I am not a coffee drinker. I think it tastes gross. Unfortunately, with everything going on with moving and setting up a new house, I have been drinking coffee out of necessity. Blech. I was only made to feel a little better when I saw an article touting the potential health benefits of drinking coffee.
A group of researchers followed around 120,000 people in the U.K. who regularly drank unsweetened or sugar-sweetened coffee over the course of seven years. Their findings suggested that those who drank 1.5 to 3.5 cups a day were less likely to die during those seven years than those who didn’t drink coffee at all. They found that coffee drinkers were 16-21% less likely to die during the study period.
This would be really interesting since the earlier prevailing thought was that coffee drinking led to a number of health problems, BUT this study didn’t actually look at causality. This means that the study didn’t show any actual biological reasons for why their health risk was different. They just said that this subgroup had the different level of health risk. Because of this, for all we know, those who could afford to drink that much coffee were in fact wealthier and thus had greater access to reliable healthcare or more time for fitness activities which would in turn change their risk of dying during those years.
Without causality it is lazy if not dangerous to say then that coffee drinking leads to greater health. But the scientists and subsequent reporters pushed it way too far when they put out this headline for the article:
“Drinking Coffee May Be Linked To Lower Risk Of Death, Even With A Little Sugar”
This title makes it sound like if you drink coffee, there is a chance that you could achieve immortality. Literally in the article they would use the words “lower mortality risk”. I have a lower chance of being mortal if I drink coffee? Sounds cool! How come it’s never worked for anyone in the past?
The scientist side of me is LIVID that these people would be so flippant about their word usage in an academic journal, but the Christian side of me is just screaming, “There’s only one surefire way to save you from death!”
All of us will die a mortal death, but our souls are immortal, and Christ has already won the victory for us. In the Apostle’s Creed it says, “…[He] died, and was buried. He descended into Hell; the third day He rose again from the dead” Our God was willing to put His physical human body through the agony of death so that he could go down to Hell to save all of the souls who had been there waiting to go to heaven and so that all of us who would come after him would have the chance to join him eternally in heaven. One of my favorite pieces of religious art is the depiction of these lines from the creed.
Look at this amazing picture. Not only is Christ there to save, but he BUSTED down the doors and STOMPED on the devil to do it! Looking at this picture, I can really truly imagine St. Paul shouting at the top of his lungs these lines that he wrote to the Corinthians.
Death cannot win. Death has no sting. We as Christians are victorious over death. No silly coffee is going to save you from death. Jesus Christ has already done that in the most loving and also EPIC way possible. Let us spend this week in awe of the power and the might that our God has. His power is beyond our comprehension. Then let us also take time to pray a prayer of thanksgiving that our God saw it fit to use that power to save us all.