God’s Hidden MiraclesJuly 7, 2022 - 12:00 am
That is why the Book of the Wars of the LORD says:
“…Zahab in Suphah and the ravines,
the Arnon and the slopes of the ravines
that lead to the settlement of Ar
and lie along the border of Moab.” — Numbers 21:14-15
Each week in synagogue, Jews read through the Torah from Genesis to Deuteronomy. The Torah portion for this week is Chukat, which means “requirement,” from Numbers 19:1–22:1.
There’s a story from the Jewish tradition: On the night before her wedding, Rabbi Akiva’s daughter was getting ready for bed. She took her golden hairpin out of her hair and stuck it in the wall — just as she did every night.
In the morning, Rabbi Akiva heard a scream. His daughter had woken up and taken her hairpin out of the wall only to discover a small but deadly snake stuck to the pin. It had been poised to strike her just as she placed her hairpin in the wall, and unknowingly into the snake, killing it.
When she showed her father the dead snake that almost killed her right before her wedding day, the great Rabbi affirmed that a miracle had taken place and gave thanks to God.
Another person might have attributed the dead snake to luck and moved on without a second thought. But Rabbi Akiva’s response teaches us that what appear to be coincidences are God’s miraculous hand in our lives. We just need to be open to recognizing God’s hidden miracles in our lives.
God’s Hidden Miracles
This week’s Torah portion records a miracle that God performed that almost went unnoticed. We read, “That is why the Book of the Wars of the LORD says: ‘…Zahab in Suphah and the ravines, the Arnon and the slopes of the ravines that lead to the settlement of Ar and lie along the border of Moab.’”
The “Book” in this verse refers to an ancient record of wars and miracles. The literal translation of the first few words of what follows is: “the gift of the Sea of Reeds and the rivers of Arnon.”
Jewish oral tradition going all the way back to Moses explains that as the children of Israel approached, the Amorites hid themselves in the crevices of the cliffs and rocks to ambush the Israelites as they passed through the valley. But God miraculously moved the two cliffs together, crushing Israel’s enemies and demolishing the Amorite army, just as the Egyptians were destroyed by the Sea of Reeds, also known as the Red Sea.
But here’s the interesting thing. The children of Israel might never have known about this miracle. But God made the blood of the Amorites flow into the rivers of Arnon and into the well that He brought the Israelites to. When they saw blood in the well, they knew what happened and understood that God had miraculously saved them.
God’s hidden miracles may not always be evident to us, but never doubt that He, indeed, still is in the business of performing miracles for us every day.
Your turn: Thank God today for the hidden miracles in your life that you don’t see and may not even know about.