Thursday, March 12, 2009

Why do bad things happen to good people

The events of the last few days lead many to cry out, "Why Lord, why do these bad things happen to good people." Here in Houston, with the murders of two women, the shooting rampage in Alabama, the school shooting at Winnenden, Germany. All of these things often make us question God.

Why does God allow bad things to happen? The question is not always so easy to answer, but basically it boils down to two things, the first of which being free will. When God created us in his image, he was creating us to be his companions in creation, and stewards on the earth. Only one problem, to be a real companion, one has to have free will, which God gave us. In other words, each man and woman has the power to decide whether they are going to obey God and be his companion, or disobey God and be a free agent. If we did not have free will, then we would be no more than robots, doing what we were programeed to do. The sad thing is, that when we decide to be free agents and disobey God, that is exactly what happens to us. We become slaves to sin. Let us remember that the middle of sIn is I, when we put I before God, when we put I before others, when we put I above creation, we end up becoming slaves. St. Paul describes this so well, "I know what is right but I don't do it. In fact I do the very thing that I know is wrong." (my paraphrase). In other words sin reins in us.

The second problem in the world is evil. Angels too had the power to decide between good and evil, and Satan chose evil, and one third of the angels decided to joion him. Satan, chose not to obey God and as a consquence was banished from heaven. He is in perpetual rebellion and seeks to hinder God's purpose wherever he can. Sadly for him, he cannot see that God has already beaten him, and no matter what evil Satan does, God uses it for the purposes of the kingdom.
So why do bad things happen to good people. Through Adam and Havah (Eve), evil entered into the world, disrupting creation. If we look around us, we can see in myriad ways how the earth is running down. When sin entered the world, sickness and death entered with it. Not only was manking corrupted, but the world was corrupted as well, making it a dangerous place.

Now not all things are bad, God sent his son Yeshua (Jesus) into the world to start a fifth column operation, called the church. Jesus through his crucifiction and resurrection conquered sin and death and has given us the power to conquer as well, as long as we remain in his word, and are nourished through regular communion and fellowship.

So how do we live in a fallen world. We are to be salt and light to the world, transforming it. As the Christians in the 19th century fought against and removed slavery in the world, so must we fight against sin in all its forms. The two recent shooting sprees in Germany and Alabama, USA, perhaps if a Christian had made friend with the perpetrators, perhaps this never would have happened. Jean who has been part of a one or two man crime spree in Pearland, Texas, maybe if he had had a Christian friend who would have led him to Christ, perhaps would have been helpiing people now, instead of stealing from them and killing them. Each Christian needs to look at where we have failed Christ. Maybe if the church in the Middle East had done its job, there would have never been a 9/11. It is time for us to consider and obey the Lordl

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