Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,454
Registered: ‎01-13-2013

Re: Anybody else wonder about this?

On 3/2/2015 Tenners said: They say not to discuss religion. I' taking a chance here. When someone you know and love has a serious health problem and then suddenly it looks like they're getting better...Wonderful! People tell you that God has healed them. If God is capable of making them well, why would he allow them to get sick in the first place? Sorry but I've never been able to grasp why that is. This is only one example, but religion does not make any sense at all to me.

He does allow people to get sick. We live in a fallen, sinful world. In His time, and in His wisdom, He still heals people.

That is the kind of world we are currently living in. It isn't permanent.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,409
Registered: ‎10-14-2013

Re: Anybody else wonder about this?

The issue of sickness is always a difficult one to deal with. The key is remembering that God's ways are higher than our ways (Isaiah 55:9). When we are suffering with a sickness, disease, or injury, we usually focus solely on our own suffering. In the midst of a trial of sickness, it is very difficult to focus on what good God might bring about as a result. Romans 8:28 reminds us that God can bring about good from any situation. Many people look back on times of sickness as times when they grew closer to God, learned to trust Him more, and/or learned how to truly value life. This is the perspective God has because He is sovereign and knows the end result.

This does not mean sickness is always from God or that God always inflicts us with sickness to teach us a spiritual lesson. In a world tainted by sin, sickness, disease, and death will always be with us. We are fallen beings, with physical bodies prone to disease and illness. Some sickness is simply a result of the natural course of things in this world. Sickness can also be the result of a demonic attack. The Bible describes several instances when physical suffering was caused by Satan and his demons (Matthew 17:14-18; Luke 13:10-16). So, some sickness is not from God, but from Satan. Even in these instances, God is still in control. God sometimes allows sin and/or Satan to cause physical suffering. Even when sickness is not directly from God, He will still use it according to His perfect will.

It is undeniable, though, that God sometimes intentionally allows, or even causes sickness to accomplish His sovereign purposes. While sickness is not directly addressed in the passage, Hebrews 12:5-11 describes God disciplining us to "produce a harvest of righteousness" (verse 11). Sickness can be a means of God's loving discipline. It is difficult for us to comprehend why God would work in this manner. But, believing in the sovereignty of God, there is no other option than suffering being something God allows and/or causes.

The clearest example of this in Scripture is found is Psalm 119. Notice the progression through verses 67, 71, and 75 - "Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I obey your word... It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees... I know, O LORD, that your laws are righteous, and in faithfulness you have afflicted me." The author of Psalm 119 was looking at suffering from God's perspective. It was good for him to be afflicted. It was faithfulness that caused God to afflict him. The result of the affliction was so that he could learn God's decrees and obey His Word.

Again, sickness and suffering is never an easy thing to deal with. One thing is for sure, sickness should not cause us to lose faith in God. God is good, even when we are suffering. Even the ultimate of suffering—death—is an act of God's goodness. It is hard to imagine that anyone who is in Heaven as a result of sickness or suffering regrets what they went through in this life.

One final note—when people are suffering, it is our responsibility to minister to them, care for them, pray for them, and comfort them. When a person is suffering, it is not always appropriate to emphasize that God will bring good out of the suffering. Yes, that is the truth. However, in the midst of suffering, it is not always the best time to share that truth. Suffering people need our love and encouragement, not necessarily a reminder of sound biblical theology.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,823
Registered: ‎11-06-2013

Re: Anybody else wonder about this?

Since we can't possibly know why we or others are injured, ill or dying at any particular time---or why some are cured and others are not, it's imperative for Christians to never judge or try to assume we know. Only God knows these things. Our duty is to accept His good will for us, IF we choose spiritual salvation. It is freely offered, never forced on His children.

HiLo points out the book of Job for some explanations, and it's also an excellent source to learn how NOT to behave when we're visiting with or trying to "comfort" those who are suffering. With friends like Job's, who needs enemies? That was pure torment.

While we're living within grace, we should try to always extend that in our words and deeds toward others. If your friend is suffering or has just lost someone to a terminal illness, it would not be the appropriate time to rejoice in your own recovery---boasting of "God's holy favor" toward you, or your loved one. No, not the time to testify of such miracles in their presence even if you believe that to be so. We are commanded to be merciful and compassionate to others. There is a time and a place for rejoicing---it is not in the presence of others' suffering. That can feel like salt to an open wound and cause others to doubt God's love for them. Jesus Himself, wept as His friends grieved for Lazarus, though He trusted he would be raised again. Compassion; empathy and care of others first.

I personally most often pray for increased strength through faith to endure whatever I must suffer ... even unto death itself, I pray that my faith in Jesus Christ will endure and sustain me through the process. I know, according to His Word that this is in accordance to His will for me. Rather or not He ever grants me further miracles is entirely His choice and for His purposes. I am willing, or so I BELIEVE. We never know what will be asked of us, but if we love Him, we truly become willing to live---or die to flesh to His glory. He has already saved my eternal soul from the wages of sin, as only He could---paid my debt in full at the cross. When I ask for and receive more evidence of His mercy, according to His will, on behalf of others and myself ... I know that is so that the glory will go to Him. This is why we give thanks and praise His holy name in testimony. I also know it's not the only way His glory is made manifest---look to His disciples and other Christian martyrs ... so that none can boast that their own faith is more perfect than anyone else's, or that they are more beloved.

As to why to see physicians (and pray for them and give thanks for them and their gifts); the same could be asked for why eat, drink, sleep, exercise, bathe, etc.? We're to honor life and these bodily temples until we're given new ones---again through grace. None of it is earned spiritually, but while on earth in mortal form, we have personal responsibility and accountability to and for ourselves and each other. Negligence and deliberate self-abuse is sinful. All life is a sacred gift to be honored with respect and great care.

Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,522
Registered: ‎09-29-2013

Re: Anybody else wonder about this?

It's all an opportunity to either grow spiritually, or to choose not to. It's not the circumstances, but what you choose to do with and through them. Life lessons and tests of your faith, and who or what you place that faith in.

When it is truly my time to go, no amount of self-determination and medical intervention will keep me alive off (artificial) life-support. Everybody will die, and I choose to do so in the hope promised by Jesus Christ.

In the meanwhile, I'm praying in gratitude for the very air I breathe and every other blessing. Trying to always stay mindful that most are not wrapped in pretty ribbons and bows.