Weighing in on Sickness Issue
As the new mother of a colicky infant, I've also found myself having this discussion with others. The mothers I've met online dealing with the same issues wonder whether God gave them a colicky baby as punishment, or whether God was involved at all. I do not know why God gave, or allowed Mandy to have colic. I know He is not going to cause her discomfort to punish me, and I know Satan is not powerful enough to determine the physical characteristics of my baby. The Scriptures say she was knit together carefully in the womb. Satan has no access to my womb.
Pulpit Helps readers keep using the example of cancer, but I think science has determined that some people can get cancer and some can't. Some smoke for a lifetime without ever getting it, and others get it from smaller exposures to smoke - like second-hand smoke or the use of a wood burning stove. God is the One who formed the physical being of each person and He created some that could get cancer and some who could not.
Furthermore, when Satan wanted to harm Job, he had to get our Father's permission first. I do not read anything that indicates this is a unique requirement to Job. I see no reason to think anything other than Satan needs permission to harm any one of us.
Clearly, Jesus does wish only health and the safety of our souls eternally. The Bible clearly states that He does not wish anyone to go to hell. Yet hell exists and many of our fellow human beings will spend eternity there. Likewise, sickness exists despite our knowledge that Jesus would rather have us healthy. And finally, when they asked Jesus why the man was born blind, He made it clear that it was not punishment for anything.
I don't know why sickness exists, but I know it is not always a punishment. And I know that whether or not God causes it, it is certainly not outside His power to control it.