If you have learned anything about me you will no I love biology, especially when it pertains to parasitic organisms. The thought that some alien life form can hijack our bodies is not just erie but fascinating. Parasitic worms especially have captured my interest from a very young age.
There is a lot of truth in science, and I believe God has given us natural facts to grasp supernatural truths, so men and women might possible reach out and find Him.
Romans 1:20 says “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”
I see object lessons all the time in science. I cannot help but draw many comparisons.
Sin is a lot like a virus or as Augustine profoundly said himself was likened to a “parasite”
Augustine said once, ‘There can be no evil where there is no good… Nothing evil exists in itself, but only as an evil aspect of some actual entity… Evils therefore, have their source in the good and unless they are parasitic on something good, they are not anything at all.’ (Augustine, Enchiridi
Parasites give no benefit to the host really, on the contrary, some destroy their hosts.
There are many types of parasitic organisms but they all have this in common. The feed off of a host, they can live either as external parasites like leeches or ticks, but in other cases they can live inside their victims completely undetected robbing the life from the unfortunate soul.
In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans he describes sin in this way. He describe how the Law, or often referred to as the Law of Moses, was not sinful in itself but through the law sin was introduced.
“What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” But sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, produced in me every kind of coveting. For apart from the law, sin was dead. Once I was alive apart from the law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died. I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death. For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death. So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good.” Romans 7:7-12
What does this mean though? God laid out his standard as to how his chosen people out to live, so he gave them more or less a legal code of conduct. However, the problem that occurred was even though the law was “holy, righteous and good” it also created an opportunity to violate those principles. With the introduction of a command come an opportunity to break it.
Lets use an illustration from US law. Suppose there were no laws legislated for a particular matter, lets call it action Y. It would for that reason be not considered criminal in our legal system to do action Y if there is no law forbidding it. However, as soon as a law is passed in regards to action Y it also creates another opportunity for a criminal offense.
Sin has always existed but as Paul also said “For apart from the law, sin was dead.”- This is very much like our friend the parasite. A parasite is bad no matter what but as soon as it finds a host it can thrive. When the host dies, so does the parasite.
The law was sin’s initial host, and I guess you can say we became the secondary host for sin.
It’s very much like a parasite known by the Latin name, Dermatobia Hominus. Dermatobia Hominus is a what we know the “human bot fly.” An adult bot fly will lay an egg on a mosquito when both are traveling through the air and then when the mosquito bites a person, the bot egg falls off and the maggot burrows deep into the flesh of it’s secondary host, a human vector.
When God’s law came it also carried with it a capacity to say “yes” and obey, or “no” by disobeying and doing wrong. So we are the problem at the end of the day. How often do we know what is right and fail to do it? We know we shouldn’t lose our tempers but we feel that powerful inclination rise up and make us fall, time and time again. We are like the child or teen who’s parents tell them not to do this or that but for some reason that only fuels our desire to do it more. Many women say the idea of having something they know the cannot is irresistable. Women are complicated needless to say but that principle is at work in all our hearts, we want that thing we shouldn’t or are told not to.
Paul says, “sin seizing the opportunity afforded by the command deceived me, and produced every covetous desire in me” When a parasite attacks a human body it can create physical cravings due to the fact the body is telling us it needs nutrition, and in the same way sin in the soul produces the unclean craving we all have had. Paul concludes by stating
“So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?” Romans 7:21-24
But thank goodness he does not conclude there but says, ” Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.”- Romans 7:25
In essence, no we can never be totally free of this parasite as long as we have a human body in this world. However, we are not left without the antidote. Biologically, a person can eradicate most of a parasite and live a normal life even though a few rogue renegades remain, but unlike before they are not infested or overrun by the parasite. Likewise, a Christian is not sinless after he or she trusts Christ, however, the reign of terror that sin caused has been nailed to the cross. The dominion has been abolished even if on occasion a Christian sins. “for if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone and the new has come” 2 Corinthians 5:17