I have wondered about this for a long time, with almost no answers to be found except statements affirming the assumption of God’s Sovereignty on death, without investigations. We have 1 Samuel 2, Deuteronomy 32:39, and most famously, Job 1 all seeming to state it’s God who decides we die. But…WHAT ABOUT THE FALL? From the Fall as revealed in Genesis, it seems reasonable to understand that death is the result rather of Causality, that death is our natural reality since the banishing from Eden, which God warned us of hence it was not His will although He permitted it. Yet even the angelic doctor St Thomas Aquinas agrees with the notion of God’s Absolute Sovereignty over everything that happens?
COMMENTARY ON THE BOOK OF JOB
by Thomas Aquinas
The Fourth Lecture: Job’s Submission
(Chapter 1: verse 21)
<<Second, he shows the same thing from divine action saying, “The Lord gave; the Lord has taken away.” Here his true opinion about divine providence in relation to human affairs must first be considered. When he says, “The Lord gave,” he confessed that earthly prosperity does not come to men accidentally either according to fate or the stars, or as a result of human exertion alone, but by divine direction. When he says, however, “The Lord has taken away,” he confesses also that earthly adversities also arise among men by the judgment of divine providence. This leads to the conclusion that man does not have a just complaint with God if he should be despoiled of his temporal goods, because he who gave freely could bestow them either until the end of his life or temporarily. So when he takes temporal goods away from man before the end of life, man cannot complain.
Third, he shows the same thing from the good pleasure of the divine will saying, “As God pleased, so it has been done.” For friends will and do not will the same thing. Thus if it is the good pleasure of God that someone should be despoiled of temporal goods, if he loves God, he ought to conform his will to the divine will, so that he is not absorbed by sadness in this consideration.>>
So my question is, what is the explanation to death in regard to the Fall and on the other hand to the other Old Testament chapters mentioned? Because, the reality to me seems that if someone dies of colon cancer, it’s because that person ate nothing but genetically modified constipating overly acidic junk their whole life, not because “God did it”…! Or, if a woman’s child died by being shot by a hoodlum or by a hit and run, they didn’t die because “God did it”,they died because an unrepentant sinner killed them…! Et cetera…
What is the answer?