|Volume 23 Number 11 November 2021
Jerry R. Kendall
“Lord, behold, he whom You love is sick” (John 11:3 NKJV). Jesus was not the only one to receive such a message. Most of us have or will spend time with family and friends who struggle through illnesses. I know of no exceptions. Sickness will confront us if it hasn’t already. Health is not forever, and illness releases strong emotions and fears. There are many things out of our control, and we don’t like this! Let’s learn some lessons from sickness.
Sickness May Come to
God’s Very Best Children
Job was righteous, but what incredible health problems he endured (1:1; 2:7). Hezekiah became mortally ill and was told to get his house in order (2 Kings 20:1, 12). Have you ever been exhausted and sick for several days? So was Daniel (Daniel 8:27). Sometimes we must cope with an ill parent. Joseph was told, “Your father is sick” (Genesis 48:1). King David was confronted with his sick child, who subsequently died (2 Samuel 12:15-23). How hard it is for a parent to go through a child’s critical illness and passing. Others know that what they contract will mean their physical life will end. “Elisha had become sick with the illness of which he would die” (2 Kings 13:14). We all have had those who have blessed our lives suddenly get sick and die as did Dorcas (Acts 9:36-37). Then some, like Timothy and Epaphroditus (1 Timothy 5:23; Philippians 2:25-27), have ‘‘frequent ailments” (1 Timothy 5:23 ESV) that cause them difficulties and concern others for a long time. [The apostle Paul was hindered but not stopped by “a thorn in the flesh” (2 Corinthians 12:7-10). ~ Louis Rushmore, Editor] The apostle Paul struggled but resorted to prayer; it helps (James 5:16)!
Sickness Does Not
Change God’s Love for Us
God’s love is an everlasting love, and it is good to know that His love for His children never changes (Jeremiah 3l:3). Our physical health, or lack of it, has nothing to do with His love toward us. God’s love will never end, and it is based upon grace, and that love is not connected with the condition of one’s body (Ephesians 2:4-5; John 13:1; 1 John 4:8). There is no power great enough to separate us from God’s great love (Romans 8:35-39).
Jesus Is Deeply
Touched by Our Sickness
Others may not care as they should, but Jesus cares (John 11:33-36; Hebrews 4:15). Jesus was deeply moved and wept. Our Lord expressed grief over the death of His friend.
Sickness Should Not Change
One’s Love and Loyalty to Christ
The devil will use health problems to try to weaken or destroy one’s faith. He knows illness is hard, and Satan wants to embitter the sick and get them to blame God and turn on Him. What we need to continually do is to trust God. We must see the security and value of faith. Faith may be strengthened through struggles and challenges of life. May we develop a heightened awareness of the suffering of others, knowing any load is lighter when another helps to carry it. What we overcome through Christ can equip us to comfort fellow travelers (2 Corinthians l:3-7). Through all our difficult times, we must not discount God’s will. If we do return to health, may we also return to service in His kingdom. Nobody cares like Jesus!
Created Full Grown
Cecil May, Jr.
The proposal that the earth is billions of years old is based on calculations as to how long it takes for organic material to turn into oil, for example. If you could have met Adam the day after he was created, how old would you have guessed him to be? He was, of course, created full grown. There is no reason not to assume that other things created were also created full grown. A full-grown earth, planned by a Creator who knew what would be needed, would have had mountains, canyons, hills and petroleum.
That is easier to believe than that the earth began with nothing and gradually, accidentally became the earth we now have. That is our choice: an intelligent, all-powerful Creator or nothing becoming something, accidentally evolving into, not only a full-grown earth but intelligent, rational beings capable of seeing, hearing and talking.
Take your choice. I have made mine. “…What may be known of God is manifest in them [mankind], for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse” (Romans 1:19-20 NKJV).