Technology has finally caught up with the insatiable need for humanity to understand the mysteries of the universe. It’s funny actually. In Ephesians 3, God told humanity that the mysteries of Christ would be fulfilled in the fullness of time. Romans 11:36 says, “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things.” And if we, His creation, are of Him, and if our spirits, our souls, and even our bodies, our health, and our genetic makeup are subject to Him, here we are on the timeline of all eternity, experiencing God’s way of giving us a glimpse into His great laboratory of creation.
Some discoveries are nothing short of unbelievable. Discoveries in genetics alone are availing us better medicine and, like the Six Million Dollar Man of the late 1970s, we are finding ways to be stronger, be faster, and in many cases live longer. After all, there was a time in history when man lived to over nine hundred years old. (See Genesis 5.) Then suddenly, for reasons explained in Genesis, God cut us to one hundred and twenty years on earth. But who even lives to one hundred and twenty? Many will soon enough. The most exhilarating thing in terms of modern discovery is our ability to treat disease and how we can improve life. Consider that we are now cloning sheep and growing replacement body parts, and stem cell research is garnering a lot of attention. As science races to learn more, they realize even more how little they know.
However, it seems that we are getting sicker than ever before and at a younger age. We are living longer than we did in, say, the Dark Ages. Nevertheless, it seems that early sickness is sweeping children across the globe and that debilitating sickness and disease is on the rise all over the world: arthritis in its more than one hundred different forms; diabetes in its multiple types; and cancer, cancer, and more cancer. It has been said that every ￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼single one of us will have someone in our immediate family or extended family circle hit with the wretchedness of cancer in our lifetime. I have seen it three times in my circle in the last ten years alone.
But science has discovered something and given it a name: epigenetics. It is sweeping conventional and non-conventional medicine faster than anything we have ever seen before. Let’s break the word down. Epi, the prefix, comes from the Greek and means “upon, besides, attached to, and over.” Genetics means “the study of genes.” And what are genes? No, not Levi’s! Maybe you hear someone talk about genes and think about what caused you to have your dad’s nose or your mom’s toes. We hear,“Oh, my hair’s going early because I got my grandpa’s genes.” But there’s more and a much deeper need to understand what genes really are and what they do.
A gene is “a region of DNA that encodes function.” Genes are what make up heredity and are made up of DNA. Our genes are commonly around twenty-seven thousand base pairs long, but they can be up to two million. And science discovered that we have over twenty thousand genes. We have two copies of each one of those genes. Let me try and summarize the breakdown simply. Your body is made up of cells. Inside your cells you have nucleotides—over three billion of them to be exact—and these nucleotides have ￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼over twenty thousand genes, which form twenty-three pairs of chromosomes. You got half of each pair of chromosomes from your father and half from your mother. These chromosomes are, in essence, what determined what you look like. But according to what Epigenetics is saying, genes influence so much more.
According to its definition, a symptom is “a sign of a disease or illness.” Symptoms of a cold, for example, include nasal congestion and a cough. So if you are displaying those symptoms, you are considered symptomatic. Symptomatic means “showing symptoms of something.” What you are showing symptoms of exists at a cellular level, at a DNA level, and is expressed by your genes. And watch this: whatever symptoms I have were directly passed to me from those before me. Somehow, someway, I triggered their activation. Or said another way, something caused the sickness and disease that lay sleeping and lurking inside me to be switched on.
Epigenetics speaks to signs, traits, symptoms, or changes—an actual, physical mark on our DNA when someone has survived an important experience, whether it’s positive or negative. These marks actually alter the function of genes. Did you get that? Simply put, tragedy, suffering, great and prolonged stress, and experiences in life we survived by enduring and hanging on to the altar have affected the behavior of our genes, have actually altered regions of our DNA, and suddenly sickness and disease have been switched on!
But it does not stop with just our personal experiences. It is also what we are exposed to, our surroundings. Epigenetics is telling us that what happens in the womb affects our genes. Yes. Inside the womb we are exposed to environmental toxins, stress from your mother and what she went through when you were inside her, the good stuff and the bad stuff. When you come out into the light, psychological stress, adversity, poverty, abuse, etc. all factor in way down deep inside of you, in the genes that God ￼￼￼￼￼￼created to function a certain way, to express power, to express what He created you to do in this world.
Epigenetics is not just sweeping medicine; it is an emerging field in consciousness because they are actually discovering that in addition to sickness and disease markers, genes pass along memory, fear, depression, anxiety, low self-confidence, and even darker traits from generations past. If there were ever a case for confirmation of scriptures such as Deuteronomy 5:9, “visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations,” it is the discoveries of Epigenetics. And if there were ever an argument for a super-natural demonic force at work, it would likewise be confirmed by the discovery of science.