We shall look at various scriptures which teach us that: 1) Disease is the RESULT OF MAN’S SIN; 2) Disease COMES FROM GOD; and 3) Disease COMES FROM SATAN.

1) In Romans 5:12 we read, “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.” This solemn verse teaches us that when Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden, his sin affected the whole human race by bringing DEATH to mankind. It is reasonable to assume then that DISEASE was also introduced at that time, for in most cases men (and women) die due to some disease (heart disease, lung disease, kidney disease, etc.). God had warned Adam that if he sinned he would die. “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Genesis 2:17, NKJV). The fact is Adam’s sin not only affected man, but all of creation. This is borne out in Romans 8:20, “For the creation was subjected to futility,” and because of the “the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now” (verse 21). The earth was cursed and the animal kingdom has been afflicted with disease and death as well.

2) We just saw that disease and death are God’s punishment for man’s sin, so we can conclude then that “disease comes from God.” In Exodus 4:11 we read, “So the LORD said to him (Moses), ‘Who makes the MUTE, the DEAF, the seeing, or the BLIND? Have not I, the LORD?’” Here the Lord tells us plainly that “disease comes from God.” But we must always remember that if sin had never entered into the world, there would be no disease or death.

3) We also know that “disease comes from Satan.” Perhaps the most well-known example of this is in the case of Job. In Job 1:11 Satan challenged God with these words, “But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face.” God responded by saying, “Behold, all that he has is in your power; only do not lay a hand on his person.” The rest of the chapter shows us that Satan destroyed all of Job’s cattle and took the life of his children, yet Job did not curse God. In the next chapter Satan asks if he can afflict Job with disease, “But stretch out Your hand now, and touch HIS BONE AND HIS FLESH, and he will surely curse You to Your face” (2:5). Once again God granted Satan his request and thus we read, “So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD, and STRUCK JOB WITH PAINFUL BOILS from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head” (verse 7). Yet Job did NOT curse God.

We have seen that Adam’s sin brought disease and death into the world and that this is the just punishment from a holy and righteous God. We also saw that at times God allows Satan to afflict man with disease and even death. But it is instructive to see that in Job’s case the disease was not the result of his personal sin, but rather Satan’s challenge to God and God allowing this to occur to test Job’s faith. Sometimes God allows Satan to cause disease to prevent men from sinning. A case in point is seen in 2nd Corinthians 12:7, “Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, TO KEEP ME FROM EXALTING MYSELF, there was given me a THORN IN THE FLESH, a MESSENGER OF SATAN TO TORMENT ME—to keep me from exalting myself” (NASB). Like with Job, Satan no doubt thought this disease would result in Paul cursing God, yet God, in His sovereignty, used this affliction to keep Paul humble (after receiving marvelous visions from God). God had another purpose in this, as we see in verses 8-9, “Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness’.” Paul experienced God’s GRACE and STRENGTH in the trial! So, if we are a believer in Christ we can take comfort knowing that disease isn’t always a punishment from God; it can be FOR OUR GOOD! (311.5) (DO)