Curing Amputees

The below item is part of my "Conversations" series.

An atheist and a Christian on a public bus

Patricia: Wake up. We’re almost there.

Quincy: I’m not asleep. I was praying.

Patricia: Praying? Seriously? You’re praying on the bus?

Quincy: There’s nothing wrong with praying on a bus.

Patricia: It’s lame. You’re embarrassing me.

Quincy: It’s not lame. Prayer gets me through the day. I get everything I need by praying for it.

Patricia: Get real. Prayer is just meditation for religious people.

Quincy: You’re wrong. Prayer is powerful. It can change your life.

Patricia: Prayer doesn’t work and I can prove it.

Quincy: How?

Patricia: If God answers prayers and performs miracles, then why doesn’t He ever miraculously cure an amputee?

Quincy: How do you know he doesn’t? Maybe He does it all the time but you never hear about it? Do you have perfect knowledge of the status of every amputee in the world?

Patricia: Of course not, but hundreds of people claim to have been healed of difficult-to-verify conditions, and not a single one who was a verified amputee and had as much as a finger restored. Shouldn’t the ones with the most spectacular healings be making the most noise?

Quincy: There’s no reason to think that. Maybe the restoration of limbs is only granted to the most devout Christians and they don’t talk about it because they are so humble.

Patricia: They don’t give evidence that could convert thousands to Christianity because they are so humble?

Quincy: It would still be bragging, and that’s not Christian.

Patricia: So you’d say that those who go on television and talk about their prayers curing their cancer aren’t Christian?

Quincy: That’s not what I said. The point is that you can’t claim that God doesn’t restore amputees.

Patricia: Then I guess you also can’t say that God cures cancer victims.

Quincy: Why not? There are hundreds of examples — you said so yourself.

Patricia: Some of those people could have gone into remission spontaneously. And, particularly in this country, the vast majority of supposedly miraculous cancer cures I’ve heard about also had medical treatment, so it probably was the doctors who cured them.

Quincy: You can’t prove that it wasn’t God.

Patricia: I can’t prove it wasn’t secret radar waves from the President of Paraguay, either.

Quincy: That’s ridiculous.

Patricia: If I came up to you and said that some atheists have a rock-solid proof that God does not exist, but that they don’t tell anyone because they don’t want to look like braggarts or make religious people feel bad, would you agree to never again say that atheists can’t prove that God doesn’t exist?

Quincy: No, but that’s an entirely different situation. There’s no such thing as a proof that God doesn’t exist, and you’d have to show me that there was before I changed my mind. Besides, there’s no way that atheists would keep such a thing secret, unless it was because they were afraid they’d be shown to be wrong.

Patricia: That’s the way I feel about God curing amputees. I can’t imagine it’s possible for an amputee to be miraculously cured, I’d have to see it to believe it, and I can’t believe that Christians would keep such miracles under wraps.

Quincy: Shoot — I think we just missed our stop.

Patricia: Then they need to turn this bus around. You’d better get praying.


If you have a conversation that you’d like me to consider publishing on this blog or in an upcoming book, please see the conversation guidelines.

Posted on March 17, 2014 at 7:12 pm by ideclare · Permalink
In: Conversations

Leave a Reply