Thursday, June 12, 2008

Question of the Day

Think about this one for a while. It's a controversial question. I'm going to leave this up for a few days, and then comment.

Question: Does God still use events such as severe weather to bring judgment on nations and/or individuals?


Late note as of Sunday morning early. I thought I would have gotten more responses to this. (No slight intended to those who have posted comments. Thanks much!)

I will leave this up yet a few more days. I really want to see a variety of remarks before I comment. Hint -- one commenter has come pretty close to what I would say.


lee n. field said...

"Question: Does God still use events such as severe weather to bring judgment on nations and/or individuals?"

Sure. Why not? I am, though, very leery of identify any given disaster as the judgment of God on a particular people, nation or sin. Ex. Katrina because of the homosexuals (so why is San Francisco still on the map?) or the Indonesian tsunami on account of high Muslim population in the area hardest hit. I have heard these.

The providence of God will, I think in the end, turn out to be very complex. And, we don't have true living prophets of God declaring his judgments. We're not in that era.

Palm boy said...

Classic Response: Who can claim to know the mind of God? :D

My response: Probably, but we don't have the fortune of knowing who and when and why if he does.
That's my completely unambiguous answer.

crownring said...

Matthew 5:45

He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

Luke 13:4-5

4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem?

5 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish."

What do I think,Sola? I believe whenever mankind chooses independence from God, there is a consequence......and none of us can claim innocence.

Luke 18

9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everybody else, Jesus told this parable:

10 "Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.

11 The Pharisee stood up and prayed about[a] himself: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector.

12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.
13 "But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner.'

14 "I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."

Strong Tower said...

Do you think that A and S were Christians? How about those who were Christians who died in Myanmar? In Katrina? China?

Since we have the testimony of Scripture that God does indeed judge his people and the fact that the whole of creation lies under the wrath of God, then, yep. We know for a fact that the death rate is still 100% (minor exceptions are exceptions nonetheless) and that won't change til the parousia, then, yep.

What do we think of catastrophe, "I the Lord create good and calamity...If evil visits a city, is it not I the Lord who have done it?" As was mentioned by crownring, what makes the difference? The righteous parish and no one takes it to heart. The question shouldn't be: Is this the judgement of God? That is a forgone conclusion. It should be: Do we take this to heart? Redeeming the times for they are evil would then become the ethic and not the contemplation of why this and not this or why them and not them. Solomon questioned this dilema: Why do the evil prosper? Same question, different perspective. The question Jesus proposed to the rich man and his building barns for the future was simply, do you know that you will be alive tomorrow? It is a question that no one can answer and so Solomon also gives the answer in summing up the duty of man.

Yep, it is God's judgement, but for what specifically, who knows? What we do know is that the creation declares the glory of God and when the interest is peeked because of some great happening, we should be ready in and out of season to give every man an answer for the hope that is within us in the face of a life in this world where we will have tribulation.

God bless,


Randy said...

Scripture is clear. I believe he does.

Gilbert said...

I guess my comment receded into cyberspace, but...

The underlying question is does God judge people today, and if so, how?

God is not limited to meteorological events to do His will to judge people. But we do have to be careful when we say "God used such-and-such to judge so-and-so". When the tower fell in Siloam and killed 18 people, Jesus explicitly told them that those who perished were no more or less wicked than those he was talking to. But he gave a grave warning in Luke 13:5...
"But unless you repent, you too will all perish."

So yes, God can judge using weather, or anything or even anyone else. And we can bear the consequences of others' sin as well, so we must repent or perish, which is the seemingly odd, but in my mind, the correct answer to the question.

saunch said...

I would answer "yes, sometimes". As others have said, God sometimes uses these things to punish people for rejecting Him. However, I don't think most natural disasters are punishments. In one sense they are a result of sin in the world. But, as Ecclesiastes and Job show us, good things and bad things happen to good people and bad people, God's children and satan's children. I think more accurately that God uses these things to bring non-believers to Him, or in the case of Christians, to bring us to maturity. Bad things that happen to us are not always a result of sin in our lives. Sometimes, but often it's just life. They're things God uses to bring people to Him. I think too often we waste so much of life asking WHY things happen to us instead of accepting them and moving on. I don't think God is as concerned with the things that happen to us in life as He is with how we go through them. What kind of people we become as a result of life's circumstances.