Hope(!!), Suffering and Evil in the World!

There are three sources of Evil and Suffering in the World:

  • A BROKEN NATURAL ORDER

    • According to the second law of thermodynamics:
      • matter always tends to the lowest state of order
        • meaning, in nature all things tend towards decay.
      • The start and sustenance of ‘life’ itself
        • proceeds in the opposite direction;
          • living things autonomously draw energy
            • (in the form of ‘food’)
            • from the surrounding environment,
        • but then eventually succumb to this law,
          • when it ends in illness, accidents, and death!!
    • For example, storms, earthquakes, and volcanoes
      • occur on the other planets and in other parts of the universe!!
      • When  these happen on earth,
        • where human beings live,
        • they cause suffering!!
  • A PERSONAL EVIL BEING CALLED SATAN

    • Personal experience with a presence
      • outside of human beings,
      • possessing the ability to reason with and influence individuals,
        • and whose sole purpose appears to be
          • to instigate, encourage all things
            •  evil, painful, and
            • opposed to goodness and to God’s purposes;
      • demonstrated in real ‘supernatural’ and demonic encounters, and
    • described in the events and exhortations in the scriptures,
    • is a source of much of the evil, and suffering upon the earth;
  • OUR FALLEN HUMAN NATURE, THAT IS,

    • the evil tendencies in everyone of us and/or combined with
    • our human limitations
      • (limited in knowledge, memory, ability etc.)
      • to use our God given freedom,
        •  for selfishness, opposition to goodness and God,
        • as individuals or together as members of communities;
      • causes evil and suffering
        • upon ourselves,
        • upon one another,
        • and upon the earth.

The ULTIMATE RESOLUTION (HOPE) FOR ME! AKA:

I HAVE PEACE BECAUSE OF THE FOLLOWING *:

  1. I KNOW GOD LOVES ME in the face of all the evil and suffering in the world:

    “but God demonstrates his own love for us [ME] in this: While we were still sinners [I WAS STILL A SINNER], Christ died for us [ME].”

    • Paul  in his letter to fellow Christians at Rome
      • Romans 5.8
  2. GOD HAS A PLAN FOR A FALLEN CREATION:

    • Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away,  And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” …

    • “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

    • Jesus’s BFF, John in his letter to some very young churches in first century AD
      • Revelation 21. 1-5

        pexels-photo-1000445.jpeg
        Photo by Belle Co on Pexels.com
  3. SATAN, (THE DEVIL) WILL BE DEFEATED FOREVER 

    • 10 And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
    • John the BFF of Jesus
      • Revelation 20.10
  4. MY FALLEN HUMAN NATURE:

    • In Christ we are a New Creation
      • Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
      • Paul in his letter to believers at Corinth
        • 2 Corinthians 5.17
    • In Christ we have a New Heart and are under a New Covenant
      • 33 “This is the [NEW] covenant I will make with the people …
        “I will put my law in their minds
            and write it on their [NEW] hearts.
        I will be their God,
            and they will be my people.
        34 No longer will they teach their neighbor,
            or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’
        because they will all know me,
            from the least of them to the greatest,”
        declares the Lord.
      • From the writings of the famous Jewish ‘weeping’ Prophet
        • Jeremiah 31.33 – 34
    • We now and will have only one NEW COMMANDMENT: LOVE!
      • “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
      • Jesus according to his BFF John
  5. THEREFORE I LIVE BY FAITH TRUSTING IN GOD THROUGH JESUS CHRIST!

    • 7 For we live by faith, not by sight.
    • Paul to his believer friends at Corinth
      • 2 Corinthians 5.7

*All quotes are from the New International Version (NIV).

Of the ‘Devil’ and the Evil in All of US!

Where does Satan and our Sinful Nature fit

  • in explaining the evil that is in the World Today?

As a Christian

  • I learn about the existence of ‘Satan‘ and of the ‘Sinful Nature,’ but
  • I have not fully resolved
    • how those two (sinful nature and Satan) interact to bring evil in the world.
gray bridge and trees
Photo by Martin Damboldt on Pexels.com

Regarding Satan (the devil, serpent, tempter, accuser, destroyer, etc.)

  • Is he present everywhere at the same time?
    • everyone appears to be constantly being affected or
      • tempted by him;
  • How is he able to tempt each person individually?
    • How come he knows what we are thinking?
    • How come he knows so much
      • about our individual histories, personalities and weaknesses?
  • If Satan, ‘the devil’
    • can tempt, deceive, dissuade, discourage, destroy individuals
      • even as the human population on the earth
        • continues to grow and
        • has reached over 4 billion; and if he
    • can work his evil from generation to generation for thousands of years;
      • the way some people say he does,
      • does not that make him a very powerful person
        • with some attributes like God(!)?
        • But he is NOT GOD!

This brings us to another source of evil in the world:

grayscale photography of woman s face
Photo by Engin Akyurt on Pexels.com
  • The Sinful/Evil Nature in all of us.

A ‘celebrity’ (in the early church)  once said this about himself:

  • (in the first century)
  • “For I know that good itself does not dwell in me,
    • that is, in my sinful nature. 
    • For I have the desire to do what is good,
      • but I cannot carry it out.   
    • For I do not do the good I want to do,
      • but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing.”
        • (Paul: Romans 7.18-19)
pexels-photo-1480689.jpeg
Photo by sebastiaan stam on Pexels.com

This is what that sinful nature looks like:

  • He(She) is lazy, slow, and a procrastinator.
  • He(She) lies, exaggerates, and deceives
  • He(She) is incredibly selfish;
  • He(She) is greedy, proud, boastful, and self-promoting
  • He(She) can be lewd, nasty, and insensitive
  • He(She) is utterly against God
    • He(she) does not want to submit to God’s rule or to worship him;
    • He(She) does not like to humble himself before God;
    • He(She) does not like to pray;
    • He(She) does not want to read sacred scriptures;
  • He(She) does not like limits
    • if the speed limit is 40 mph, he(she) wants to go at 45 mph or
    • if the speed limit is 55 mph, 65 mph seems attractive to him/her
  • He(She) lacks self control, prefers excesses,
    • he(she) does not want to wait or to accept limit on him/herself
      • whether it’s with regard to food and drink, or
      • in relation to social interactions,
        • including sex, and marital fidelity;
    • he(she) does not want to go to bed or to wake up early;
    • with regards to words and conversations,
      • he(she) can be mean, insensitive, inconsiderate, gossipy, and crass.
    • He(She) is never satisfied, always wants more.
  • He(She) works against the interest of the person in whom he dwells;
    • the excesses of the sinful nature may cause
      • disease, physical harm, crime and punishment;
      • auto accidents, fire, financial ruin,
      • ruined relationships and broken families,
      • loss of face and status, loss of power, etc.;
    • but this does not stop him or cause him to change direction .
low angle view of man standing at night
Photo by Lennart Wittstock on Pexels.com

I believe that

  • this sinful/evil nature is in every human being;
    • it can be conditioned/tempered by
      • parental discipline and personal experiences;
      • Christian (religious) conversion and education, and by
      • custom, and the laws of society;
  • this sinful nature is a “he/she” because
    • it is a part of but
      • not the totality of who we are as individuals
    • because he(she) appears to operate by ‘reason’ and ‘persuasion’
      • to our minds and/or to our will
      • (See Paul above in Romans 7.15-25);
    • as individuals we have still have the ability
      • TO MAKE A CHOICE between what
        • the persuasion of what the sinful nature wants and what
        • commons sense, conscience, laws of society, and the dictates of our faith, tell us.
  • (Personally, I refer to this sinful nature as “THE BEAST”).
  • Bring a community of people together
    • with this sinful nature and its tendencies,
    • we then have endless possibilities for evil,
      • in our world!

NEXT POST:  BRINGING THE TWO TOGETHER:

  • SATAN, OUR SINFUL NATURE, AND THE PREVALENCE OF EVIL IN OUR WORLD!!