Saturday, April 4, 2009
The cancer-healing god
He has, in fact, had the ear of our presidents, and has held a revered place in the halls of the religious right and has even gained the respect of certain Jewish groups because of his feigned concern for Israel. I say "feigned" concern, because it should be obvious that he isn't concerned for Israel or the Jewish people for themselves, but because they play an important role in Robertson's deranged end-times scenario.
Here's an example of what oozes out of CBN and the 700 Club.
This "amazing" story derives from CBN.com. It's about a mand named Ray Hayworth who was doing very well in life, thank you, until one day he discovered a lump in his neck. It was cancer. Not just one, "but two types of cancer: carcinoma and melanoma."
Ray and his wife, Billie, were distraught. "Billie said, 'At night I would lay my hands on his neck and he'd be sleeping away. And I would say, "Satan, how dare you! How dare you come against us like this! Greater is He, God, who is in us!" and I would just yell out, "I command you in the name of Jesus, you get off, you get off of his neck."'"
Everybody started praying for Ray and Billie. Well, not everybody, but you know what I mean.
Guess what? Yup. The cancer disappeared! When the doctor told them the cancer was gone, Billie glanced at Ray and Ray "just raised his hands and said, 'thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus.'"
Three years later, Ray is still cancer-free.
"He says the Lord gave him a scripture that signifies God's amazing power. "'Be still and know that I am God. That's my theme for the rest of my life,' said Ray.:
Now, it is wonderful that Ray is cancer-free. But there are some questions - big questions:
1. Why would God cure Ray of cancer and not everyone else who has cancer? Is Ray a better person, a better Christian than all the other people with cancer?
2. Did Satan cause Ray's cancer?
3. Was it Billie's laying on of hands and casting out Satan that did it?
4. If God loved Ray, why did He/She allow Ray to get cancer in the first place. Being all-powerful, God certainly could have stopped the cancer in its tracks?
5. Does healing of cancer depend upon a certain laying on of hands, cries of "Get out Satan!" and lots of prayer?
6. How much prayer is enough? Did God not know of Ray's dilemma, or did it take prayer to remind him?
7. Why does a supposedly-loving God allow people to get cancer in the first place?
8. Why can God heal cancer and cannot heal an amputee? Have you ever heard of an amputee being healed by God?
Spontaneous remissions of certain diseases, while uncommon, are not unusual. In may cases, the body heals itself and the doctors are not certain why that is so.
To rely on prayer to manipulate a deity to cure oneself while ignoring the fact that millions of people the world over are also suffering from cancer, is obtuse and uncaring.
To think that there is a person called Satan who causes cancer is religious insanity.
To believe that one can "cast out" cancer by reciting words like "I command you, in the name of Jesus to get off his neck," is just the same as relying on the incantations of shamans and witches.
And that's the bottom line: Ray and Billie believed in magic. Magic, not God, cured Ray.
God doesn't care. Just take a look around. It's obvious.