Why Won’t God Heal Amputees?

Within the growing, offensive movement of the New Atheism is another attempt to “logically” dispel the notion of God, employing cheap emotional tactics. One website is a part of a network of sites that tries to convince the reader that God cannot possibly be real, because amputees aren’t healed. In fact, the question, “why won’t God heal amputees?” is considered “the most important question we can ask about God.”

We can surely get into the theological implications of such an inquiry, but I believe this video is self-explanatory. Nick Vujicic is not an amputee, but he was born without any limbs. Glory to God, however, Nick not only embraced Christ, he actually sees the hand of God even in his unusual condition. Here is his testimony (just pretend Robert Schuler isn’t there):

 

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21 comments so far

  1. Zain Ibn Bakari on

    Hi there you might like our blog. We just tried to explain this.

  2. Algebra Answers on

    Just because you got an quadriplegic to give his “testimony” does not explain why god does not heal amputees. He either can do it or he cant. If he can do it then he chooses not to ever heal an amputee although he grants you mundane things like a better job or a garage sale with a lot of stuff you want (this was described as a “miracle” to me on the bus today). Either way it makes no sense. You found a quadriplegic Christian? Who cares? My cousin is an amputee and he doesn’t believe in God so we got 1 vote for the Christians and 1 for the atheists. Lets get some more cripples and see if we can get some votes for Allah!

  3. Mike on

    I second “Algebra Answers” response above mine, with a follow-up agreement in something YOU’VE said just prior to the video clip: Just pretend Robert Schuler isn’t there.

    According to your Bible both God and Jesus performed miracles to show their power and that they exist and are who they claim to be. I won’t even argue further than that because by now you should see how a claim like “It’d be too obvious” falls flat on its face with that in mind.

    I hope the darkness of your faith brightens with truth before your (and everyone else’s religion) continues to darken our world. We are truly in trouble if you keep this superstition up. And I should know, because I once believed like you, and when you finally get away from it you see how embarassing it can be in hindsight. But you won’t see that right now. Hopefully someday…

  4. Kevin on

    What a great video! Nick is doing some remarkable things and has such a great perspective on life.

    The statement made by ‘Algebra Answers’ about cripples was tasteless and ignorant.

    A question for Mike – I try my best to help others in need. I give food to the homeless, visit those who are ill, and donate what I can to the Children’s hospital and more. Every year, about $5000 goes to someplace or someone in need. My question to you, Mike, is (since I am Christian) how is this ‘darkening’ our world?

    • slingword on

      Any time that myth replaces reality, the net result is negative. Sure, some good things happen due to believing in fantasies, and mythology, but the path to reality is always the better path.

      Believe in the tooth fairy if you like, but I say I am in a better situation believing only in reality.
      BTW, I give 10 times what you to to charities every year, and I am an atheist. Does that make atheists 10 times better? I don’t think so. You seem to.
      The larger question is this: Is it better to believe in what is real, or better to believe in fiction. Obviously, there are pluses and minuses depending on the criteria for making the assessment.
      But on the whole, even you probably believe that being in touch with reality is the better path. If not, are you going to start praying to the Easter Bunny? It’ll feel good! Give it a try!

      http://slingword.wordpress.com/

  5. W. E. Messamore on

    Algebra Answers and Mike:

    What do you think about this answer:

    http://www.slaying-dragons.com/2008/08/answers-to-why-wont-god-heal-amputees.html

  6. TJ on

    W.E.,
    I have taken a look at your response to this challenge. Your points are very well thought out.
    I have written a more thorough response to this challenge and others like it.
    As you will see, I agree with you about the fact that Mashall Brain’s entire argument is built on an unbiblical and therefore unchristian view of prayer. However, as you mentioned, skeptics like Brain have only taken advantage of an open door that has been given to them.
    We as believers must examine our own teaching reguarding this issue. A dilluted concept of prayer makes for an easy target.
    Thanks for your comments.

  7. W. E. Messamore on

    It’s good to talk to other Christians who have healthy, Biblical views on matters that have been muddled and confused for many by “Pop Christianity.” Thanks for your feedback. I’ve added Return to Biblicism to my blogroll (you can view it by clicking the icon of the four little people at the top of my page.

    Peace.

  8. slingword on
  9. jacob on

    MY RESPONSE: To start of the explanation of this chapter, I will first clarify certain Bible passages on prayer. Matthew 7:7-11 says, “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him? Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.” In order to understand the principle of prayer that Christ is teaching, you must first understand the illustration that He uses. If a son asks his father for bread, the father is not going to give him a stone, and if a son asks his father for a fish, the father is not going to give him a serpent. Why not? First off, because he is his son, and he loves him. Secondly, it is because the son is asking for a good thing. He needs fish, and he needs bread to live. The son is asking his father for a need. Likewise, in order for God to answer a prayer request, a person must, firstly, be His Son by putting his faith and trust in Jesus Christ (John 1:12). Secondly, he must ask for a good thing, such as a need. God is not a gumball machine. James 4:3 says, “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your own lusts. Moreover, let me make it clear that God does not answer the prayer of the unsaved because their sins have not been forgiven. Isaiah 59:2 says, “But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.” Also, God will not hear the prayer of a Christian who is living in sin.
    Secondly, Matthew 17:15-20 says this: “Lord, have mercy on my son: for he is lunatick, and sore vexed: for ofttimes he falleth into the fire, and oft into the water. And I brought him to thy disciples, and they could not cure him. Then Jesus answered and said, O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him hither to me. And Jesus rebuked the devil; and he departed out of him: and the child was cured from that very hour. Then came the disciples to Jesus apart, and said, Why could not we cast him out? And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you.” Notice that Christ is talking to his disciples after that they had failed to cast a devil out of a child. He said that the reason that they could not do so was because of a lack of faith on their part. Therefore, He, *SPEAKING TO THE DISCIPLES*, said that if they had the faith of a grain of mustard seed they could move mountains. Now, it is important to first off note that Christ was speaking to the disciples, and though as Christians, we can often take what Christ is saying and apply it to ourselves, I do not believe that this is one of those instances. The faith that He is talking about here is not the faith of salvation or the faith of Christ to supply my needs. It is the faith of miracles that they could perform as apostles. Jesus was saying that if they, with the abilities that Christ had given them to perform miracles, had even a small amount of faith that that miracle would be accomplished, then it would happen. This is not for Christians. The time for miracles passed as the apostles died off and the canon of scripture was fully completed. Matthew 21:21 has the exact same explanation. I explained Mark 11:24 and John 14:10-14 in chapter one, and I explained Matthew 18:19 in chapter two.
    Furthermore, it is time to examine your “simple experiment”. Does God do unbelievable miracles? I believe so. He does not do them all the time, but I believe that they happen. However, why does not God heal amputees? It is a very intriguing question that could be paraphrased as such: why does not God do things that would beyond a shadow of a doubt prove His existence, so that everyone would worship Him? Here is the answer. He already has. In the Old Testament He did it with the nation of Israel, and that is one of the reasons why he was so strict on them through all the death penalties and such. He sent the ten plagues on Egypt. He parted the Red Sea. He sent them manna from heaven. He provided quail for them when they got sick of manna. He led them through the wilderness in a pillar of cloud by day and fire by night. He split the earth open so that it would swallow up Korah, a man who openly rebelled against Moses. He consistently helped them win battles of war. He caused the massive walls of Jericho to fall down. He filled the tabernacle with His presence. He openly communed with the Israelites through their leader (e.g. Moses, Joshua, etc.).He gave the Israelites prophets that would commune the words of God them and would do miracles. He sent down fire from heaven in 1 Kings 18. He gave the Israelites water out of a rock in Exodus 17. He prolonged the day in Joshua 18. In Daniel 6, He kept Daniel safe in the lion’s den, and He did much, much more. In those days, he would have healed an amputee, but even through all of those miracles, the Jews rejected Jesus Christ when He came to the earth as the Messiah (John 19:12-16). Because of this God decided to arrange a “new testament” or a new “revelation of God’s purposes towards man”. In the Old Testament a person was saved by putting his faith and trust in God/ Jehovah and showing it through his sacrifices and obedience to the law. In the New Testament, a person is saved by putting his faith and trust in Jesus Christ and believing that his sacrifice paid the price for his sin. Now, as a result of salvation, works come out, but works do not give anyone salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9). The basis of God’s new testament with man is faith. He is no longer the God of miracles and wonders that He was in the Old Testament. He no longer rules a theocratic nation. He has distanced Himself a little bit, and He wants man to put his faith in Him. This is the reason why God will not heal an amputee. Could He? Yes. Will He? No. If God showed Himself to man, there would be no room for faith. Even in the Old Testament, He did not completely reveal Himself. I know it is a little bit difficult to understand, but this is why God does not heal amputees.
    However, does not God reveal Himself to man every time He answers even the simplest of prayers? If God was truly going to hid Himself, it would be logical that He would not answer any prayers, right? Wrong. God does not want to completely hide Himself. He wants to make it to the point where it is definitively credible to believe in Him and to the point where a case can be made for God. Nevertheless, He does not want to make it to the point where the only people who do not believe in Him are those who are in complete denial. He makes room for faith. He is separating the wheat from the tares as the Jews would do when they gathered the grain from the field, and He is going to cast the tares into Hell because they rejected Him. Moreover, what about the doctors or people who witness miracles firsthand? Does not God make Himself beyond a shadow of a doubt obvious in those cases? First off, this claim is on the ground that God actually answers “miracle prayers”. I am not saying that He does not. I am simply saying that sometimes the miracle maybe have just been some biological mishap or something of that sort. Secondly, there is a big difference between cancer disappearing and an amputees legs disappearing. I doubt the doctor whose patient’s cancer disappears is going to drop down on his face, get saved, and surrender his life to God. He may be in awe of what happened, but I highly doubt it will truly change his life. Lots of people heard about Jeanie’s rabies case, but how many got saved, got in church, and began serving the Lord? Who knows, but I doubt it was even thousands and maybe not even hundreds. Thirdly, the claim that answered prayers in everyday life ways and sometimes in miracles is God definitively revealing Himself is completely void. Because if this were true, then why would you have written your book? You would be in church somewhere serving God. It is not that God does not reveal Himself; God simply does not reveal Himself definitively and openly. When God works a miracle in a believer, He does not destroy his faith. He fulfills it. It is not that God is not allowed to in any way shape or form prove that He exists. He even does this in certain times through prayer. He jus t simply does not openly and definitively prove that He exists, so that even the dumbest of people would get saved.

    • slingword on

      You are using circular arguments.
      Have a look at logic, which is the most reliable navigation tool for life.
      I belief in X
      X says that it is right
      So I am right in believing in X

      See here:
      http://slingword.wordpress.com/2009/04/09/this-i-believe-logic/

      This is the same logic that leads Muslims to believe in the Qua’ran. In fact, all religions have their Book which proves that their book is the right book.
      All religions use circular arguments to prove they are the chosen ones.

      See them all wiggle and dance to protect their beliefs here:
      http://slingword.wordpress.com/2009/04/30/an-open-question-to-the-religious/
      and here:
      http://slingword.wordpress.com/2009/05/26/an-open-question-to-the-religious-summary/

      It’s all smoke and mirrors.
      Be objective.
      Use logic.
      Use your brain and stop using the brain of those who have indoctrinated you with that which you hold to be true.

      Slingword.

      • Hank on

        Slingword:

        What circular argument? You are making several assumptions about prayer that simply aren’t true, setting up a straw man argument. The problem presented by “Why won’t God heal amputees” is based on the assumption that God is still doing miracles. If He is not (and that is the point that Jacob makes, then there is no contradiction.

        If I assume that you believe the earth is flat, then show that it’s round in order to disprove your beliefs, I’d be an idiot, because you don’t believe that! You’ve assumed that the Bible says something it doesn’t in order to disprove it. The only thing you’ve disproven is the idea that God is currently doing miracles. Congratulations! I didn’t believe that.

  10. Shawn on

    This proves nothing, big deal… I bet I can find people to say just the opposite of what this guy is saying.. once again the question is still there ..Why won’t God heal amputees?

  11. slingword on

    Why god won’t heal amputees is hardly the “most important question we can ask about god”. (Where did you get that quote anyway?)

    But it is certainly interesting, and is the doorway to even more interesting ones, such as “why is there zero truly objective data showing that there is a god”.

    Also, I would like to point out that just because one amputee believes in a Christian god, that is no evidence what so ever of the existence of that god. There are certainly Muslim amputees squirting glory to their god in the exact same way.

    Why aren’t you holding them up as evidence that their god is the correct one?

    And there are certainly atheists who say there isn’t a god because if there were, he would help them.

    Why aren’t you pointing to them as evidence of the lack of a god?

    Because you pick and choose carefully what you want to believe in and seek out evidence to back up your belief, instead of the other way around. Because you are heavily emotionally committed to believing in that one special god you need to believe in.

    If you want truth, you look at all the data, not just the data which is convenient to your belief structure.

    Truth will set you free. You are trapped in your own little beliefs.

    Slingword.

  12. Huh on

    But you still haven’t explained why God only acts in ambiguous situations.

  13. maria on

    Errr…it’s rather embarrassing that a religion can fall on such a simple question, but, looking at the previous attempts at answering it, fall it must.

    The only possible yet ineffective take is what we get here: God performed miracles in the Old Testament, but stopped that kind of thing in the New Testament. Saying so is pitifully inadequate, because the New Testament is full of miracles, and Jesus himself promises miraculous answers to prayers for those who believe in him. Claims for miracles don’t stop with the many recorded in the New Testament; hundreds of people claimed miracles all through Dark Ages and the Middle Ages.

    Miracle claims start to decline exactly at the point in history when humanity starts to routinely question the veracity of the claims, and starts comparing notes and numbers.

    Nowadays, with immediate recording technology available to most people in their very own pockets, I suspect miracles will hit a new low. They can’t be filmed, as they don’t happen. If they’re not filmed, then they can’t gain followers. No more Lourdes and Fatimas, and that is a good thing.

    So the response by the religious HAS to be what we get here. Since they can’t prove that a miracle has happened, they have to say that, oh, heavens, no, we never promised you a miracle!!!! However, what Jesus himself promised in the New Testament disproves that. He promised miracles. None are forthcoming.

    Basically, Islam and Christianity are screwed.

  14. Mark on

    So, let me get this straight from reading various “answers” above:

    1) God only heals those who are his sons, and you only get to be one of his sons by believing in him? Setting aside the fact that it takes quite a bit of special pleading to read that into Matthew 7:7-11, I’m left thinking that only explains why atheist amputees are never healed, and wondering why no believer ever is?

    2) OK, so even if god only heals believers (makes sense – he only exists for them after all), he only heals the believers who’s healing would be good? Are there never good reasons for an amputee believer to be healed then, ever? I wouldn’t want to have anything to do with a god as unloving as that thank you, even if I could bring myself to believe in him.

    3) God stopped doing miracles in the New Testament did he? Handy that. Of course, not many Christian’s believe that until they run out of other excuses; witness the beatification of Pope John Paul II or any other modern day saint; all apparently based on miracles they’ve worked.

    4) If god stopped doing miracles in the New Testament, and we accept that he ever existed, how do you know he still does, or that IF he does, he hasn’t long since given up on us and turned his attention to messing up some other universe?

    5) If god doesn’t work ANY miracles anymore, how does he answer prayer? I’ll tell you how; he does it for believers in exactly the same way as he does for me (yes, I have many many examples that’d be answered prayer if I believed in prayer); through coincidence, extreme good fortune, clarity of thought, focus, inspiration, or (with hindsight), taking the right path even though it felt like it wasn’t at the time. These things happen to all human beings, whether or not they pray.

    6) “If God showed Himself to man, there would be no room for faith.” I laughed our loud at this one, then thought about it and nearly cried. So, the less evidence there is, the more we should believe? But more seriously, I don’t want anything to do with a god that so loves his children that he refuses to help them, in fact actively intends to torment them for eternity, if they refuse to believe in him without evidence. Frankly, even if you could prove him, I’d reject him anyway. Would you punish your child for eternity for refusing to say sorry? Especially for refusing to say sorry for things they couldn’t help doing?

    7) “If God showed Himself to man, there would be no room for faith.” Why did he need to show himself in old testament days then, and why should I be more damned than someone who lived 3000 years ago? Why is this eternally fair god applying a different test to me than to my ancestors?

    8) If Jesus’ miracles were done to prove he was the son of god, why didn’t he do a better job of it so that the whole world at the time, and forever more, could have no doubt?

    8) Why, in performing miracles in the old testament to prove his existence, did this all loving god kill, torture, enslave and rape so many people? (cue theological wriggling!).

    9) The circular argument is the one that says “God exists > the bible is god’s word so must be true > the bible says god exists > QED god exists.”. The truth of the bible, and its credentials as god’s word, are the propositions, not the proof.

  15. shmuelish on

    The question “Why Won’t God Heal Amputees?” isn’t meant to be facetious, but is meant to prompt believers into considering the nature of supposed “answered prayers”. In essence, that the sorts of occasions that the faithful (of all faiths, mutually exclusive as they are) cite as evidence for their divine “father” intervening in this world, are events that usually transpire anyway, whether as a result of human endeavor or by mere coincidence. That it is our position that there really is no evidence for a god, any god.

    The next time you think you have bore witness to divine intervention, challenge yourself with the question “Could this have been the result of something other than a god? Coincidence? The work of people?” Perhaps this is true of all of your religious experiences, in the same way that you summarily conclude that everyone of a rival religious disposition is mistaken. Consider that you might be biased towards your particular religious book and god – after all, would you be convinced by a person who cited an identical experience as “evidence” of their particular opposing religious book? Their particular god?

  16. unrman on

    Interesting stuff so far. Atheists, please comment on this article.

    http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/2009/01/30/feedback-god-heal-amputees

    Here and there, I read atheists asking for open-mindedness. I ask for the same on your part.

  17. The_Gawd on

    @ unrman

    I read the article and it totally ignores the question at hand choosing to answer its own question instead. The question is simple. Yes, the answer to the question leads to other questions, but the question itself needs to be answered. Why? Because humans have not observed human limbs regenerating naturally nor have humans found a way to regenerate limbs. By doing this god could get the credit he so desperately is seeking… the credit that he murdered his own son for.

  18. unrman on

    Wow. This took a while to respond.

    @The_Gawd

    The article does address the question, you just happen to miss the answer or it was an answer you didn’t like to hear; one you weren’t willing to open your mind to. I have a question for you: why won’t you pay my bills? Why won’t you clean my house? I think that’s what you should do for me because it’s not right that I have to live with my lack of income and a dirty house. I should be able to live with everything I deserve. I think you get my analogy.

    What right do you have to question the will of an all-powerful, all-knowing, just God? Who are you to question why He won’t do what you would expect him to do? You think it would be GOOD of Him do fix all our problems, especially heal an amputee. I have another question for you: where do you get your meaning of what GOOD is? Who’s standard are you following here? Your own? Someone you look up to? What if something you think is right is wrong in my mind? What if I was firmly under the belief that raping children was totally ok? Sure, I’d get in trouble with our justice system, but again I ask, what gives them the right to punish me? Who’s standard do we follow?

    I follow the ULTIMATE standard; one given by a God worthy of our worship. I don’t say this to make me look better than you. According to God’s standard, I’m at the bottom of the barrel, filled with mold and rotting wood. I’ve sinned, Gawd. So have you. You’ve broken His standard several times over, just like everyone else in the world. We all deserve Hell according to God’s just, righteous standard of what GOOD is.


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