VIRGINIA TECH – "WHY WOULD GOD ALLOW THIS TO HAPPEN"

Our hearts are saddened at this time over the events that have taken place at Virginia Tech today. 33 people have been killed and many others injured in senseless, godless, evil and cowardly act violence that took place at VT. Please, please remember to pray tonight for the victims, their families and our country.

I’d also like to share a few thought on this subject (that we’ve talked about in the past) of “Why would God allow this to happen?”

I’m not sure that anyone will ever be able to answer that question. It’s been a question that has been asked since the beginning of the world. I’m not sure that I have an answer today, but I have given it a lot of thought. I’d like to share with you three thoughts to the question, “If God is great and God is good, why do the innocent suffer?”

  • First thought: That is a fair question. It’s okay to ask that question. Somewhere we’ve been given the idea that if we ask why the innocent suffer, it is a sign of unbelief or a challenge to God. Not so. The Bible asks the question often. Even Jesus quoted the 22nd Psalm, as he hung on the cross, “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” It’s a fair question. Not a question of unbelief or a challenge to God.
  • Second thought: I don’t know. The Bible never gives an answer. I don’t know why the innocent suffer, but I do know that sandwiched up against the blackness of evil is the brightness of good. Ultimately I do know that God will not leave evil unanswered. I think there is a day coming when all of the crooked things will be made straight, all of the dark things will be made bright, and all of the innocent will be vindicated. I think that is what the cross of Christ is all about, and the resurrection is God’s declaration that eventually things will go right.
  • Third thought: Good is God’s character and no matter what happens in this world, that can’t change. What I’m saying is you can focus on the good in God or the evil in the world. I hope you have found enough goodness in the world to choose to keep lighting candles instead of cursing the darkness.
If God is great and God is good, why do the innocent suffer? That is a fair question. I don’t know that there is a good answer out there, but I do know there is a goodness in this world that cannot be explained outside of a God who loves you and me. God IS good and all the evil in the world will not and can not change that.

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Article by Trey Morgan

I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast. Read 1182 articles by
22 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Don Neyland says:

    trey-
    For the same reason everything that happened yesterday happen and we didn’t even think about or mention those events.

    “If God is great and God is good, why do the innocent suffer?”
    I’m sure that “innocent” means something different to God than to us. I know Jesus had to set us straight just on “good”.

    Don

  2. Neva says:

    I have been praying all day—I believe in a God who can use even the senseless, godless acts of sinful men to bring others comfort, healing and peace. For now, thousands of miles away, I simply pray.

    Peace
    neva

  3. JP Manzi says:

    I have no clue is a safe answer. It makes no sense. You will hear someone thanking God that they cured them from cancer yet you see this and you scratch your head. Why? Maybe God is not a God of intervention like we think. Not sure Trey but it sure can be a test of faith.

  4. Messianic Gentile says:

    Basically you have alluded to the classic “problem of evil” which when fully stated asks: If God is all Good, all Knowing and all Powerful, then why is there evil in the world?

    St. Augustine gave us his theodicy, which most of us are unfamiliar with in those terms but all of us have inherited in one pop version or another which says: God allows us FREEWILL and therein lies the answer to the question.

    However there are problems with that too. And basically you cannot ask such a surgically sterile question and expect a surgically sterile answer. And anyway, the question is ultimately misleading because it requires something of a Deist god to answer it to our satisfaction.

    I recognize that your post deals with the question at a more gut level approach, but if you chase it to the end of the line, you will have to deal with it at more esoteric levels too. I suggest a look at N.T. Wright’s lecture called “God, 9/11, the tsunami and the New Problem of Evil”, which you can find here:

    http://www.spu.edu/depts/uc/response/summer2k5/features/evil.asp

    It is a complicated lecture, but worth the time. I assure you.

    Jesus is Lord!

  5. Bobby Cohoon says:

    Good thoughts Trey,
    I couldn’t help but think today as I went to a High school softball game that just a few years ago many of these might have been making the same trek as I was. And, in just a few years the girls that I watched play to do some might be a VT. It really puts things into perspective.

    Bobby

  6. TREY MORGAN says:

    I apprecaite the thoughts. I remember the story of Job. I think God did a fine job defending Himself against Job’s questions. Don’t you think?

  7. Stachia says:

    At the same time this was happening in VA my daughter who attends a college nearby was called and told that a young girl that lived 3 doors down from her in the dorm had been attacked and beaten in the dorm room. It totally shook her world. She told me last night that after she learned everything that had gone on yesterday that she was through with school. She was going to hide in her room and anyone that wanted to see her would have to go through a security system. We did what Trey suggested in point 2 and talked about all the good she would miss by hiding from the bad. That while what happened in both instances is horrible that she has to move forward and pray, there are many things to been done in her life and hiding is not one of them.

  8. Gilbert Kerrigan says:

    Great thoughts, Trey! It is in the midst of great destruction that we find these words, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning. Great is his faithfulness.” That takes some faith to be able to utter those words in the midst of such evil.

  9. Gallagher says:

    Pray always! We all need prayer. May we cast our thoughts on at the feet of the loving Savior and the Merciful Father.

  10. Danny says:

    I have come to the conclusion that we probably cannot know the answer to that classic “problem of evil” question.

    Like Job found out- there are just some things beyond our ability to understand.

    Your points do illustrate what our response should be during these times – trust, faith, patience and prayer.

  11. TREY MORGAN says:

    MG said a mouthfull when he mentioned that God does give us free will to choose. Sadly may choose to do evil and violent things that effect others as it did yesterday.

  12. The Preacher's Household: says:

    Stacia had a very good point. There are lots of people involved that just want to hide but have to gone on seeing the good. At least we have the knowledge that when we find nothing else good, there is always still the goodness of God being there.
    Kathy

  13. Chris says:

    Good post and comments. I appreciate everything that has been offered.

    As much as we would like to join the “Adam blamewagon” and question God in all of this, just remember the following words:

    “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.”

    “When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.”

    And God said, “Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”

    Adam said, “The woman YOU put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”

    Why does evil exist? Not because of God, all he did was create something GOOD. All he has done since we messed it up is overcome our sinfulness with his son.

    I know, too simplistic a view, but I am from Arkansas. LOL

  14. Chris says:

    I hope no one interpreted my comments as implying that I am not troubled over what happened yesterday or that I have taken it lightly. IF my comments came across that way I certainly apoligize as nothing could be further from the truth.

    All of us need to pray for those affected by yesterday’s tragedy. But, we also need to let people know that even though dark days such as this happen that God is good and his love for them is strong enough that he sacrificed his son.

    Let our lights shine.

  15. TREY MORGAN says:

    Chris,

    I understood completely what you were trying to say. I appreciated your comments and your insight. Thanks for sharing them :)

    Trey

  16. Di says:

    Trey, I think that God allows suffering and bad things at least partly because he has relinquished control in order to have a sentient creation with the ability to choose – but then illness is not caused by someone else’s free will and God’s intervention would not impinge on others.

    Recently, in my own life, I left God for a 5 year period, after fully facing the sexual abuse by my youth pastor. When the plug exploded out of me, I found I could not go to church without having a panic attack and I was very angry at God. Thus, I avoided both.

    Finally, about 5 months ago, I sat arguing with my present pastor and realized I really had only two choices. I could be miserable and angry and fight this fight of “WHY GOD?” for the rest of my life or I could let it go and move on.

    I chose to let it go.

    I do not understand why God allowed the abuse but he did. Perhaps it was my own free will that he would not step on. I had given it to my abuser. Whatever the reason God did not send a bolt of lightening, I am much more at peace and much happier realizing I have no answer, can continue to question, but it is not worth the angry fist in God’s face.

    Nevertheless, I think that period of anger WAS part of the grieving and healing process. By going through it I can now heal.

  17. Neva says:

    di
    I was so moved by your comment. After many years of questions and wondering, I have come to believe that all sin has consequences and someone has to pay those consequences. Unfortunately some of us have to bear the consequences for the sins of others. I don’t really understand why that happens except that sin almost always involves more than just the one commiting it.
    I do believe that no matter how ugly or how shaming and hurtful our past is, it shapes and enhances our ministry. My friend, there will be people you can minister to that others cannot. There will be hurting souls that will HEAR you live God’s love–souls that would not be moved by someone else’s life. You are walking, talking, living proof that God is the healer of souls and that when He loves you, there is hope. Your healing will be all the sweeter as you help others come from where you have been.

    Peace and prayers
    Neva

  18. TREY MORGAN says:

    Di, Much like Neva, I appreciate your honesty and openness. When hurt by another we always have the choice to “get better” or “get bitter.” I’m glad you chose to get better. And I’m looking forward to you sharing more of your heart with us.

    Neva, You are so wise!

  19. My Insignificant Life says:

    my question is, if the killer commits suicide, do his roommates get all A’s for the semester? Afterall, that’s the unwritten college rule………

  20. Messianic Gentile says:

    Trey,

    Rich, from Lutheran seminary in Austin, tipped me off to this NT Wright analysis of the VT tragedy. See it at this site:

    http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/nicholas_t_wright/2007/04/god_with_us_grieving.html

  21. TREY MORGAN says:

    MG … thanks for the info. I love NT Wright stuff. I’ll go see right now.

  22. Di says:

    Neva, I do believe you may be prophetic and do not know it. :-) God seems to be opening all sorts of doors in my life in which I am or will soon be sharing and ministering. One door is the blog that Trey has encouraged me to start. You can click on my name and read a couple of things I have written. My complete story will be there before long. It is my heart to see God take my healing and like seeds scatter it across His fields.

    Your encouragement was wonderful. Thank you.

    Diane

About Me

Trey Morgan Here are my thoughts about marriage, family, raising children, humor, faith and the life God intended for us all. I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast.

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Husband, father and cancer survivor & Senior Minister for the Childress Church of Christ. Tweets about life, marriage, Texas Rangers and randomness.
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