The problem of miracles is the problem of the apparent contradiction between miracles and the laws of science. How can a miracle occur if it breaks a law of science?
Following C.S. Lewis in his book, Miracles, the first question to determine is whether or not you are a naturalist. A naturalist believes that nothing exists except this physical world. A miracle involves some kind of interaction outside of this physical world. Since naturalism and a belief in miracles are incompatible then if you are a naturalist, miracles are impossible and no further discussion is necessary. But if you are not a naturalist, then the problem of miracles becomes the question: does anything outside our physical world have causal interaction with our physical world?
Science has nothing to say on this question. Science describes what goes on in the physical world when it is not acted upon by outside influence, but it cannot say whether or not this physical world that it describes is causally closed. Consequently, the question of whether or not the physical universe is closed is not a question that you will ever find in a science textbook. It is not a scientific question – it is a metaphysical question. How would science ever even begin to answer questions about things outside the physical world? Read the rest of this entry »