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Is prayer effective?

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posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 01:38 AM
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Originally posted by Daniem

Does this quote come from years of experience or is this Just a personal belief?

If you don't believe in God and don't pray, then how can you comment on if prayer works or not?


1)
Its common knowledge, even though people doesnt believe in your god and prayers, good things and bad things will happen to them.
If they live a life praying, good things and bad things will also happen.
See? you dont need to pray, good things may still happen. But you cherry pick, you prayed for a million things, and some came true. Those you blame god for.



I was born into a christian family and country, and the church was nice enough to automaticly make me a member when i was born. As they do to 90% of the people here. But i dont know anyone that believes (maybe 1).
The ONLY ones i have met have been realy old people.

I went to gospel choire (most because of the free buns and lemonade) when i was little, but as i got older all was forgotten. never saw god in my daily life, never had a prayer answered by anyone as far as im concerned. and life goes on without him just fine. frankly i think its a waste of time. why bother with all that, were fine without him. (why believe when nothing happens?)

Then i of course got more educated and saw things as they are. (1000s of religions\gods exists) You could clarely see that they are just a manmade thing.


2)
Cause many times people who pray blame god when it comes true, when it has a logical explanation. and i have prayed, and it have come true sometimes, and other times not. but it can most always be explained why it came true or not.



So what you are saying here is, because i have never known God in my life then no-one else has.

OK, fair enough.

Not all answered prayer can be so easily explained away though. Try explaining away the gift of knowledge when it is used in prayer. What about instant healing?

Of course, if you don't believe these things happen, then i see your point, but if you have seen them used in prayer situations they are not so easily explained away.




posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 04:38 AM
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Instant wisdom and instant healing?

Never heard of a amputee that got his limb back. If you were feeling down, and suddenly became happy, thats perfectly normal, it happens to everyone for different reasons, if you wanna call that healing.

So i dont know what kind of healing you are referring to, but im guessing it is just feelings or other non physical, cause people just dont get their fysical damgage healed in a poof. If you have seen in a church blind people getting instantly healed... expect hoax.

When it comes to wisdom, you will never be able to get knowledge unless you learn it first. You cant get it by just asking, you have to work for it.



posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 10:04 AM
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Originally posted by Daniem
Instant wisdom and instant healing





I have never heard of a amputee that got his limb back. If you were feeling down, and suddenly became happy, thats perfectly normal, it happens to everyone for different reasons, if you wanna call that healing.


I have never heard of anyone with enough faith to pray that prayer. (to grow a limb, that is)

No disrespect Daniem but you don't seem to understand what the healing ministry is all about. It's not about feeling happy when you are down, it goes far deeper than that.



When it comes to wisdom, you will never be able to get knowledge unless you learn it first. You cant get it by just asking, you have to work for it.


I am not talking about wisdom here, i am talking about words of knowledge, A totally different thing.
A word of knowledge is a word from God about a person or a situation. Something that you could not have known before.



i dont know what kind of healing you are referring to, but im guessing it is just feelings or other non physical, cause people just dont get their fysical damgage healed in a poof. If you have seen in a church blind people getting instantly healed... expect hoax.


I can assure you without any doubt that physical healing is possible as i have not only seen it happen but i have prayed for and had healing prayers answered.

You have just never been at the right place at the right time. Or should i say you have never been to the many churches that work with the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

I don't know where you went to church but the teaching there was not very good to say the least,
Everything that i have said here can be found out by just reading the bible.

Look up the gifts of the holy spirit, it will explain what each of the gifts are and how they are used.
God promises these gifts to us if and when needed and many people use them today.

It's a shame that you were never taught these things before, as you could have had a completely different view of things if you had.

Anyway. All the best
John.



posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 10:55 AM
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You have seen someones physical damage been healed just like that? that is amazing. it is astonishing. and if it was true it would be all over the news. sorry, but you have been fooled. wounds just dont close up and dissapear immediatly because you pray for it.



i would love to see evidence of this happening. seems like you are not seeing what is realy happening (its a hoax or something that can be explained) , cause if prayer worked, we`d all do it
but it just hasnt ever seemed to be proved right. every time it seems that the same things happen to those who pray and those who doesn`t pray.



I only went to the church a little while, and i dont remember much anyway. But we had christianity in school also, and there we learned about the bible. (ot and nt) i dont think anyone believed in those stories for real, and anyway none of the students i know of are christians today.

(even though they are members of the church, and many will probably marry in one.)

but thats tradition only. and in my country you are born as a member, and most people wont bother the hazzle of giving up the membership. but if you could do it with the press of a button... hehe wouldnt be many left.



posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 11:58 AM
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reply to post by Daniem
 


I can see that we won't get much further with this conversation but at least we have seen each others views on things.
All's that i ask is that you look into the subject a little more and maybe realise that this subject is bigger than both of us.

Cheers
John.

Sorry OP, back to you.

[edit on 9-4-2008 by jon1]



posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 12:21 PM
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"The Prayer of a RIGHTEOUS man avalieth much..."

If my people will humble themselves.....I will heal their land.

If a man full of humility and fasting cries out to the KING of KINGS kingdoms will tremble. AMEN.

For Elijah was a man with like passions unto us, but when he prayed for it not to rain 3 1/2 years it didnt rain.



posted on Apr, 9 2008 @ 04:07 PM
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reply to post by Scyman
 


odd that there's no evidence anywhere that substantiates that it happened in reality instead of just in the story...



posted on Apr, 10 2008 @ 11:58 AM
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Originally posted by Daniem
You have seen someones physical damage been healed just like that? that is amazing. it is astonishing. and if it was true it would be all over the news. sorry, but you have been fooled. wounds just dont close up and dissapear immediatly because you pray for


Actually, there have been thousands, if not millions, of cases of people healed of physical illness, including me on several occasions. Many of these healings are verified by doctors, most of whom have their own stories of a miracle or of unexplained recoveries. Sometimes the healings are instantaneous, but often they happen gradually, over a period of time.

These healings don't appear very often in the MSM for the simple reason that most publishers and reporters don't believe in them; therefore they discount all evidence and refuse to acknowledge them.

As far as why some people receive physical healings while others pray for them and don't, I'm not sure. I believe it has something to do with how they pray; you can't just petition God, you have to be willing to change and grow spiritually. That's my understanding anyway.



posted on Apr, 10 2008 @ 02:56 PM
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this is riduculous, bring some proof of this if you can. if millions of people can be healed just by praying then id like to see the evidence. surely someone could make a video that shows someone praying and getting their damage healed.


In 1872, Francis Galton conducted a famous statistical experiment to determine whether or not prayer had a physical effect on the external environment. Galton hypothesized that if prayer was effective, members of the British Royal family would live longer, given that thousands prayed for their wellbeing every Sunday. He therefore compared longevity in the British Royal family with that of the general population, and found no difference.


Several studies of prayer effectiveness have yielded null results. A 2001 double-blind study of the Mayo Clinic found no significant difference in the recovery rates between people who were (unbeknownst to them) assigned to a group that prayed for them and those who were not.

Similarly, the MANTRA study conducted by Duke University found no differences in outcome of cardiac procedures as a result of prayer. In another similar study published in the American Heart Journal in 2006, Christian intercessory prayer when reading a scripted prayer was found to have no effect on the recovery of heart surgery patients; however, the study found patients who had knowledge of receiving prayer had slightly higher instances of complications than those who did not know if they were being prayed for or those who did not receive prayer.


Many believe that prayer can aid in recovery, not due to divine influence but due to psychological and physical benefits. It has also been suggested that if a person knows that he or she is being prayed for it can be uplifting and increase morale, thus aiding recovery.

Now if you`d be so kind, dont tell people prayers are answered by god, when it clearly doesnt work. just dont lie like that. you can say you hope it comes true, sure. you have had thousands of years to prove it works, but still nothing. sorry, but you are denying the evidence.

[edit on 10-4-2008 by Daniem]



posted on Apr, 10 2008 @ 03:18 PM
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reply to post by Daniem
 


Hi. Thanks for adding to the vigor of the debate!


you are denying the evidence


I just feel it needs to be said that pretty much all of the points you raise in your latest post are specifically dealt with, and I believe answered, in the article this thread started with. That's not to put you down - rather it shows that you are indeed knowledgeable with regard to the subject at hand.



posted on Apr, 10 2008 @ 03:46 PM
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What concerns me personally is the worship of prayer itself. Could one classify that as idolatry? Now wouldn't that also open the door for a man to set himself up as a priestly figure acting as a mediator?

It's always been a turn off for me personally to hear such emphasis put on the prayer itself as though it is what does the work.

Which is most definitely a result of my upbringing in christian religion. It doesn't take but one around saying that this and that only happened because they were praying for it, to bring one to this understanding.

If any good thing happens, it's GOD that is good. Isn't our communication with him a secondary issue?

The LORD is effective, after all he is the creator.



posted on Apr, 10 2008 @ 04:01 PM
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reply to post by WiseSheep
 



It's always been a turn off for me personally to hear such emphasis put on the prayer itself as though it is what does the work.


I believe the commonly-used phrase "there's power in prayer" is to blame for this misconception.


If any good thing happens, it's GOD that is good. Isn't our communication with him a secondary issue?


You have touched on a subject that is very deep. Is our focus the answer to prayer or is it the Lord? There is a wonderful quote from a very wise Christian on this, and I'll post it here in the next few days when I've found it.


The LORD is effective, after all he is the creator.


That was exactly what I meant by the simple illustration I put forward earlier!



posted on Apr, 10 2008 @ 04:09 PM
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reply to post by pause4thought
 


whoops, I missed your link in the first post. :p

let me just add, to any of you people out there; please, for your own or others best interest, go to a doctor when you damage your body. if you are dying i wouldnt bet on a prayer to help heal you. wish it would though.



posted on Apr, 11 2008 @ 01:56 AM
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Originally posted by Daniem
reply to post by pause4thought
 


whoops, I missed your link in the first post. :p

let me just add, to any of you people out there; please, for your own or others best interest, go to a doctor when you damage your body. if you are dying i wouldnt bet on a prayer to help heal you. wish it would though.


Prayer for me is never the first option, Prayer is effective for some people, but not others.
Always go to your doctor with any ailments and by all means pray as well. Prayer, or the answering of prayers is to unpredictable to be used as the first or only option.

Glad you brought that up Damien.

( can't agree with your other posts though )

John.

[edit on 11-4-2008 by jon1]

[edit on 11-4-2008 by jon1]



posted on Apr, 12 2008 @ 06:44 AM
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reply to post by Daniem
 


Your comments on the wisdom of approaching a doctor when ill are well-placed. Incidentally, as Christians we believe it is no coincidence that innumerable plants have qualities that aid healing, and form the basis of drugs and medicine. We believe they were designed that way with that specific purpose in mind.



if you are dying i wouldnt bet on a prayer to help heal you. wish it would though.


Has it occurred to you that you are wishing that the Bible were true? The message of the Bible is that praying for forgiveness in the light of God's Son crucified for our sin opens the door for God to heal the soul, such that death simply transfers us into the welcoming arms of our Maker?

I wouldn't bet on it if it were just myth or philosophy, but I and countless millions of others have examined Christ's life and teaching for much of their lives and found it more convincing the more carefully and extensively we examine them!

Check out the evidence for yourself before you reject it. Here's a couple of starting points I know of:

www.belowtopsecret.com...

www.belowtopsecret.com...

If Christ is who He claimed He was, a prayer is the only thing that can actually help you if you're literally dying...


Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in Me, even if he dies, will live. Everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die - ever. Do you believe this?..

John 11:25&26

God bless.

[edit on 12/4/08 by pause4thought]



posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 10:44 AM
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reply to post by pause4thought
 


surely those who pray to anything, any god, will still feel that sometimes their prayer
accidently got answered. its all too random to show as evidence of superior beeings
to exist. and even if one for surtain could say that one type of prayer has got
a guarantee to get answered, we could not know what or who helped you. it`s
not even nessesarily any gods that we know of.



posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 11:32 AM
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reply to post by Daniem
 


Hi. I follow your logic. Bear with me, the answer require a few steps.

The Christian faith is based on the belief that a supernatural being not confined to time and space, but actually the one who designed and formed it, revealed Himself to real historical people, such as Moses. If our entire universe was indeed made by a being, you would have thought he would be interested in what happens in it, and that communicating with its inhabitants would not be beyond him. In fact it would be odd if he didn't communicate.

Philosophers and religious leaders have taught their own ideas based on their own thinking, but millions upon millions of people who have taken the time to actually read the Bible (usually starting in the New Testament) have become convinced that it contains not man's ideas, but what God has said to man.

The theme of the Bible, from beginning to end, is Jesus Christ. This is what Jesus explained (Luke ch. 24:27), for the simple reason that He was the Maker that the Scriptures speak of, (and that men have philosophized about since time immemorial).

He came to communicate with man, and he came to destroy the thing that creates a seemingly impenetrable barrier between God and man: human moral corruption - as God's essence is infinite moral purity. That he offers through what he did on the cross.

My point is this: if God has indeed spoken, and all the prophets sent by God, and the Son of God all revealed the truth about him, then what they told us about prayer is reliable. This eternal being that made everything has communicated to us that he is aware of and listens to prayer.

God (the Father) is a spirit not confined to a body or by a body. He perceives perfectly the thoughts and intentions of the heart, the spirit, of every human being. Prayer happens as and when a person turns from rebelling against God's laws to following them willingly (called repentence). It starts with asking for forgiveness for a lifetime of guilt. This happens as a result of hearing about God's love for sinful people as demonstrated in the message Jesus brought, and the way he died to take on himself our punishment.

From that point on there is no barrier to communicating with the One who perceives your every thought. Previously he recoiled from your motives, thoughts and actions, as they were tainted by a corrupt human nature, with every thought and deed that broke his laws demanding justice. Once a person truly believes in Jesus Christ and turns from their old way of life, the just penalty has been paid and is not required again. The new Christian now loves God and his laws and now experiences communion, a deep fellowship with his Maker.

At this point a person can take God's own promises relating to prayer, and experience the reality of how he responds. For example, he taught us to pray for insight and understanding of the Scriptures, and it comes in extraordinary power. He gave us many other promises relating to prayer, and Christians really do find that he is faithful to keep the promises. If it weren't so, the church wouldn't have lasted 10 years, never mind 2,000...

So there you have it. Promises relating to prayer are fulfilled. Our prayers are based on the promises we read, and are not vague wishes whose fulfillment could come about through chance or the intervention of some other, unknown influence.

PS It's pretty awesome - like waking up and suddenly finding the world you live in is even more extraordinary than it seems!



posted on Apr, 13 2008 @ 11:48 AM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
reply to post by pause4thought
 


actually, the templeton foundation (they're a religious group) did in fact conduct a study that showed that prayer didn't have any effect..

they studied the effects of prayer on people recovering from heart surgery

there were groups

1: people who weren't being prayed for a knew that they weren't being prayed for (control)

2: people who were being prayed for and didn't know it

3: people who knew they were being prayed for

the difference in group 2 and 3 was to measure if there was a placebo effect

large congregations prayed for each person in 2 and 3 by name

the people in group 1 had the best recovery.

the article you provided fails to even mention this study.


Hello

There is a reason for that

here is how prayer should be used for the Ill

James 5:14-15

Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:

And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.

go outside of Gods mandate how do you expect things to happen?

All the best

David



posted on Apr, 26 2008 @ 09:39 AM
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reply to post by drevill
 


Good point. God himself has laid down the parameters for effective prayer.

In addition, when you ask your father for something you don't tell him what to do. That would be plain impertinence. How much less fitting if you are speaking to the Creator of the universe (and much more)!

As a result we should not expect prayer to attract push-button responses, which is what such research is often seeking. Clearly the designers often don't understand what prayer is, which invalidates the exercise.

True prayer begins when a person has found forgiveness through the Cross, and begins to approach the Almighty in tones of gratitude and humility.


"Don't worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God."

Philippians 4:6



posted on Apr, 26 2008 @ 11:32 AM
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reply to post by pause4thought
 


hello

My wife and i have been praying for a baby for some time, We thought we was ready. we were not and the Lord could see what we could not. for myself i have now been of depression meds for 20 moths and i have stopped drinking for approx 18 months as i was binge drinking getting into trouble etc. Not a good advertisment for God!

however i trusted and he gave me faith to trust him more. now we have just discovered, Heather, my wife is pregnant. Thankyou Lord for making us wait and making me a better person before giving us this wonderful gift.

He certainly knows best. I was all over the place until the last 18-24 months

david



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