News

Puritan Gems

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Amputees and God

Following a debate with unbelievers, a 'drive-by' left this link: http://www.whywontgodhealamputees.com/important.htm

It seems the crusaders at this site are still under the impression they have a knockout blow to Christianity on their hands. Navigating the forums, it becomes quite clear that the 'importance' of this question has more to do with confirming their unbelief than God intervening on behalf of amputees. One gets a sense that this is the 'feather in the cap' for these rebels. There is no real desire to seek God, just a poor attempt at one-upmanship.

I'm going to take their two fundamental claims and show them to be fallacious, and therefore the 'question' incoherent. This will not be exhaustive, so feel free to chime in with any additional criticisms.

'Clearly, if God is real, limbs should regenerate through prayer. In reality, they do not.'

1. There is an assumption that, if God exists, He must heal amputees. This is an unargued assumption, and it is a patently false assumption.

2. There is an assumption that, if God exists, His purpose and plan must involve healing amputees. Again this is a false assumption.

3. There is an assumption that, if God exists, He must heal amputees, regardless of His purpose and plan, in order to appease sinners, thus elevating the 'plans of men' above His own plan in creation. False assumption.

4. There is an assumption that, if God exists, He does not heal amputees; yet without possessing knowledge of all amputees everywhere, past and present, they are relying on an inductive process in order to make the general claim (embedded in the assertion and main question) that God does not (and will not) heal amputees. Thus the question, 'Why won't God heal amputees?', is completely fallacious, and at best incoherent! Technically, we could dismiss the whole thing out of hand based on this alone!

5. There is a presupposition that the healing of amputees would be good; but whose standard of good are they applying here? Their own? What if their standard of good differs from mine? Without a consistent, objective standard of good, the 'objection' carries no significance whatsoever.

Christians have the ultimate standard of good, a just and righteous God. This does not make us any 'better' than unbelievers; we all deserve hell according to God's standard of good.

'The bible clearly promises that God answers prayers.'

It's always amusing watching unbelievers trying to 'exegete' the Scripture... I'd like to see just one rebel let the Scriptures speak for themselves...

While the Bible says that God will answer prayers, these prayers are to be in accordance with His will, that is to say, in accordance with God's purpose and plan in creation:

14 And this is the confidence that we have towards him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.

15 And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.
(1 John 5:14-15 ESV)

This is what Jesus means when He says,

13 Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.

14 If you ask me for anything in my name, I will do it.
(John 14:13-14 ESV)

23 In that day you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you.
(John 16:23 ESV)

Jesus is not giving us carte blanche to just ask for any old thing in His name.

We are to ask in faith:

6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.

7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;

8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
(James 1:6-8 ESV)

3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.
(James 4:3 ESV)

26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.
(Romans 8:26 ESV)

Is 'testing' God demonstrating faith? Can we truly pray apart from the Spirit?

And God works all things for the good of His people:

26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.

27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
(Romans 8:26-28 ESV)

So to sum up, yet again we see the unbelievers' 'knock-down' arguments for what they are, having more holes than a second-hand dart board. Rational thought seems to just fly out of the window with these guys (if it was ever there in the first place). And yet again we witness a lackadaisical attempt at Biblical exegesis that would make a Sunday school child shudder.

Soli Deo Gloria


18 comments:

Anonymous said...

actually it does make "believers" better than non believers you believe you've been chosen by God!

Puritan Lad said...

Only if you assume that we were chosen based kn some virtue that we possess in ourselves.

DannyM said...

Anon,

You misunderstand. God's elect are no more 'worthy' of salvation than anyone else.

10And not only so, but also when Rebekah had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, 11though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad - in order that God's purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of him who calls -12she was told, "The older will serve the younger." As it is written, "Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated."
Romans 9:10-12 (ESV)

16So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy.
Romans 9:16

Anonymous said...

"You misunderstand. God's elect are no more 'worthy' of salvation than anyone else. "
you misunderstand you are considered more "worthy" because you been chose

DannyM said...

Correction: Romans 9:10-13.

DannyM said...

Anon,

Worthy: having or showing the qualities that deserve the specified action or regard.

We are no more worthy having been saved than we were prior to being saved. Do we somehow 'deserve' salvation after the event?

Anonymous said...

No I am saying that being chosen by god makes you into an elite class favored by the master of the universe,

DannyM said...

Anon,

Indeed. And your problem is?

But that is not what you have been saying; you said God's elect are somehow 'better' and 'more worthy' for having been chosen. But you have singularly failed to substantiate your assertions, even in the face of Biblical passages spelling out Christian doctrine.

But if you'd like to call God's elect 'privileged' or something to that effect, then crack on. But again you need to make a cogent argument as to why you think this presents a problem.

Can you do this?

Anonymous said...

first of all if you are more privliaged then you are better then those who are not and also I honestly don't see this as a problem it's just that its better to admit so that you think you are superior to those others, again I don't mind or care if you really are better than everyone else

DannyM said...

Anon,

I mean no offence, but is English your first language? You've already been shown that Christians are no 'better,' and are not 'more worthy' than unbelievers. There is nothing *in* the believer that warrants salvation; all we have is your bare assertions.

Yes, Christians are in a privileged position in that they are *immune* from spending eternity in hell, and *secure* in eternity with God; but this is merely a truism - what's your point? This says *nothing* of the *hows* and the *whys* regarding salvation itself.

Do you see the error you are making?

Anonymous said...

no not really,the fact that you are in a privileged position makes you better.
no English is not my first language but Ive been treating it as if it was my first language for over 10 years, and i am just a lot more stupid than i like to think i am that's all "Kruger-dunning effect"

DannyM said...

Anon,

Again, just bare assertion. How does being in a privileged position, i.e., being *immune* from spending eternity in hell and being *secure* in eternity with God, how does this make the believer 'better' than the unbeliever?

It's time you moved on from bare assertion. This is your last chance.

Puritan Lad said...

Anonymous,

You may want to look at this before you attack a position that you merely assume we hold.

http://www.fallacyfiles.org/strawman.html

Someone from Stan's blog said...

DannyM,

Healing amputees serve as a precise example supporting a larger point: gods do miracles in "mysterious" ways only.

If anything 'like' healing amputees through prayer was real, then it would be a starting point for discussing real supernatural events.

Such things do not happen. That's the point. Yet, religious believers in the supernatural continue to believe that some form of supernatural things happen, they are just not as obvious as healing amputees because... they are not real. They are fairy tales.

DannyM said...

Fred,

I'm afraid your post amounts to a fallacy already identified in the OP, i.e., it begs the question. And glaringly! You are assuming the very thing you seek to prove. Look again at what you've written. Are you omniscient, Fred?

Also, you have failed to interact with the OP regarding the issue of prayer, whether it be the irrational demands of the rebel or what the Scripture itself says about prayer. Are you on auto-pilot, Fred? Did you actually read what you're responding to?

Finally, if you'd like to talk about a real fairytale, how about we discuss the Materialist Fairytale? We could even find room for the Darwinian Story, a sort of sub-fairytale of the Materialist Fairytale. And we'll get through it without begging the question.

All the best



August said...

I will repeat my answer that I posted elsewhere.

The whole amputee objection is one of the silliest, in my opinion. Why do we accept the objection as stated by the non-believer? Have they evaluated every person who have lost a limb, ever, in the history of humanity, and confirmed that there never was one that grew back? Their claim that God never does it, or has never done it, is simply unsupportable. It is an inductive assertion based on invalid premises, because it only takes one case to disprove the assertion. So unless they can prove that every amputee, ever, have been investigated for proof of limb regeneration, it is a silly argument.

And as we see, when evidence of miraculous limb regeneration is presented, they immediately discount or negate it, without investigation to see whether it may actually be true or not. It shows that they are not interested in answering their own question, it is just rhetoric.

val said...

A gift for you....truth.
The true Gospel is now delivered to you from the wilderness Rev 12:6 as a witness Matt 24:14.
Our heavenly Father will NOT put any child of his into a hell fire no matter what their sins. Sin doesn't scare God! He created it Isa 45:7 to teach us all the knowledge of good and evil Gen 3:22 for our eternal placement in his coming kingdom. Throwing a child of his into a hell fire has never entered the heart or mind of God to ever do such a thing Jer7:31, Jer 19:5. Anyone preaching a hell fire for any child of God has been deceived into teaching lies. The whole world has been believing in a god of hate murder and revenge (The devil Rev 12:9). The true word of God John 1:1 is now delivered Rev 12:5 here http://thegoodtale.blogspot.com/

God chose a woman Rev 12 to be the prophet like unto Moses Num 12:3 and Elijah Matt 17:3, Acts 3:21-23, Luke 1:17. Those professing themselves to be Christians would be wise to hear all Acts 3:23 BEFORE making any judgment. The proof of what I tell you is in the hearing.

Prove ALL things 1 Thes 5:21. Satan has deceived the whole world Rev 12:9 until now. Turn your heart to the children of God for a better placement Ezek 37:26 in God's world Rev 21.

Puritan Lad said...

val: "Throwing a child of his into a hell fire has never entered the heart or mind of God to ever do such a thing..."

Response: True, but not everyone is a child of God. Those who are not will be "suffering the vengeance of eternal fire." (Jude 1:7)