The Gospel is the Cure
At the writing of this commentary my cousin, Justin Graves (not real name), died. He was young; in his mid-thirties. He died because his body stopped working. His body deteriorated to the point where it could no longer function.
It was not a bullet wound, a car accident, substance abuse, etc. It was not consequences of choices he made. Justin was born with a rare congenital disease - Behr's Syndrome - that dystrophies the muscles, crippling anyone that has it. Justin's only fault regarding that condition was to be conceived out of parents that carried the recessive genes of the disease. Justin's fault was to live. Can Justin be held responsible for being born with the syndrome? Evidently, no. Still, he bore a condition that if left untreated could, and did harm him. There is yet no cure for this rare syndrome.
But, what if there was a cure? What if the person with a treatment walked into Justin's room and gave it to him free? What if Justin declines to take it and eventually dies? Could Justin be held responsible for his untimely death? Yes, he can be held accountable. For now, his death is not due to the disease, but for declining the cure.
As Justin was born with this disease, we are all born with Sin (Justin included). As the psalmist said, "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me" (Psalms 51:5). Paul expresses the same point in Romans 3: 10 – 12,
Romans 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:
Romans 3:11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.
Romans 3:12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
Which is why Paul concludes in verse 23 - almost repeating the psalmist - "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). As Justin could not be held responsible for his disease, neither can we be held accountable for being born in Sin. We did not choose to be born this way. But, if there was a cure for Sin, given to us freely and we reject it, then we are held responsible for refusing the cure.
Is there a cure for Sin? That is the greatest news ever to come into this world. Yes, there is a cure for Sin, and that cure is Jesus Christ. Paul gives us a glimpse of what this means in Romans 3: 24 – 26,
Romans 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
Romans 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Romans 3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
The cure will not do us any good unless we take it. By faith we take Jesus, and He cures us of the Sin disease. We must continually take Him as if it was a prescription, for it to be effective. It is a lifelong treatment. But, we will be glad we did it in the life to come.