Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Associating God with Evil (Part 2)
Okay, in picking up where I left off, I would like to share with you why I believe that there is a "flow" throughout the Scriptures that tell us that God should not be associated with evil, or be blamed as the cause, etc." One passage that leaps out in this regard is John 10:10a where Jesus states this concerning satan...."for the thief comes only to steal, kill & destroy". This clearly tells us friends that it is the enemy (satan) & not God who comes to steal from us, who comes to destroy us & who intimately seeks to kill us! Yet, so many times we hear people say that God is the cause of their problems....perhaps the reason behind that is this...."well if God is really that powerful & loving, then why doesn't He put an end to my problems".
Well I believe that is a fair question from a person who knows little or nothing about the Bible, don't you? It makes a lot of sense that if God is who He said He is, that He can take care of anything that befalls us. So this leads me to another point in this discussion....."why then does God allow evil?" Now there is a question for the ages! After all, at the end of all this, this is really the "heavy" question isn't it? Because most people I think realize & understand that God is good & that He always wants the best for us, but the best doesn't always happen, so clearly God is allowing some bad things to happen & so there lies that deep question of simply "why". I promise we will come back to that friends, but let's continue to look at why I believe God should not be associated as the cause or source of evil.
If we now go back to John 10 & read Jesus words right after 10:10a, He states "but I have come that you might have life & have it to the full". We also read this in 1 John 1:5: "that God is light & in Him there is NO darkness!" Now that is a pretty clear statement from John friends. In God there is NO darkness, is it a stretch to also say that in Him he can not produce darkness & thus would not have produced the fall of Man in Genesis? I think not! We are further told this by James in chapter 1:16-17: "that every good & perfect gift comes down from the Father of LIGHTS in whom there is no shadow of turning! V.16 tells us not to be deceived, so we must ask, not to be deceived of what? The very next verse tells us, that all that is good is from God, not evil! James is making the point clear that God is a God of light, not of darkness! This goes hand in hand with what we have also read from John friends. Today, we often hear these 2 mutually exclusive words together "God - dam". How did that happen? How did God get blamed for all this, how does He still get blamed for the bad things in life that happen? Now we will visit soon that God can & does use evil for good, this is clear & true, but because He uses something, does not make Him the author of it friends! Here is a statement made by a popular Reformed writer: "If God's chief end is to bring glory to His name and God does whatsoever He desires to do, then the existence of evil must be allowed and decreed by God ultimately bringing glory to his name" This continued phrase by Reformers "God does nothing, but for His glory, or similar statements like "God is all about His glory" must leave some who are examining the claims of Christianity to ponder if God is egotistical no? Scriptures like John 3:16-17 & Phil. 2:5-8 teach us that God is all about us & that we are to bring glory to His name, not the other way around friends! yes, I do believe that God does indeed seek His glory in all circumstances, but not the way some of these Reformers make it sound. For instance a passage like Isa. 43:7 which states: "Everyone who is called by My name, And whom I have created for My glory, Whom I have formed, even whom I have made." is taken to mean that God is only about His glory and yes He created us to have fellowship with Him and for us to glorify His Holy name, but I think this idea of God ONLY being about His glory is a bit out of context.....Now it is also a Biblical truth that God doesn't "share space", just as Jesus doesn't (Isa. 42:8, 48:11, Jn. 14:6) but I think this phrase can be dangerous........and other similar statements like "God is most glorified when".....the fact of the matter is this: The Bible does not clearly state exactly when God is most glorified! That is an assumption, but it is being stated as a fact & that my friends is also dangerous! Just my thoughts here. Okay, we can pick up talking about how God has used evil for good & does, while keeping in mind that satan is the author of death & evil. Satan, not God tempted Eve in the garden & caused mankind to fall! Jesus stated this in His heated discourse with the Pharisee's in John 8:44a "but you are of your father the devil, for he was a murderer from the beginning" showing us that satan is indeed death's author by bringing sin into the world & we know that sin leads to death. (Rom. 6:23)
Until Next Time,