Tag: love (page 1 of 2)

Why Did God Make Us Knowing All Would Fall and Many Would go to Hell?

I am not a super smart guy but I like to think, especially about God and His Kingdom. When I was very young, I asked someone why God made us. They said because He was lonely. Years later, I read the Scriptures and found no hint that God was ever lonely. In my early Christian days, I thought that God just wanted to share a good thing, namely, Himself and eternal life in bliss. Later, however, my thought process deepened when I realized how bad the Jewish nation was and how bad all mankind has been, including myself. My teacher colleague who was somewhat religious but wanted nothing to do with following Jesus, kept throwing this question in my face – Why did God make us knowing that people would go to hell? Jesus did say many would travel down the wide road of destruction and few will find the narrow road to life (Matthew 7:13-14). So now there was more to contemplate. God does know the future and would have had to do all His creating knowing about the impending pain and suffering on earth and beyond. How then can we proclaim that our God is a loving Master? (Note: an essential side issue is whether or not Hell is eternal torment for humans, but that discussion is too long of a rabbit trail for now, so I will sidestep it for now).

I began to search for an answer based upon what I saw in His Word. For starters, Psalms 40:7 reveals that God comes in the volume of the Book, so I begin all thinking based on the Bible. The only way I can know God intimately is to know His Word, understand it, and meditate on it (unless He appears to me in a vision and talks for hours which has not yet happened – and even then, He will not contradict His written Word to us). I hold the Word in awe as well as God Himself. Even God magnifies His Word (or promises) to the level of the honor of His name (Psalms 138:2). In this awe of respect for God and His Word is the beginning of wisdom, and for this issue, I need a lot of wisdom.

I also learn from the Book of Job that I need to assume that God is perfect and all that He does is right. I believe that God has always existed in eternity because the Bible says in John 1:1 that He and His Word were already existing at the beginning. He has no beginning. After all, there must be an uncaused cause to get everything in existence going, right? Once we transport our minds into the eternal realm, we lose something from our frontal lobe. Try as we may, we can never wrap our brains around the concept of eternity. Nevertheless, the answer to the question must begin in this unfathomable arena.

I also believe that all angels were created in righteousness. If Ezekiel 28:12-17 is referring to Lucifer as many Bible scholars believe, then he was in the Garden of Eden still in a perfected state then fell shortly after. I also believe that time was created sometime during the creation (oops, I can’t have “some time” before time was created, but please just bear with me a bit). Now I have set the stage for my thoughts about why God created everything knowing that devastating results would be incurred.

My logic says that if there is such a thing as righteousness, then there must be its antithesis. After all, how can there be good without the notion of evil? In other words, if there is the concept of “good,” then there has to be the concept of “not good.” If evil is only a concept, then it is not actually in existence…yet. It is this notion of “not good,” later emerging into reality, that God may have been targeting to conquer, not just once, but forever! How could He do this? He would have to allow it to emerge from concept to reality and then conquer it with perfected love.

What is perfected love? It is not only a willingness and a commitment to experience the ultimate pain and humiliation for the sake of something or someone that is totally evil (undeserving of salvation) and not able to help itself. It also becomes action (Rom.5:8). Merely saying we love someone without any demonstration of that love is shallow at best. At worst, it is a lie. Our fall enabled God to perfect His love, i.e. to demonstrate what was already in existence (His love was always perfect). His Word states that His love is perfected in us (1John 4:12,17). I think this means His love can now be seen by all the angels and humans. It is the deepest that a love can be. This is why He wants us to love our enemies and not limit our love to only those who love us (Matt.5:44-46). This is one of many hints He has given us as to His reason and plan for our existence. It reveals our Father’s “heartbeat.” If we desire to be close to God, we need to embrace this love lifestyle in order to reflect Him to others.

But isn’t it cruel for God to put mankind (and animals) through all this pain and suffering? No, He knew what was necessary to bring about perfection forever. He told us this fallen life would be sorrowful, but that the joy later will be so wonderful that we will not remember the earthly woe (John 16:20-22). It’s kind of like what a physical therapist does to a patient needing rehab from surgery. The contortions may cause pain, but it does prevent scar tissue from forming and promotes healing and prevents pain in the future.

Therefore, God allowed His human creation to fail and fall into sin and be captured by evil power. This may explain the troubling Scripture in Genesis 6:6 when it is revealed that God was sorry that He made man. At first glance, it sounds like God had wished He never made us, but I think it means that He simply went through a temporary mourning period when He saw evil take over His creation. God had a similar experience in Jesus when He wept over Jerusalem as that nation was poised to reject Him.

God could have created more angels to replace Lucifer and his cohorts (fallen angels), but these newbies could rebel sometime later in eternity. I believe God’s plan was to do something so that evil and rebellion could never occur again. Therefore He made creatures (humans) lower than the angels and allowed them to fall into darkness (we cannot see God like the angels can) so that He could put an end to evil’s claim on those souls of those humans by stepping into His own creation and paying the price Himself. He bought us back (1 Cor.6:20) from the sentence of the Lake of Fire (Eph.2:1-7) where unredeemed souls would die a Second Death (Rev.20:6,14), thus ridding His universe of all evil and bad things forever. Immediately following this judgment, the new heaven and new earth was seen by John in Revelation 21. Perhaps the concept of evil will not be erased but certainly its power to appear again will be gone forever. Scripture definitely states that God knows good and evil, so I assume this knowledge will not be erased. As a result of the Fall, humans know about good and evil, but I’m not sure if the redeemed will have this knowledge in eternity. Certainly temptation to do evil will never occur again, thank God!

During the suffering years of earth’s history, He also formed a Bride for Himself which is a central theme throughout both Testaments. This may have been the prize that Jesus looked forward to just prior to His crucifixion. At the center of the new heavens and earth was His Beautiful Bride – all the believers who ever lived on earth as fallen people but now without blemish. What a sight for His sore eyes!

Romans 12:21 – “Be not overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” This is what our Great Creator has accomplished in Christ and why I think He made everything knowing what would happen.

End Note: I believe all human history is just “Phase One” of God’s plan for us. Scripture states that His government (Kingdom) is everlasting and ever expanding (Is.9:7 & Dan.2:44). Currently, we are in what is called the “Church Age” or “Age of Grace.” The Bible speaks of “ages to come” in Ephesians 2:7 and Daniel 7:18. The teaser is that we cannot imagine what will occur in those ages (1Cor.2:9). The Bible gives use some hints, however:

  1.  We will not remember the former things (Isaiah 65:17),
  2.  All rule, authority, and power will be abolished (1 Cor.15:24),
  3.  No suffering or death (Rev. 21:4),
  4.  Sunlight and moonlight are not needed (Rev. 21:23),
  5.  No night times (Rev. 21:25),
  6.  We will see God face-to-face (Rev. 22:4),
  7.  No Temple needed because Jesus is the Temple (Rev. 21:22),
  8.  We will rule (something) forever (Dan. 7:18 & Rev. 22:5) – I guess #2 above refers only to worldly powers,
  9.  We will judge the world and the angels (1 Cor.6:2-3).

I think our afterlife experience may feel like being catapulted into the stratosphere. Whatever is in the works for the redeemed souls could not happen until evil was done away with first. Then we will be ready for “the booster rockets” necessary to usher in the other ages to come. Wow!


CL – very understandable – well done

NF – Wow– what a deep lesson really made me stop and think about the future and the past–thanks so much for sharing it!

Is Leaving Family for God All right?

PATRICK: I’ve left some family who do not believe because they want me to agree with them follow them in worldly ways. It’s heartbreaking at times, and I try always to be sensitive to the Spirit when He wants me to contact them and what to say, which I do. I know Jesus wants us to love the sinner and our enemies, but at the same time He speaks of leaving one’s family and farm to follow Him. I know this is a struggle many Christians face and the danger of being legalistic looms over such relational struggles. Any thoughts?

DAVE: You raise a good issue. It’s not an easy one to deal with. Obviously, our love for Jesus must far surpass our love for family/friends/enemies (Matthew 10:37). Sometimes that priority will lead us away from them. As long as our heart has the right attitude, it’s okay to leave. At one point Jesus said to the man whom He was calling but wanted to bury his father first, “Let the dead bury the dead you follow Me now” (Matthew 8:21-22). In other words, I think Jesus was saying that “some people will never get saved and are ‘dead’ even though they are still alive in the flesh, and there is Something of Utmost Importance speaking to you right now.” Jesus also said of the Pharisees who were His enemies, “Let them go for they are blind guides” (Matthew 15:14). The Apostles left their wives and families (how completely we do not know) and Jesus said there will be a reward in Heaven for that (Matthew 19:27-29). So certainly leaving certain people is not only permissible, it may be dictated by the Spirit. It doesn’t necessarily mean we stop loving and praying for them because we will never know whether or not they will get saved someday.

On the other hand, many Scriptures say that family commitment is important and good. For example, if a spouse gets saved, they are not to divorce the unsaved partner unless the unsaved demands it (1 Cor.7:12- 13). Also, a man should provide for his family. Husbands are to love their wives as Christ Loves the Church and gave Himself up for her. Wives are supposed to submit to and respect their husbands. Fathers are not to provoke their children to anger. Children are to honor their parents. None of these contexts remotely suggest abandoning the family for God. So perhaps leaving the family is for a special calling, i.e. Peter and the other eleven, and more people over the centuries. But maybe this is not to be the norm for all Christian men and women.

Why are some words foul?

In Mark 7:20-23, Jesus explains what defiles us. What we say with our mouths, He says, reflects whatever is in our hearts and therefore will eventually spew out of our mouths. This is one reason why “four-letter words” are wrong. When I taught teens, some agreed with the late comic George Carlin’s erroneous position that words are just words and none are wrong to say.

This raises a good question: What really makes the “F-word” wrong? I’ve always maintained that sexual intercourse between two humans in love with each other and married is a very special moment. God joins us in a holy soul-tie to one another through this act. With humans, sex is more than a mere physical act. It is NOT the same with animals because there is no love or soul-tying happening. By reducing the human sex experience down to a word that is often used in anger, rebellion, gross exploitation of women, or debasement to an animal level, it becomes quite bad (foul, perverted), certainly not neutral as Mr. Carlin asserted. Other words are wrong because of gross connotations they carry. Every language has them. If they spew out of our mouths, then what is in our heart? Ouch.

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