Why is there pain and suffering? What world view explains evil and the reasons it exists. If there is a God what is his purpose in allowing broken hearts and a broken world, and what is his plan to deal with them? This talk explores these questions and more. Don't miss part 2 Guardians of the Galaxy coming soon.
God - being perfect relationship (the Godhead), gave us the gift of choice and consequence, to love Him or hate Him; to be independent or dependent.
In choosing against love-relationship we chose for all that is not God - evil and death. God allowed the choice - and us to exist, and the consequences of those choices. It’s free-will - freedom within his will. Independence is an illusion. We can chose life, love and abiding in our Maker. But, when we (Adam and Eve) chose independence, death and degeneration entered the world, and God’s sustaining life power was lifted from creation. As man goes so goes creation, but it works in reverse as well, Romans 8 shows us that.
God warns us that our “delusion” will be to seek our identity (who we are - where we find our hope, purpose, meaning, happiness) on all the things of creation. He warns us that they will not bring us life; we cannot get life from them. We were designed to get life from Him and then let that life flow through us out to the creation/ relationships, people, things that are given to us as stewards, not owners.
God in his wisdom and grace allows the separation, the consequences of independence from God (pain, degeneration, disease, death, catastrophe, evil choices) to affect us and our world, to wake us up to the reality that we are dead in our sins - our separation. we are the walking dead, and all our goodness and religions just make really good dead people.
Only as His creation can we rail (get upset) against death and evil as unnatural. If we are but products of evolution, then death, degeneration, and loss are natural and the process of survival of the fittest, evolutionary progress.
We need Life - Christ our Life giver to restore us and our world. Think of it as a life transplant. With His life in us, then goodness becomes worship, not facade and delusional independence (us declaring our own good and evil). We can all choose to Image/reflect God; but we must chose Him over self, we can be inoculated against evil (death). We are called, destined and purposed to become sons and daughters of God; who renounce self-life delusion (I make life, determine right and wrong- reality, and am my own God- primacy of the mind); who face the adversary and overcome evil and the evil one with good/God. He is growing us up, into His character - Christ-likeness. Growth requires struggle and adversity- this is His grace to reveal our dependence. His life in us is the hope of our salvation.
I want to echo C.S. Lewis characters in this Chronicles of Narnia series: The Last Battle.
I have come home at last! This is my real country. I belong here (heaven/restored earth). This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now. The reason why we loved the old Narnia (Earth) is that it sometimes looked like this...
(This earth) is only a shadow (of what it once was) or a copy of something in Aslan’s (the Creator’s) real world (the coming kingdom on Earth).
from my up-coming novel Genesis Cataclysm