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Offline TboneDano

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A question
« on: October 20, 2008, 07:52:16 AM »
I saw someone on FB that had joined the FB group associated with this website, and the question intrigued me, as did realizing that there was a website dedicated to this question.  I suppose many people view it as a lynch pin argument.

The way I see the argument in the first few days of being aware of this supposed lynch pin proof against God is that a God who proclaims to be all-powerful, all-loving, all-good and all-knowing must be none of those things if amputees don't get healed.  But for that to have intellectual traction, or to be an argument worth considering at all, then it must be sufficiently demonstrated that the primary good for all men is wholeness of the body.

Can anyone sufficiently argue that case, or does anyone truly believe it? 

Offline Azdgari

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Re: A question
« Reply #1 on: October 20, 2008, 07:58:37 AM »
Welcome, Tbone.

While this website's argument may have some traction with regard to an anonymous omnimax deity, it's targetted specifically at the Christian one.  The reason for this, is that the Bible doesn't just say that "God is good" - it contains explicit promises regarding answered prayers.  Whether or not "wholeness of body" is "primarily good for all men" is not relevant in the context of the Christian god, because this god supposedly promised answers to prayers at the outset.  That's why the lack of miraculous amputee-healings falsifies the Christian god.

As I said, and in response to your question, an argument could be made that any omnimax deity should be expected to heal amputees.  This argument is signifiantly weaker though, for the reason you pointed out.
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Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2008, 03:10:28 PM »
Does a view that God won't heal amputees supersede a belief that he doesn't raise men from the dead?  I guess I find the question intriguing, and why this has become a central argument in favor of an atheistic world view.  Why amputees rather than those who are deaf, dumb or blind?  I enjoy intellectual stimulation, and stumbling upon this website has certainly provided that, so I think I'll enjoy hanging around for awhile.

I think it's safe to say that anyone who doesn't believe that God can heal amputees doesn't believe that Christ was raised from the dead either, since that seems infinitely more difficult than healing a missing limb.  A belief in whether or not God heals amputees hinges more on whether one believes that God raised Jesus and Lazarus from the dead.  If one believes God has the power to do this, (which is something that cannot be proved, therefore this is where faith comes into it), the question of whether or not God can heal amputees is moot.

So why this particular website, rather than one addressing the resurrection?   

« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 03:13:29 PM by TboneDano »

Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2008, 03:16:03 PM »
Incidentally, I've not used the term "omnimax" deity before.  Is that the equivalent of saying all-knowing, all-loving, all-powerful, all-good in for the purposes of discussion on this website?  And thanks for the welcome too! 

Offline Azdgari

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Re: A question
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2008, 04:02:56 PM »
I suppose the reason the website doesn't ask "why won't god raise folks from the dead?" (apart from URL-length issues), is that nobody claims these days that god does anything like that now (well, maybe a few do, but it's not a widespread claim).  With amputation-healing, however, the question allows comparison to other healing-claims (which are quite frequent) made these days about god supposedly putting cancer into remission, waking up coma patients, etc.  With amputation, we're able to ask the divine-healing-believer: "why does god heal those other kinds of ailments, but never this one?"  As for why the website doesn't ask about healing the "deaf, dumb and blind", I suspect it's to prevent ambiguity.  After all, people do occasionally recover from some forms of deafness and blindness (although the dumb seem to be permanently aflicted, and you will occasionally find people making this point as well).  Amputees, on the other hand, never just recover from their ailment, so there's no ambiguity regarding whether it's happening or not.

And as for "omnimax" - you have the meaning exactly right.  You will find the term comes up a lot.  ;)
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Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2008, 05:36:57 PM »
I see.  I take it as an assumption that all atheists consider the resurrection an absurdity, so that in order to convince those who believe in Christianity and the "power of prayer" or its ineffectiveness, the question that seems to have the most power is this one.

I have spent some time looking at the website and watched the video equating prayer with a horseshoe, as well as the pages quoting Jesus' own words about "asking and receiving."  My first thought when I saw the video is that those who equate a horseshoe with prayer have a rather simplified view of prayers, as if prayer is an incantation or a magic wand.  That might have traction if that's what Christ intended, or if Christ's example revealed that this was the way He viewed prayer. 

What I think is informative for the discussion is how Christ answered his followers when he asked them to pray.  Though I suspect  most on this website have knowledge of the Lord's Prayer, I quote it just for ease of discussion.

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name.
Thy Kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever.
Amen

When he answered the question of how to pray to God, the focus was turned outwardly towards God, specifically towards His name being hallowed and that His will be done.  He didn't mention asking for healing at all.  When He did heal a blind man, the reason He was born blind was so that God's work would be made manifest in Him.  If anyone is ever healed, it is ultimately for the glory of God, and if they are not healed it is because by not being healed there will be a greater manifestation of the work of God in their lives.  It's as simple as that. 

Prayer in Scripture is never a magic wand--it's a conversation with God, seeking out His will.  If the question of unanswered prayer is at the very root of this website, one could dispense with the this entire website by pointing to the words of Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane himself:  Christ prayed to His Father that the cup of His death be taken from Him, yet it wasn't.  Isn't that sufficient proof that prayer doesn't work like a magic wand?  Isn't that proof that prayer doesn't work to make six dice show up with sixes?  Why use the issue of amputees not being healed when there is better evidence already contained in Scripture by the very man who claimed to be the Son of God?  His prayer wasn't answered that the cup would pass.  But the other part of his prayer was this:  thy will be done.

That's what Christ said about prayer, and it's what he taught us.  Therefore, when he says, "ask and it shall be given to you," this will only be the case when it is the will of God.  My belief in God has never hinged on the efficacy of Christ to heal me or others when I prayed that He did.  Clement of Alexandria, one of the doctors of the Church said this about prayer:   “Ask and it shall be granted you” are words spoken to those who are able of themselves to choose higher things.  Stromateis, Book One, 116.2

There are higher things than asking for six dice to show up with all sixes, and there are also higher things to ask for than that amputees be healed, or that everyone who has cancer would be healed.  One need only ask Christian amputees or paraplegics who would not have their lives be any other way.  (The mother of some dear friends is missing a limb, so I know that of which I speak).  God never purported that he was a vending machine for wish fulfillment.  it seems that  this website argues as if that's what He proclaimed.

Offline Micah643

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Re: A question
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2008, 06:25:05 PM »
TBoneDano:  Thank you for that post.  You brought out some really great points!  You are absolutely right about asking for higher things.

Offline Deus ex Machina

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Re: A question
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2008, 07:40:28 PM »
That's an incredibly wordy (and preachy, sigh) way of asserting that it's never God's will to verifiably heal an amputee in any way, shape or form whatsoever, without actually justifying the claim in any way that makes sense. How would verifiably healing one amputee in any way diminish God's glory, when apparently (unverifiably, alas!) curing any number of people of cancer, leukaemia, brain tumours and lost car keys purportedly diminishes it not at all?
« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 07:42:40 PM by Deus ex Machina »

Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2008, 08:06:36 PM »
That's an incredibly wordy (and preachy, sigh) way of asserting that it's never God's will to verifiably heal an amputee in any way, shape or form whatsoever

No it isn't.  Read it again.

Offline Deus ex Machina

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Re: A question
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2008, 08:14:24 PM »
That's an incredibly wordy (and preachy, sigh) way of asserting that it's never God's will to verifiably heal an amputee in any way, shape or form whatsoever

No it isn't.  Read it again.

So you're saying it is God's will to do so? Fine. Prove it.

Or you're saying that every single amputee is entirely happy with that? Fine. Prove that. I don't believe it for a second. I think that's a lame, cop-out excuse, and you should be ashamed of yourself for even suggesting it.

Or are you actually saying nothing of substance at all under all that flowery prose, but saying it in a way that you hope no-one will notice?
« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 08:17:49 PM by Deus ex Machina »

Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2008, 08:27:27 PM »
If you read it again you'll see it's about honestly confronting the Church and Scripture says about prayer.  I have no doubt that in the history of the Church, God has healed amputees.  But that's irrelevant to a man who believes that God raised Christ from the dead, since that's a far greater miracle than healing a missing finger or arm.  I would say the only time that it has, or will happen, is when it aligns with the will of God.  The key arguments of the people on this website stem from a belief that the Church, and Christ Himself, state that prayer is a magic wand that is provable by praying that dice will always come up with sixes.  That's simply a false take on what Scripture teaches.  My post is questioning whether or not atheists are willing to be intellectually honest about what Scripture, Christ and the Church teaches about prayer.  From what I've seen on this website, they do not.

Of course you will jump on my statement that I believe that God has healed amputees and dismiss my discussion out of turn, and ask for proof.  But the point of my post still stands:  I challenge you to ask yourself if you first of all honestly have an understanding of what the Church teaches about prayer.  Before you attack something,  you should accurately understand it, and according to the video that I watched today about horseshoes and dice, I don't think the administrators of this website do.  And that has a direct relationship on whether or not God heals anyone.

I am interested in discussing the underlying core issues of what Scripture really teaches, for it has a direct relationship on any sort of healing.  But it's absurd to hinge a belief in a possible omnimax God on whether or not a man has an arm or not if one hasn't fully investigated who that God claims himself to be, first and foremost.   
« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 08:31:32 PM by TboneDano »

Offline Azdgari

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Re: A question
« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2008, 08:39:47 PM »
Quote
I have no doubt that in the history of the Church, God has healed amputees.

If you have no doubt about the veracity of a statement with no evidence whatsoever, then you're being completely irrational with regard to the subject.
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Offline Goodkat

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Re: A question
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2008, 08:42:32 PM »
Here is what scripture teaches about prayer:

John 14:14
  14You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

Offline Deus ex Machina

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Re: A question
« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2008, 08:44:37 PM »
No.  If you read it again it's about honestly confronting the Church and Scripture says about prayer.

If that's what you call it. From here, it looks like just another cute rationalization.

Quote
I have no doubt that in the history of the Church, God has healed amputees.

You have no doubt? Despite the fact that you can't produce a single verifiable instance of a healed amputee? Isn't that just a bit credulous?

Quote
But that's irrelevant to a man who believes that God raised Christ from the dead, since that's a far greater miracle than healing a missing finger or arm.

Which, sadly, is also unverifiable.

Quote
I would say the only time that it has, or will happen, is when it aligns with the will of God.

Which still leaves us with the question: is it ever the will of God to verifiably heal an amputee? If so, please establish this. If you can't, but assert that it happens anyway, then you are in no position to lecture anyone about intellectual honesty.

Quote
The key arguments of the people on this website stem from a belief that the Church, and Christ Himself, state that prayer is a magic wand that is provable by praying that dice will always come up with sixes.  That's simply a false take on what Scripture teaches.  My post is questioning whether or not atheists are willing to be intellectually honest about what Scripture, Christ and the Church teaches about prayer.  From what I've seen on this website, they do not.

You wish to lecture us on intellectual honesty? Ah, that's rich. You've made a positive claim: namely, that prayer works if it's in accord with God's Will. Now establish it. If the results of prayer come out at exactly the same rate as chance, however noble the undertaking might be, the answer is obvious. Rationalizing your way out of it isn't going to help here.

Quote
Of course you will jump on my statement that I believe that God has healed amputees and dismiss my discussion out of turn, and ask for proof.  But the point of my post still stands:  I challenge you to ask yourself if you first of all honestly have an understanding of what the Church teaches about prayer.  Before you attack something,  you should accurately understand it, and according to the video that I watched today about horseshoes and dice, I don't think you do.  And that has a direct relationship on whether or not God heals anyone.

Firstly, I am not the author of the videos. Secondly, I am no more compelled to accept that your interpretation of your sacred text holds any greater weight than my own or that of the author, particularly when you have a vested interest in preserving the shreds of your faith by rationalizing your way out of the obvious, and therefore cannot be considered an honest broker. Thirdly, I am basing my questions on your own assertions. And finally, my "understanding" has no bearing on the facts of whether or not God heals amputees. Either he does so, verifiably, or he doesn't. So which is it? If it's the former, prove it. If the latter, why is it never God's Will to verifiably heal a single amputee?

Quote
I am interested in discussing the underlying core issues of what Scripture really teaches, for it has a direct relationship on any sort of healing.  But it's absurd to hinge a belief in a possible omnimax God on whether or not a man has an arm or not if haven't fully investigated who that God claims himself to be, first and foremost.

I don't hinge any belief on it at all. The question is, why do you? You say you have "no doubt" that God has healed an amputee - despite being able to provide no evidence whatsoever of this. Why?
« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 08:49:12 PM by Deus ex Machina »

Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2008, 08:48:33 PM »
Quote
I have no doubt that in the history of the Church, God has healed amputees.

If you have no doubt about the veracity of a statement with no evidence whatsoever, then you're being completely irrational with regard to the subject.

No more so than a man who believes in the resurrection of the dead.

Here is what scripture teaches about prayer:

John 14:14

  14You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

And this is what the church teaches about that very passage, which I included in my comment above.

Clement of Alexandria, one of the doctors of the Church said this about prayer:   “Ask and it shall be granted you” are words spoken to those who are able of themselves to choose higher things.  Stromateis, Book One, 116.2

And again, I reiterate that Christ himself prayed, asking for His death to be taken away from Him, and it wasn't.  So His very example makes the argument for what the Church really teaches.  And obviously the Higher thing in that situation was the will of God, resulting in a sacrificial death of the Son of God.  It seems very simplistic to take the view that if I wanted to pray for a Blue Moon to appear in my hand right now, (which I would love, since I just drank one and I'm out of beer, and would like to have more), that it would be given me simply because I prayed for it.  Obviously that is not what Christ's words meant.  Though I wish it was.


Offline Azdgari

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Re: A question
« Reply #15 on: October 21, 2008, 08:52:34 PM »
Quote
I have no doubt that in the history of the Church, God has healed amputees.

If you have no doubt about the veracity of a statement with no evidence whatsoever, then you're being completely irrational with regard to the subject.

No more so than a man who believes in the resurrection of the dead.

Yes, well, I never claimed that such a belief would be rational, did I?
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Offline commsky

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Re: A question
« Reply #16 on: October 21, 2008, 08:57:08 PM »

Clement of Alexandria, one of the doctors of the Church said this about prayer:   “Ask and it shall be granted you” are words spoken to those who are able of themselves to choose higher things.  Stromateis, Book One, 116.2

And again, I reiterate that Christ himself prayed, asking for His death to be taken away from Him, and it wasn't.  So His very example makes the argument for what the Church really teaches.  And obviously the Higher thing in that situation was the will of God, resulting in a sacrificial death of the Son of God.  It seems very simplistic to take the view that if I wanted to pray for a Blue Moon to appear in my hand right now, (which I would love, since I just drank one and I'm out of beer, and would like to have more), that it would be given me simply because I prayed for it.  Obviously that is not what Christ's words meant.  Though I wish it was.


Why bother writing it if that's not what he meant, another gimmick to make people follow along?
« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 08:59:37 PM by commsky »
7th grade, I realize my classmates actually believe this crap.

Offline Goodkat

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Re: A question
« Reply #17 on: October 21, 2008, 09:01:12 PM »
Here is what scripture teaches about prayer:

John 14:14

  14You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

And this is what the church teaches about that very passage, which I included in my comment above.

Clement of Alexandria, one of the doctors of the Church said this about prayer:   “Ask and it shall be granted you” are words spoken to those who are able of themselves to choose higher things.  Stromateis, Book One, 116.2

And again, I reiterate that Christ himself prayed, asking for His death to be taken away from Him, and it wasn't.  So His very example makes the argument for what the Church really teaches.  And obviously the Higher thing in that situation was the will of God, resulting in a sacrificial death of the Son of God.  It seems very simplistic to take the view that if I wanted to pray for a Blue Moon to appear in my hand right now, (which I would love, since I just drank one and I'm out of beer, and would like to have more), that it would be given me simply because I prayed for it.  Obviously that is not what Christ's words meant.  Though I wish it was.
Your example of Jesus praying to the Father is meaningless, Jesus said "You may as me for anything", Jesus was not praying to Himself. An interesting verse appears two verses before th one I posted that would seem to back up my interpretation:

12 I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing.

It says anyone, have you ever healed the blind or raised the dead? If not, then apparently you don't have faith in Jesus...

Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #18 on: October 21, 2008, 09:18:42 PM »

[/quote]
Here is what scripture teaches about prayer:

John 14:14

  14You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

And this is what the church teaches about that very passage, which I included in my comment above.

Clement of Alexandria, one of the doctors of the Church said this about prayer:   “Ask and it shall be granted you” are words spoken to those who are able of themselves to choose higher things.  Stromateis, Book One, 116.2

And again, I reiterate that Christ himself prayed, asking for His death to be taken away from Him, and it wasn't.  So His very example makes the argument for what the Church really teaches.  And obviously the Higher thing in that situation was the will of God, resulting in a sacrificial death of the Son of God.  It seems very simplistic to take the view that if I wanted to pray for a Blue Moon to appear in my hand right now, (which I would love, since I just drank one and I'm out of beer, and would like to have more), that it would be given me simply because I prayed for it.  Obviously that is not what Christ's words meant.  Though I wish it was.
Your example of Jesus praying to the Father is meaningless, Jesus said "You may as me for anything", Jesus was not praying to Himself. An interesting verse appears two verses before th one I posted that would seem to back up my interpretation:

12 I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing.

It says anyone, have you ever healed the blind or raised the dead? If not, then apparently you don't have faith in Jesus...

Just for the record, since I am new to this forum, I hope that this is as stimulating for all of you as it is for me!  This is the sort of thing that I enjoy engaging in at a pub with plenty of beers on hand with people who enjoy grappling with issues that have confronted humanity since the dawn of time.  I sure wish I had another Blue Moon! 

OK...so addressing this point.  My point of praying to the Father isn't irrelevant because of the concept of the Trinity.  Asking in Jesus's name is one and the same with asking in the Father's name, or the Holy Spirit's name.  Christ said that He is one with the Father, and the Father is one with Him, just a few verses before that, in v. 10

And as "to what Jesus has been doing," he came to suffer for the redemption of the world.  Yes, those who do believe in God the Father and Jesus Christ are doing the very thing that he did for us, namely suffering on behalf of the redemption of the world.  All you need to do is look to Colossians 1:24 for evidence of what Christ was talking about.  Paul said this:  "Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church."

Which brings us full circle to amputees.  What it probably seems absurd to understand is that Christians who suffer, without an arm, embrace it as suffering with Christ, on behalf of the redemption of the world.  It's the concept of salvific suffering, or redemptive suffering.  This is why Christians can share with Paul's words and say that they rejoice in suffering.

And I think that's ultimately what this question hinges on:  the question of suffering.

« Last Edit: October 21, 2008, 09:21:29 PM by TboneDano »

Offline Azdgari

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Re: A question
« Reply #19 on: October 21, 2008, 09:22:30 PM »
If only Christians kept this suffering to themselves...
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Offline Goodkat

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Re: A question
« Reply #20 on: October 21, 2008, 09:26:05 PM »
Just for the record, since I am new to this forum, I hope that this is as stimulating for all of you as it is for me!  This is the sort of thing that I enjoy engaging in at a pub with plenty of beers on hand with people who enjoy grappling with issues that have confronted humanity since the dawn of time.  I sure wish I had another Blue Moon! 
Wine is a mocker and strong drink a brawler and whoever is taken therof is not wise...

Quote
OK...so addressing this point.  My point of praying to the Father isn't irrelevant because of the concept of the Trinity.  Asking in Jesus's name is one and the same with asking in the Father's name, or the Holy Spirit's name.  Christ said that He is one with the Father, and the Father is one with Him, just a few verses before that, in v. 10

And as "to what Jesus has been doing," he came to suffer for the redemption of the world.  Yes, those who do believe in God the Father and Jesus Christ are doing the very thing that he did for us, namely suffering on behalf of the redemption of the world.  All you need to do is look to Colossians 1:24 for evidence of what Christ was talking about.  Paul said this:  "Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church."
That's funny, did you read the verse right before it to get your context? Let me refresh your memory:
11Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.
Quote
Which brings us full circle to amputees.  What it probably seems absurd to understand is that Christians who suffer, without an arm, embrace it as suffering with Christ, on behalf of the redemption of the world.  It's the concept of salvific suffering, or redemptive suffering.  This is why Christians can share with Paul's words and say that they rejoice in suffering.

And I think that's ultimately what this question hinges on:  the question of suffering.
I suppose then that Christians should masochistically rejoice in the suffering of Cancer or heart disease also.

Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #21 on: October 21, 2008, 09:36:37 PM »

Quote
I would say the only time that it has, or will happen, is when it aligns with the will of God.


Quote
The key arguments of the people on this website stem from a belief that the Church, and Christ Himself, state that prayer is a magic wand that is provable by praying that dice will always come up with sixes.  That's simply a false take on what Scripture teaches.  My post is questioning whether or not atheists are willing to be intellectually honest about what Scripture, Christ and the Church teaches about prayer.  From what I've seen on this website, they do not.

You wish to lecture us on intellectual honesty? Ah, that's rich. You've made a positive claim: namely, that prayer works if it's in accord with God's Will. Now establish it. If the results of prayer come out at exactly the same rate as chance, however noble the undertaking might be, the answer is obvious. Rationalizing your way out of it isn't going to help here.


The question still remains:  have you really endeavored to learn what 2,000 years of Church history, and the rest of Scripture says about prayer?  The question that I see being raised on this forum stems from the mistaken notion that Scriptures teaches that prayer is like a spell or a magic formula.  I simply think it's important to disabuse oneself that the horseshoe analogy, or prayer as a magic wand, has anything to do with the words of Christ, or the teaching of the Church for the past two millenia.  If one believes that prayer is an incantation, then you're attacking a god that isn't the God of Scripture.

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I am interested in discussing the underlying core issues of what Scripture really teaches, for it has a direct relationship on any sort of healing.  But it's absurd to hinge a belief in a possible omnimax God on whether or not a man has an arm or not if haven't fully investigated who that God claims himself to be, first and foremost.

I don't hinge any belief on it at all. The question is, why do you? You say you have "no doubt" that God has healed an amputee - despite being able to provide no evidence whatsoever of this. Why?

But it does seem that you hinge your disbelief on God on this point, and it seems to me that before one disbelieves something, they should fully understand what it is they purport to disbelieve.  It doesn't seem like anyone here really does understand what Christ, the Church, and Scripture really teaches about prayer, based on all of the many pages and chapters strewn about this website.



Offline Micah643

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Re: A question
« Reply #22 on: October 21, 2008, 09:40:01 PM »
Azdgari:  You raise a great point.  Every worldview must give a reason to pain and suffering.  It is universal to all men.

Offline TboneDano

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Re: A question
« Reply #23 on: October 21, 2008, 09:52:44 PM »
Just for the record, since I am new to this forum, I hope that this is as stimulating for all of you as it is for me!  This is the sort of thing that I enjoy engaging in at a pub with plenty of beers on hand with people who enjoy grappling with issues that have confronted humanity since the dawn of time.  I sure wish I had another Blue Moon! 
Wine is a mocker and strong drink a brawler and whoever is taken therof is not wise...

And I can do you one better:  wine gladdens the heart.  Pass the Blue Moon!  And as to me not being wise, I never claimed to be.   ;D




And as "to what Jesus has been doing," he came to suffer for the redemption of the world.  Yes, those who do believe in God the Father and Jesus Christ are doing the very thing that he did for us, namely suffering on behalf of the redemption of the world.  All you need to do is look to Colossians 1:24 for evidence of what Christ was talking about.  Paul said this:  "Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church."
That's funny, did you read the verse right before it to get your context? Let me refresh your memory:
11Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.
[quote/]

I anticipated this rebuttal.  What do the miracles refer to?  A cause for the belief in God the Father.  Christ was saying that if you couldn't trust His word that He was one in the Father, then believe that this was true as evidenced by the miracles He performed.  Christ came to suffer on behalf of the world, and to glorify His Father, and anytime a miracle was performed by Christ, it was done to point the way to the Father.

And as to your last claim that Christians should rejoice in the suffering of cancer and the like, it is not masochistic at all.  It is done out of love on behalf of others, which is why Christianity is so beautiful, and is the most complete answer to the question of suffering ever presented in the history of the world, or the history of philosophy.  It finally answers the question of suffering:  it is embraced, on behalf of others, out of a complete adherence to the example of Christ.  It is the supreme call of charity.  It is indeed what the Church teaches, and what Christ teaches.  It is the essence of love:  accepting all trials and sufferings that this life brings us all, and transforming then on behalf of those we love.  What would we not do to ensure happiness for those we love?  That is why Christ said on the Cross, "Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do." 

Offline Azdgari

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Re: A question
« Reply #24 on: October 21, 2008, 10:49:30 PM »
Azdgari:  You raise a great point.  Every worldview must give a reason to pain and suffering.  It is universal to all men.

That was not my point.  My point is that not everyone reveres and seeks out suffering as much as Tbone's brand of Christian does, and I for one do not appreciate any attempts to promote this suffering.
I always say what I mean. But sometimes I'm a sarcastic prick whose tone can't be properly communicated via text.

Offline Goodkat

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Re: A question
« Reply #25 on: October 21, 2008, 10:51:11 PM »
And as "to what Jesus has been doing," he came to suffer for the redemption of the world.  Yes, those who do believe in God the Father and Jesus Christ are doing the very thing that he did for us, namely suffering on behalf of the redemption of the world.  All you need to do is look to Colossians 1:24 for evidence of what Christ was talking about.  Paul said this:  "Now I rejoice in what was suffered for you, and I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body, which is the church."
That's funny, did you read the verse right before it to get your context? Let me refresh your memory:
11Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.
I anticipated this rebuttal.  What do the miracles refer to?  A cause for the belief in God the Father.  Christ was saying that if you couldn't trust His word that He was one in the Father, then believe that this was true as evidenced by the miracles He performed.  Christ came to suffer on behalf of the world, and to glorify His Father, and anytime a miracle was performed by Christ, it was done to point the way to the Father.
That does not alter the fact that Jesus was talking about miracles when He said "what I have been doing."

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And as to your last claim that Christians should rejoice in the suffering of cancer and the like, it is not masochistic at all.  It is done out of love on behalf of others, which is why Christianity is so beautiful, and is the most complete answer to the question of suffering ever presented in the history of the world, or the history of philosophy.  It finally answers the question of suffering:  it is embraced, on behalf of others, out of a complete adherence to the example of Christ.  It is the supreme call of charity.  It is indeed what the Church teaches, and what Christ teaches.  It is the essence of love:  accepting all trials and sufferings that this life brings us all, and transforming then on behalf of those we love.  What would we not do to ensure happiness for those we love?  That is why Christ said on the Cross, "Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do." 
Christianity is not the most complete answer to suffering in the world. There are much better ones, such as Buddha's suggestion to rid oneself of cravings and desires to ensue that one is incapable of suffering. There is also the capability of science to end suffering, you just say to accept it. The ultimate answer to smallpox was to cure it, not to accept it. Not all suffering is the fault of humanity.

Offline commsky

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Re: A question
« Reply #26 on: October 21, 2008, 10:54:33 PM »

But it does seem that you hinge your disbelief on God on this point, and it seems to me that before one disbelieves something, they should fully understand what it is they purport to disbelieve.  It doesn't seem like anyone here really does understand what Christ, the Church, and Scripture really teaches about prayer, based on all of the many pages and chapters strewn about this website.

Then go understand every religion that you don't believe, have fun with Buddhism, Islam, every sect of Catholicism, every sect of Christianity, every cult including Mormons, as well as every ancient religion there is, including polytheistic, because until you do, you shouldn't disbelieve them.
7th grade, I realize my classmates actually believe this crap.

Offline Azdgari

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Re: A question
« Reply #27 on: October 21, 2008, 10:56:41 PM »
Don't forget the ones that claim not to be fully understandable until you believe...oh wait, that's Christianity.  At least according to many.  I suppose it depends on which decoder ring the Christian has.
I always say what I mean. But sometimes I'm a sarcastic prick whose tone can't be properly communicated via text.

Offline Micah643

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Re: A question
« Reply #28 on: October 21, 2008, 11:08:30 PM »
GoodKat:  Buddha and his disciples also said that a person's suffering was their own doing because of Karma, or kamma as said in the Pali language.  So, if someone breaks into your home and paralyzes you with a gunshot, Buddah would say that that is what you deserve because of Karma from your previous life. 

Do you find that a suitable answer to suffering?

Do you ever think we can devoid ourselves of desire?  For a man that said everything is connected, he then advocates to disconnect with everything around us, which is the only way to rid ourselves of cravings.  Even when Buddha finally said he reached "Nirvana," he still had complaints against his disciples.  How can a man have reached a place of no cravings and desires, yet desire for his disciples to change?