Why Does God Allow Evil?I think this might be one of the biggest reasons people cite for not believing in God, or more importantly, for people who once believed in a God to decide they don't believe anymore. At the very least, its one of the most frequent questions he gets asked... so for today and today only, I will give you the answer for free. #1... please refer to everything you have heard, read, thought or know about FREE WILL.
Now, taking that whole free will thing into consideration, understand that all things are relative. Happy is only happy in comparison to sadness. In Happy, Happier, Happiest... happy becomes sad. Accordingly, Good, Better, Best, Good can be percieved as evil. By example, Adam and Eve in the garden created the biggest sin they could possible commit by directly and intentionally disobeying God's command - but is that evil? and yet from that transgression, look at the evil we know today! Bear with me, I am leading up to something...we will both know when I get there. ;)
Think for a minute of a hundred dollar bill, and imagine it in your hand. Now, that hundred bucks can make you happy knowing you have it, it can make you secure knowing you have a manner in which to provide yourself with food/clothing/shelter (I know, its only a hundred bucks--but go with it). Consider that $100 bucks as God's love which has freely been given down to you. You can keep it in your pocket and be glad that its there, you can spend it taking care of yourself, and yourself alone, and it will come and go with no real notice. You can decide to share that gift with others and in doing so, you can multiply your own joy, because now you are not only joyous that you had $100... but you have brought joy to another! So say that is your decision, you are going to share the love, and the joy. You have countless options... Lets look at three.
First, lets say that you could spend the money stimulating the economy, a portion goes to taxes, a portion is returned in goods to yourself, a portion is paid out in wages to support another, and a portion of it profits corporations... some of it will go to good, some of it will go to evil, you will have no real knowledge of where any of it ends up and such is the circle of life. Thats what most of us do with our money, thats what most of us do with our life.
Second, helping someone less fortunate than yourself is another option...consider a homeless person, alcoholic, drug addict, etc. or an orphaned or abandoned child.
Finally, you could throw in a little extra in the church basket, or give it to a charity.
I think we all do number 1... its called getting by. We earn, we spend, sometimes we are good, sometimes we are bad, it is what it is.
Sometimes we do number 3... but number 3 turns into a gray area, especially when the wealthy do it for a tax break. Chrisitan charity is not giving something you won't miss, but that is another story.
So number 2. I think a lot of people would easily give to the orphaned child, and would reject the homeless addict... but noone really knows what hope would mean to either. In God's perfect world, the addict just might turn his life around and then use the pain his life held up to that point to create works of art whether writing, painting, singing, or they may just become a beacon of hope for others through their words and their deads...but the fact is that as long as their is breath in the body, there is the potential for greatness from the soul. The child on the other hand, who most people would willing and lovingly give could quite likely turn into a rapist, an abuser, a serial killer or an addict. It is not up to you, or I, though we could hope to give either enough love and hope that they achieve what is best for them. But the truth is that "turning good" or "turning bad" does not negate the effect each has upon the other. If you kill a man in cold blood, then turn around and save a family from a burning car...one does not make you more or less of a hero. Of course one is more desireable than the other, that is plain to see....but God sees in all of us the potential to do something good...and at some point in our life, I am sure we have. Doesn't mean we haven't can't or won't do something bad!
To indiscriminately destroy evil would essentially be to destroy all life. God is a God of love and compassion, forgiveness and hope. Make no mistake that God is not weak... Vengenance is mine sayeth the Lord. People wonder how God can allow the suffering in the world, and the evil in the world, and wonder how each year there gets to be so much more of and God will not do anything...but just suppose that there is such a thing as life after death...reincarnation... what would be an appropriate punishment for a myriad of sins. Doesn't the bible say that as you do unto others, the same will be done unto you... 10 fold.
God created the heavens and the earth and all things upon the earth and in the heavens. There is no evil in heaven with God, but it has to go somewhere... so we get it here on earth. When will the evil stop....when we stop it here on earth. Think back to teh $100.00 and remember the ways we thought about spending/sharing it... what if, instead of choosing any of the options above, we refused to make a choice, and took a lighter to the 100.00 bucks... that way no good, or no evil could become of it. But then... wouldn't the ashes return to the earth to nourish the soil, wouldn't the smoke rise from the fire and pollute the air. Small nourishment, small polution, but even when the $100 ceased to be, did it? I think that is God's dilema with us. I don't know really, I am not God. You want to know - ask him. You want to know who will win the battle between good and evil, look in your heart because thats where the war is being waged.
Will God ever destory the evil in the world and start anew? I believe He will, but even if He doesn't... my life is made better by my belief that He will....