SCEPTIC.INFO  Free your mind - question!



If you are praying for more money or for to be a better person are you hoping for or asking for - there is a difference - for a secret miracle? Why a secret one??


If God does secret miracles a problem with trust appears. Suppose you put an apple into Johnny's lunchbox and send him off to school. He prays during class that when lunch time comes that you will have put a peach in his lunchbox for he doesn't like apples. Then God swaps the apple with a peach for Johnny will never ask you anyway what you put in and he won't say about the peach. So nobody will ever know.


Is Johnny asking God to change what is in his lunchbox the moment he prays?


Is Johnny asking God to take his present prayer into account to change the past? Is he asking God to manipulate me to put in a peach not an apple?


Either way Johnny is asking for reality to be rigged up to suit his insignificant whim. Prayer suggests that God approves of one's manipulative urges. If God is like that then God cannot be trusted.


If I mark somebody's exam paper, they will never know if God altered the work after they did it. You might say one should trust that God would not do a thing like that. But we are asked to trust God no matter how bad life gets for us. So he hurts and lets bad things happen presumably for a good purpose. We are asked to become victims if God needs that for the greater good of others. So to say you should trust that God has not altered the marks is no better than saying that you should dictate to God what he can and cannot do. If you trust God, you will trust that he may have changed the work and that he knew what he was doing and had to do it for a good reason and not because he wanted to. So you can't really be sure of anything should you believe in miracles.


But if you trust your friend and confide in her or him, do you really trust him or her if you expect her or him to repeat what you told for a "greater" reason? No way! Christians are boasting of trusting in God when they do not!


So what do we learn about prayer and secret miracles?


If you think prayer does not work but want to think it does you will ask for secret unnoticed miracles.


If you want a bike and you get nothing you will reason that the prayer did something else for you. That presupposes secret miracles.


If you want God to do magic but discreetly why are you asking him not to just make the bike for you from nothing? Magic is magic. You are secretly embarrassed.


If God is doing secret miracles then he is manipulating others for what happens in your life affects others. The bike needs people to get it to you and to make the bike in the first place. You are asking him to be manipulative. You are the one launching the manipulating.


Prayer does not work and the reasoning behind it is wrong. And damn well the Church knows it for it spends more time pondering prayer than anything else!



Catholic Encyclopaedia. This discusses Quietism.





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IN DEFENCE OF THE FAITH, Dave Hunt, Harvest House, Eugene, Oregon, 1996

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THE BIBLE TELLS US SO, R B Kuiper, The Banner of Truth Trust, Edinburgh, 1978


The Dark Side, How Evangelical Teachings Corrupt Love and Truth, Valerie Tarico, Ph.D, Dea Press, Seattle, 2006

THE GREAT MEANS OF SALVATION AND OF PERFECTION, St Alphonsus De Ligouri, Redemptorist Fathers, Brooklyn, 1988

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THE LIFE OF ALL LIVING, Fulton J Sheen, Image Books, New York, 1979

THE PRACTICE OF THE PRESENCE OF GOD, Brother Lawrence, Hodder & Stoughton, London, 1981

THE PUZZLE OF GOD, Peter Vardy, Collins, London, 1990

THE SATANIC BIBLE, Anton Szandor LaVey, Avon Books, New York, 1969

THE SPIRITUAL GUIDE, Michael Molinos, Christian Books, Gardiner Maine, 1982

THE STUDENT’S CATHOLIC DOCTRINE, Rev Charles Hart BA, Burns & Oates, London, 1961

UNBLIND FAITH, Michael J Langford, SCM, London, 1982


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