To my WP followers: “Jennifer” on FB asked me the following question: “Why do people get sick and why do they die?” This post is written in response to her question. I could have gone into much more detail but felt that I should stick to the basics. Followers, please feel free to add comments to help her with this question if you’d like.
Jennifer, the short answer to your question is that people get sick and die because of sin. In order to understand this answer, you have to understand what sin is and what its negative effects are on mankind and the whole world.
Definition of Sin
Sin, according to the dictionary, is an immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law. It is falling short of God’s requirements. 1 John 3:4 says: Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
Sin is refusing to do whatever God tells us to do through His Holy Word. It’s also doing whatever He tells us not to do. Sin is disobedience to the ordinances of God. There is no need for me to do a roll-call on sin because we all know what it is about. Lying, cheating, stealing, drinking, etc. You know the drill.
Did God Create Sin?
God did not create sin, but when he made angels and men He gave them a free-will. We are all free moral agents. Angels and men have the potential to sin or go against God any time we choose to do so. But we are also able to choose to obey God and live for Him. Satan and one-third of Heaven’s angels decided to go against God and became the first sinners.
In the Book of Genesis, chapter 2, verses 16, and 17 we are presented with a situation in which Adam (and Eve through either God or Adam) were given a particular option. They could obey God and avoid a certain fruit from a specific tree in the Garden of Eden or eat of that tree and die.
16 And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:
17 But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
Adam and Eve Had All of the Other Fruit in the Garden Available to Them
Adam and Eve had access to all of the other fruit in that entire garden and still would have been within the Will of God. What was it about that one tree, the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil that made them partake of it? That tree held the future of all generations in its limbs. Avoid it, and man would live; eat of it, and man (all the way down the human chain to you and me) would die.
Satan Beguiles Eve
Unfortunately for mankind, the fallen angel, Satan, in the form of a serpent, suggested to Eve that God was a liar when He said that man would die. Eve believed his lies, disobeyed God, ate of the forbidden fruit, gave it to Adam, and this disobedience ushered in death. What was the actual sin of Adam and Eve? Yes, it was disobedience, but listen to what Satan said, and we might find that pride was at the core of the problem: Genesis 3: 5-6 says:
5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and also gave unto her husband with her; and he did eat. (Accent added by author)
This suggests that Eve was possibly intrigued by the thought of becoming a god, just as Satan was. The sin of pride can be infectious.
God Confronts Adam and Eve
When God confronted them about their sin, Eve blamed the serpent, Adam blamed Eve and ultimately, he blamed God by saying, in Gen. 3:12 the woman whom thou gavest to be with me… They weren’t repentant, they were full of pride. Mankind is still blaming God today when negative things happen. They accuse Him when things go wrong in their lives; when negative circumstances occur; and reject Him because He won’t do what they try to tell Him to do. But God is sovereign, and Jesus reigns supreme. They are not going to obey us, we are to follow them.
God’s Reaction to the Sin of the Serpent, Adam and Eve
So how did God react to the sins of the serpent, Adam and Eve? God cursed Eve with painful childbirth and made her submissive to her husband; he cursed Adam with hard work, surviving by the sweat of his brow; and the serpent with slithering around on his belly and eating dust. But they were not the only ones who were affected. The ground was cursed because of Adam and Eve’s sin, and it is still cursed today. With the curse came sickness, disease, pain and then ultimately death.
All of Nature Was Affected by the Sin of Man
Man’s sin not only affected mankind, but the entire creation was affected. Romans 8:22 states: For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. All of nature was affected by man’s sin. Animals are not what they were initially made to be, the stars, the seas, everything was altered. The most severe and grievous response to man’s sin was that the relationship between God and man was shattered. And what we have to realize is that sin pays wages. Romans 6:23 says For the wages of sin is death.
The Answer to Jennifer’s Question is Nearly Complete
Hopefully, this information answers Jennifer’s question concerning why people get sick and die. Illnesses, diseases, dying and death were ushered in by the curse on sin. But I would be remiss if I did not remind us of the rest of the story. Because God loved mankind so much He just didn’t want to see Him go out like that. God created a plan in which man could be loosed from his hopeless state of ultimate death with hell his destination.
1 John 4:10 states Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
God’s Plan included asking His only begotten Son to die for us as a propitiation for our sins. 1 John 2:2 says: and he is the propitiation for our sin: and not for ours only.
The Death, Burial, and Resurrection of Jesus Christ Paid Our Sin Debt
Jesus Christ gave his life for us that we might be able to live eternally with Him and our Heavenly Father. When He rose from the dead, He rose with the victory over death, Hell and the grave. He paid our sin debt with His life! All we now need to do in order to be saved is to is believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, accept Him by faith, repent of our sins and live the way God requires of us. 1 John 1: 9 says If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Once we are saved, the infilling of the Holy Ghost affords us the power to please God. Acts 1:8 says But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you…
We Must Each Receive Forgiveness for Our Sins
It is extremely important that each of us asks for forgiveness for our sins. Why? Because, according to Hebrews 9:27-28 (KJV), …it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment. Each of us will be judged for any unrepentant sins in our life. Eternal Hell will be the destination of everyone who has not received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
Death Will Ultimately Be Eradicated
There is one last piece of good news for those who will be citizens of the Kingdom of God. According to Revelation 21:3-4 death will ultimately be destroyed.
And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. (Accent added by author).
Amen and Amen!