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The practice of praying for the sick, anointing them with oil, is based on James 5:13-18 (ESV):

13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? 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. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. 17 Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently that it might not rain, and for three years and six months it did not rain on the earth. 18 Then he prayed again, and heaven gave rain, and the earth bore its fruit.

But what about diseases which are incurable for modern medicine?

Some obvious examples off the top of my head are blindness, deafness, Down Syndrome, etc. Other examples taken from this article https://www.pharmatutor.org/pharmapedia/top-incurable-diseases-in-medical-science-cancer-asthma-hiv-aids-common-cold-polio-ebola-influenza include:

  • EBOLA
  • Polio
  • Lupus Erythematosus
  • Influenza
  • Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease
  • Diabetes Mellitus
  • AIDS
  • Asthma

Do any Christian groups pray for the sick to get healed of these and other incurable diseases for modern medicine?


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As someone who comes from a denomination that continues to anoint with oil and pray for the healing of the sick, there is no disease that we do not pray for. Christians pray not only for little things like colds, and major things like blindness and polio, but even for the dead. We believe that God can and does heal the sick today in his name, although he often chooses not to in this lifetime. Cases of the blind and deaf improving after healing prayer are noted towards the end of this article. An example of someone raised from the dead from my denomination can be found here.

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  • What is the name of your denomination?
    – user50422
    Nov 21, 2021 at 18:00
  • The Christian and Missionary Alliance, we are charismatic but not Pentecostal
    – ninthamigo
    Nov 21, 2021 at 18:03
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    @NigelJ uhh, okay... don't really think lacking 'providences' makes it 'invalid', certainly not in a logical sense. The original question was whether Christian groups pray for incurable diseases, and I note an example that suggests non-cessationist denominations do in fact pray for healing of incurable diseases, even for the dead.
    – ninthamigo
    Nov 22, 2021 at 3:30
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    @NigelJ - ninthamigo shared an interesting medically documented healing here. I hope it helps.
    – user50422
    Nov 22, 2021 at 17:11
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    @NigelJ Dude chill. I included them as examples of things we pray for, not answers to a totally different question (does God heal these diseases/disorders today)
    – ninthamigo
    Nov 23, 2021 at 1:28

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