An important topic for Christians is the relationship between sin and sickness. Another is the connection between forgiveness of sins and mercy. There are many thoughts here, so this will likely be Part one of a series.
The first question is whether there is a connection between sin and sickness. The answer is “yes” to the general question. By the general question, I mean that there was no sickness before Adam’s fall. The entrance of sin brought sickness in tow. Notice also that in the Atonement, God introduced the solution to sin and sickness, i.e.,
Isaiah 53:5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
Psalm 103:2-3 Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits- who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases
So that shows the link between sin and sickness in the general causative sense. The fallen state of humanity is the background to all sickness. However, we see that healing and the forgiveness of sins became available through the second Adam—Jesus Christ. I say “became available”, because they are not automatic. The new currency of exchange with God has become faith, and forgiveness and healing are available through faith.
Now, let’s look at the individual level. Can sin bring about sickness? Yes it can. The sin of worry can bring about many stress-related diseases. Fornication can lead to sexual diseases. Anger and violence can lead to physical harm. Illegal drugs destroy the whole person. Thus, many types of sin can lead to sickness and harm to the mind and body. The best authority here is Jesus, who, after healing the disabled man at the Pool of Bethesda, found him and said;
John 5:14 Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had made him well.
Jesus warns the man that further sin can lead to sickness. Some may then conclude that all sin leads to sickness or that all sickness is the result of the sick person’s sin. However, these would be erroneous assumptions. I’ll explain why in the next post…stay tuned…