- Praying for answers to the Las Vegas shooting? ~Chicago Tribune
Beloved, Jesus told us specifically not to look for God’s judgment on an individual, city, or nation for some specific sin. Those killed in a natural disaster, an act of terrorism, an epidemic, or a random act of hatred are no more sinful that anyone else. (See Romans 3:23.)
When Jesus’ disciples asked whether a man’s blindness was the result of his, or his parents’ sin, Jesus said “no” to both.
And His disciples asked Him, saying, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God should be revealed in him.
John 9:2–3, NKJV
We know that God stands against evil and violence and He is not responsible for evil (Psalm 5:4). In worldly circumstances and tragedy, God is not punishing people for their sins. God is present for those who are hurting. God is not accountable for tragedy.
And we know that God will ultimately call an end to evil and usher in His Kingdom. Although God is not responsible for the evil in this world, He IS present.
One of the most difficult questions that ever comes upon the hearts and minds of those in distress is “How could God have let this happen?” These and many other questions confuse our heart:
- If God is such a God of love and mercy, why is there war?
- Why is there sorrow?
- Why is there so much sickness and pain in the world?
- Why did Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Maria, the Mexico Earthquake, the Sierra Leone Mudslide, Tropical Storm Nate, and the Las Vegas Massacre happen?
If we could see as God sees, we would never question the protection of God or the circumstances permitted to enter into our lives. We would never question who is in absolute and complete control of all circumstances and situations. We would never question God’s love for us.
To answer the questions of our heart, let’s look at the life of Job. All on the same day Job’s oxen, camels, and donkeys were stolen; his sheep were killed by fire; all of his servants were killed (except those who delivered the messages); and his children were crushed to death.
And through all this, Job’s response was to glorify God.
… and he fell to the ground and worshiped. And he said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord.” In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.
Job 1:20–22, NKJV
If we knew that someone was going through the same trials Job had, we would ask, “Why?” or, “What did they do? There must be a reason why all of those things are happening to them.” Likewise, there must be reasons that God allows the tragedies that go on in our world today.
Like Job, we are living in two worlds—the natural world and the spiritual world. Throughout the Word, we are taught, time and again, that we should accept the good with the bad . . . that this life on earth is temporary.
. . . for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
Matthew 5:45, NKJV
Beloved, in the midst of tragedy, we must trust God.
God is in control—not the devil, not our troubles, not our circumstances, not our conditions. Almighty God is in control of every circumstance of our life and of our entire universe . . . not the weather, not terrorists, not murderers . . . but GOD is in complete control!
When you understand this, you understand that in the midst of your trials and earthly tragedy, God is always there. Our faith in God is the key to our victory! There is an end to the trial. Even without being able to see behind the scenes, Job was able to say in faith, Though he [God] slay me, yet will I trust in him . . . (Job 13:15). Job won the victory! Job had the key to victory—his faith in God!
Say this faith declaration out loud:Lord, thank You for being in control of every circumstance. I am ready to put all my faith in You. Through every trial, tribulation, and earthly tragedy, no matter the circumstance, I will not question You. I will respond as Job did, by glorifying Your name. Amen.
I will give thanks to You, O Lord my God, with all my heart, And will glorify Your name forevermore.
Psalm 86:12, NKJV
Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee.
Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things …
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