commission and authority of a religious teacher, and therefore warrant acceptance of his doctrines and obedience to his commands as the doctrines and commands of God, whether these be communicated at intervals or all together, orally or in written documents.
The exceptions to the above statement are very few, and are found only in cases where the whole commission and authority of Christ, and not some fragmentary doctrine are involved. Jesus appeals to his miracles as proof of the truth of his teaching in <400905>Matthew 9:5, 6 ? ?Which is easier to say, Thy sins are forgiven; or to say, Arise and walk? But that we may know that the Son of man hath authority on earth to forgive sins (then saith he to the sick of the palsy), Arise, and take up thy bed, and go unto thy house? 12:28 ? ?if I by the spirit of God cast out demons, then is the Kingdom of God come upon you.? So Paul in <450104>Romans 1:4, says that Jesus ?was declared to be the Son of God with power...by the resurrection from the dead.? Mair, Christian Evidences, 223, quotes from Natural Religion, 181 ? ?It is said that the Theo-philanthropist Larevellier- Lepeaux once confided to Talleyrand his disappointment at the ill success of his attempt to bring into vogue a sort of improved Christianity, a sort of benevolent rationalism which he had invented to meet the wants of a benevolent age. ?His propaganda made no way.? he said. ?What was he to do?? he asked. The ex-bishop Talleyrand politely condoled with him, feared it was a difficult task to found a new religion, more difficult than he had imagined, so difficult that he hardly knew what to advise. ?Still,? ? so he went on after a moment?s reflection, ? ?there is one plan which you might at least try: I should recommend you to he crucified, and to rise again the third day.? Sec also Murphy, Scientific Bases of Faith, 147- 167; Farrar, Life of Christ, 1:168-172.
(c) Miracles, therefore, do not stand alone as evidences. Power alone cannot prove a divine commission. Purity of life and doctrine must go with the miracles to assure us that a religious teacher has come from God. The miracles and the doctrine in this manner mutually support each other, and form parts of one whole. The internal evidence for the Christian system may have greater power over certain minds and over certain ages than the external evidence.
Pascal?s aphorism that ?doctrines must be judged by miracles, miracles by doctrine,? needs to be supplemented by Mozley?s statement that ?a supernatural fact is the proper proof of a supernatural doctrine, while a supernatural doctrine is not the proper proof of a supernatural fact.? E.G. Robinson, Christian Theology, 107, would ?defend miracles, but would
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