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Passage (KJV) Content
Matthew 7:21-23 21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Matthew 24:24 24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
Mark 13:22 22 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.
2 Thessalonians 2:8-12 8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
Revelation 13:13-14 13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, 14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.
Revelation 16:14 14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
Revelation 19:20 20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.

I've encountered Christians who highlight passages like Matthew 7:21-23, 24:24, Mark 13:22, 2 Thessalonians 2:8-12, Revelation 13:13-14, 16:14, 19:20, which describe the end times as witnessing an increase in miracles. However, they note that these miracles are attributed to Satan rather than God, Christ, or the Holy Spirit. They stress that this phenomenon is accompanied by the dissemination of false doctrine.

Do these passages imply that all miracles during the end times will be of Satan?

How do Christians who believe in present-day miracles performed by God reconcile this belief with the aforementioned passages?


On the relevance of the question

I believe this question is very relevant, given the fact that many Christians believe in present-day miracles that are (purportedly) performed by God, and so it would be terrible news for them to come to realize that all those miracles are in fact deceptive tricks of Satan. Hopefully this is not the case.

Notable advocates of contemporary miracles by God include:

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Before proceeding further, let me define "False miracles" as any miracle that is either a fake/delusion, or, a genuine miracle from a Satanic/demonic source, i.e., not from God.

Next, in purely logical terms, something can only be fake and false if there is a true. For example, there is no such thing as fake $3 bill because no real $3 bill exists! Therefore, the very existence of false miracles implies that there must be genuine miracles.

Indeed, Jesus even says this in Matt 24:24, for His day and time as well. Thus, the problem of distinguishing true from false miracles is ancient. Peter ran across a similar problem with a false miracle worker in Simon the sorcerer (Acts 8:9-24) as did Paul with Elymas in Acts 13:6-11.

The existence of such false miracle workers did not invalidate the true miracles worked by both Peter and Paul. Exactly the same logic applies to the predicted false miracles at the end of time.

Indeed, every conversion to Christ is a miracle in itself. On a personal note, I have seen too many genuine miracles (to the glory of God) to believe that there are only false miracles today.

APPENDIX - Signs and Wonders

The frequent Scriptural references to “signs and wonders” naturally fall into two obvious categories of the genuine and false. It is clear from Matt 12:38 & 39, 16:1-4, Luke 11:16, John 4:48, 6:26, 30, that the scribes and Pharisees had trouble distinguishing the two. See also 1 Cor 1:22, 14:22.

Genuine

The genuine signs and wonders attest their divine origin and serve to strengthen faith.

  • John 2:11, 3:2, 4:54, 6:2, 10:41, 20:30 are all references to Jesus’ miracles.
  • Acts 2:22, Mark 16:20 also refer to Jesus’ miracles.
  • Matt 10:8, Mark 16:17, 20, Acts 2:22, 43, 4:30, 5:12, 6:8, 8:6, 13, 14:3, 15:12, 19:11, Rom 15:18, 19, 2 Cor 12:12, Heb 2:4 speak of the signs and wonders accompanying the apostles’ ministry.
  • Ex 7:3, Num 14:11, Deut 6:22, 7:19, 10:21, 26:8, 29:3, 34:11, Neh 9:10, Job 5:8-11, Ps 105:27, 135:9, Isa 8:18, Jer 32:20, 21, Dan 6:27 recall the miracles done for ancient Israel, eg, to free them from Egypt.
  • Dan 4:2, 34 records Nebuchadnezzar’s hymn of praise for God’s signs and wonders.
  • In Luke 7:18-23, Jesus’ only answer to John the Baptist about Jesus’ identity (as Messiah) is to list His miracles: “the blind see, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the poor are given the good tidings…”

False or Lying Signs and Wonders

Pseudo (false) signs and wonders are invariably produced to deceive the wicked, either by fake a real miracle or performing a real miracle by Satanic/demonic power.

  • Matt 24:24, Mark 13:22 predict false signs and wonders performed by false Christs and false prophets
  • 2 Thess 2:9 predicts the rise of the lawless one accompanied by false signs and wonders
  • Rev 16:14 predicts that demons will perform false signs and wonders
  • Rev 13:13, 14 19:20 predict that the great false prophet (third beast of the Beast Trinity) will perform false signs and wonders

It should be remembered that Deut 13:1-5 contains a stern warning about the veracity of signs and wonders to see if they are genuine. Similarly, Matt 24:24 contains Jesus’ warning not to base one’s faith purely on Signs and Wonders.

Similarly, Luke 16:30, 31 contains a warning that faith must not be based on miracles but upon our trust in God and His Word:

And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’”

A Christian's faith should be based purely on their trust in Jesus as Heb 12:2, 3, Col 3:1-3 plainly teach. There is nothing wrong with miracles, but they should only confirm, not convince.

The healing of the 10 lepers (Luke 17:11-19) is helpful here about the place of miracles:

  • the lepers had to have faith in Christ before their healing as demonstrated by Jesus' instruction to go to the priest before they were healed.
  • Despite the miracle, only one returned to “give glory to God” (Luke 17:18)
  • Jesus plainly declared that the ex-leper's “faith has made you well!” (V19)

That is, faith must precede miracles, not follow them. The same is taught in other places where Jesus often said, “your faith has healed you”, such as Matt 9:22, 15:28, Mark 5:34, 10:52, Luke 8:48, 50, 17:19, 18:42, Acts 3:16, 14:9, James 5:15, etc.

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Matthew 7 shows contrasts:

  • Sheep versus wolves
  • Wide gate and narrow gate
  • Grape vines versus thornbushes
  • Fig tree versus thistles
  • Healthy tree versus diseased tree
  • Houses built on rock and sand

The key in 7:21 is "Not everyone who says to me..." It does not say "No one who says to me..."

These contrasts show that for every wicked, counterfeit thing, there is a good and real thing.

The Sermon on the Mount is one of Jesus' complex, thorough, authoritative treatments of spiritual matters. I would use a text such as this to interpret the texts that deal with only one part of the issue.

Take for example Matthew 24. Jesus says, "For many will come in my name..." He does not say, "All will come in my name..." Jesus offers a surprising contrast: He does not know when he is returning but these false prophets claim that they do.

And Matthew 24 is followed by Matthew 25, which has wise and foolish virgins, and the parable of the talents, with two diligent and one wicked servant. The emphasis is again on contrasts. There are some of each kind of opposite.

It does not look as though the contrast is between deceptive miracles and no miracles, but between false and true.

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  • 'For every wicked' . . . . 'there is a good' . . . . . The why does Jesus say 'few' find the strait gate. 'Many' go down the broad way. And even of those who find the strait gate, 'many shall seek to enter in and shall be unable'. Your statistics do not seem to tally with the 'many are called, few chosen'. They are always a 'little flock'. And all the world wonders after the beast.
    – Nigel J
    Commented Apr 10 at 17:58
  • It is many and few, not all and none. Commented Apr 10 at 18:01
  • Recall the two faithful witnesses in Revelation who will perform miracles. Two is few, but not none. Likewise the 144,000. Commented Apr 10 at 18:02
  • I was counting categories (qualitative), not members of those sets (quantitative). Commented Apr 10 at 18:05
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    The two witnesses perform acts which are acts of judgment upon the world,
    – Nigel J
    Commented Apr 10 at 18:06
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Notice the profound insight conveyed in Dottard's statement: "faith must precede miracles, not follow them".

In the current epoch, Christians find themselves amidst the ultimate battle between the forces of good and evil. Satan's power will employ their signs and wonders for illusion and deception, especially targeting those whose faith is fragile. Throughtout the New Testament, we encounter repeated warnings against false teachings and the peril of losing salvation.

While some may perceive miracle as overt displays of wonder, the intervention of God transcends mere spectacle. Often subtle and imperceptible, divine intervention manifests in ways that may elude immediate recognition. In contrast, Satan's wonders are tailored for conspicuous illusion and deception, underscoring the warning of the New Testament writers to remain vigilant.

A profound truth is encapsulated in Revelation 3:10 (NIV):

Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come on the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth.

This verse elucidates that those who steadfastly uphold their faith in the Lord will be shielded from the snares of Satan's deception. Ultimately, the miracles of the Lord shall triumph.

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  • Where do you find "peril of losing salvation"? In this age of grace (Eph 3:2), we are "sealed unto the day of redemption" upon belief. It isn't temporary or subject to being lost. It is eternal: Eph 1:12-13 "That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ. 13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise," Eph 4:30 "And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption." Commented Apr 11 at 14:46
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    @MarkVestal - Your comment is true for sincere believers in Jesus Christ. Commented Apr 11 at 18:33
  • Amen brother! My only hope is that others here see that truth of scripture also. It is the key to TRUE peace and freedom, and how we find the strength to overcome our sinful fleshly desires (God's grace...not wrath)! Peace and grace! Commented Apr 11 at 18:42
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How do believers in contemporary miracles from God interpret passages indicating that miracles during the end times are attributed to Satan?

The question is premised on the the idea that there are passages "indicating that [all] miracles during the end times are attributed to Satan",* and I guess it incorporates a claim that some of the passages cited in the question are in that category. That premise is false.

Neither the cited passages nor any others in scripture predict a period during which supernatural wonders will be performed only through diabolical powers. Nor does scripture say anywhere that supernatural wonders are not sometimes performed through diabolical powers already.

The Revelation is probably best understood as highly symbolic language, not literal, but even so, it's not unreasonable to take it as predicting a significant increase in Satanic activity during the end times, including supernatural activity. But that poses no particular challenge to belief in contemporary miracles from God. Certainly not if we suppose that we have not yet reached the end times, but not even if we suppose that we are in the middle of the end times. That Satan will be more active in no way implies that God must be less active, much less inactive.

I've encountered Christians who highlight passages [...] which describe the end times as witnessing an increase in miracles. However, they note that these miracles are attributed to Satan rather than God, Christ, or the Holy Spirit.

Again, what of it? For the sake of argument, suppose we accept the interpretation you describe. An increase in Satanic activity does not imply a decrease or absence of Godly activity, supernatural or otherwise. There is nothing here to challenge a belief in contemporary Godly miracles. On the contrary, that we accept supernatural wonders being performed at all tends to support the idea of supernatural wonders performed by God.

Do these passages imply that all miracles during the end times will be of Satan?

I see no basis at all for such an interpretation, unless possibly we start from the assumption that God does not perform contemporary miracles.

How do Christians who believe in present-day miracles performed by God reconcile this belief with the aforementioned passages?

No particular reconciliation is needed. There is no conflict between contemporary miracles from God and end-times supernatural wonders from Satan, whether we are now in the end times or not.


* I feel comfortable reading the "all" into the question, for if I instead take it as "some" then there would seem to be no controversy.

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I would personally be careful in calling any obvious miracle a thing of Satan. It is this very thing that the unforgivable sin is based on. Jesus performed a miracle, which was done by the Holy Spirit. The priests said he cast out devils by Beelzebub, attributing the miracle of God to Satan. This specific blasphemy, to credit the work of the Holy Spirit to Satan, Jesus said, would not be forgiven them.

So, for starters, I would be careful in labeling a miracle the work of the devil.

In knowing the difference, John tells us to test the spirits. If the miracle glorifies God, it’s a miracle. If it glorifies an individual, it’s likely one the mentioned deceptions. But, the warning we are given is to not be deceived. We aren’t told to run about speaking out against miracles. We are only told to be mindful and careful.

Furthermore, many of the passages quoted more specifically say “power,” “signs,” “wonders,” or all three. Signs and wonders can be viewed or construed to be miracles, but a sign or a wonder are neither necessarily synonymous with a miracle. Where “miracles” are being performed, they are being performed by a lawless one, and the objective of the miracle is to cause people to worship something other than God. Going back to a previous point . . . Test the spirits. If a miracle glorifies something other than God, it likely not a miracle from God.

This is how I myself, a believer in historical and contemporary miracles, interpret passages about miracles in the end times as being potentially performed by Satan.

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  • John speaks directly to Hebrews who will need to discern miracles during their trib. You are correct that Israel's unforgivable sin was unbelief through the Spirit, culminating at the stoning death of Stephen. God then went to the Gentiles to offer salvation openly to anyone who will simply believe. Enter Paul, and God's Eph 3:2 age of "grace", with salvation today being the gift through faith alone in Christ's shed blood (not miracles). Insinuating that unbelievers of "miracles" will be punished in this age is where caution should be taken. Christ was punished for ALL of our sins today. Commented Apr 11 at 12:33
  • I neither stated, nor insinuated, that people who don’t believe in modern miracles will be punished. I said to take care not to attribute any modern miracles of God to the devil.
    – AFrazier
    Commented Apr 11 at 12:54
  • I also did not say that their unforgivable sin was unbelief through the Spirit. I said that their sin was attributing the work of the Holy Spirit to Satan. I don’t think there was any “unbelief” going on at all. It’s the fact that they knew it was a work of God that made it so offensive to Jesus.
    – AFrazier
    Commented Apr 11 at 13:00
  • You said to "be careful". Why, If it is not insinuating some form of punishment? I did wrongly assume that you understood that it was Israel's unbelief of the Spirit's testimony (through Stephen) that was Israel's unforgivable sin. I apologize for that. For clarification (Paul speaking of Israel to Gentiles): Rom 11:30 "For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief:" I do not believe they "knew" it was of God: 1 Cor 2:8 "Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory." Commented Apr 11 at 13:14
  • I understand what you’re trying to say. It’s honestly probably best not to attempt to engage in a debate about sin, punishment, atonement, etc. in these notes. I’ll take your theological objection as noted. On the other point, it is my opinion that the context determines the definition of the so-called unforgivable sin. My position is that it’s as I already described and defined it. I do agree that the gentiles were afforded inclusion because of the Jews’ unbelief, but I don’t see this as being synonymous with the unforgivable sin. I believe they are separate things.
    – AFrazier
    Commented Apr 11 at 13:26

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