What ever happened to god's miracles?

Renshia
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What ever happened to god's miracles?

One thing I do not understand, and admit it was a huge part in my departure from christianity is where are all the signs and wonders that god is said to be capable of?

For me I actively fight against religion because the entire structure is based on this god that in the past is claimed to have been extremely active in messing around in humanities affairs. Basically getting his point across to us dullards, as in old testament stuff. Even active in more modern times.. with new testament miracles. But then ever since man has developed the ability to group information together.. Poof no sign of god…

Where are the blind healed?.... Where are the lame that walk?…. where are the hungry fed with just a couple fish….

Why is the world is the UN food agency worried about shortages. There should be at least a couple believers that could pass a few loaves of bread and a couple of fish around and feed them surely?


Show me one person that was completely blind, crippled or on a death bed with cancer that was healed. One truly verifiable miracle. Why would god feel the necessity’s to send his son down to die and dispatch his disciples into the world to and then just disapear?

In the bible in Mark V16:15-18 the bible states;


“He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues, they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”

Seems mighty fishy that as soon as we would all be able to witness this awesome power of our said Lord he retracts his influence and expects everything to be based on faith….

I may not be an overly smart person, but he states the credentials of his followers,  where are the signs that "will accompany those who believe?

I spent a number of years devotely following a chritsian faith… I never seen a miracle that did not have an obvious explanation. I never did see the blind healed. Hell never even met anyone that has or at least could prove they have.

So where is your god, what is he doing taking a holiday on Bazor?


Really if people don’t use there common sense and see religion for the fruit it doesn't bear, then i think they really do deserve to be slaves.

Renshia
-------------------------------------------------------------
I just can’t believe that people waste all this time being one thing for something else, they waste all this time and energy on developing some mythological construct as an excuse to live as a person should. What a pathetic waste of energy.


Joe_Canon
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miraculous claims

A definitive problem here would be that scientists (as far as I know) do not follow missionaries around to corroborate their anecdotal evidence.  I have heard story after story of the miraculous occurring: the blind healed, lame healed, deaf made to hear, etc.  Indeed, there is an entire branch of Christian studies devoted to this: Missiology.  This branch, using cultural anthropological methods, tracks the proliferation of the gospel as it moves into new places.  They have come up with a trend: wherever the Gospel has not reached a group or its efficacy in a certain group is effectively lost power encounters occur.  This includes the afore mentioned miracles.  So, there is actually a statistical trend but I am afraid it is not being pursued by scientists (as far as I know).  Unfortunately it is primary if not solely anecdotal which I know will not do for this skeptical crowd.  But there is study being down here, however biased one may feel the institutes are which are pursuing the studies.

 

Personal anecdotal evidence: I know a pastor in China who was led from a prison by a dream; I know a Californian photographer who witnessed a blind man healed (nothing sketchy like money or anything was involved by his account); even more to the point of this thread, I know an Indian couple who were invited a man's house to share the Gospel, given a drink, told they had actually been poisoned, and he waited to see if their God would save them.  Either he didn't poison them or did not do it well, because I spoke with them afterwards (or they lied, I suppose).  These are just a few.  Alas, they are anecdotal and have not been approved by any doctor or university, but I find them compelling nonetheless.  I understand if people do not. 

I am afraid my knowledge in this area cannot produce any scientific reports one way or the other, and I am limited to accounts such as these.  But I felt it important to mention there is currently a documentation of this kind of thing and it is being studied academically if not scientifically.

 

For THEISTS i must add one thing: a position that miracles no longer occur as they did in the N.T. or are no longer a necessary part of the Christian witness simply will not do.  This has never been the stance of the Church as a whole and ignores the testimony of many people throughout the last 2000 years.  Skeptics are well within their rights to question miraculous claims.

On a side, side note- The last portion of Mark quoted throughout this thread is hotly debated among textual critics.  Theists would do well to recognize that.  On the other hand, skeptics would also do well to realize that the amount of controversy in Textual criticism is limited to a much smaller number of passages than one might think.  It is not as if the entire textual base of the N.T. is debated.  A moderate position here I think is best.

I hope any of this was helpful.  Not really an argument, I know, but some information for the conversation.


razorphreak
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MichaelMcF wrote:If Christ's

MichaelMcF wrote:
If Christ's existence and sacrifice removed the need for God to perform miracles of salvation - miracles which would strengthen belief in him - why don't we see miracles that aren't supposed to strengthen belief?  Why aren't people of genuine faith able to drink poison?  Why does God only speak to people that already believe in him in mysterious ways?  Why doesn't he speak to the faithful as a burning bush?  I don't understand why the life of Christ would remove the need for these kinds of acts.

This goes back to the point I was trying to make in establishing what a miracle is to begin with.  A lady was telling a story to a group of us at work about her daughter.  Her 7 year old began getting symptoms of leukemia, which is to say the inflamed lymph nodes on her head, dizzy spells, fatigue, even to the point where the doctors were telling her that it did not look good at all after a few initial tests.  After about a week of this, the daughter woke up one morning and all was gone.  The daughter had not begun any specialized treatments other than trying to help with the flu like symptoms.  The doctors were amazed that everything had simply disappeared.  They indicated that one part of the prayer they had done was to simply accept anything that came from God, especially if that meant her time was up.  Now while I'm sure this might not be as "compelling" as other stories you may hear, it did none the less aid in my own faith. 

You ask why we don't see them.  I cannot say they don't happen.

As to the whole "why don't you drink poison" or something like that, people of faith are not idiots.  One important point needing to be remembered here is we are not here to test God neither.  To say "here let me prove that God will save me" is testing him and that means we doubt God.  Part of walking this lifestyle is not flaunting who you are.  Why do you think you see morons dying during actions like this.  Remember the guy who said that was going to prove that God would save him if he went into the lion's pit at some zoo? 

As to your other questions, regards to how God speaks to people, since these would all be personal experiences, I can only comment on my own.  But then again, there isn't much point in doing so here.

What is faith? Is it to believe that which is evident? No. It is perfectly evident to my mind that there exists a necessary, eternal, supreme, and intelligent being. This is no matter of faith, but of reason. - Voltaire


razorphreak
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Joe_Canon wrote:a position

Joe_Canon wrote:
a position that miracles no longer occur as they did in the N.T. or are no longer a necessary part of the Christian witness simply will not do.  This has never been the stance of the Church as a whole and ignores the testimony of many people throughout the last 2000 years.  Skeptics are well within their rights to question miraculous claims.

No one said they couldn't be critical.  As to stated in your post, most are simply he said/she said accounts of the event.  My OPINION that they are no longer necessary was only that, an OPINION.  I have never been witness to one of these types of miracles nor am I actively looking to see one because of the faith I already have.  It is that faith that I and others share that the word in the bible is the inspired text of God makes it the documentation that the miracles that were necessary to early Christians served their purpose at that time.   But again, because I have not been witness to one does not mean they no longer happen.  If they are far and few between or not occur at all, I've given my opinion as to why.

What is faith? Is it to believe that which is evident? No. It is perfectly evident to my mind that there exists a necessary, eternal, supreme, and intelligent being. This is no matter of faith, but of reason. - Voltaire


daedalus
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Joe_Canon wrote:A definitive

Joe_Canon wrote:

A definitive problem here would be that scientists (as far as I know) do not follow missionaries around to corroborate their anecdotal evidence.  I have heard story after story of the miraculous occurring: the blind healed, lame healed, deaf made to hear, etc.  Indeed, there is an entire branch of Christian studies devoted to this: Missiology.  This branch, using cultural anthropological methods, tracks the proliferation of the gospel as it moves into new places.  They have come up with a trend: wherever the Gospel has not reached a group or its efficacy in a certain group is effectively lost power encounters occur.  This includes the afore mentioned miracles.  So, there is actually a statistical trend but I am afraid it is not being pursued by scientists (as far as I know).  Unfortunately it is primary if not solely anecdotal which I know will not do for this skeptical crowd.  But there is study being down here, however biased one may feel the institutes are which are pursuing the studies.

 

Personal anecdotal evidence: I know a pastor in China who was led from a prison by a dream; I know a Californian photographer who witnessed a blind man healed (nothing sketchy like money or anything was involved by his account); even more to the point of this thread, I know an Indian couple who were invited a man's house to share the Gospel, given a drink, told they had actually been poisoned, and he waited to see if their God would save them.  Either he didn't poison them or did not do it well, because I spoke with them afterwards (or they lied, I suppose).  These are just a few.  Alas, they are anecdotal and have not been approved by any doctor or university, but I find them compelling nonetheless.  I understand if people do not. 

I am afraid my knowledge in this area cannot produce any scientific reports one way or the other, and I am limited to accounts such as these.  But I felt it important to mention there is currently a documentation of this kind of thing and it is being studied academically if not scientifically.

 

For THEISTS i must add one thing: a position that miracles no longer occur as they did in the N.T. or are no longer a necessary part of the Christian witness simply will not do.  This has never been the stance of the Church as a whole and ignores the testimony of many people throughout the last 2000 years.  Skeptics are well within their rights to question miraculous claims.

On a side, side note- The last portion of Mark quoted throughout this thread is hotly debated among textual critics.  Theists would do well to recognize that.  On the other hand, skeptics would also do well to realize that the amount of controversy in Textual criticism is limited to a much smaller number of passages than one might think.  It is not as if the entire textual base of the N.T. is debated.  A moderate position here I think is best.

I hope any of this was helpful.  Not really an argument, I know, but some information for the conversation.

 

Please cite your statistics.

Imagine the people who believe such things and who are not ashamed to ignore, totally, all the patient findings of thinking minds through all the centuries since the Bible was written. And it is these ignorant people, the most uneducated, the most unimaginative, the most unthinking among us, who would make themselves the guides and leaders of us all; who would force their feeble and childish beliefs on us; who would invade our schools and libraries and homes. I personally resent it bitterly.
Isaac Asimov


skeptiform5
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Quote: Hmmm...guess it would

Quote:
  razorphreak

 

               Hmmm...guess it would depend on what you call "proof." Of course, there is no point I can make under a forum post that would convenience you otherwise anyway so I won't go there.

No please, I honestly want to hear what you have to say , but if I can logically disprove it that is another thing entirely.


atheist6in6a6foxhole
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i think this is appropriate

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=56EHNB04JHk

i hope i typed that right.


mellestad
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I love how miracle claims

I love how miracle claims are always ambiguous.  Is it a necessity that miracle claims must be second hand or un-verifiable?  According to many theists miracles still happen all the time but they are always lame, or off in a Jungle somewhere.

Jesus didn't have any problems raising a long dead corpse totally out in the open, but now we can't even get a limb regrown with reliable witnesses and a camera phone nearby?  Weak.

Everything makes more sense now that I've stopped believing.


Sterculius
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Renshia wrote:In the bible

Renshia wrote:

In the bible in Mark V16:15-18 the bible states;


“He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation.
Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues, they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”

 

Jesus' supposed last words on earth. 

Historicity of these verses being later additions to the chapter but christians accept them as the inspired word of god without error.

1.  Whoever believes and is baptised will be saved.

2.  And these signs will accompany those who believe:

     a.  In my name they will drive out demons
     b.  They will speak in new tongues
     c.   They will pick up snakes with their hands (I'm guessing the implication is that they will not be harmed)
     d.   When they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all
     e.   They will place their hands on sick people and they will get well.

3.  Today we see no credible evidence of those 5 events occurring especially the most straight forward - item d.  
     I have yet to see a christian drink a liter of arsenic and not die.   A. B, C, are difficult to quantify or verify as they lack definition and rely on  supernatural assertions of the malady in question.   E seems to have lacked evidence and could also be open to fraudulent activity.   I would like to see under verifiable and controlled conditions such as the James Randi challenge a healing actually occur (note the poison test wouldn't work in the James Randi challenge because people putting themselves in dangerous positions are barred.)   In itself laying hands on someone and their subsequent recovery proves nothing because many times we get well without any intervention after being sick or damaged.   Other times medicine and such are responsible for the healing.

d seems to be the easiest to verify under controlled conditions - notwithstanding the said risk to the participant's health.

Note I am not suggesting anyone ingest any poison but it should be obvious.

 

"Lisa, if the Bible has taught us nothing else, and it hasn't, it's that girls should stick to girls sports, such as hot oil wrestling and foxy boxing and such."
Homer Simpson


Atheistextremist
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The resurrection of this

 

mummified thread is proof that miracles are still happening...

 

 

 

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


Atheistextremist
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Christians and poison

Sterculius wrote:

 


1.  Whoever believes and is baptised will be saved.

2.  And these signs will accompany those who believe:

     a.  In my name they will drive out demons
     b.  They will speak in new tongues
     c.   They will pick up snakes with their hands (I'm guessing the implication is that they will not be harmed)
     d.   When they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all
     e.   They will place their hands on sick people and they will get well.

3.  Today we see no credible evidence of those 5 events occurring especially the most straight forward - item d.  

 

 

 

Sterc is correct and the point raised is one most christians, including fundies, shy away from wildly. They are wrong to do this. I think christians who really believe ought to prove their faith to us by supping a little poison.

Not deadly poison, mind you. Bee sting poison. Brandavino. Bhut Jolokia. That sort of thing.

 

 

"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck


Sterculius
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Atheistextremist

Atheistextremist wrote:

 

mummified thread is proof that miracles are still happening...

 

 

 

 

A resurrection we can believe in!

"Lisa, if the Bible has taught us nothing else, and it hasn't, it's that girls should stick to girls sports, such as hot oil wrestling and foxy boxing and such."
Homer Simpson