Let God Be True, But Every Man a Liar (Romans 3:4)
After every tragedy, I hear people condemn God and say, “If there really is a God, He would never of allowed this terrible thing to happen.” I usually try to be very tactful in addressing things like this, but I now feel led to be quite blunt. The ones who say this are their own god and have no idea who the God who created them really is. I will now give, to the best of my ability, an answer to the nature of God according to what the Bible says, and not what my opinion is.
First of all, God knows everything down to the minutest detail and He knows exactly what is happening before it happens. God warned Cain before he killed his brother Abel, but God did not stop the murder. Genesis 4:6-8 says, “Why are you so angry?” the Lord asked Cain. “Why do you look so dejected? You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master.” One day Cain suggested to his brother, “Let’s go out into the fields.” And while they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother, Abel, and killed him.” Matthew 10:29-31 goes on to say, “What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.”
Second, we learn in the book of Job that God is in complete control of everything. Satan had to get permission to touch Job’s possessions (Job 1:12) and then permission to inflict Job’s body (Job 2:6). Job acknowledged God’s sovereignty in Job 42:2, “I know that you can do anything, and no one can stop you.” God revealed Himself to Job in Job 40:7-9 and said, “Brace yourself like a man, because I have some questions for you, and you must answer them. “Will you discredit my justice and condemn me just to prove you are right? Are you as strong as God? Can you thunder with a voice like his?”
Third, we learn that God’s ways are higher than our ways in Daniel 4:34-35, “After this time had passed, I, Nebuchadnezzar, looked up to heaven. My sanity returned, and I praised and worshiped the Most High and honored the one who lives forever. His rule is everlasting, and his kingdom is eternal. All the people of the earth are nothing compared to him. He does as he pleases among the angels of heaven and among the people of the earth. No one can stop him or say to him, ‘What do you mean by doing these things?’”
Then Isaiah 55:9 plainly states, “For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.”
Fourth, we live in a fallen world where good and evil battle everyday. Jesus gave us the parable of ‘The Wheat and The Tares’ to illustrate:
“The Kingdom of Heaven is like a farmer who planted good seed in his field. But that night as the workers slept, his enemy came and planted weeds among the wheat, then slipped away. When the crop began to grow and produce grain, the weeds also grew. “The farmer’s workers went to him and said, ‘Sir, the field where you planted that good seed is full of weeds! Where did they come from?’ “‘An enemy has done this!’ the farmer exclaimed. “‘Should we pull out the weeds?’ they asked. “‘No,’ he replied, ‘you’ll uproot the wheat if you do. Let both grow together until the harvest. Then I will tell the harvesters to sort out the weeds, tie them into bundles, and burn them, and to put the wheat in the barn.’” (Matthew 13:24-30 NLT).
In this world there is much suffering and heartache, but Christians are not of this world. We are designed to spend eternity in a wonderful place:
I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among his people! He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” (Revelation 21:3, 4 NLT)
Fifth, a lot of our heartache and suffering is brought about by our own hand, both as individuals and as a nation. Before the Israelites entered the promised land, God gave them the curses on Mt Ebal in Deuteronomy chapter 27 and the blessings on Mt Gerizim in Deuteronomy chapter 28. It was up to the Israelites to obey all of God’s commands, the same way it is for any nation up until this time. Furthermore, God will rebuke the Devourer for those who are obedient:
“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the Lord of hosts. And all nations shall call you blessed: for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the Lord of hosts.” (Malachi 3:10-12 KJV)
Sixth, God gives life and life is in the blood. When innocent blood is shed, it cries out and God hears it:
But the Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground!” (Genesis 4:10 NLT)
Before the Ten Commandments and the Law were given by the hand of Moses, God Himself established a requirement for the shedding of innocent blood for all generations to come as long as man inhabits the earth: “And I will require the blood of anyone who takes another person’s life. If a wild animal kills a person, it must die. And anyone who murders a fellow human must die. If anyone takes a human life, that person’s life will also be taken by human hands. For God made human beings in his own image.” (Genesis 9:5, 6 NLT)
Three thousand years ago the Israelites murdered their innocent children. Today the United States does the same, but calls it abortion:
They shed innocent blood, the blood of their sons and daughters. By sacrificing them to the idols of Canaan, they polluted the land with murder. They defiled themselves by their evil deeds, and their love of idols was adultery in the Lord ’s sight. That is why the Lord’s anger burned against his people, and he abhorred his own special possession. He handed them over to pagan nations, and they were ruled by those who hated them. Their enemies crushed them and brought them under their cruel power. (Psalms 106:38-42 NLT)
In His mercy, God had tried to warn His people the consequences of their sin in hopes they would repent before He took action:
The people of Samaria must bear the consequences of their guilt because they rebelled against their God. They will be killed by an invading army, their little ones dashed to death against the ground, their pregnant women ripped open by swords. (Hosea 13:16 NLT)
Everyday the United States pours the innocent blood of aborted babies down the drain and into the ground. Every drop of this innocent blood will be paid for.
Seventh, God controls the nations and He uses them as He pleases. Both Jonah (Jonah 4:1-2) and Habakkuk (Habakkuk 1:6-7,12) had a hard time accepting the way The Lord used the more wicked nations of Assyria and Babylon to punish the Israelites. Its true God used these other nations to discipline His people, but these other nations went overboard. We learn that man’s cruelty to man can be horrendous:
But I am very angry with the other nations that are now enjoying peace and security. I was only a little angry with my people, but the nations inflicted harm on them far beyond my intentions. (Zechariah 1:15 NLT)
God then sought justice for their excess cruelty:
Then the Lord showed me four blacksmiths. “What are these men coming to do?” I asked. The angel replied, “These four horns—these nations—scattered and humbled Judah. Now these blacksmiths have come to terrify those nations and throw them down and destroy them.” (Zechariah 1:20-21 NLT)
Eighth, even though Jesus told us it was no longer an ‘Eye For An Eye’ for those that would be ‘Born Again’, the way nations are to deal with criminals and the way God deals with nations is still the same all the way thru to the end of the Book of Revelation. That is because evil will still abound in the nations (Revelation 20:3) despite the fact Jesus has given us a better way to live as individuals. When a murder or rape is committed, it is against everyone in that society and not just the victim.
Ninth & final, it is up to us how we handle what life throws at us. There are false teachers that twist scripture for one to believe that only good things happen to Christians and all that one has to do is ‘Name It & Claim It’. But nowhere in the New Testament is that even suggested. Just look up how many people were tortured and martyred for the name of Jesus Christ. The world we live in can be extremely cruel and unfair. At times innocent people are victims, and the guilty seem to flourish. Asaph had a hard time trying to understand the injustices of life until he went into the sanctuary and sought God’s face. God gave him the answers he was looking for. We read about it in Psalm 73 and it sums it up quite well:
Truly God is good to Israel, to those whose hearts are pure. But as for me, I almost lost my footing. My feet were slipping, and I was almost gone. For I envied the proud when I saw them prosper despite their wickedness. They seem to live such painless lives; their bodies are so healthy and strong. They don’t have troubles like other people; they’re not plagued with problems like everyone else. They wear pride like a jeweled necklace and clothe themselves with cruelty. These fat cats have everything their hearts could ever wish for! They scoff and speak only evil; in their pride they seek to crush others. They boast against the very heavens, and their words strut throughout the earth. And so the people are dismayed and confused, drinking in all their words. “What does God know?” they ask. “Does the Most High even know what’s happening?” Look at these wicked people— enjoying a life of ease while their riches multiply. Did I keep my heart pure for nothing? Did I keep myself innocent for no reason? I get nothing but trouble all day long; every morning brings me pain. If I had really spoken this way to others, I would have been a traitor to your people. So I tried to understand why the wicked prosper. But what a difficult task it is! Then I went into your sanctuary, O God, and I finally understood the destiny of the wicked. Truly, you put them on a slippery path and send them sliding over the cliff to destruction. In an instant they are destroyed, completely swept away by terrors. When you arise, O Lord, you will laugh at their silly ideas as a person laughs at dreams in the morning. Then I realized that my heart was bitter, and I was all torn up inside. I was so foolish and ignorant— I must have seemed like a senseless animal to you. Yet I still belong to you; you hold my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, leading me to a glorious destiny. Whom have I in heaven but you? I desire you more than anything on earth. My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever. Those who desert him will perish, for you destroy those who abandon you. But as for me, how good it is to be near God! I have made the Sovereign Lord my shelter, and I will tell everyone about the wonderful things you do. (Psalms 73:1-28 NLT)
When my eldest son was taken from me at the age of 23, I had a choice whether to bless or curse God. Please see: