Proof #34: Your Health Insurance Policy

A reply to proof #34 of God is Imaginary.

For a brief window in its hypotheticals, GII allows for the existence of God in order to "prove" that he is imaginary by attempting to demonstrate how absurd his existence is. Time and again, we see that simply by understanding certain key concepts, the arguments put forth by GII are childish and immature. Here is one more example.

The concept GII ignores is the same as proof #10: stewardship. In proof #10, I explained that stewardship isn't a forumula for managing money; rather, it is a lifestyle of bringing honor to God by wisely using every gift that he has given to us. Obviously, the "gifts" to which I refer are more than mere money or material goods. Rather, I speak also of spiritual blessings, talent, health, welfare, and everything else given to us by God.

First, understand that everything we have (money, talent, health, welfare, even life itself) is a gift from God. Without that as a starting point, nothing I say about stewardship is going to make any sense.

Wise stewardship isn't limited to giving back a portion of God's gifts to be used for edification of believers, spreading the gospel, and helping those in need. Stewardship also includes taking proper care of what God has given to you.

The Parable of the Talents (Mt 25:14-30) is a good illustration. Here, a landowner goes on a journey and entrusts talents to three different servants (v. 15). The first two invest the money wisely and return the original talents with dividends to the landowner (vv. 20-23). The third, however, buried his and thus was only able to return the original talent (vv. 24-25). This enraged the landowner. He told the servant he should have at least put the talent in the bank, that way it would have accumulated interest (v. 27).

The point is that God expects us to be good stewards of everything he has given us–-and all blessings come from him, both spiritual (Eph 1:3-4) and material (Jms 1:17). In order to fulfill the call to be wise stewards, we must also take measures to protect what God has given us; not burying it like the slothful servant in the Parable of the Talents, but locking the door, alarming the building, and buying proper insurance.

Accidents and illnesses will come. Health is a gift from God and we ought to protect it, same as any other gift. Can the God of the universe stop terrible illnesses, thus rendering health insurance moot? Of course he could! But trials come (Jms 1:2-4), and it is through those trials that our faith is made stronger (Jms 1:12). We are just fools if we don’t think it could happen to us.

As to GII's repeated hammering on prayer, especially James 5:15, one has to remember that in GII's view, God must reach in unambiguously with his mighty hand and change reality in a perceivable way in order for any event to be an answer to prayer. If I pray for financial provision, a relative dying and leaving me a large sum of money is just a coincidence. If I pray for my wife to make it home safely in a snow storm and she does, it's because she was a careful driver.

A bona fide answer to prayer must drop completely out of the sky. Just why that is assumed has never been discussed. And that mistake is propagated throughout GII, and repeated in this proof.

The final section seriously misuses Matthew 6:25-34. God does provide for all of our needs. The raw resources for making enough food, clothing, shelter, and purifying drinking water all exist on this planet. However, we (as humans) are very bad at portioning these resources in a way that the basic needs of all of humanity are met. This is hardly God's fault, especially since God calls us to be wise stewards of the gifts he has bestowed on us. It is this anlge on stewardship that Jesus has in view.

Using this verse to deride Christians who own health insurance is therefore fallacious, and a little immature.

But there is another level on which this is fallacious. Purchase of health insurance represents preparedness: it is taking necessary measures to protect and properly maintain a gift from God. It is not worrying about the future. Purchasing health insurance is obedience to God by showing good stewardship. That fact torpedoes this side of GII's argument.