Is God angry?
Does he want to punish us?
A few years ago there were tornadoes that ravaged the middle of the USA. One famous preacher and theologian said that the tornadoes were God scraping his fingers across our country in judgment.
Is that what God is like?
Is God meticulously controlling the world so that everything that happens is because he wanted it to? Does he make all the bad stuff happen? If something bad happens can we say that it is God’s fault?
Consider all the very difficult and awful mass shootings that our world has been dealing with lately. Paris. San Bernadino. Is God controlling these people that shoot and kill?
When we are going through tragedy, the “Why?” question comes out. “Why God? Why are letting this happen? Are you angry? Are you punishing me?”
Since I have become a pastor, I have had the opportunity to officiate a lot of funerals, and people have asked that question. Sometimes people have asked this question even when the deceased have died of old age. It is such a common question. I have gone to visit people frequently in the hospital, and they too will often ask that question. “Why is this happening to me?”
“Why would God allow this?”
It is hard to know what to say in those moments. What would you say? There are so many possible answers. The pastor I refer to above, and many others like him, believes that God does judge and punish, and allowing us to go through hard times is an indication of his judgment. They believe that God sees the sin in the world and responds with trials and troubles.
Famous preachers said that the 9/11 attacks were punishment against America.
Others said that Hurricane Katrina was a judgment against the sinfulness of Mardi Gras in New Orleans.
That preacher who talked about God scraping his fingers across Oklahoma was responding to a denomination who was having denominational meetings nearby and one of the issues they were considering was accepting homosexuality. So he believed God responded by slamming the area with tornadoes.
Is God like that? You and I have asked these kinds of questions many times in our lives when we go through hard times. “God what are you doing to me? Are you angry?”
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