Lots of Christian churches, not just the far-out ones, have healing services. Even more commonly, Christians pray to God to heal sicknesses in people they care about.
Leaving aside the arrogance of presuming that God doesn't know what he's doing and shouldn't have let anyone be ill, I'm more interested in another issue it raises.
Many Christians really believe in God's power to heal the sick, and a sizeable proportion of them believe they've seen it work. So why doesn't he ever heal any amputees? I've been searching the interweb for answers.
amputees don't need to be healed. removing the limb is often what saves a persons life. People are born missing limbs and live content successful lives. Why should we be " healed" when prosthetics and other devices allow us to live successfully.
I know a lot of amputees and none of them have prayed for their limbs to grow back. If anything when I lost my leg my family prayed that it would come off taking the cancer with it.
Yes, amputation can save their life, as it did with the cancer sufferer who wrote that reply. Which brings us not only on to why God would let them get cancer, but why he can't get the cancer cured without the need for amputation.
Yep, we now have prosthetics. But that only applies to a minority of amputees even today. What about the ones not rich enough to buy those, or all those who lived before the advent of prosthetic limbs, why didn't God help them a bit more?
Even if there were universal access to prosthetics, it's rather like the Alf Garnett line about God being benevolent by blessing the poor-sighted with two ears and a nose so they could wear glasses.
The idea that all amputees are having lives just as good as if they had all their limbs - well, excuse me while I rush off to get my legs taken off then. Praise the lord and pass the landmines.
There's a Christian who guesses
perhaps God doesn’t restore lost limbs (or other body parts) for the very reason He doesn’t raise people from the dead – it’s not time (yet)... The raising of the dead and the restoring of limbs (whether for those who lost them due to injury or birth defect) is for the resurrection.
I don't think we're looking for the exact same leg to be stuck back on, surely growing a new one would do. Certainly the resurrection of the long-dead is a hell of a thing to achieve, but as living people can readily and automatically regenerate blood, skin, hair, fingernails, bone and many other bodily tissues, there's no reason why it couldn't come from the living body of an amputee.
Another Christian suggests
Perhaps God chooses not to convince the world of his existence through acts of power
Not only does God bang on in both testaments with exhortations to prayer and his power to answer them, but, for fucks sake; sending the messiah! Having that messiah go round publicly healing the sick, then raising that messiah from the dead! If that's not a show of power - and specifically medical miracles - what is?
Our man also suggests that perhaps
he reveals miracles to those who already believe, and to those who disbelieve he never reveals more than they are able to explain away
Are we saying no true believer amputee has asked for a limb back? Or are we saying that it's happened but they've kept quiet about it?
In which case, why have so many other miraculously cured people been very vocal about their good fortune and used it as leverage to try to make suffering humans turn to the lord? He only ever cures blabbermouthed blind people and secretive amputees?
Then I found whydoesgodhateamputees.com. As well as having a page patiently, clearly and convincingly covering all the arguments about amputees and why it leads us to the conclusion that god is imaginary, it's part of godisimaginary.com, perhaps the best anti-monotheistic place I've ever come across. It doesn't just lob bricks from outside, it takes the stated beliefs, the bits of bible we get quoted, and then walks us through all the reasons why they don't make any sense at all.
There's something wonderful about setting out to uncover an idea only to find that somebody's done it with greater clarity than you could ever have managed.