I was reading an article that a friend had posted and he wrote that:
“It’s things like this that make me question a higher power…”
To that I have to say, that many, many theologians have tackled and overcome “The Problem of Evil”, but I will quickly say this:
The existence of evil does not negate the existence of a benevolent God, but instead proves that our power of choice, apart from always choosing to obey God, can only bring ruin. The existence of evil results from the existence of choice, not from a lack of a God, but from the lack of choosing God-honoring choices.
God gave us a wonderful gift — the power of choice — to either obey Him or to do as we please. The problem this power brings is that as beings with limited knowledge of how things work and limited knowledge of what truly is Right & Wrong, Good & Bad (as only a Just, Righteous, and All-knowing being could have that power — God); humanity brings to this world many choices/actions that “miss the mark” of Perfectly Good choices/actions. Not only that, but our choices/actions do not just affect ourselves but others as well. If one man chooses to hurt another, the first man has done wrong, while the second man suffers the ill-effects of the first man’s actions. Multiply this scenario to 7 Billion people worldwide and it’s easy to see why “bad things happen to good people”. That’s not even theology, human reason can easily ascertain that bad things happen (cause and effect) because humans have limited knowledge and limited morality. Even if we were to pick the most “superior” human with the highest amounts of knowledge and morality, that human would still be limited by the things he does not know and the moral solutions to dilemmas he has not thought of.
On theology, we know that humanity sins (misses the mark of God’s perfect standards) by both nature and choice. It wouldn’t matter if we found a superior human to rule and judge the world, because by nature (accidentally making mistakes) and by choice (purposely making bad/evil choices/actions) that person would still bring sin and evil into this world, no matter how good their intentions may be. Not to mention that this world (earth) is also broken by man’s sin; that a superior person could end world hunger but a sin-stricken planet (by natural processes) could bring about a famine to wipe out the food supply, or a storm to destroy crops and labor, or an earthquake to level cities and supplies. A superhuman “savior” would still bring about destruction one way or another with the passage of time. I say all of this because if the best human (or an army, or a planet full of superiors) cannot stop sin and evil through their own choices/actions, then we can safely say that we need a Perfectly Good, Just, All-Knowing, All-Powerful, Savior to deal with the “Problem of Evil” once and for all. How might a such a Savior deal with this problem? He might be inclined to remove humanity’s sin and power of choice, but that would leave us as moral “robots” who could only choose Perfect Goodness because it was the only option given us. Another such solution (which happens to be the Biblical one) would be to patiently restrain His Perfect Justice on sin for a time, and allow humanity to continue living with their power of choice but choose to record their choices/actions throughout life and “reward” each person the Perfect Justice they deserve because of those choices/actions. The issue with this is that every human alive has sinned (missed the mark of God’s Perfection), so the Perfect Justice that is sent out on us would be that every human who has ever lived would be sentenced to prison away from God and have God’s Perfect Wrath on sin (Perfect Justice) poured out on each and every one of us. So what has God chosen to do? Well, the latter solution, but He created an addendum to that, foreknowing that our sinful lives would only end in our destruction. He created a way for His Perfect Justice to be poured out on humanity AND to save them from that Perfect Justice at the same time. God (in three persons, but co-equally God) sent His Son Jesus the Christ to humbly lower Himself from co-equality of the Godhead into the form of mankind (fully human & fully God, but now physically away from God), to live out a Perfect life as a human (with no sin), dying a Perfect death (sacrificing His human body to absorb God’s Perfect, Just, Wrath on sin for all of humanity’s sins), and rising from the dead (to prove His victory over sin and return to Heaven as God once more). So what did this complex addendum offer? To quote John Piper:
The Wisdom of God devised a way for
the Love of God to deliver sinners from
the Wrath of God while not compromising
the Righteousness of God.
Another friend of mine, a respected man, suggested to the first friend to research Deism as it had shown him rationale and peace during trying times as these. To Deists, I write this:
That Deism [with an uncaring God who left us alone because we were too messy, where His Kingdom (Heaven) and His prison for evil (Hell) are closed, and where ultimate justice of wrongs displayed by humanity will go unpunished] will leave no one at peace but at a greater distress than with the Gospel whose God does care, who patiently waits for people to repent from sin and turn back to Him, and who will ultimately wait no more and judge each person for all of the sin and evil they have ever committed, bringing full justice to everyone wronged – past, present, and future. A God that allows injustice to go unpunished (as inaction against evil is evil itself) is not a God to be worshiped. Graciously, as God Himself is both Good and All-knowing, knowing that our sinfulness (while still our own fault) cannot be solved by human effort but are in need of help – a Savior from our sin; He has offered a pardon against His Perfect Wrath (Justice), and that is offered by the free gift of salvation by wholeheartedly believing in Jesus Christ and His Story of Redemption & Restoration (the Gospel).
<Original work by BenBRockN. Feel free to reblog, ONLY if you give credit to the original author (me). Thanks!>