When man rebelled against God, his whole personality was affected. The word used in Scripture to describe this condition is corrupt. Every area of human personality is affected—spiritual, moral, and physical. Death is at the end of physical corruption. Paul said, “Through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned” (Romans 5:12). Through sin, the poison of corruption entered us. First Corinthians 15:56 tells us, “The sting of death is sin.” Just as a bee or a wasp introduces its poison into a body with its sting, so Satan introduced the poison of corruption and death through the sting of sin.
We have all become corrupt creatures. In Philippians 3:21, Paul called our present bodies “the body of humiliation” (Modern King James Version). We are humiliated because we rebelled against our Creator. No matter how elegant, healthy, strong, wealthy, or famous we are, we live in bodies of humiliation. We may eat the finest meals and drink the tastiest beverages, but we will still have to use the toilet. We may be strong and healthy, but when we get really warmed up, we start to sweat. Whether wealthy or poor, we all sweat. These built-in bodily functions remind us that we are all rebels and transgressors whose bodies are consequently subject to corruption.
I spent five years training African teachers, and I was interested in their athletic abilities. I would tell these strong young men, “Just bear in mind, one little anopheles mosquito can come along and insert his proboscis into you, and you will be a shivering, fever-wracked mess.” That is our body of humiliation. The good news is that Jesus died to redeem us—and not just our souls. He redeemed the whole man—body, soul, and spirit.