Sunday, January 17, 2010

Don't Blame God, Tragedies Happen

After the Earthquake that devastated Haiti, Pat Robertson was accused of saying that God was punishing Haiti because of the evil practices of its people. At first I must admit that I cringed and even stated that he was out of line and the statement was ignorant on his part, especially when the Scriptures go directly against such foolish beliefs. Then I looked into what Pat actually said, and found this statement put out by CBN:.
Pat Robertson's comments were based on the widely-discussed 1791 slave rebellion led by Boukman Dutty at Bois Caiman, where the slaves allegedly made a famous pact with the devil in exchange for victory over the French. This history, combined with the horrible state of the country, has led countless scholars and religious figures over the centuries to believe the country is cursed. Dr. Robertson never stated that the earthquake was God’s wrath. If you watch the entire video segment, Dr. Robertson’s compassion for the people of Haiti is clear. CBN


So Pat Robertson did not say what he was accused of saying, yet I still have a problem with the so called scholars whom he quoted and it is their belief that I want to address today. I must question how well learned these scholars are for making such a claim. After all, a simple reading of the encounter that Abraham had when he was visited by three angels on their way to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah should be enough to dispel such nonsense. 16Genesis 18:16:33 God was willing to spare the whole of Sodom and Gomorrah if, as
Abraham pleaded, He found 10 righteous individuals. Well, God did not find 10 righteous people and so, destroyed both cities. Regardless of how evil the men of Sodom were, God was willing to spare them. I could probably list many of the evils things that have been going on in Haiti, from their supposed deal with the devil in 1791 all the way up their current practices of Voodoo. However, I could probably find and list the names of Haitians who practice their Christian beliefs as good or even better then many Christians I know in America. That would be hundreds of times the number of people God was looking for to spare Sodom and Gomorrah..

What many Christians fail to understand is that God did not target the people of Haiti for their sinful ways no more then He specifically targeted Indonesia in 2004 when it was devastated by a tsunami, or America on September 11, 2001. I can think of a certain few cities in America that are just as evil in God's eyes, if not more so, because they have more access to the truth than many people in Haiti do. Last time I looked San Francisco is still among the cities of America.

Furthermore, we live in a dispensation of time that was ushered in by Christ. This new dispensation makes each individual person responsible for his own sin. There is no corporate punishment for countries or societies like there was in the Old Testament times. Other than the final judgment that is spoken of in Revelation when God will finally judge all mankind, there is no such thing as God punishing nations. Like it or not that is a fact. Christ came as the Lamb of God the first time to usher in His church and die for our sins. The next time He comes it will be with a sword, and He will usher in His Kingdom.

Now as far as disasters are concerned, it's easy to think of nature as serene and safe--the way that many people who enjoy the comforts of the modern world experience it. We in America are used to nature when and how we like it. But natural disasters are faith-shakers. It may be that we in the west should ask why we do not suffer more faith strengthening natural disasters. Katrina should have been a faith building disaster, but we allowed too many to use it for political purposes and in the process too few realized the moment to trust fully in God as they should have. We would be wise to study the actions of the early Christians who suffered many tragedies for their faith. For them, suffering was not a metaphysical problem needing a solution but a practical challenge needing a response of faith. Apparently it never occurred to them to question their belief in God or his goodness because they were unjustly suffering from either man made or natural disasters. Rather, their faith gave them direction in the face of persecution and general misfortune. God did not cause the earthquake nor did he step in to stop it, because he expects us to use those moments of trouble to look to Him.

There will come a time when we will all collectively be tested by persecution and tragedies because of mankind's sin, but depending on what your understanding of the end times is, the way, and time will happen when God is ready. Ones understanding of how and when the end will come has no bearing upon the salvation of ones soul. Acceptance of Jesus as your Lord and Savior will save you, not your understanding of the Revelation of Jesus Christ.

I pray that those who have ears to hear will hear His voice and call upon the name of the lord Jesus Christ.

Amen

5 comments:

  1. The devastation and suffering resulting from the earthquake in Haiti are difficult to comprehend. There is unbelievable damage and untold deaths and injuries.

    My wife and I are giving to those already there who are high-integrity relief organizations that can provide the kind of assistance that makes a difference.

    The organizations we are partnering with in this relief effort are providing medical relief, an orphanage, as well as building and continuing the Church, and include:

    * The Hands and Feet Project (http://www.handsandfeetproject.org)
    * Conduit Mission (http://www.conduitmission.org)
    * Operation Blessing (http://www.ob.org)

    With this significant tragedy, we know there is a tremendous need for assistance in Haiti. Make a difference now and help those who need it most. All funds donated go to these relief organizations. Thank you.

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  2. That was perfect Chuck, I did not realize that Pat was misquoted...

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  3. Dear Chuck,
    Thank you for writing again and sharing God's
    loving ways and insight into the lives of people
    who are often misinformed. We will continue to
    pray for the people to have ears to hear the
    Lord's voice through all circumstances of life
    and to receive Him into their hearts as their Lord
    and Savior!

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  4. Thank you Tim. I added the three organizations web site as links at the top of my blogs.

    And thank you Gary and Katy for your kind comments.

    God bless you all.

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