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Why are good things from God, but not bad things?
|Created by Gerard de Vos|
A beautiful, perfectly healthy baby is born and we say, “God is good!”. A drunken driver ignores a stop street and an innocent young man is crippled for life. Why do we refuse to accept that the same good God devastated this young man's life?
The Bible declares that the origin of all good is God. (James 1:16-17, “Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father.”) But the same Bible declares that God is not in control of the world in this present, evil age. (1 John 5:16, “We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world is under the control of the evil one.”)
But who is this evil one? God created angels. They had a free will since God’s kingdom uses no force. One of the angels, called Lucifer decided to rebel, and God allowed it (Is 14:12-15; Ez 28:11-19). This rebellious angel persuaded a myriad of other angels to follow him and they were thrown out of heaven and down to earth (Rev 12:7-9 & Luk 10:18).
God initially created the physical earth for an eternal, peaceful kingdom characterized by love and harmony. It would be inhabited by human beings. God as King required loyalty and obedience. Man was created with a free will, to choose to follow and obey God or the perpetrator, thrown out or heaven. This evil angel has a character directly opposite to that of God, for example hatred instead of love, unforgiveness instead of forgiveness, et cetera. Mankind was deceived by the devil and chose to obey him.
God warns in the Word that choices have consequences (Gen 2:16-17; 3:4; 3:16-19 & Gal 6:7). Man lost his dominion of the earth to the devil. Rebellion against God/sin entered the world and God’s payment for sin is death (Rom 6:23). The effects of sin are seen every day. A father is crippled by the thief’s bullet, a daughter is raped, a son is killed in an accident. This does not come from God (James 1:13-15). But, because God is God, He can change evil to work out for good, as explained in the narrative of Joseph. His brothers hated him, sold him, and eventually he saved them, because God used the intended harm for good (Gen 50:20 & Rom 8:28).
What about natural disasters? God ordained that as long as the devil is in rebellion against God, the earth will be in rebellion against the devil as the ruler of this earth (Rom 8:18-22). Because of Adam’s sin in not accepting God’s rule, but the devil’s, the earth has been cursed, and this will only change in the end with the new earth (Rev 21:1).
Summary: God is good, and the devil is responsible for evil, by inciting man to sin (John 13:27).
Related articles: Did a good God make a bad devil?, Where will good people spend eternity?, Does God send people to hell?