Atheist Converts After Mock Prayer is Answered

Stories like this stink of trouble.

A self-confessed atheist has become a believer after mocking God by sarcastically praying for his mother to win the lottery. However, his joke prayer was amazingly answered as the next day his mother won $1 million on the New York Lottery Sweet Million game.

Sal Bentivegna, 28, who did not previously believe in God, had sarcastically asked his mother to “ask your God for a million dollars”.

However, his mother Gloria Bentivegna, follows the Catholic faith, and staying true to her belief refused to ask God for such a thing.

Taking his joke further, Sal then prayed out aloud saying, “God, I don’t know if you’re real or not, but if you are there, please let my mother win a million dollars.”

He added, “If Jesus wants me to believe in him, that’s what he’ll do”.

The following day his mother bought a “Lotto Tree” of unscratched instant win tickets from her Church’s charity auction. Sal was then left absolutely stunned when he found out his mother had won a million.

via Atheist Converts After Mock Prayer to Win $1m Lottery is Answered, Christian News.

First, there is the whole context of this ‘miracle’.  God would not support gambling habits.  He certainly wouldn’t answer a prayer asking him for, of all things, money (since, you know, that whole ‘give up all you own and follow me‘ mentality he has).  Second: Why would God grant this prayer (mock prayer) over the potentially millions of daily prayers to him for the same thing, often by people in much more dire straits?

This is a brand of dilettantism that stretches back.  People need to learn the difference between a coincidence (she had the winning lottery ticket whether he prayed or not) and a miracle (something that defies all natural explanations).  People win the lottery, it happens all the time (though, usually, not to you).  But the odds are not all that insurmountable!  If they were, people wouldn’t ever win and nobody would play (well, some people might–because they enjoy giving someone their hard earned money for no reason whatsoever).  I think people purposefully blind themselves from this fact when they are fabricating this world where God intervenes like this.  How odd that people actually believe that God will expend energy to boost capitalism and support someone’s addicting (re: self-destructive) habits but won’t lift a finger to alleviate the AIDS crisis in Africa.

3 Responses

  1. Adding to what Thomas has said…

    Try praying for houses destroyed in a natural disaster to miraculously reassemble themselves, or for an amputee to regrow a leg or arm. These things never happen, and prayer hasn’t changed that fact.

    Matthew 21:21 says:

    “I tell you the truth, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.”

    If God kept his promises, destroyed houses would reassemble themselves and amputees would regrow limbs, and many other things they believers pray for but which never happen.

    For some insightful commentary about prayer and the biblical promises regarding prayer read:

    http://www.godisimaginary.com/i1.htm

  2. I think the whole story sounds bogus. Many atheists already feel Christians are fools. What a great way to show up the stupidity of Christians.

    Watch out using the word “dilettantism.” Remember the trouble you got in before.

  3. Dan,

    I don’t think the story is bogus. It is probably true. And as for the word use, I’m not sure what your point is… is it that I was once, years ago, ignorant about the subjects of the Bible, Theology, and Biblical Studies? Did I make some mistakes? Well yeah, okay, you got me, along with most of the world’s population. So? I’ve paid, and am still paying, my dues. What happened ‘before’ is ‘before’ for a reason. I’ve moved on, so should you. If I see someone who is a dilettante, I call them on it. Maybe they’ll take that word seriously and wake up like I did.

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