I’ve been offline for a few months from writing this blog due to travel commitments and then our old website got seriously hacked. I hope none of our regular visitors got affected because of this hacking. If you did, please accept my sincere apologies. Now let me discuss my topic with you.
It has been my observation, that when Christians see suffering, their first response is empathy and they want to contribute to help relieve the suffering they see. Like an inbuilt magnet they feel drawn into the pain and suffering.
Therefore we could safely say, as a Christian, that;
- EMPATHY FOCUSES US
Because we too have bodies (Hebrews 13:3): Therefore, love commands, “Weep with those who weep”. (Romans 12:15)
- COMPASSION CAPTURES US
And that includes our enemies as well: “Love your enemies do good to those who hate you” (Luke 6:27). “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink”. (Romans 12:20)
- AID FLOWS FROM US
Then comes aid. Christians want to help relieve human suffering—all of it, especially eternal suffering; “So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Galatians 6:10).
However, sooner or later it becomes apparent that people want more than empathy, compassion and aid—they want real answers. Because when love has wept, grieved and worked, it must have something to say about the situation at hand and God’s perspective on it. Christians don’t need to have all the answers, as only God has those. But they do have the Bible, and the Bible is far from silent on such pressing matters, and there are answers to be had.
Yahweh is the Lord of heaven and earth—all creation, Psalm 24:1-2: He looks on the earth and it trembles; He touches the mountains and they smoke Psalm 104:32 (NKJV); He commands even winds and water, and they obey him (Luke 8:24-25). Therefore we can assume from these and many other scriptures like them, that nature does not have a will of its own and the Lord of Heaven and Earth does not owe Satan any freedom in this regard either.
Biblically, it is correct to assert that due to the sin of Adam, whatever mayhem demonic forces wreak in creation, they do it within the sovereignty of God’s permissive will. And God has reasons for what He permits.
The Bible clearly demonstrates that His permissions have purpose. Clearly, that’s the point of Job 1-2 and Luke 22:31-32. If stories like these and those concerning ecological calamities in the earth realm are ultimately under God’s permissive and sovereign will, why is that so? That’s a big question to cover in a simple blog like this; however let me try.
It is clear from Scripture that God does nothing without an infinitely wise and good purpose. Many of these purposes we will never quite fully fathom, as they will remain hidden to us until we are able to grasp and understand them at the end of the age. How do we understand this passage in Isaiah 31:2, Yet, He also is wise and will bring disaster… (NKJV). That all His ways are true and just, like King Nebuchadnezzar said, after his personal humiliation, because he now understood that … those who walk in pride He (God) is able to abase (Daniel 4:37 NKJV).
As hard as it is to say, God has an all-wise purpose in calamities, even like the Oklahoma tornados or the earthquakes in China; both of which cost people their lives. As mere mortals we are left pondering such things struggling to find satisfactory answers to peoples questions. Deuteronomy 29:29 says, “The secret things (unsearchable) belong to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and our children forever…” (NKVJ) Paul in Romans 11:33-34 (NKJV) says something similar, “How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out! For who has known the mind of the Lord?”
What are His all-wise purposes trying to tell us?
In my next blog I will seek to answer this question.