Friday, March 28, 2014

Functional and Structural Disease: Why Does God Not Heal Amputees?

Why Does God Not Heal Amputees?

This question is so stupid and obvious, only the most petty atheist could ask it, who simply grasps at the most unworthy snipe against Christian faith his moronic mind can think up. Either that or it was asked by a child, which, at least it is sincere.

How Does Science Divide Disease?

On the most basic level, the level on which disease can be no further generalized, science recognizes two forms of disorder:

  1. Structural disorder, and
  2. Functional Disorder

The difference is straightforward.

A structural disorder is one in which the disease originates from the absence of a structure, malformation of a structure, atrophy of a structure... etc. This is something that is noted by examining the structure itself for evidence of deformation or disease.

A functional disorder is disease of a structure that is not the effect of the the absence of a part or dysfunction of a part. It is a subtle disease of a chemical or cellular variety, an occasion where the transfer of cells or cell bodies, the metabolism or elimination of materials, or any such process is hampered within the structure itself. This is a form of disease that microbiology, genetics, hematology and all other such sciences are required to identify. For most of history, these illnesses were not directly diagnosable or treatable. People who were responsible scientists in their era doubted the existence of particular syndromes now known to be functional in type and they left merely to fate and the outcome of time to eliminate (the disease or the one suffering from it). The advanced minds of the day also reflected on what little science could reveal about these problems and fretted that the state of contemporary scholarship would not allow them to correct the problem, but looked forward to an era where future scientists with future tools could begin to identify and treat.


Supernatural Healing... Of What Sort?

We have established the nature of illness, such as how it might result from malformation or deformation of structures, or how it might happen on a subtle, chemical level. We should now ask straightforwardly, What did the prophets work to heal?

Or a like question, Did the prophets ever heal structural disease?

My answer is that the prophets did not heal diseases of the variety of missing limbs or like structural disorders.


If they healed blindness, it was by the working, not on a deficient structure, but rather the deficient operation of the ophthalmic structure.

Where they healed a disease of the lung, it was not by a restoration of an absent lung, but rather the restoration of the lung's function.

Where issues of blood were treated, it was to restore the function of the structure, but not adding a structure or regenerating a structure or operating on the constitution of the structure, but restoring the function.

Similarly, muscles were not healed on the structural level, but where muscles were not functional, their function was restored.


The biblical variety of healing was never an alteration of a structure, but only affected restoration of the function. Psychiatrists are not dissecting or reconstituting brains. They are not gods obviously and we don't even fault them as physicians, much less as gods, for not having omnipotence in reconstituting the brain and its properties, but very similarly, though less obviously, we fault God for not performing mind-blowing restorations of structural variety, and fail to acknowledge the great wonders He has shown the world through the prophets.

So if God does not restore limbs, the blind who recovered sight were no less overjoyed. Restoration of sight, of the ability to walk, to be free of psychotic interferences, or devastating sleep disorders, are not somehow unimpressive because God fails to restore in a highly-publicized visible way obvious structural disease. Doctors often see restoration of function and have no way to explain it. The restorations in the Bible days one could be skeptical of, they could dispute for lack of a firm chemical or biological explanation and presumably if healings occur today, they are happening with very few witnesses and some of the witnesses unsure if they have seen the body restore itself or something more. But the people who feel the warm touch of God and see restoration are powerfully moved, and enormously thankful to see the restoration. They don't fret their time away asking moronic questions like, "Why didn't God stop 9/11... Why does God not make people grow arms back?"

It is only very sad people who have almost no meaning left that ask for naive signs, like the regeneration of limbs.

God's Complete Authority Over Life and Death

For if now medical science has the power to restore life after death, then several implications follow:

Of all crackpot, thankless, Godless theories the atheists in medicine have posited, one of the absurd ones floating around for us today is of those who have died, and then been restored to life. Yet the atheists violently insinuate that biblical reports of resurrection are preposterous! Yet if medical science proves resurrection is possible, what does that mean?

It would imply two things,

Jesus' miracles were nothing extraordinary and the long-standing scientific criticism against their possibility is negated. Now the atheistic materialist has no basis to reject Jesus' miracles as they can be explained naturally.

If science has power to restore life, say, within seconds of death, or within a few minutes of death, we are only a few extrapolations away from extending life indefinitely, perhaps raising people from the death days

No Christian, Jew, atheist, or scientist is happy with either of these and certainly not both. And then atheists have no reason to reject Christ as a Messiah... because He was not a miracle-worker; He was only a very gifted scientist.

This idea of being dead on the operating table and then reviving, is only in the poetic or as-it-were sense.


Let it be noted now, that this very naiv objection, once thought clever, is not even founded in the science it is pretended to be based upon. For it pretends to posit a scientific notion, and thereby refute God; when, on the contrary, on the basis of science itself it as shown as a pretension, a smarmy, naive attack on God and an appeal to the ignorance of the fellow atheists. I can liken it to an old parable..

Take an old broken down car.. perhaps an 80s Oldsmobile... Now take the shell of a Lamborghini and fix up the broken down old jalopy so that outwardly it has the frame of a Lamborghini. It has all the flash and pizzazz of an expensive Italian sports car.. but examined closely, it is a broken down smokestack.

Careful examination of the atheist arguments shows every indication that they are clever, fast, and expensive. But upon a closer look, you find that they are only pretentious, showy, and cheap.



  1. I am only commenting because no one else had done so at the time of my reading it.

  2. And I have a long g-mail account: morethan8allagainstpaul. I listen to Hate Radio often. One thing I heard was a book entitled "I don't Have enough faith to be an atheist.