Saturday, January 05, 2008

The "Miracle" of St. Nicholas

Last night I was watching a WQED program on the Darr Mine disaster. On December 19th, 1907, a massive explosion ripped through the Darr Mine near Van Meter. It shook the ground for miles. A gout of flame was said to have reached across the Youghiogheny River from the mine's entrance. 239 men and boys, mostly Hungarian immigrants, perished. Many bodies were never recovered. Others were identified only by bits of clothing, personal effects and body parts. Local cemeteries were not prepared to handle all the bodies so they were spread all over neighboring townships and counties. 49 bodies never identified were buried in the nearby Olive Branch Cemetery.

200 men had skipped work to attend a Greek Orthodox mass for Saint Nicholas. Their lives were spared through this miracle.

Are you people defective? OK, maybe if you have a petty, vengeful, jealous or apathetic god. I could imagine a god like that choosing to spare the lives of those who chose to worship him and punish those who had the temerity to go to work that day. Such a god would not have a problem murdering those men and condemning their families to poverty and despair.

But if you have an all-knowing, all-powerful, all loving god as you claim to have, well, that god can't possibly exist and be all that. A god cannot be all-loving and and all-powerful and still permit horrible suffering to be inflicted upon his believers. An all loving god would be compelled by his own moral imperative to prevent that pain and an all-powerful god would succeed in preventing it. An all-knowing and all-powerful god would have known what was coming and would have had the power to prevent it but chosen, for his own reason, not to. Such a god could not be all-loving. An all-knowing or all-loving god would not have to be reminded or convinced by Nicholas to do the right thing.

There are too many contradictions for god to be what you say he is.

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