Wednesday’s Column: Third’s Words
The problem of evil is a very difficult issue for many Christians. Most people reading this article have seen someone lose their faith or justify atheism with this exact problem. Maybe some of you have struggled with it too — I did for a long time.
Evil is dysfunction. What God made in the beginning was functional and good. At some point, forces outside of this earth rebelled against God. We don’t know when this happened, but it was before mankind sinned (Genesis 2.16-17, 3.4-5; Ezekiel 28), likely before humanity was even created.
But evil exists on earth because we introduced it. We opened that pandora’s box because we were given the freedom to do so. God warned us not to, but we did it anyway. So why doesn’t he stop bad things from happening to good people? He often does. Hebrews 1.14 and Matthew 18.10 prove that he uses angels to help his family. Evil still exists because it allows us to choose our own destiny.
We do have to remember, though, that satan runs the planet right now (II Corinthians 4.4). This is his time, before he’s tortured around the clock for eternity (Revelation 20.10).
When we introduced dysfunction to earth, it had far-reaching consequences (Romans 8.15ff). Evil is short-lived and on borrowed time. Jesus defeated satan when he came back to life (Hebrews 2.14; Colossians 2.14-15). Evil affects us all, but it won’t last forever. Just because it still exists now does not mean that God doesn’t exist or doesn’t love us. His unlimited forgiveness should be enough to get us through this life so we can leave evil behind forever (II Corinthians 12.8-9). It’s hard to have that mindset, but it’s worth it.
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