Is Illness some kind of punishment from God?

United States
January 11, 2008 11:45am CST
No! It is not, I hear all the time from sick people how they must have done something wrong to deserve the sickness they have incured, and it always seems that sick people "find Jesus" while they are sick because they think it is a punishment. However sickness is a way of life, everyone gets sick and those that dont well are just healthy. God wants you to come to him while you are happy and healthy because then you are coming because of faith, not because of need. What is your opinion of this topic?
5 people like this
19 responses
@williamjisir (22884)
• China
12 Jan 08
Hello dear pastorkayte. You have my complete support. I don't think that it is some punishment from God. As this is very normal for anyone since we have to experience our birth, growth from an infant to an adult, during the time of which we can be sick, healthy, and pass away. So it is not punishment at all. Thanks.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Jan 08
thank you
• United States
11 Jan 08
Your're right, being alive means you will have illness in your life no matter what. But I have seen many Christian talk shows who have believers come on the show and tell their story of healing. The people say they were non-believers but found the Lord while they had cancer or some other disease. They prayed all day every day and were healed to their doctors amazment. How do we explain that? And even the talk show host tells the TV audience go to God when you are ill, and he will heal you. This is very tempting and influential to a sick person believer or not who sees this or hears about it. Any non-believer who is desperate is going to try it. And if it works to cure cancer or something that was thought to be fatal, how do we explain that? I think that a person's illness can be a good way to bring people to God. Maybe through their healing they will become believers. This is a good thing. It doesn't matter what makes you a believer as long as you are.
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Jan 08
I agree that healing can come from God, but it seems to me that an alarming number of people feel they are being persecuted by God and that they must then and only then turn thier life around. I personally feel that whenever you find God it is a good thing but I want them to know that God is not the blame for every bad thing that happens in their life.
@ParaTed2k (22971)
• Sheboygan, Wisconsin
11 Jan 08
If we are to believe the Holy Bible then, the answer is, sometimes it can be. Sometimes it can even be a blessing for God. Most the time though, it's just (as you say), a way of life. If we are to beleive the Holy Bible, those who are sick as a punishment will know it as such. I can't think of any examples of a person in scripture being made sick by God, that they didn't know it. Ok, there is one... I'm not sure if Job ever knew, but that wasn't punishment now, was it. What is just plain wrong (with absolutely no scriptural backing) is when someone tells someone else that their illness is a punishment (or blessing) from God.
1 person likes this
• United States
11 Jan 08
How very true that is.
1 person likes this
@gloria777 (1675)
• India
12 Jan 08
Illness does not have any link with God, but how we care our health. Illness are due to human errors and it is not due to any punishment. Some people have the attitude to blame others including God himself for all the situations in their life.
@friendship (2085)
• Canada
12 Jan 08
In my opinion, the answer is yes and no. This site has a great length explanation about it. http://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Davison/Roy/Allen/1940/diseases.html
@DrRick (1)
• United States
30 Jan 09
NO. Absolutely NOT!!! Disease is not caused by God. BUT let's look at the origin of that belief. Go back about 2000 years, when medical science had no germ theory, no understanding of sanitation, communicable disease and such. The Romans, advanced for the time, were the amongst the first to even bring in sewage systems. They noticed a correlation between sewage use and decrease in disease but had no knowledge of the reasoning behind this. Add to that, the passage in the Bible where Jesus heals a paralyzed man (Mark Chapter 9) The story couples healing with forgiveness of sin, as to suggest clearly and explicitly that illness is caused by sin and thus punishment from God. Jesus was rebuked thusly for forgiving sin, something supposedly cast on this paralyzed man by God. This story has become the impetus for the belief by many, held today that illness is caused as punishment by God. This belief was common amongst the occupants of Judea and the Roman empire; It was a common belief of Jews and held evidence of a superstitious and seemingly ignorant thinking of the time. Remember, these people, the ones who told these stories like in Mark Chapter 9 over and over, were products of a culture ruled by astrology, magic, superstition. Alchemists, Astrologers, MAgi, all held positions of Power as they were believed to have an understanding and diving properties of the earth. Many people held that the earth was fixed and that the sun rotated around it. They held beliefs that the same mystic forces whoch magically created the earth (maybe in 7 days) also controlled and intervened in the lives of the people. So illness, to them, was Believed to be punishment from God. Fortunatley, 2000 years later, we know better. Illness is NOT a punishment from God. Illness is a natural result of life. It has many causes, and as far as science can prove, "God" is NOT one of them. Anyone who believes that is holding onto outdated cultural and scientific myth. God has nothing to do with it. But people, today, in search of understanding, out of guilt, frustration , may still hold to these beliefs. God has nothing to do with it and should not even be considered. This is the 21st century. Let us live in it.
• United States
24 Jun 09
I think if you read the bible, you could probably find passages to support both positions. I don't believe that God created disease. But the bible does say, as with Job, that he may use disease to accomplish his purpose. Accordingly, in our life while disease is a normal part of life, God may use it to accomplish his purpose. Its possible that sickness is the only way we will change our lives and turn to him.
• United States
8 Feb 10
Illness like belief is a choice, a person who at birth is stricken with some awful disease, may seem as though they had no choice, however in thier family the choice was made for them. Like my child who has Lupus, she clearly did not have a choice in the matter, however my history shows that my family passed it on through genetics and how they lived, a choice they made for future generations. Having a cold comes from choices as well, I live in the US and everyday commercials, television shows, and hundreds of health classes tell you how to keep yourself free from the germs that cause colds, however, man still doesnt wash his hands, eat the right foods or do the things he has been taught to fight this illness. Then when that cold becomes pnuemonia then it is punishment by God. Again believing in God is a choice because we are given free will but sickness is not a part of sickness, however it can be a part of the cure.
@Uroborus (910)
• Canada
11 Jan 08
I agree with you. How could it be? If you look at history there are many good people that are struck down by illness often and at a young age while there are example of very evil people living a long life. There is no correlation between illness and how "good" or "bad" a person you are. Also, if we live long enough we are all eventually struck by illnes. I can't believe then that God has it in for us at the end, no matter what. However, remember that how good or bad you are does affect what you get for Christmas.
• United States
12 Jan 08
Now that is funny.
@soulist (2985)
• United States
11 Jan 08
Illness is not a form of punishment if anything its a way to grow closer to God and rely on him more. Illness helps you see that God is in control of your life sometimes. I recently was diagnosed with cancer and not once did i believe it was some sort of punishment from God in anyway. I used it to grow closer to him and now am using it to help others.
• United States
12 Jan 08
Now that is a great answer, we should rely on God to make us better not blame him because we are sick.
@lilaclady (28226)
• Australia
11 Jan 08
I think the body is like a car engine, it can break down and with all the influences to help it break down like bad food , bad lifestyle and such, I guess the body needs a bit of fine tuning every now and then just like a car
• United States
12 Jan 08
thank you for posting
@sedel1027 (17850)
• United States
11 Jan 08
In my experience people who believe that illness is a punishment from, God are often the same people who do not take responsibility for their won actions. It is easier to say, God punished me so I am sick, then to say I was around a sick child and didn't wash my hands, so I am sick.
• United States
11 Jan 08
How true that statement is.
@mamasan34 (6520)
• United States
5 Feb 08
I have to agree with you on this! People just get sick because we are human. No more no less. Maybe these people's thoughts are a throwback to when Job was afflicted with leprosy by God allowing satan's hand to test his faith. This obviously does not happen in this day and age. Other than that I realy don't understand why people feelt hat way. Sometimes I joke around and say God has afflicted me with this illness, but I say it in jest. We have to have a sense of humor about things or we won't have a positive outlook on things. Laughter is the best medicine.
@barehugs (8984)
• Canada
12 Jan 08
I'm 74, still working every day, and I'm not Christian. I've not had a medical checkup for 30 years because I am enjoying good health. I believe all disease begins in the head.I have a strong faith in God, but I draw the line at Religion. God has never made any demands on me and I don't expect She ever will!
@ssh123 (31086)
• India
12 Jan 08
Illness comes to all living beings and only man can express the pain and get remey either temporarily or permanently. God has nothing to do any such thing caused to humans. Sometimes it is self made illness, sometimes, it is by birth and sometime due to change in climate, sometimes it is due to bad food consumed or bad atmosphere. Ultiamtely it is the human being that are responsible for such illness and no one else.
@vorovo (67)
• Nigeria
12 Jan 08
i think thats how God has made it, life is full of ups and down no matter how righteous you are, there are odd times in life remember job in the bible, TY
• Brazil
12 Jan 08
Not.The disease is actually as punishment of the man hinself, winthout respecting the laws of nature, acuses the destruction of the evironment, does experiments on animals and creates biological agents to its self destruction
@TDonald (1422)
• United States
12 Jan 08
In a sense, I would say yes. Let me explain. Illness is caused when some natural law is broken. Either intentional or not. Now if you believe that the set of natural laws where created by something you call a god, the violation could be seen as a punishment.
@eyewitness (1577)
• Netherlands
12 Jan 08
I don't think illness is a punishment of God it's just life like you said. However sometimes people come to faith when they are ill or in different situation i don't think God matters how you come to faith or in what situation,but the fact that you come to faith is way more important for him.After you have come to faith you ask God things not only because of need but you share your happiness and your sadness with God. Especially in time of need God will be there.
@jayman32 (267)
• Australia
12 Jan 08
your right, god wants us to come to him out of love, faith & respect. illness is something we do to ourselves and is not punishment from a higher plain.
@anniepa (27520)
• United States
12 Jan 08
I've always wondered why do little children get horrible illnesses or even adults who have lived very good lives and never done anything noticeably wrong in their entire life, as least nothing terrible because I know none of us are without sin. Then there are those who have never done anything but hurt others, etc. and they seem to live forever and never suffer a moment. I've got to admit, things like that confuse me deeply. Annie