Why won't God heal amputees?

Some skeptics use the question, "Why won't God heal amputees?" to argue that God does not exist (such as at whywontgodhealamputees.com). The argument suggests that if God is both all-powerful and loving, why wouldn't He heal a person with an amputation when they ask Him?

However, this perspective relies on several faulty assumptions that must be addressed in considering God's purpose and plan for those who live with amputations. First, the New Testament miracles of Jesus suggest that He has on some occasions healed amputees in the past. For example, Jesus healed many with leprosy, some of whom were likely missing digits or facial features; when Jesus healed them, He made them whole (Mark 1:40-42; Luke 17:12-14). Another clear example is the servant Malchus. His ear was cut off, yet Jesus instantly healed it (Luke 22:50-51).

Second, there is a difference between saying God can heal everyone and saying God will heal everyone. God has never promised healing to all people in this life. One of the aspects believers anticipate in heaven is to have a new body, which will be free from the problems and limitations of one's body in this life. God often uses those with physical limitations to inspire others as part of His divine plan. Nick Vujicic is a Christian who lives without legs or arms, yet serves as an inspirational speaker to many, calling them to "life without limits" (lifewithoutlimbs.org). He serves as one of many examples of those with physical limitations who inspire many through their resilience.

Third, those who question God's existence because of amputees who are not healed assume that if God does not heal them He does not exist. Yet this logic denies that a perfect God could work through people with imperfect bodies to accomplish His purposes. God has often used the most unlikely and least expected people to accomplish His plans. This was true of David, a young shepherd boy who became king; it was also true of Esther, an enslaved queen who saved her entire nation; as well as Joseph, a foreign prisoner who was used to lead Egypt and save the people of Jacob.

Finally, 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 offers another powerful response relevant to this issue: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God." Paul noted that those who have been afflicted have the ability to help others dealing with similar issues. For example, those who are impacted by disability often have the ability to best help others in this situation (For instance, the ministry of Joni Eareckson Tada called Joni and Friends). Those who have served time in prison can often best help others in prison (For example, through Prison Fellowship). God's lack of healing may be part of His plan to work in a person's life in a unique way that will impact lives that could never be helped in another way. Rather than reject God's existence when healing of an amputee does not take place, we are called to believe and live for God regardless, knowing His plan and purposes are greater than our own.

Related Truth:

Healing - What does the Bible have to say?

What does the Bible say about birth defects? Why does God allow birth defects?

Why does God allow sickness?

Is sickness ever part of God's will for believers?

Can Christians feel disappointment with God? Is it wrong to experience disappointment with God?

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