On account of exhausting labor in cultivating cursed ground (Gen. 3:17-19; 5:29), because of injurious words (Prov. 15:1), the unresponsiveness of others to good (Rom. 9:2), disease and other adversities (Job 2:13; 16:6), humans have experienced mental, emotional and physical pain. Dreadful or frightening situations, whether real or visionary, have likewise given rise to pain.—Ps. 55:3, 4; Isa. 21:1-3; Jer. 4:19, 20; Ezek. 30:4, 9; see LABOR PAINS.
‘NO MORE PAIN’
Although unpleasant, the physical sensation of pain serves a beneficial purpose by alerting a person to danger as regards bodily damage and thereby enables him to take steps to avoid serious injury. The fulfillment of God’s promise that “neither will . . . pain be any more” (Rev. 21:4), therefore, could not mean that humans would become insensitive to or incapable of experiencing pain. Rather, mental, emotional and physical pain that has resulted from sin and imperfection (Rom. 8:21, 22) will ‘be no more’ in the sense that its causes (such as disease and death) will be removed. That bodily perfection does not of itself require absolute painlessness is verified by the fact that even the perfect man Jesus experienced physical and emotional pain in connection with his death and the unresponsiveness of those to whom he ministered. (Matt. 26:37; Luke 19:41) He was even foretold to be a “man meant for pains.” (Isa. 53:3) By curing those “distressed with various diseases and torments” (Matt. 4:24), Jesus bore the pains of others.—Isa. 53:4.
Often the Scriptures refer to pain in a figurative sense. Depending upon the context, it may denote hard work (Prov. 5:10) or a wholesome fear and awesome regard for Jehovah God. (1 Chron. 16:30; Ps. 96:9; 114:7) Waters, mountains and the earth, when in a state of agitation, are described as being in pain. (Ps. 77:16; 97:4; Jer. 51:29; Hab. 3:10) Jehovah viewed unfaithful Judah as having an incurable pain, one threatening death.—Jer. 30:15.
Pains or pangs can also denote something that serves as a restraint. With reference to Jesus Christ, the apostle Peter stated: “God resurrected him by loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to continue to be held fast by it.” (Acts 2:24) Ropes, when tightly drawn and constricting the limbs, produce sharp pain or pangs. Therefore, while dead, Jesus was held, as it were, by figurative ropes or pangs of death.—Compare Psalm 18:4, 5; 116:3.