Monday, July 7, 2008

Medical Science and the Relational Theology of Healing

The C&MA views the science and practice of medicine in its many forms as an extension of God's healing hands. Whereas that could ultimately be true in a theological sense, it must be clearly qualified what is meant by "medicine" or "medical practice" and when does actual divine healing via divine intervention with the purpose of complete healing take place.

Ever wondered why the Scripture records on miracle healing primarily involve leprosy, total blindness, demon possession, paralysis, pre-mature death, and other fatal diseases? We are almost sure that during those times there were also headaches, migraines, stomach aches, dizzy spells, tooth aches, etc. but there is no record of any healing by direct Divine intervention along those lines, except for the case of Peter's mother-in-law in Matthew 8:14,15 and Paul's healing of the father of Publius of fever and dysentery (in those days there was no easy cure for this either) in Acts 28:8. God is, of course, capable of healing any disease for any reason at any time, and God forbid that I put Him in a box like the classicists do. However, either the writers of the Bible either did not deem it of great importance to record toothache miracles or this is not a common item for divine intervention. I tend to lean towards the latter. God gets glory for healing diseases that man or medicine can no longer address. For the common ailments, we have a plethora of natural cures ("natural" as ordained by God's creative design).

God Rarely Heals Where Medical Science Already Has a Cure.

I believe that medicine, its science and "correct" practice, is God's delegation of the natural healing process to man. This means that there are natural things in this world, like gravity, that does not need active Divine Intervention to operate. We do not need to pray to God and plead and fast in order for gravity to keep on operating the way God designed it. It will just happen as ordained by God whether we pray for it or not! The same is true with concepts like natural medicine. Again, yes, ultimately, everything comes from God, but this statement has no practical value in day to day how-to-live language until we see it under this perspective.

Analgesics will relieve headaches, albeit, not necessarily cure it. The relief part is the delegated human element. Sometimes it could be the cure, sometimes not.

Correct Medical Practice NOT Quack Medicine or Drug Marketing Science.

It is therefore quite important in the natural healing process that we emphasize "correct" medical practice. True natural healing is experienced when true medical science is applied, not just marketing science which Big Pharma companies operate on constantly bribing medical doctors with perks, sports tickets, dinners and junkets just so these can "push" their drugs. Sorry for the strong language, but when there is a real cure in the market, all it needs is word of mouth and passionate testimonials from trusted people to make the drug popular.

When cancer is at issue and radiation and chemo-theraphy become the only recommendations, it is important to find out what real oncologists believe and what is the statistical success rate of such torturous theraphies.

The following is an excerpt from Dr. William Campbell Douglass’
Real Health Breakthroughs, ©Copyright 2004, Agora Health, L.L.C.
(emphasis in red are mine)
Traditional cancer solutions—modern day

Someday, people will look back at today’s conventional
cancer treatments and consider them as crude and
barbaric as we view the medieval practice of bloodletting
Chemotherapy is perhaps the most common mainstream
cancer solution. Although it can be helpful in
cases of testicular cancer and lymphocytic leukemia,
chemotherapy is basically fraudulent and illogical. How
in the world can oncologists think they are treating
rationally when their so-called therapy is destroying the
immune system?
Sure, the tumor may shrink—because its immunity is
being attacked as well. So it becomes a race as to which
will kill the patient first: the cancer or the treatment?
The chemicals, although they kill the rapidly dividing
cancer cells the fastest, also kill healthy cells in the
body. And the cure rate is dismal at best.
The McGill Cancer Center in Canada, one of the
largest and most prestigious cancer treatment centers in
the world, did a study of oncologists to determine how
they would respond to a diagnosis of cancer. On the
confidential questionnaire, 58 out of 64 doctors said that
all chemotherapy programs were unacceptable to them
and their family members. The overriding reasons for
this decision were that the chemotherapy drugs are ineffective
and that they have an unacceptable degree of
toxicity. These are the same doctors who will tell you
that their chemotherapy treatments will shrink your
tumor and prolong your life!
Surgical removal of the cancerous tumor offers yet
another dangerous option for cancer patients. When the
malignant tumor is removed, normal, healthy tissue is
often removed as well—and the process weakens the
immune system and other systems in the body that are
essential for resisting disease. For men, surgery is often
used in the case of prostate cancer to remove testicles.
Even if the cancer may be stopped, impotence is often
the result.
Don’t allow mainstream medicine to brainwash you
into thinking that their way is the only way.

I momentarily digress by expressing that it is very ironic that most of us have put our faith in Big Pharma who are more interested in the mega-bucks they charge for treatment than the actual cure which may even be natural and inexpensive (which is why they also try to cloud these cures because they cannot make money out of natural cures). Back to the sub-issue: It is also ironic that people who get cured of cancer credit these quasi-cures when, if fact, they changed their lifestyle (food, sleep, toxin avoidance) almost the moment their doctor informed them that they had cancer. Was it really chemo or radiation that cured the cancer? or was it their change into a healthier lifestyle? As a rule, cancer patients actually lose much of their fighting chance to cure cancer when they subject themselves to chemo and statistics already has proven that.

If you look at the history of drug recalls in the past 50 years, including those that have caused diseases, deficiencies or actual cancer and death, one wonders how the big drug companies have gotten away with murder --- literally! And this is with the blessings of the FDA which is more often than not, bribed or funded by big pharma (at least some of its employees receive "gifts" from big pharma).

You will excuse me for dwelling a bit into "correct" medical practice. When you begin to know what I know, then you appreciate where I am coming from. I have complete faith in God. That does not mean in any way shape or form that I SHOULD have complete faith in the practice of medicine which is performed by imperfect humans with finite wisdom, intelligence and abilities and most of the time funded by special interests like Big Pharma. You should too. Quite a lot of needless deaths have been accelerated by conventional medicine. My daughter had a friend whom doctors literally killed at 41 years old due to pain killers. Prior to his death, he had been unsuccessfully requesting a lower dosage but finally succumbed to liver and kidney failure, a system shutdown that occurs when the liver no longer has the ability to filter toxins and nutrients and channel them either to waste or to the blood. Sadly, the man is a professed Christian.

Having said all these, how does God participate in this whole healing process when man-managed medicine is now involved. For starters, never attribute to God what man has done (especially irresponsibly). Just because the FDA approves a drug dispensed by your physician DOES NOT at all mean that God becomes automatically involved in the healing process. This is the biggest mistaken assumption of modern day Christians which have resulted in disability and even death where even Christians have the subliminal tendency to blame God for non-deliverance.

The logic is fairly simple.

Expect No Healing when You are Tempting God.

Can I pray for a good pair of lungs if I am a habitual smoker, or am I, in fact, tempting God and violating Deuteronomy 6:16; Matthew 4:7, etc.?????

Can a diabetic pray for healing when white sugar and high fructose corn syrup is a part of her regular diet or intake. Note that this comes from almost ALL processed sodas, juices, cake, ice cream, syrups, purees, ad nauseaum, or is she, in fact, TEMPTING GOD!!!???

It is so easy to condemn others like sexual perverts and say they cannot pray for deliverance if they continue to read pornographic material. But isn't almost every other Christian doing the very same thing with their health and life???

In general, should someone subject himself to "uncertain" medical practices (radiation theraphy and chemotheraphy for cancer by the way has almost NO SIGNIFICANT STATISTICAL DIFFERENCE in results as those cancer victims who don't go through any of those). [Update 01/21/2011. A National Cancer Institute study in 2005 which I will post to this website clearly shows that only a measly 2% of chemo and radiation theraphy patients survive after 5 years!!!. It would be an honest declaration if medical institutions like the City of Hope in Duarte, California would add this to their advertising. "CANSWER: Disclaimer 98% of you will die anyway in 5 years and about 70% will die this year through our treatments." I have already several friends including my mentor who did not die of cancer but died of chemotheraphy. The irony is that the medical institutions will insist that they died of cancer when TECHNICALLY it is their treatment that hastened their demise!!! Chemotherapy Statistics] NCI Cancer Survival. Doesn't subjecting oneself to these so-called cures be the statistical equivalent of TEMPTING GOD???

In the process of tempting God, should we pray and expect a cure? Logically and theologically, it seems that once we enter into tempting God, all hope is lost! And that is the sad lesson here.

The biggest irony of the above principle is that ignorance of what is right does not exempt anyone from the consequences of subjecting themselves to what is wrong

Disease May be a Spiritual Curse from God.

Furthermore, there are those diseases, illnesses, maladies which are actually caused by God and are a direct result of a curse He puts on His disobedient or rebellious people. This is part of the CORRECT theology that Jesus Christ is "the same, yesterday, today and forever." He healed in the past, He still heals. He loved in the past, He still loves. But...He cursed His own people in the past, He STILL DOES!!! We cannot be selective about what God can and cannot do.

In Exodus 15:26, God says, “If you diligently heed the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the LORD who heals you.”
Obviously, in context, God declares that He would be the source of diseases placed upon a disobedient people, EVEN IF IT IS HIS OWN PEOPLE!

This are all part of God being a Jealous God! He will get our attention any which way He can for He longs for true meaningful relationship with His people and will get it the easy way or the hard way. Towards the end of Deuteronomy, one will observe the several lists of blessings and the tirade of curses from God ALL DEPENDING on the response of His people to His offer or relationship and covenant behavior.

Then there are those diseases that may or may not be caused by God, of which natural medicine has obviously NO solution. Such diseases are candidates to bring to the feet of Jesus for actual Divine intervention. These are diseases where healing definitely points to the glory of God, and where healing can indeed take place miraculously for God's people who are in right relationship and fellowship with Him.

The "Thorn in the Flesh" Should Not Be a Christian's Cop-out for lack of healing.

Finally, there are those diseases which are like St. Paul's "thorn in the flesh" which God would most probably not heal, or will not heal for a very long time. It is quite unfortunate that many Christians revert to the thorn-in-the-flesh syndrome to justify the fact that God is not healing them no matter how they try. Most of the time, I believe this is a faulty belief and I am not surprised if it has devilish sources (by devilish I refer to the parable of the sower where the birds representing the devil takes away seeds "of knowledge" to shroud God's people in ignorance of God's lovingkindness and care). That is what Satan does. He either makes sure that God's people continue to be ignorant or that they are bombarded by non-truths and half-truths about the God of healing, "who heals all your diseases (Psalm 103:3)".

One indicator of the thorn-in-the-flesh condition if it is indeed true in the Christian's life is that:
  1. It does not get in the way of the Christian's good testimony of how God is working in his life.
  2. It even empowers the afflicted Christian. God told Paul that His "strength is made perfect in weakness", 2 Corinthians 12:9.
If none of those two conditions above are true, the afflicted Christian is simply making excuses (as usual) for his lack of faith and relationship with God. I pointed out in another blog that prolonged depression CANNOT be a thorn in the flesh. An afflicted Christian should seek deliverance and plead with God and seek His face until God responds. He should learn to deny himself, not wallow in self-pity which aggravates depression. He should dwell on positive thoughts and things according to Philippians 4:8 and not persist in violating such a command.

Why Christians May Doubt Divine Healing Today.

The most prevalent reason I have seen as to why many Christians doubt the existence or even possibility of divine healing is medicine itself. A Christian prays for a cure for headache and when it is cured, he may not be fully convinced that divine healing actually took place. Why? Precisely because in a majority of cases, the headache would have disappeared anyway with or WITHOUT prayer! The same is true for simple maladies like toothache, nausea, dizziness, etc. especially the non-recurrent ones

Practically and realistically, all a Christian needs to do is to pray for peace during the suffering and plead that it is not any worse than it already is or seems. When God does not get the glory or the credit for healing, He rarely heals. So when satisfactory medical care is available, a responsible Christian should simply take his prescribed path to the cure. In many cases like the simple illness of headaches, it may be best to DO NOTHING but let the ailment take its course and time would heal it. There are even some certain physiological responses of the body that are simply the immune systems natural way of dealing with some medical condition.

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