Friday, May 13, 2005

PRAY...AND SEEK MEDICAL INTERVENTION

GOD HEALS...BY FAITH AND MEDCIAL SCIENCE. I found online the following statement of a fellow holiness group (Church of the Nazarene) regarding divine healing. Here is the official statement from their "Articles of Faith."

We believe in the Bible doctrine of divine healing and urge our people to seek to offer the prayer of faith for the healing of the sick. We also believe God heals through the means of medical science.
Bible references given include: 2 Kings 5:1-19; Psalm 103:1-5; Matthew 4:23-24; 9:18-35; John 4:46-54; Acts 5:12-16; 9:32-42; 14:8-15; 1 Corinthians 12:4-11; 2 Corinthians 12:7-10; James 5:13-16.

FREE METHODIST STATEMENT ON DIVINE HEALING. The following is from the Free Methodist Book of Discipline:
"All healing, whether of body, mind, or spirit has its ultimate source in God who is 'over all and through all and in all' (Ephesians 4:6). He may heal by the mediation of surgery, medication, change of environment, counseling, corrected attitudes or through the restorative processes of nature itself. He may heal through one or more of the above in combination with prayer, or He may heal by direct intervention in response to prayer. The Scriptures report many cases of hte latter kind of healing which centers in the life and ministry of the apostles and the church. Consistent with the Scriptures (James 4:15-16), therefore, we urge our pastors to make opportunity for the sick and afflicted to come before God in the fellowship of the church, in strong faith that the God and Father of Jesus Christ is both able and willing to heal. At the same time, we recognize that although God's sovereign purposes are good and He is working toward final redemption which assures wholeness to all believers, He may not grant physical healing for all in this life. We believe that in such cases He can glorify himself through the resurretion to life everlasting."

AM I MISSING SOMETHING? If I understand the situation correctly... from news media sources, yesterday a Christian couple from Franklin, Indiana were found guilty by jury of their peers of reckless homicide for choosing to pray only instead of seeking medical attention for their infant, who died as a result of a lack of medical intervention. Apparently some in the evangelical Christian community are trying to make this some political rallying point.

CLEAR CUT CASE OF NEGLIGENCE. But based on what I understand of the case, and based on my own faith tradition's Biblical interpretation and understanding of healing, I would agree with the jury: the couple should have prayed earnestly and also sought all reasonable medical attention available as soon as possible. They did not do so and that constitutes negligence. This is not a faith vs. government, or faith vs. secularism, or faith vs. medical science case. A child needed medical help. The parents had it within their power to access it. They did not. The child died. They are liable.

1 comment:

  1. John... Glad to see others from the Christian community speaking to this issue. We've linked to you from our post on this topic at IndyChristian.com. ...Neil

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