7 billion people and counting

National Geographic conducted a world population series a few years ago. Their research findings were very informative and interesting. For those of you who enjoy stats here are a few from the study conducted:

  • 5% of people consume 23% of the world’s energy.
  • 13% of the world’s population don’t have clean drinking water
  • 38% of the world’s population don’t have adequate sanitation.
  • 5 people are born every second around the world.
  • 2 people die every second around the world.

What I found profound was how fast the world’s population has grown over the past two hundred years. At the end of the year 1800 the world’s population was estimated to be 1 billion people. By the year 1974 it had grown to 4 billion people. 37 years later at the end of 2011 the population had increased to a staggering 7 billion people. It is estimated that by the year 2045 the world’s population will have grown to an astronomical 9 billion people living on planet earth! Can you even begin to wrap your head around those types of numbers? According to the Genesis account of the Bible the world’s population originated with two human beings- Adam and Eve.

Adam, as we have learnt, was the first patient zero because he was originally uninfected by sin. Yet because of his disobedience to God he was infected with sin and one of the consequences of this choice was the introduction of death into the world (Romans 5:12). The question that needs answering is “how does one find a cure for sin?” We would need a second patient zero who was not infected by sin. Are there any worthy candidates amongst the 7 billion people that have lived or are living on planet earth? The problem, as we noted previously, was that because Adam was the representative of the human race, all people (descendants of Adam) are born into this world infected by sin. Therefore this second patient zero would need to be unique in many ways but specifically unique in their conception and birth into the world. A woman would need to become pregnant without having sexual intercourse with a man. In other words, the only way that a second patient zero could exist is through divine intervention. The only man to have been born in this manner was Jesus Christ of Nazareth.

Furthermore in order to qualify as the second patient zero Jesus would have to be a descendant of King David according to the Davidic covenant (1 Chronicles 17:11-14). Both Mary and Joseph, his earthly parents, were of the house and lineage of King David. The problem however, was that Joseph was not a direct heir to the throne of David because of the Jeconiah curse (Jeremiah 22:24-30). Jeconiah, one of the last kings of Judah, was cursed by God and part of the curse meant that none of his sons or descendants could sit on the throne of David. Joseph was part of Jeconiah’s lineage. If Jesus was biologically related to him it would disqualify Him from fulfilling the Davidic covenant. While there is no biological connection between Joseph and Jesus, Mary’s lineage was not related to the curse of Jechoniah. So this fulfilled the requirement for kingship, that Jesus was a son of David through Mary and not part of the Jechoniah curse. The dilemma is solved by the virgin birth of Jesus completely bypassing the Jeconiah curse. Mary had not yet had sexual intercourse with her fiancé, Joseph, when she became pregnant. God caused Mary to conceive supernaturally by the Holy Spirit. Listen to what Matthew 1:20 says, “But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.”

The implications of Jesus Christ being the second patient zero in human history are profound and offer much hope. Unlike the rest of mankind, His unique and miraculous conception and birth guaranteed that He was not infected by sin. This meant that He was born sinless and lived a sinless life (Hebrews 4:15). Jesus therefore was truly innocent, uninfected, and able to provide a cure for sin. He qualified as the second patient zero because He was the Jewish, God-Man King!

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