Why does evil exist? Why are bad people allowed to do horrible things? How can a loving God allow such pain and suffering? These questions and more permeate the culture today while some people try to justify their lack of faith in God while others struggle with their faith in times of sorrow and pain.
The answer is simple–but not easy or popular. His ways are not our ways.
“”For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.” Isaiah 55:8
Our limited knowledge and viewpoints can’t begin to comprehend His plans and foresight. We’re a people who have to ask Mrs. Landers, Dear Prudie, and Mrs. Manners to justify cheating on our spouses, how to iron out problems instigated by our own bad behaviors, and how to interact with rude neighbors. We clog emergency rooms for blisters, colds and splinters. Do you really think that we, in our extremely limited capacities and knowledge, should be questioning God and his plans? Most can’t balance a checkbook, let alone the universe or human race.
We see things that anger and hurt us, but fail to see any reason for them…but that doesn’t mean there isn’t one. It’s actually alright to ask God questions, but it needs to be done with respect and reverence with the right motives and heart.
An interesting question to contemplate if we were brazen enough to question Him: where should He draw the line? Do we expect heaven on Earth, Utopia? No? To far to the extreme? If Utopia and our current situation are the extremes, then again, where should God draw the line?
We all sin. Some lie (“of course that dress doesn’t make your butt look big!”), some cheat (creative tax deductions anyone?), some steal (ever snacked on a grape while still in the store?), some curse…some do far worse. Yes, yes I know that seems a far cry from murder, rape, and mass shootings, but sin is sin. Who are we to tell God which ones to prioritize and which to let pass?
“All wrongdoing is sin” 1Jn 5:17
“All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Rom 3:23
We all have frail, complex human bodies. We all die someday. Should we really expect perfect health and longevity for everyone? Till what age? Regardless of lifestyles? We live in a fallen world. We make poor health and life choices. Again, where should God draw the line on healing the sick and keeping us happy and healthy?
Free will comes at a price. If we lived in Utopia, we’d either have no free will to do as we chose, or else we’d all be char spots to pay the penalties. If we live as we do now, we have to trust in Him to work His will for us in order to increase our faith, while admitting our ignorance. In good times and bad.
“You may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith…may be proved genuine.” 1Pet 6-8
God is just, vengeance and judgement are His alone. His choice, His time, His plan.
“There is no one righteous, not even one.” Rom 3:10
“All our righteous acts are like filthy rags.” Isaiah 64:6
There is a God. He is good. Try to do what is right, walk in His light, and trust that this world is not our final destination. All your questions will amount to nothing, but will be answered if they remain. If we lived in Utopia, if we never dealt with evil, sickness, cancer and death, there would be no need for faith. Bad things happen to good people, evil exists, catastrophes are going to occur. It really doesn’t matter if God caused them or allowed them, everything happens according to His plan, thankfully, not ours. Are you really willing to turn your back on the only one that holds the power to control such things?
“If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to save us from it…but even if he does not….” Dan 3:17-19