Why Bad Things MUST Happen to Good People
I want to start by saying that I am devastated to hear of the recent natural disaster that hit Oklahoma City and surrounding areas. I spent a good part of my life being raised in Oklahoma and tornados were all too common. However, the tornados that hit Oklahoma on May 19th and 20th this year were by far the most devastating that I have seen. My thoughts and prayers go out to those affected by this terrible disaster.
Amidst this tragedy, many may ask a question that so many people in this world maintain as a revolving hidden mystery: Why would a loving God allow bad things to happen to good people and innocent children?”
Many attest that “God works in mysterious ways.” Some say that “God is sovereign and there is a purpose (only known to him) why such tragic things happened.” However, neither statement truly answers the question. Why would a God who is good and loving allow such catastrophe?
The answer can be found in 3 simple truths:
1. Death is not a bad thing. People feel that when someone is removed from this earth, that it is indeed tragic. The Bible does not speak to this though. Philippians 1:21 says, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” Heaven is home, not earth. This life is just a mist, just a temporary resting place prior to us arriving in heaven. So when innocent children pass, because of their innocence, they will go to heaven where they will live and prosper. I do not want to undermine the devastation that occurs when innocent children perish; that is not my intention. I just want to simply point out that death is a part of life, and children that die are proverbially in a better place.
2. Natural Law. When God created the universe and earth, he set into motion what is called Natural Law. Essentially, the universe obeys a set of rules to which all things must adhere. These laws are precise, and many of them are mathematical in nature. Natural laws are also hierarchical in nature; secondary laws of nature are based on primary laws of nature, which have to be just right in order for our universe to be possible. Everything in the universe, every plant and animal, every rock, every particle of matter or light wave, is bound by laws which it has no choice but to obey. The Bible tells us that there are laws of nature—“ordinances of heaven and earth” (Jeremiah 33:25). So when a person decides to pull the trigger of a loaded gun, it is an act that would cause harm or even death to a human under the law ordinances of this world that God created. Tornadic storms, like the one is OKC, substantiate this premise. When climate occurs such that a tornado results, destruction and peril is inevitable. The OKC storm, and the carnage in left occurred as a result of it, was a product of natural law and should not be seen as “mysterious” or “God having a particular plan.”
3. Bad must to happen to prove that God is good and answers prayers. Consider this: if nothing bad ever happened, could anything good ever happen? It is impossible. Because good and bad are mutually exclusive, bad MUST happen to prove that good happens. If bad never happened, how could one ever know what ‘good’ even was (or if good is happening)? It can’t. God affirms this in John 9:1-4, which states: ‘She went along, [Jesus] saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him.”’ So in order for God to prove that he is good, bad things must happen to good people. If bad did not happened to anyone, there would be no need for intercessory prayer, healing, or altruism. In fact, most would question the necessity of God, because everything seems fine without him. But God is glorious and magnificent, and, as believers, he wants us to know that we can do NOTHING apart from him. Nothing. The second we try, nothing works or bad things happen. But only when we completely lean on him, he will fix anything we ask. Remember, Psalms 34:19 says, “MANY are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all.” So bad must happen to prove that He is good.
God created natural law wherein bad things may happen to good people and, in this ideal environment, prayer and faith moves the hand of God such that our prayer will be answered despite the trial, hardship, or challenge. So, bad things must happen for Him to prevail in our lives so that He may get the glory. In fact, we should actually expect bad things to occur (see Psalms 34:19 as read above). The good news is that God answers ALL of our prayers if we remain faithful to him, ask, and have faith that they come to past (see my articles on the Prayer formula and why God never says no to your prayer).