It’s an age old question, often made subtly excusing ourselves and accusing the God almighty. One may be saying indirectly that he is very good, yet God has dealt with him unjustly. As Bible believing Christians we accept the fact that God is always just and true but man is not as good as he thinks to be.
Nevertheless, it is an issue we find very hard to explain on certain occasions. Unexpected turn of events that lead to untold pain, agony and loss force one to question, ‘why me’! Even the godly, obedient and fruitful believers go through hardships that are beyond human comprehension. How can we answer this puzzling question, “Why do bad things happen to such godly people?” I think we need to consider three things before we can come to some conclusion.
1. Sovereignty of God.
Our God is a sovereign God who does things according to His perfect will and no one can question Him. He is the Master who owns us. He has every right to do whatever pleases to Him. He needs no counsellor. His purposes are perfect and eternal. Unsearchable is His wisdom. He is an incomparable, self-governing God. Cf. Rom 9:19, 20; 1133ff; Isaiah 40:13, 14, 25, 28 We can only yield to such a sovereign God’s purposes without any question, believing fully that He does not make a mistake.
2. Frailty of Man.
Along with God’s greatness we should also acknowledge the limitations of man. Our knowledge is imperfect. We do not understand every thing. The Lord Himself says, “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” Isa 55:8, 9. With our finite mind we can not grasp God’s activities fully.
The word of God makes it very clear that there are still secrets hidden with God and we can not understand it now. Definitely, He has revealed all that we ought to know today and the biblical revelation is complete in that sense. Yet certain things are not clear to us today, but in future we may know fully. Cf. Deut 29: 29; 1Jn 3:2. Job 8:9; Ecc 8:7.
3. Diving dealings.
With the above mentioned two facts we need to consider the divine dealings with man. We are in His hands as clay in the hands of a potter. He is working on us. We may not understand His intentions fully. But He has a definite plan and still in the process of shaping us. Cf. Jerm 18: 1—6.
Scriptures refers to some aspects of God’s eternal plan for us. We may be conformed to the image of His Son; we may show forth the riches of His glory etc. cf. Rom 8:29; 2The 2:14; Rom 9:22, 24. He is preparing us with the intention that we may be the best vessels to be used for the Master. 2Tim. 2:21. All such goals have an eternal perspective.
So, every event in our life is part of this preparation. God in His wisdom allows certain experience or incident so that we may be moulded in a particular manner. With our natural eyes we see only the earthly and temporal things. It’s only by faith we can see beyond the temporal and earthly that God is involved in. Cf. 2Cori 4:18.
Moreover the word of God also states that, God may allow hardships to godly people, so that it may be used to prepare other believers. Cf. 2Cori 1:4—8. Sufferings of a Christian and his response to it can be a lesson to others. The comfort and strength we get through trials can be used to encourage one another.
In short we can say, God in His sovereign will and plan permit godly people to suffer in various ways. He does it with an eternal point of view; we may not fully understand it today. But let us be sure that He does everything well and with a specific purpose. So, beloved, let us acknowledge these realities and humbly yield to His will and working in our life. Such patience and longsuffering will be a challenge to many others, God will be honoured and thus His purposes will be fulfilled in us.
Poor yet Rich
Story of Edgar Allan Poe shows how a poor and worthless man can be a great genius. Before he was three he became an orphan and stayed with strangers. He could not continue his studies in the school due to utter poverty. At seventeen he had heart trouble and became weak physically. He died at a young age of forty.
Only after his death the world came to know of the real worth of this invalid. With in span of twenty years, he wrote number of articles, essays, poetry, and stories etc which are widely read. One of his poems is on exhibit at the world – famous Huntington Library, at San Marino, California and is worth $ 50,000. He was great literary genius.