By Robert Owens:
This question has confounded philosophers for ages and led countless millions to blame God for all the evil in the world. We must have faith if we’re going to question whether God is the author of evil since the Bible says of God, “You are good, and the source of good.”
We need faith to doubt God and instead ask the question, “If God is good why is there evil?”
Why do I say that we need faith to question God?
To even consider this question we must first accept the fact that God is and that He created the world. If those two things are not the foundation of our faith, the basis of our world view, the question which forms the center of this essay is a meaningless exercise, an enigma wrapped in a riddle that makes no sense.
Most of us believe in fairness. So how can we even think of blaming God for evil if He isn’t the source of it? That wouldn’t be very fair would it? So we’ve established that if we ask this question, “If God is so good why is there evil?” Or, if we blame God for all the evil we see in the world we must therefore believe in God and believe He is the creator of all things.
Having established that this question will only make sense in the context of faith let’s move forward with our reasoning.
First, we must determine is life as we know it normal? Is this world filled with hatred, violence, death, disease, and war what God intended? Was it His plan to have us suffer through this vale of tears?
There is only one place we have a chance to get God’s side of this question. He only wrote one book. Therefore if we reject the Bible as God’s word we have nowhere to get the answer to this question except our own finite mind. Does seeking the answer to an eternal question in a finite source make any sense? If as established above we have a foundational faith in the existence of God and that He is the creator of the world eternal facts which we can only learn from the Bible why would we then reject the Bible as a source of other eternal knowledge?
Moving forward in reasoning based on the eternal knowledge revealed in the Bible:
We know God placed Adam and Eve in Eden. Are we to believe that God intended for his children to run around naked in a poison ivy patch filled with thorns and thistles? No, at the end of the fifth day of creation after God had made the whole universe and all that is in it except man he looked over everything He had made and it was good. If everything was good and then after He brings man into the equation all of a sudden there is all this not good going on all over the place what happened?
Humanity was not an afterthought. God didn’t create the world and then decide, “I need a gardener” and then make humans to fit the bill. You see long before He laid down earth’s foundations, He had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of His love, to be made whole and holy by His love. Long, long ago He decided to adopt us into His family through Jesus Christ. Humanity was marked out as God’s children before He said, “Let there be light,” or as the science guys call it, the big bang. Before the foundations of creation were laid God purposed a family, and humanity is the answer to that purpose.
But what kind of a being did God create?
When God was saying let there be this and let there be that and He came to the creation of humanity He said, “Let us make human beings in our image, make them reflecting our nature.” That’s right. He made humanity in His own image. He goes on to tell us, “God created human beings; He created them godlike, reflecting God’s nature.” That’s what it says. When God first created humans they were in His class. Not the monkey class…the God class. And He even tells us why, “So they can be responsible for the fish in the sea, the birds in the air, the cattle, and, yes, Earth itself, and every animal that moves on the face of Earth.” Then He gave them the power to reproduce so they could give Him a wonderfully large family to manage His creation, “Prosper! Reproduce! Fill Earth! Take charge! Be responsible for fish in the sea and birds in the air, for every living thing that moves on the face of Earth.”
That was His plan. He created a perfect earth and then created beings that were like Him to run it as His assistants, His superintendents. Humanity was given complete charge over the earth from the fish in the sea to the birds in the air. It was all ours to command because God gave it over to us.
If God is anything He is fair. If He makes a deal He sticks to it. God is not a contact breaker.
Just think of this: if I gave my child a new car signing the title over to him doesn’t he then have a legal right to do anything he wants with that car?
I may have wanted him to use it for his business, maybe taking the kids to school, and even for his own pleasure. That was my vision when I gave him the car.
But he had other ideas. He decided to give the car to someone else. He signs the title over to her. Who does the car belong to?
Would I have any legal right to take it back from the one he gave it to and say, “Hey, that isn’t your car! I bought it for my child.” I don’t think that would stand up in court. That wouldn’t be legal.
You see God gave humanity dominion over the earth. We have no idea how long that dominion lasted. Adam and Eve could have been in the garden for millions of years. We have no way of knowing. But then along comes Satan, the father of sin, whose original sin was saying that he would set his throne above the Most High and that he would make himself god.
And what does he do? He invents the first pyramid scheme. He entices Eve with the idea that she could be like God. Eve was conned. She bought the dream … eat the forbidden fruit … then lay on the beach collecting residuals as the new god. Hook, line, and sinker she swallowed it all. She never understood the part about kicking it all back up the line to her new boss, Satan.
Then Adam comes home and Eve tells him of the fabulous deal Satan is offering. Adam isn’t fooled. He sees through the whole thing but he wants to be with his wife so he signs on the dotted line and by doing that he transferred his dominion over to Satan. He gave Satan the title to the new car.
Now God being a loving Father wanted his children to have the new car but they gave it away, so being a just God He can’t just take it back. Therefore, because of the treason of Adam creation now groans under the lordship of Satan.
That’s it in a nut shell. God created humanity to be His supervisor here on a perfect earth. He gave us the title deed to the planet. Then through Adam’s willful disobedience we gave it to Satan and that’s how he became the god of this world. Ever since, Satan’s nature, evil, has ridden rough shod over us and sin and death have plagued us from that day to this. This isn’t what God planned. This is the result of our choice, the choice to serve Satan instead of God. And remember Satan’s original sin was that he wanted to play God, so every time we blame God for what Satan has done we give him exactly what he wanted all along … to be recognized as God.
What a mess we made. God gave us a good deal and we traded it in for a swindle.
All I can do is echo another poor sinner saved by grace who once said, “Oh wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?”
More on that later. …
© Copyright by Robert Owens, 2018. All rights reserved.