Tuesday, July 20, 2021

The Theology of sickness and disease: Does God punish people with sickness and afflictions?

how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. Acts 10:38 MEV

Dear Friend, I pray that in every way you may prosper and be in good health,  just as your soul is prospering. 3 John 2 Mounce Reverse Interlinear New Testament 

God is Good. His Word can't be more clear. Jesus in manifestation upon earth revealed it perfectly. Yet why do so many believers often question this when tragedy strikes, when one experiences a loss, or when the doctor reveals a diagnosis of a particular illness? 

 The root is a theology of sickness and disease that has become a stronghold in the minds of many. The root is a result of religiosity and not Christianity. A religious ideology that is based merely on human intellect, man's experience, and a shallow surface glossing over of the Scripture, where the character of God and the heart of God is missed almost entirely and instead replaced solely by creeds and commandments and cold-hearted traditions of men.

 This religiosity leaves us questioning God's Goodness. The theology of sickness and disease believes God is the author of tragedy or affliction. When faced with an attack of sickness and disease religion also asks God's children to accept it and celebrate it;
"Christian friend, if after clearing your conscience, praying and using the means God has provided for the improvement of health, you remain sick, then take your sickness as a gift from God for your good and His glory. It must be that He wants you sick. Be at peace with His providence. Heaven will only be the sweeter for those who suffer more."
 What a fatalistic view of the life we have in Christ. Just give up and die. Again, this view makes God the one afflicting. This view also says smile you're on your way to Heaven. Heaven is majestic but we have work to do here on earth. We have a Gospel message to share. We can't do that dead and gone. 

 Believers also question God's Goodness because the theology of sickness and disease can go further claiming that God is actually punishing you when you sin with sickness and disease. 

"This was the regular practice under the law [punishing sin through sickness and disease] and should not be seen as normative now.  Having said that, we would be foolish to say God would never judge our sin this way today."

This theology is burdensome and harsh. It weighs heavily on believers who have made a wrong choice or mistake in their life. They can spend months or years thinking of themselves as unworthy, unclean, and unwelcome in God's presence. 

 Whenever a negative experience arises in their life, the thought immediately rushes in, "this must be God punishing me". If sickness or disease attacks their body the enemy who is the great condemner, will speak to their mind, this is the result of your sin. The religious theology of sickness and disease merely echos the lies of the enemy.

 Is God punishing people by bringing sickness and disease? To answer, let's look at perfect theology, the Lord Jesus Christ. Whenever Jesus encountered the sick and afflicted we never see Him once declare, I can't heal this person. God is punishing them. 

 When Jesus encountered a woman who was caught in the actual act of adultery, why didn't He place some cancer on her? Why didn't He give her ms or md or a bout of tuberculosis? I thought Jesus punished sins with sickness? What a real candidate for judgment. 

 Adultery breaks one of the big ten. Adultery shatters the hearts and trusts of the betrayed spouse and the children. Adultery is so cruel and brings about so much mental anguish and emotional turmoil. If anyone should have been judged with sickness surely this woman was worthy of it.

 Yet we see Jesus, God's perfect theology, doing the unthinkable. He gave her the gift of no condemnation. He didn't accuse her, He forgave her. He didn't afflict her, He restored her. That's perfect theology!

 Is God punishing people for their sins by afflicting them with sickness and disease? Absolutely not. Jesus' final sacrifice was more than enough payment for the sins of all mankind. Hebrews tells us the Finished Work is complete. We can't add to it nor can anyone take away from it. God is satisfied with Jesus' sacrifice. For God to afflict anyone for their sin would mean God hasn't fully accepted Jesus' Finished Work. Reject this religious lie that God is punishing people with sickness.

So if our sins have been forgiven and forgotten, why would we ever need to offer another sacrifice for sin? Hebrews 10:18 TPT

God is a loving Father. He punished the sins of all mankind in the body of Jesus on that tree. He has accepted the final sacrifice. He isn't looking to punish you after Jesus bore the judgment of all your sins. In fact, when we trust in Christ, we are made the Righteousness of God in Christ. We are accepted and approved. God no longer imputes our sins to our account. Therefore reject religion's lie that God seeks to punish you when you fail or fall. 

 Let me briefly address a passage that seems to contradict what I am saying.

So also I will make you sick, striking you down, Making you desolate because of your sins. Micah 6:13 NASB

This passage is recorded under the Old. The curse of the Law was in effect. Jesus had not yet died and paid the price. This was only true in the Old Covenant. While this may seem harsh, also know God still gave those under the Old hope. There was still healing and mercy under the Old. When Jesus died on that Cross, He bore all sickness and disease. If He bore it, God doesn't expect you to. If He bore all the curses of the Law, then there is no more punishment for sins. Don't allow one obscure passage to rob your hope when we see Jesus reveal the heart of God. 

 In summation, remember no matter the situation or circumstance God is always Good. We don't have to question God's goodness in the face of tragedy or disease. Why? Because we know from His Word, from His Finished Work, and from His character revealed in Christ, that He isn't the author or creator of evil or disaster or tragedy or any sickness or disease. 

 Whenever one faces illness remember God isn't punishing them. Some may say well their sin caused it to come. It is a truth that poor choices can result in physical sickness or disease. Tobacco use may result in health issues. Having multiple sexual partners brings opportunities for sexually transmitted diseases, etc. Whatever the cause, focus on the solution, Jesus Christ. James reminds us even if one sins, God forgives and heals the same, by Faith. Trust in Christ's goodness and relinquish these traditions of men. Trade the theology of sickness and disease for the perfect theology of Jesus!

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay 

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