An Alternative Christian View of Evil

One of the biggest objections against the existence of the Christian God is the argument of evil. If God is so good, why do bad things happen? He at worst wills it to happen, and at best allows it to happen, for reasons known only to Him. If He wills it to happen, then He is cruel, and if He allows it to happen, then He is not omnipotent, thus powerless to stop it. But since the argument about the existence of God revolves around worldview, the Christian (apart from asking the non-believer to justify any kind of morality from his worldview), should also be careful not to accept views of evil that are inconsistent with their beliefs.

Many times the instances of natural disasters, like the earthquake in Japan, are brought up as proof of evil, since many people die. Other horrific examples are also quoted, often very graphically, to raise the emotional levels of disgust.

But here is the problem with using that as proof of evil. In the Christian context, evil has nothing to do with that kind of human suffering. Evil, simply put, is that which drives people away from God, that which is in direct opposition to the will of God. Throughout the Bible, evil, is mentioned hundreds of times, and it is never about man, it is always about man’s relationship with God. Yes, people do horrible things to each other. And the ones doing the evil things are evil, but not because of what they do to others, but because they are doing what is contrary to the will of God.

Some may counter that God instructed some people to do bad things to others. But in the Biblical context, obeying God cannot be evil. To argue such is to raise the morality of the questioner above the moral reasoning of God, and once again, that argument needs to be constructed before it can be applied.

But God lets people die, in their thousands, in some of the most horrible ways thinkable, some may counter. And again, if we are to discuss death, then we need to take the Christian perspective. Paul, sitting in prison, and fully expecting to be executed in the most horrible way, writes this:

Php 1:21  For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
Php 1:22  If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell.
Php 1:23  I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.

Death is not something that the Christian fears, it is something that he desires, because it means to be with Christ. Death is not evil for the Christian, it is hope and gain. Death is only evil for those who are not Christian, and who are in opposition to the will of God.

God surely cannot go against Himself, and David writes this in the Psalms:

Psa 5:4  For you are not a God who delights in wickedness; evil may not dwell with you.

And if we remember that evil is that which leads people away from God, then the blame should be placed where it belongs, the evil force that lead mankind, and caused the fall of creation, into a state of evil that could only be overcome by the perfect sacrifice. That is the Christian view of evil, and how evil is to be overcome…not by asserting that there is no God, but by accepting the Christian view of evil and the victory over it.

Before entering into an argument about evil, it needs to be understood. And the Christian view is radically different than the secular view.

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