I see some bigoted grouch is having a go at a Hawkes Bay church for daring to express their beliefs in a public forum.
A church in Napier which claims to have members recently healed of cancer has disgusted a local family by erecting a billboard stating “Jesus heals cancer” on its wall.
The billboard made the Condin family’s “blood boil”. Their son Toby, 3, is undergoing treatment for leukaemia.
Now, if this family had shown up to the church, had hands laid on their child, and had the elders pray for Jesus to heal their son’s cancer, then I might understand their anger somewhat. But they do not seem to have done this. They haven’t actually asked Jesus to heal their child of cancer, so they have no right to be angry. They are just assuming that the church is lying. Or, to put it another way, they are being bigoted. Not only that, but they are protesting the church’s exercise of free speech. If the church has members who have been healed of cancer, then they have every right to state their belief that Jesus did it in a public way. How dare anyone in a free society attempt to stop them from doing that!
For the record, Jesus DOES heal cancer. It happens all the time. There are countless folk out there who can testify to the power of prayer in healing cancer, and in many other things. And while I’ve never had cancer, I can also testify to Jesus working in my own life.
That is not to say that Jesus always heals cancer. I personally watched people lay hands on former Avondale College Principal and National Party candidate Phil Raffills. He, and the people around him, were Godly individuals with strong faith, but Jesus did not heal his cancer, and he died. However, the sign, and I am assuming, the church, is not claiming that Jesus is some sort of magic genie – he’s the saviour of the universe and he is not under any obligation to us or our prayers. But he heals cancer enough to make the statement an accurate one. And nor is the church saying that people shouldn’t seek medical assistance, as the article implies. The Lord helps those who help themselves.
This is a matter of personal faith, expressed publicly, as is our right. Why all this would make somebody mad is beyond me. And furthermore, to have the ASA investigate the advertisement borders on fascism. We have freedom of religion in New Zealand, and the only thing being sold is the idea that Jesus of Nazareth is the Son of God who can restore us spiritually, emotionally and physically.
I am going to pray for Toby Condin, that Jesus would heal him of his leukaemia. I hope other Christians, and especially the Napier Equippers Church, will join me in doing so.