Why Do Christians Fall Sick?
Sickness came to the world as a result of man’s fall (Genesis 3), and will persist until the return of Christ to complete His work of redemption (Romans 8:19-23). God is the source of all restoration through the redemptive work of Christ (Isaiah 53:5).
Due to the fact that full redemption of our body will not be completed until the last day, neither will our body be fully cured until then. Because of various reasons (given below), God allows Christians to get sick. Likewise, God has full sovereignty to determine the timing, the type of sickness, and whether to offer cure to our sickness. The following are reasons God allows sickness to occur:
1) Some sicknesses are not related to our sins. God allowed the man in John 9:1-3 to be blind since birth so that the mercy and power of God can be displayed.
John 9:1-3: As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.
2) Other sicknesses are directly related to our sins; we reap what we sow (Galatians 6:7). For Example, in early church of Corinthian, Christians got sick even died because they took the communion in an unworthy manner.
1 Corinthians 11:27-32: Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep. For if we would judge ourselves, we would not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened by the Lord, that we may not be condemned with the world.
Galatians 6:7: Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.
3) Some sicknesses are allowed on Christians so that we can be close to God and experience Him through our weakness. Paul said, God’s grace is sufficient for him, for His power is made perfect in Paul’s weakness, and only when he is weak, he is strong in the presence of God (2 Corinthians 7-12).
2 Corinthians 7-12: To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations, there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. I have made a fool of myself, but you drove me to it. I ought to have been commended by you, for I am not in the least inferior to the “super-apostles,” even though I am nothing. The things that mark an apostle-signs, wonders and miracles-were done among you with great perseverance.
4) Some sicknesses are allowed on Christians to give us a stronger desire and expectation for our redeemed body in heaven (Revelation 21:1-4; Romans 8:23-27).
Revelation 21:1-4: Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
Romans 8:23-27: Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.
5) Some sicknesses are allowed to test and develop our faith (Job 42:5,6; Habakkuk 2:4)
Job 42:5,6: My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you. Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes.”
Habakkuk 2:4: the righteous will live by his faith..
6) Some sicknesses are allowed as judgments for Christian leaders (2 Samuel 24; 1 Chronicles 21)
7) Other sicknesses: We cannot fully understand God’s prerogative and His will for Christians’ sickness and suffering (Deuteronomy 29:29; Romans 8:28). However, one thing is for sure; God works for the good of those who love Him. All we need to do is to love God with all our hearts and our mind (Deuteronomy 6:5; Matthew 22:37).
Deuteronomy 29:29: The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our sons forever, that we may observe all the words of this law
Romans 8:28: And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Christians are not immune to sicknesses and suffering. God allows sicknesses on Christians for various reasons, some are related to ours sins or sins of leaders, others are not. Some sicknesses are allowed to test and develop Christians’ faith, to keep us close to God and experience Him through our weakness, it also gives us a stronger desire and expectation for our redeemed body in heaven. Although we may not fully understand the reason behind our sicknesses and suffering, we can be sure that God works for the good of those who love Him. All we need to do is to love God with all our heart and our mind and leave the rest up to God.