Why Would a Loving God…

The question of why evil exists in a universe that the Bible tells us was created by a loving God is one that I and probably just about every human being has grappled with at one point or another.

When I was younger, I really had a hard time reconciling the pain that so often characterizes this life, and a God who we are told possesses all power–including ostensibly the power to prevent that pain. There was a time when I became convinced God must enjoy seeing people suffer; why else would an all-powerful God fail to prevent our pain and suffering.

Thankfully, after a number of years, I finally came to understand this reality and at peace with the realization that God really does love us, and if his perfect will were to reign, we would not know the pain we so often do.

So why IS there such pain, suffering, and outright evil in a universe created by a loving, all-powerful God?

Steve Deace was asked this question, and answered it on one of his shows last week.

This is as good an explanation of the issue as I think I’ve ever heard, from about 1 hour 38 minutes into the podcast:

Woodrow Wilcox


Charla Pate sent me a note recently and it included a link to an Associated Press story with this headline: “Girl who was raped, dismembered by adoptive mother and boyfriend had been abused in at least three other homes.” And she asked me this question: I don’t have a good answer when a non-believer asks me why this occurred. Saying that there are things we don’t understand doesn’t really cut it.

I completely agree, Charla, and we should never say that. See, the presumption in the question “Why would a loving God allow these things to happen?”, the presumption is that we have no freedom to act on our own at all, in that question.



God is sovereign, but he does not exercise his sovereignty as an authoritarian. He could make us obey his law all the time. He could make us love him. But would that really be love? Or would it be obligation?

If you’re a parent, if you have children at home, if you’re bigger, stronger and smarter than them, you can impose your will, you can make them do what you think is right. But the goal is, as a parent, when they grow up and get out of the home, that they will do what you taught them is right because they love you and believe you taught those things to them because you put your love for them first, why you taught them what was right from wrong.

So as it is with our heavenly Father. See, I understand why people say, why does God allow these things to happen. Because as Saint Paul says in Romans 1, we suppress the truth in our unrighteousness. We don’t want to have to be accountable to God.

On one hand, we demand that God give us the freedom to do whatever we wish, particularly where our zippers and our wallets are concerned. We demand that God give us the freedom to do whatever we wish, and then once we act on said freedom, who is the first person we blame when tragedy happens or we are faced with those consequences? That same God that we demanded our freedom from. You cannot have it both ways. This is how a child acts.

When a child chooses to disobey his mother or father, or both, the consequences they warned him would happen occur, and they say, “Why didn’t you stop me from this?” You disobeyed me; other way around.

Now, how does a sovereign God who’s not an authoritarian, how does he respond to our disobedience? Well, all things work together for the glory of God and for those called according to his purposes. So first he sends his Son to live the life that we could not live, die the death we should have died, and then to rise from that death again proving once and for all that he is God, it is accomplished. He has paid the penalty once and for all for our transgressions against God’s law, so that we can be renewed by God’s spirit and become people who don’t behave like this anymore. And then share that good news with the rest of the world.

He raises people up to be police, to be investigators to find and punish people, and judges to find and punish people who are Hell-bent on being Hell-bent. He raises up people to be teachers and counselors and other forms of preemptive measures to try and reach hurt people before they act out in these ways.

See, those of us who believe in the sovereignty of God, we’re not the ones who have the tough question to answer. This is pretty easy, actually, to answer, when you account for the freedom of man. The really difficult question, I would say to Charla and to many of my fellow patriots listening tonight, you know who has a real tough case to make? The people on the Progressive side who tell us that human nature is basically good, and that evil is not an objective force in the world. That we are just a product of nature.

Do you know of any serial-killing lions who run amok of the pride and just go out there indiscriminately killing their fellow lions for no reason whatsoever? No. Does this phenomenon exist anywhere in nature? No.

There is only one place in nature where this behavior manifests itself. With which species? The homo sapien. Why? Well, we have to answer that question, don’t we? The answer is, we have a soul, and that soul has gone bad, and it needs to be made new so that we can become good.

It is not the Christian who has a difficult time with this question of evil. It is the Progressive.

Either we have free will, or we don’t. People wouldn’t be happy if God created us all to be good-behaviored automatons. People aren’t happy when some of us use our freedom to do evil. All sin is condemned by God. If you expect God to interfere in that other guys’s sin, then you expect him to interfere with your sin. And if he’s automatically blocking all our sin (without it being our choice to restrain ourselves), then we have no free will.

Let’s not blame the one who created us free, but rather blame the ones who misuse their freedom.

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Bob Ellis has been the owner of media company Dakota Voice, LLC since 2005. He is a 10-year U.S. Air Force veteran, a political reporter and commentator for the past decade, and has been involved in numerous election and public policy campaigns for over 20 years. He was a founding member and board member of the Tea Party groups Citizens for Liberty and the South Dakota Tea Party Alliance. He lives in Rapid City, South Dakota with his wife and two children.
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