Session 5: Why Does Cancer Exist?

Apologetics and the Gospel  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  8:31
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Join us today as we discuss the question, why does cancer exist?

(Intro Music starts with first slide - read intro and move forward)
Welcome to Apologetics and the Gospel. My name is Pastor Jonathan White, and I am the Lead Pastor at CrossPointe Family Church in Hurricane, WV as well as a practicing Emergency Medicine Physician.

Question for Today: Why Does Cancer Exist?

This is a personal and difficult question for many today. I don’t think there is anyone listening to this podcast that hasn’t either been personally affected by cancer or had a close friend or family member affected by cancer.
But why does cancer exist? Where did it come from?
Today we are going to address this question like we always do - from a scientific perspective as well as a Scriptural perspective.
So the first thing we need to address is to further understand what cancer is.

What is Cancer?

According to, cancer is a disease in which some of the body’s cells grow uncontrollably and spread to other parts of the body.
It can happen virtually anywhere in the human body. The human body is made up of trillions of cells. Each of these cells have a defined life span. In order to continue existing, these cells must grow and then multiply by a process called cell division.
Without getting too far into the weeds in cellular division, there are many steps of this process that must occur without error or problems develop.
When problems do develop during DNA replication especially, we get something called a genetic mutation.
Some of these genetic mutations are called silent mutations and do not lead to any harm in the cells. But others lead to mutations that cause various diseases including cancer.

How Common Is Cancer?

According to, It is estimated that around 1.9 million new cancer cases are diagnosed yearly as of 2022.
It is also estimated that around 600,000 people die each year from cancer.

What Are the Most Common Types of Cancer?

The most common types of cancer today are breast, lung, colorectal, and prostate cancers.

How Can I Prevent Cancer

As a physician, I cannot address this topic without giving some preventative health information as well.
According to the World Health Organization, around 1/3 of cancer deaths are due to tobacco use, obesity, alcohol consumption, low fruit and vegetable intake, and a lack of physical activity.
So far we have addressed how cancer occurs and what it is. We have discussed some of the most common forms of cancer as well as some preventative measures we can take to try to prevent cancer.
But we still need to answer the question, Why Does Cancer Exist?

Does Evolution Have an Answer?

Those who have an evolutionary worldview, have a difficult time explaining cancer. Because in their worldview, things went from lesser to greater. They went from worse to better. Things went from lower to higher.
Yet, cancer diagnoses continue to increase worldwide.
Although it is true that an increased life expectancy as well as better diagnostic testing have attributed to this increased diagnoses, these two things do not fully explain the increase of cancers worldwide - especially as seen in pediatric cancers (per NCI data). According to NCI data, pediatric cancers since 1975 are up 27%.
If evolution provides a framework of improvement in life forms over time, then why does it seem like the opposite is what we observe?
But what about the Bible…

Does the Bible Have an Answer?

Absolutely. Genesis 1 and 2 describe the earth as created perfectly.
Genesis 1:31 ESV
And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.
Everything is great. There is no death. There is no sin. And there is definitely no cancer!
But then Genesis 3 comes and man sins against God. Sin and death enter the world. DNA replication, heart health, relationship health, and mental health are all affected. Everything is affected.
This sin that entered the world through Adam and Eve in the garden continues to affect the world today. It affects the earth through catastrophic tornadoes, hurricanes, volcanoes, and earthquakes. See Romans 8:22:
Romans 8:22 ESV
For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.
But our bodies groan as well. I’m pretty sure I just heard everyone near or over 40 say, ‘Amen’ after that statement!
Cancer entered the world when sin entered the world. And sin continues to wreck havoc on our DNA and bodies. God has been gracious through the use of medicine to treat and even cure some cancers, but it is clear that our bodies continue to get worse and not better.
Note one quick thing here. We are all sinners - yes. But not all cancer is due to your sin in particular. Although our sins do have consequences and some cancers can be directly related to our sins (consider smoking, obesity etc), many cancers are due to the overarching sin of the world. We all live in this fallen world and we are all affected by the sin of this world.

Is There Any Good News?

Yes! The good news is that for those who are in Christ - who have believed in Him as their Savior and repented (or turned away from their sins) - they will receive a new and glorified body after this broken one passes!
1 Corinthians 15:35-49 lets us know that we will be given a new body! It will be imperishable and undefiled. And Revelation 21:4 states:
Revelation 21:4 ESV
He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
There will be more tears and no more pain. There will be no more death!
So in conclusion, why does cancer exist? The answer is because of sin. But that is not the end of the matter.
We all pray for a cure for cancer. Obviously, for those of us with more medical knowledge, we realize that there are more than 100 documented types of cancer with many of them having many different mutations requiring different treatments even for the same type of cancer.
But for those of us in Christ, we continue to have hope. We know that first and foremost, He has the ability to heal anything this side of eternity. Sometimes His answer is yes and sometimes it is no.
But eternally-speaking, for those who are believers in Christ, cancer will eventually be eradicated forever as we live in our Lord in heaven.
Praise be to God for that promise!
(Slide Closing 1)
This presentation has been put together to strengthen the faith of believers and to challenge the unbelief of others. I pray that you have found this presentation helpful.
Also, please note that this 10-15 minute presentation cannot exhaustively address most issues. My prayer is that it stimulates you to personally research further, and I am assured that you will find the Word of God proven time and time again.
(Slide Closing 2 with outro music)
Feel free to email any ideas you would like to see addressed by emailing me at There are slides prepared for each of these presentations which can be accessed at our church website at and select ATG. God bless and have a blessed week.
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