Chronic disease management has become one of the most valuable classes for me as a student at Hartland College. I am so glad that my teacher gave me an opportunity to research on the subject of cancer and to present it in the class. Though it was not an extensive study, I was able to draw some significant facts that I believe God wanted me to understand.
“Sin is like a cancer” is a very common phrase people use these days. There are several sermons prepared based on this phrase to show the similarities between sin and cancer. However, when we study cancer on a microscopic level, it brings a whole different perspective which most people can’t even imagine. When I studied this, I found out that there are several traits that are common between cancer and the devil. We will look at a few of them in this article.
God has created us “fearfully and wonderfully," even at the microscopic level (Psalm 139:14). Before corruption, everything inside our body was “Decent and in Order” (1 Corinthians 14:40). However, when a disease enters the body, this Order and Decency is ruined. This should remind us of the decency and order that was disturbed when Lucifer whilst in heaven transformed as Satan.
Cells in our body undergo two processes called cell Proliferation and Differentiation. Proliferation is also known as the Cell Division Process. It is an adaptive process where new cells grow so that it replaces the old cells or when additional cells are needed. In a normal condition, cell proliferation occurs so that the cells that actively divide would be equivalent to the number of cells that die. But the cancer cells that enter into the body are not so. They keep multiplying and multiplying but don’t die until the person is finally deceased. Thus the scientists say that the cancer cells are “immortal." Whereas when a noncancerous cell is cultured and viewed microscopically, it has only a limited amount of replications and then those multiplied cells die.
After sin entered this world, death became a part of everything that lives because “the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). For this reason, Adam and Eve were exiled from the garden of Eden so that they would not take the fruit from “the tree of life, and eat, and live forever” in their sinful state (Genesis 3:22). This shows that sin is not tolerated by God. However, the plan of the devil, as you know, is to disobey God and manage to live forever with sin. Thus we see that this character of the devil is revealed in the Carcinogenic Cells.
An article from http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/ says the following, “Cells from Henrietta Lacks, an American woman who was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 1951, are still growing. They are used in research laboratories all over the world, many years following her death.” This shows the real characteristic of the cancer cell.
Differentiation is the process that comes after proliferation. It works on specializing each cell progressively until it becomes an adult cell. This process specializes cells in specific sets of categories, such as structural, functional and length of lifespan. For example, cells in kidneys are different from the cells in the stomach; cells in liver are different from the ones in the blood. Thus, we know that the cells of each organ are different from other organs. These cells go through this process so that they will do their specific work in the assigned place.
When we look to the cancerous cells it is totally different. They do not have a specific shape and therefore form a random shape. Cancer cells also don’t have any assigned place and therefore when they enter the body they multiply, and when they break loose from the primary tumor, they move to different part of the body and form a tumor there which is called Metastasis. When they metastasize, they affect the other normal cells present around them. Also, as we saw before, they don’t have a specific lifespan and therefore live inside the body until the affected individual dies or some kind of treatment is given to kill those cancerous cells.
Another characteristic of the normal cell to be noticed is what occurs when they come in contact with each other. When the normal cells multiply and come in contact with other normal cells, they stop dividing and thus avoid being crowded in that area. In contrast, cancer cells do not respect such boundaries and therefore continue to divide without desisting.
Now that we have seen the differences between the normal cell and the cancerous cell, we will look at the similarities between the character of a cancerous cell and the devil:
1. Cancer cells don’t die until they kill the person. Satan’s objective is to not leave the person until he devours his victim (1 Peter 5:8).
2. Cancer cells stay immortal as long as they are not treated. Isaiah 14:14 shows that the devil wanted to live forever in his sinful nature, stating that he would be like the most High, who is immortal.
3. Cancer cells do not have a specific order or specific shape. 1 Corinthians 14:33 says God is not the author of confusion. But when Satan is involved there is no order and there is always confusion and we can see it throughout the Bible (Daniel 9:8).
4. Wherever the cancer cells are present they affect the normal cells. When Satan was filled with pride and sin, not only was he filled with corruption but corrupted the other angels also, thus causing them to fall from heaven with him (Revelation 12:4 & 9).
5. Cancer cells do not respect the limitations and boundaries of the human body as do the normal cells. Satan is rebellious and didn’t want to keep the boundaries set by God which are His Commandments (Revelation 12:17).
These points mentioned are not exhaustive--as mentioned prior. However, this snippet gives a huge understanding of what our bodies are going through.
‘Let it be made plain that the way of God's commandments is the way of life. God has established the laws of nature, but His laws are not arbitrary exactions. Every "Thou shalt not," whether in physical or in moral law, implies a promise. If we obey it, blessing will attend our steps. God never forces us to do right, but He seeks to save us from the evil and lead us to the good’ (Ministry of Healing, Page 114.2).
Are we going to struggle so much in the spiritual life only to fall in to the devil’s trap in health? Are we suffering in health so much that it affects our mental, spiritual and social life too? NO! We should not let the devil in any form, shape, or type defeat us because we have victory in Jesus (1 Corinthians 15:57). We also have perfect guidelines to have better health. Today is the day for you to make your choice!
Martin Raj is a Student Missionary at Hartland College.