Bizarre Claim: Faith healing will make hospitals obsolete

faith healing
Healing “laying on of hands” ceremony in the Pentecostal Church of God. Lejunior, Harlan County, Kentucky. 1946

During a recent interview, bonkers QAnon Cultist and Christian fanatic, Dave Hayes, has asserted that a God-orientated health care system should completely replace all doctors and hospitals.

Apparently he would very much like to see this happen. He claims that God has told him that this is what God wants to do.

Via Hemant Mehta, here is a tweet with a two-minute extract of the interview where he makes this claim…

Here is a transcript of what he claimed within the above clip …

You know, God gave me a dream back in 2013 or 2014. And in that dream, He showed me that He has a health care system that He wants to implement that is going replace our current health care system. 

And, uh, let’s see… No appointments necessary, no deductibles, no side effects… It’s not like we’re going to take out the wrong kidney if we pray for you. No iatrogenic damages. No lawsuits, no liability. What I’m seeing on Telegram with all these people getting healed is this — people are becoming awakened to the fact that, if we partner with God, we could get to a point — literally get to a point — one day where we really don’t need a health care system. 

In fact, on my livestream this afternoon on my Telegram channel, I was telling the story about how John G. Lake, in the early 1900s, between 1910 and 1920, he started a thing in Spokane, Washington called the Healing Rooms.

And he trained people in divine healing and deliverance, sent them out into the community, and they started praying for people to get healed. They had such great success. They had over 100,000 documented healing miracles in that time span.

There were so many people getting healed, the Spokane Hospital closed. They literally closed down the Spokane Hospital. It’s a historical fact. You can go on Wikipedia and look it up… There was such great success, they actually closed down a hospital.

It’s unbelievable.

100,000 documented healing miracles sounds amazing.

Who is John Lake?

Mr Hayes gives us a name, John G. Lake, along with dates, and the suggestion that we can go to Wikipedia to look up this specific “historical fact”.

So let’s do exactly that.

Starting with the name he cites, John G. Lake, we find a Wikipedia page – this one.

There we can see a lot of biographical details regarding an individual who was deeply into the early Pentecostal movement. There we learn that after being a missionary in Africa, he spent 20 years along the US west coast setting up “healing rooms”.

There are some truly insightful details regarding Mr Lake.

For his early career, Mr Lake claimed that he started two newspapers. Both are named. Wikipedia notes that historian Barry Morton found no evidence for this claim and managed to track down who really founded them. It turns out that Lake had also exaggerated other parts of his past business career. He had not been an “industrious businessman” as claimed but had in fact been a small-scale roofer.

This supposedly godly man lied about his background. It is all there fully documented.

Why would he inflate his past career?

He was claiming that he had walked away from a $50,000 salary to work for Jesus and had previously been an influential financer. It is a typical yarn spun by a con man to craft an illusion of importance and confidence. None of it was actually true at all.

Yep, a red flag alert is rather obviously going up now.

His actual conversion to Pentecostalism happened during a tent crusade run by Charles Parham in 1907.

Now for something oh so familiar.

Later that same year Parham was arrested for being gay and also for pedophilia.

That resulted in the movement falling into chaos. It gave rise to a belief that many were infested with demons. Brutal exorcisms commenced. As a result, at least two people died.

In the face of all this Lake and many others fled town.

Lake in Africa

In 1908 Mr Lake went to Africa to commence missionary work. There exists a book that documents what happened during that period. You can find the full text of that book below. It is written by Barry Morton from the University of South Africa.

The full title is – The Devil Who Heals’: Fraud and Falsification in the Evangelical Career of John G Lake, Missionary to South Africa 1908–1913

It is a saga of how claims of amazing miracles were coupled with a plea for cash from the folks back in America and the UK. It turns out that Lake and friends simply kept most of the cash.

Yes, yet another familiar theme, It was all a giant scam.

Oh, and let’s not forget that Mr Morton reveals in his book that Lake was also caught having affairs with multiple women. Morton documents all the evidence.

Again, oh so familiar.

The Healing Rooms

In 1913 Lake returned from Africa and eventually settled in Spokane, WA. There he started The Divine Healing Institute and opened what he called “Lake’s Divine Healing Rooms”.

That ran from 1915 to 1920. He then moved to Portland and ran a similar setup for another five years. This all continued until he died of a stroke at age 65 in 1935.

That’s it, that is the full extent of what we learn via his Wikipedia page.

I’d bet good money that none of those listening to Dave Hayes will bother to check, and so fail to discover not only that the number of verified healings documented there is exactly zero, but that his supposed hero was a bit of a rogue.

Are there any documented healings by Locke?

There are indeed lots of claims.

The number of credibly documented healings, in any meaningful sense, is exactly zero.

But he put the Spokane Hospital out of Business … right?

Simple answer – no.

That claim, as best as I can tell, is totally and completely fraudulent.

Honestly, knowing what you already know about Lake, are you in any way surprised to discover this?

Perhaps it was not a Hospital, but a clinic that got closed down in Spokane

Actually yes.

In 1916, Lake’s own faith healing clinic was forced to close because they were violating the local fire code. Reading that link we discover that he had a total of just three people being treated with Prayer. It was a tiny small residential property. Not exactly an operation that could in any way challenge any hospital, assuming of course that his claimed faith healing had really worked.

But faith healing does not work.

Are there any supernatural healings anywhere by anybody ever?

There are of course numerous claims, it is very popular to promote stuff like this.

As for such claims, when asked to produce actual evidence, nothing ever turns up.

As an example, the famous evangelist Morris Cerullo was at one time loudly claiming thousands of miracles during a UK crusade. He was challenged on British television to produce his three best examples of claimed miraculous healing for scrutiny by a panel of doctors. He was unable to produce even one. Their final report was “there is no evidence that anything has occurred that is outside the realm of normal clinical experience

Rinse and repeat. Again and again, it is the same story.

But Faith Healing just must be real

The Wikipedia page on the topic goes into it all in great detail.

Basically, lots of claims, but no credible evidence.

Why do people belive in it?

Things happen and we interpret it as supernatural. Our brains work like that.

Somebody tragically dies. The clock on their bedside stops at the moment they died.

Astonishing, and yes, that really happened.

Supernatural?

Nope.

As the patient passed, the doctor picked up the clock, noted the time of death and placed the clock back. That jostled the mechanism and it stopped at that precise moment as he tossed it back on the table without really thinking about it.

Others, unaware of what had really happened, assume something supernatural had taken place.

Often there is a huge disconnect like this between what has actually happened, and what people sincerely believe has happened.

Bottom Line

The Divine Healthcare proposed by Mr Hayes is not going to happen.

Given his well-established status as a QAnon Cultist, I’m guessing you already knew that.

One Last Question

If you sincerely believe faith healing really works, then here is something for you to mull over.

You have just been admitted to hospital because you are seriously ill. Without immediate treatment, you will die.

A doctor stands ready to treat you. Also nearby is the very best faith healer.

There is only time for you to pick one.

Who do you pick?

You might think this is rather abstract and detached from reality. However, in the middle of a pandemic, we literally have people making this choice and opting to skip vaccines and go with Jesus.

Many who made that choice are now dead because they have been successfully conned into making the wrong decision.

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