Man who is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble. He comes forth like a flower and faded away; he flees like a shadow and does not continue (Job 14:1, 2).
These words spoken by Job centuries ago come tumbling down to us in cataclysmic proportions. The leader of the avalanche is the pandemic caused by the Corona Virus. As of this day, January 10, 2021, 377,000 people have died from the virus in the USA. I have had family members, brethren, friends, and acquaintances die from the virus. I’m thankful vaccines are being distributed and additional treatments are helping combat this enemy to health, the economy, and life. In deed we are living in “troublesome times.”
To speak on a sad note, I am deeply aware and concerned about the attitudes and actions some have toward wearing masks, social distancing, and limited gatherings. Even among some Christians there is a disregard for these guidelines; some have created division and spread of the virus to others or caused quarantines. One of the popular remarks made by the rejecters of guidelines is, “The government will not tell me what to do. If I choose not to wear a mask it’s my business not theirs.”
Talk about inconsistent! These same rejecters let the government tell them what to do about paying taxes, obeying traffic laws, taking oaths, sending children to school, etc. Then there are the Scriptures that tell us to pay our taxes, pray for rulers, obey the law, not to curse those in power, love our enemies, do good to all men, etc.
I think, at least for me, the relevant question relates to God. Is God interested in our health? Does He care about what happens to His children—you and me—health wise? My answer is YES. It is yes based of Scripture.
BASIC SCRIPTURES ABOUT GOD AND HEALTH
I don’t have the time and space to go into a deep and detailed presentation relative to what God has said about what we can classify as health concerns. Hopefully, what follows will be a door opener to a more in-depth study.
Here are 10, what I call, bedrock truths to base what will follow on:
- Health is an issue that relates to the human body (cf. Psalm 139:13-16).
- God created man’s body and said “it was good” Gen. 2:7)
- God gave Adam specific orders (Genesis 3:17-24)
- God made promises relative to health (Jer. 30:7; 33:6).
- God wishes for us a “merry heart” (Prov. 17:22).
- The Holy Spirit dwells in the body (1 Cor. 6:19, 20).
- God wants us to prosper and be in good health (3 Jno. 2).
- Jesus died to guarantee the resurrection of our bodies (1 Cor. 15).
- One day the body will die (Hebrews 9:27).
- One day the body will be resurrected (Cf. 1 Cor. 15).
JESUS’ CONCERN FOR HEALTH ISSUES
The Gospels are filled with accounts of Jesus healing and performing miracles. Each one should be studied in its context; however, for my purposes I simply want to call our attention to the fact that Jesus was concerned with the health problems of people; reinforcing the point that our heavenly Father is concerned too. Affirming we should be concerned too.
- Jesus heals an official’s son at Capernaum in Galilee (Jno. 4:43-54).
- Jesus heals Peters mother-in-law sick with a fever (Matt. 8:14, 15).
- Jesus cleanses a man with leprosy (Matt. 8:1-4).
- Jesus heals a paralytic who was let down through the roof (Matt. 9:1-8).
- Jesus heals a man with a withered hand on the Sabbath (Matt. 12:9-14).
- Jesus heals a woman with an issue of blood (Matt.9:20-22).
- Jesus heals a man who was unable to speak (Matt. 9:32-34).
- Jesus heals a man who cannot hear or speak (Mk. 7:31-37).
- Jesus heals a man born blind (Jno. (:1-12).
- Jesus raises Jairus’ daughter back to life (Matt. 9:18, 23-26).
While these healings and miracles were designed to prove Jesus was the Son of God, they point to the fact that He was concerned about the life and health of others. We cannot heal or perform miracles but we can, and should, be concerned about the life and health of others. It’s the “Christ-like thing to do.
EXAMPLES OF HEALTH CONCERNS UNDER NEW COVENANT
Several times after the establishment of the church we see examples of health issues, concerns, and healings:
- He gave Timothy advice on how to take care of his stomach problem (1 Tim. 5:23).
- He requested prayer for Epaphroditus (Phil. 2:25-30).
- Paul had a thorn in the flesh he had to live with (2 Cor. 12:6, 7).
- Peter brings Tabitha back to life (Acts 9:36-42).
- Peter and John’s response to a lame man (Acts 3:1-9).
OLD TESTAMENT SCRIPTURES ON HEALTH
Romans 15:4: For WHATEVER things were WRITTEN before were written for OUR learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the SCRIPTURES have HOPE.
Paul affirmed that we can learn by studying the Old Testament Scriptures. Thus, it is relevant and essential that we take a few minutes and read what God has said about health and related issues. The following are randomly selected passages that reveal God’s attitude toward our health, etc. (Please take time to read the Scriptures).
- The wearing of a mask covering the lips (Lev. 13:45).
- Rules for kind of food eaten (Deut. 14:20, 21).
- The use of poultices (2 Kgs. 20:7).
- The use of ointments (Jer. 8:22; Isa. 1:6).
- Physicians employed (2Chron. 16:12; Jer. 8:22).
- Medicine is referred to (Prov. 17:22).
- A splint for fractures (Ezek. 30:21).
- A place to deposit human waste (Deut. 23:12-14.).
- Rules for body cleansing (Lev. 15: 7, 8).
- The practice of quarantine (Lev. 13:46, 50).
- Rules for disinfections (Lev. 15:12, 13).
- Circulation of blood (Lev. 17:11-14).
- Rules for not touching the unclean (diseased) (Lev. 5:2, 3).
- Rules for containers (Num. 19:15).
- Disinfecting items (Num. 19:18).
- Weak eyes (Gen. 29:17).
- Prayer for health and healing (2 Kgs. 20:1-7; cf. Jas. 5:13-15).
- The law of circumcision (Lev. 12:1-4).
- Rules for diseased garments (Lev. 13:53-55).
- Prayer request for cleansing (Psa. 51:7).
- Emotional health advice (Prov. 4:23).
- Warnings about diseases (Ex. 15:26, 27; Deut. 7:15).
These things were written for our learning, not in order to “bind them as conditions of salvation”, but to educate us relative to what God has said about sickness, diseases, procedures, healing, death, etc. Therefore, I conclude that God is interested in our health. This is why as a steward of my body I will do everything in my power to protect my health and the health of those I am around.
Remember God’s desire for us under the New Covenant is: Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in ALL THINGS and be in HEALTH, just as your soul prospers” (3 John 2).
Caesar is trying to help us be in “good health” by giving these rules:
- Wear a mask when around others
- Observe six-feet social distancing
- Wash your hands often every day for 30-seconds
- Avoid crowds (The number varies by jurisdiction)
- Wear gloves and throw away after one use
- Learn the symptoms of the virus (self-monitoring)
- Stay in touch with your health provider
Think about this. What if you had the virus, won’t wear a mask or observe social distancing and infected someone else and that person died, how would you feel?
As James commanded, we need to pray for wisdom (James 1:1-6).
As Paul commanded, we need to obey Caesar (Romans 13:1-7).
As Jesus affirmed, “by this shall all men know that you are my disciples if you love one another” (John 13:34, 35). YES! God cares about our health. Do I?