Reading the Bible in (a bit more than) One Year
Still reading Job, but wanted to focus this on the first chapter of today's reading - chapter 24. As a person who believes in a Higher Power - and it could be any power, for purposes of this discussion - this chapter was definitely one that posed questions that I've asked myself...and had others ask as well. If there is a God, and He is Great, why does he let bad things happen? Why does he let the poor go hungry, let children go hungry, let women (and men) get attacked...the list can go on and on. If He is so Great, why doesn't he stop these things?
There are so many responses to this...but here is mine. I'm going to start by saying I don't know the truth. Only the Big Man Upstairs can really answer that. However, I do think:
1. God doesn't personally do bad things to people. I don't think He wakes in the morning (does He even sleep?) and says, "Hmm...Sally's had a good life so far, let's have her get into a car accident today.". I really don't believe this. I think God sits back and allows us to live our lives. In the general course of living, LIFE HAPPENS. Life can be good, and life can be cruel. Good things happen, and horrible things happen. Things happen. Life Happens.
2. We, as Americans, have taken a stance that "we" (present company excluded) don't want God in our schools, so we've removed him from the Pledge. We don't want him in the courts, so we've removed The Ten Commandments. We don't want him on public land, so we've removed the cross and don't put up the Manger scene for Christmas. Sadly, this list, too, can go on and on. I think God is sitting (does He sit?) up there and says, "Ok, I got the message. You don't want me.". I truly believe the more politically correct we become, the more we push away our faith sometimes.
3. Jesus SAID we would have suffering (read John 16:33). He said, "You will have suffering in this world." Note the word WILL. Not, "you MIGHT". He said, "you WILL". In truth, this doesn't answer the "but why?", but it at least holds a truth to say that at least we were warned.
4. Some of the daily pain we experience is a result of our FREE WILL. Each day, we all possess the ability to cause ruin to another. Thankfully, most of us do not. However, we have the ability and the will to chose to do so if we should so chose. If God were to get rid of all pain and ruin, he would have to remove the ability of us to chose - the ability for us to have free will.
What do you think? I'm so interested in hearing your thoughts.