The Issue of Evil

“Why does God allow bad things to happen?”

If He didn’t He would have to take from us one of our most cherished blessings, the right of choice by making us His automatons. As long as there are choices there will be some bad ones, hence bad things happen. Even the bad things not having a direct human cause are the responsibility of some good thing having become mutant as a course of some direct or indirect human cause.

Bad things often rob us of everything except hope. Hope is often engendered by a chain of events. “And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.” (Romans 5:3-4)      

As we fumble for an answer we can be assured the answer is within the fact God is a holy, righteous, all powerful, all loving God. The issue is so comprehensive we cannot expect to find a definitive answer. That does not mean there is no answer to the issue, only that we are not presently able to fathom it. 

C.S. Lewis noted that if you argue against God you are arguing against the very source that made it possible for you to argue. To conclude there is no answer to the issue of suffering is like reading half of a novel and complaining the author does not develop the plot. By way of analogy there is still much of the book of reason yet to be read. We will finish it in eternity.

Suppose you make a product which is to be used in a certain way and put it on the market. Thereafter people don’t use it in the way intended. That incorrect use is not your will, but your will made it possible. So it is with God’s world. It was not His will for it to be used as it is being used, but His will made it possible for human beings to use it as it is used.

You can be absolutely certain God does not ordain evil, but it is because of evil that His grace abounds.

Bad things don’t happen to good people because there are no good people, only people who are better than others. “There is none righteous, no, not one…” (Romans 3: 10)

If God were unconcerned it could never have been said, “… the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.” (John 1: 14) He subjected Himself to our limitations, yet without sin.

We would never have seen Him, “… despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief….Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him not.” (Isaiah 53: 3 – 5)

The answer is not to be found in a script, but the Savior, not a philosophy, but a person, Jesus. If He did not love us and intend our ultimate good, He would not have chosen the cross. It is His way of saying “I forgive” your misuse of the perfect world I created.