jesus' miracles? What did Luke want to show Christians? Why?

    Each religion establishes itself as solidly as the next, thereby overthrowing and destroying its rivals. Furthermore, the more ancient and barbarous a people is, the greater the tendency for miracles of all kinds to flourish. Jesus' miracles had significance and meaning for the people of his time but they have as much if not more significance for Christians today. The miracles that occurred as part of Jesus' ministry were signs that God was present and at work in the world. The healing miracles show the compassion of Jesus. It is shown that Jesus haled on occasions due to his overwhelming feeling of affection for people for example Widow of Nain's son.

    • Word count: 934
  22. Identify David Humes understanding of miracles.

    In these examples it is not the events themselves which make them remarkable but the time scale within which they take place. For example, when water is normally turned into wine it does not happen spontaneously nor does it take a mere few seconds. As the aforementioned Biblical events take place seemingly outside of such natural laws, they are considered miraculous. The transgression of a natural law is not considered sufficient in isolation to grant the event status of a miracle.

    • Word count: 733
  23. Explain the term 'miracle' - Describe how Jesus was presented as a worker of miracles giving examples from Luke's gospel.

    Therefore, we can't call these things as miracles. So we consider miracles as things which we think are 'impossible' such as your cat starting to do the housework. But, in the Bible, miracles are seen as a sign of the power of God. It doesn't matter what we think of as miracles, but that they were important to Luke. This is because Luke records so many miracles that Jesus performs. Even Jesus' birth was miraculous to him. Through the miracles in Luke, Luke shows that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and the fulfilment of the Old Testament prophecies.

    • Word count: 1132
  24. What is meant by the term miracle?

    However one interprets it becomes either semantic or dialectical. Jesus is the 'Word' and how powerful are his words. Describe how Jesus was presented as a worker of miracles, giving examples from Luke's Gospel. The category of Jesus as miracle worker overlaps with the category of Jesus as healer, since Jesus' healings would be classified as miracles. For the sake of clarity we shall distinguish between the two, since not every miracle that Jesus performed was a healing and because Jesus gives an interpretation to his healings that would not be applicable to his other "miracles."

    • Word count: 1952
  25. Miracles and science are irreconcilable - Modern Christians must adapt their beliefs to the superior claims of science.

    Then he told them, 'now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.' They did so and the master of the banquet tasted that the water had been turned into wine." Another well known miracle was the feeding of the five thousand, Matthew 14:19-21, "Taking the five loaves and two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then He gave them to the disciples and the disciples gave them to the people.

    • Word count: 1397

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