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Author Topic: So Why does God allow Bad things to Happen?  (Read 4169 times) Average Rating: 0
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J Michael
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« Reply #45 on: April 19, 2013, 10:18:05 AM »

I see a lot of opinion, but no proof.

You know, I can't quite put my finger on it (probably because I'm not quite smart enough or well-read enough), but it seems to me that there's a way to reconcile your view and stavros_388's view about this.

Maybe it's in the term "allow", but I'm not sure.  When I think of that term, usually it's in the kind of context of asking permission to do something and then either getting that permission or not.  Just a somewhat random thought as I consider the interesting posts here. Wink
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« Reply #46 on: April 19, 2013, 10:39:56 AM »

Here is Eugene (Father Seraphim) Rose's response to Ivan Karamazov (and the philosophical 'problem of suffering'), from Father Seraphim Rose - His Life and Works. It presents a Christian approach to suffering. This discussion made me think of it, and re-read it, so I thought I'd post it here. Oh, to have faith like his...

"Once one has risen to the level of doubting, two paths open up to him: the path of questioning, of doubting, of trying to understand until one ends in doubting everything, destroyed by doubt, or else giving oneself over to some false science that 'explains' - i.e., explains the irreconcilable paradoxes of our existence; or the path of acceptance and prayer, accepting even the doubt (without contriving more than one's immediate experience gives one legitimacy to doubt), praying to be given yet more to try and test us, crying for more life, more to accept and weep over, accepting and praying in the midst of doubt, knowing that the way of doubt has as many pitfalls as the way of easy acceptance.... For everyone who rationalizes away the suffering of living--the hedonists, the 'philosophers', those who simply don't care--there is at least one who [falls into these pitfalls of doubt], who drives himself to doubt more than he really (existentially) doubts, who explains away the other side of the paradox of human life (the real goodness, and penitence, and the very pity that drives him to doubt in the first place) as cheaply as the false comforters (whom he hates) explain away the suffering and sin and evil.

"For we have entered the time of the Last Doubt, the final and greatest of all: the doubt of everything, the denial of all coherence, the abandonment of the attempt to make 'sense' of the world and human life.

"But the man of this Last Doubt, in the end, falls into the same pit as the false comforters, those who explain away suffering: for both have thought too much, have tried too hard to make 'sense', to 'explain' life. The one explains it too easily, the other finds the lack of explanation, perhaps, too easy. But both trust the mind, both think that life should make sense, should be explained--and that if I, a normal questioning man, can (or cannot) make sense of it, that is all that is needful.

"O proud and vain man! You can make no sense, no real sense of life until you have lived it far more deeply than your mere doubt reveals. You have gone deeper, it is true, than the false comforters, you have refused to be satisfied with the obvious hypocrisy that shields us from the intolerable suffering of our fellow man; but you too, in your turn, have stopped, stopped at the very threshold of the mystery of life....

"You are at a standstill because you have approached the mystery of existence with the mind, with questions and demand for explanation; whereas it can only be approached through prostration, humility, prayer--and acceptance. Accept all, take all into yourself--all that is given you. If you do not do this, if you shield yourself from one smallest bit of suffering so as to take refuge in the rational attitude of doubt, then the fault lies in yourself, and the world fails to make sense precisely because you, who look at it, make no sense. You are foul, and constantly contradict yourself, yet you expect to see the world pure, and making sense!" (pp. 99,100)

"And so He knows how it is with us... We know existence is suffering, and we know that our God loves us and for this love suffered even more intensely than the greatest saint; we know this, and yet we presume to 'doubt', to offer our petty questioning of the 'meaning' of it all. O vile man! Accept it and suffer more, and pray to God--pray for no object, for no cause, merely give your heartfelt prayers and tears to Him. He knows the 'why' of it. He knows all." (pp.103,104)
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« Reply #47 on: April 19, 2013, 10:56:09 AM »

In regards to this topic, I haven't found a better treatment than David Bentley Hart's The Doors of the Sea. It's brilliant.
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Great googly moogly!


« Reply #48 on: April 19, 2013, 09:24:23 PM »

CHALLENGE:
Prove to me God has allowed something bad to happen.

Okay, being serious now,

My mom was pistol-whipped as a teenager, I was born with PKU and my mom miscarried. If God is omnipotent, then He let those things happen. There is no getting around it.

So for  the same reason you could hide under your bed, or someplace safe for the rest of your life, Or your mom can fight all yor battles, or you can play it safe all your life.

The point is that freedom has a price, and we do not want what you you think would be good.

There is no anwser specifically to the question, you ask, it is one that silence is best for an anwser. Just as Job's freinds would have been doing him a favor by shutting up and just be there for him.

I seem to remember you talking about joining a monastery. I was just thinking that there you would not be able to ask that without getting silence as an answer, and for a good reason that silence is the answer at monasteries. Especially for this question.
Only wisdom of many years can possibly help us understand this paradox.
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« Reply #49 on: July 20, 2013, 03:56:03 AM »

This is probably one of the oldest recorded philosophical questions in human history. From what I've gathered so far, the oldest answer's probably the best answer -- we just don't know. That's really where the book of Job leaves us. To quote G.K. Chesterton (who I realize probably isn't all that popular on here):

“Indeed the Book of Job avowedly only answers mystery with mystery. Job is comforted with riddles; but he is comforted. Herein is indeed a type, in the sense of a prophecy, of things speaking with authority. For when he who doubts can only say, ‘I do not understand,’ it is true that he who knows can only reply or repeat ‘You do not understand.’ And under that rebuke there is always a sudden hope in the heart; and the sense of something that would be worth understanding.”

Personally, I've found peace in accepting that the question's probably always going to be beyond me. I'd also recommend The Tree of Life, (the movie), for an interesting application of Job's answer to the problem of suffering.

Jesus seemed to respond to the Problem of Evil with his life, rather than trying to work out an answer rationally. You can see all sorts of suffering and evil surrounding him throughout the Gospels -- people crippled from birth, demonic possessions, storms, poverty, etc. It seems apparent to me that the Gospel writers had the same question you have in mind when they were narrating Jesus' life, and they each chose to let Jesus' sacrifice be the answer to it. And to quote Nikolai Berdyaev,

"The sacrifice of Christ on Golgotha, made by God and by man, is a theodicy not merely intellectual, but rather in life, and in deed. The Lamb is given in ransom from the very foundation of the world. The sacrifice of God primordially has entered into the plane of the world-creation. God Himself shares in the tragedy of the world, in the sufferings of the world, and takes upon Himself the sufferings of mankind."

That whole essay's great too in full (and Orthodox!): http://www.berdyaev.com/berdiaev/berd_lib/1927_321.html
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« Reply #50 on: July 20, 2013, 03:19:21 PM »

An interesting thread, I'm sorry I missed it the first time around. 

Do you think that our deification cannot happen unless we are immersed in evil? What happened to the idea that we are falling short of the kind of persons that He created us to be? I submit to you that we would still have a challenge even in the absence of evil, suffering, pain and disease. My priest had an interesting take on this, just last week (Sunday of the Holy Cross) he said the following (I am paraphrasing from memory): The creation of man in Genesis ("Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness") was not completed until the Lord was crucified ("It is finished").

This goes along with St Athanasius' dictum that "Christ became like man so that we might become like him." What this means is that we each have our own crosses to bear--affirmative actions that go way beyond eschewing sins, being "good," and overcoming evil, pain and suffering. If you remember the parable of the rich man, he fell short when he could not bring himself to give up all of his wealth, even though he was a righteous man.

Carl,

A slight correction, I don't think the rich man you referring to is a parabolic figure, much to the chagrin of many I believe.

And I have some slight problems with folks reading a bit much into Christ's words it is finished given when they happen and the possible implications which lie within the Greek which might not be apparent in the English. A reading as the one which you include above does seem lend itself to a more "saved by the blood" protestant reading.

What Carl's priest preached about above is a central theme in the services of Good Friday, at least in our tradition.  Sure, it's poetry, but it's also more than that.  Whatever it is, I've never seen Protestantism in it until you suggested it, and even then I'm not sure I see it.  I'd love to hear more about your view on this, orthonorm. 

If there is no evil, then where could we get our concept of good?  I think evil has to exist in order to make sense of man's moral struggle on Earth.  

We get our concept of "goodness" from its source: God. 

What I find objectionable about the statement I quoted is that it requires evil to exist for God to exist.  Or it requires that goodness be separated from God.  How is either a Christian notion?

CHALLENGE:
Prove to me God has allowed something bad to happen.




You can't?  Ok then...

Though I found James' Kim Kardashian example to be funny and easy on the eyes, when I read this challenge, what immediately came to mind were these (in no particular order): 

Mt 26.47-27.50 (with parallels in Mk 14.43-15.37, Lk 22.47-23.46, Jn 18.1-19.34 [cf. Gal 3.13-14]).  Rom 11.32.  Jn 9.1-3.  Ex 7.3-4.  Jn 21.18-19a (and see vv. 20-22).  And there are others. 

Whether or not God can be said to "do" bad things, it is certainly the case that God allows bad things to happen.  Anyone who reads Scripture, the theological and ascetic writings of the Fathers, the lives of the Saints, etc. without an urgent need to "protect God" can see that plainly.  Equally problematic, however, is the attitude of those who seize on such instances in order to vilify God.  The truth of the matter is in the middle.             
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« Reply #51 on: July 20, 2013, 03:56:34 PM »

I came for the philosophical discussion. I stayed for the Berdyaev. (love that guy)

I think I read the thread at some point, but it would have been a month or more ago.

I sometimes feel like there is a double standard when it comes to this stuff. If Pat Robertson blames natural disasters on evil or sin we point the finger and ridicule. If a saint of the Church does so... well are we ok with that? Because they did, so...?  St. Gregory the Theologian, for example, blamed a drought and hail storm (and I think one other thing) on the sinfulness of the congregation. To my modernistic ears this just sounds horrible. God didn't allow a drought--or, if I remember correctly, send a drought as a warning--because of sinfulness; it happened for completely natural reasons. Or so I assume. Though I can't prove it. Either way, if St. Gregory was alive today and blaming hurricanes and whatnot on whatever sins are particularly infamous, would be point the finger and laugh, or scoff?

I guess part of what I'm getting at is, I don't know why God allows bad things to happen (I don't much buy a lot of the theodical reasoning and arguments regarding this kind of stuff), but I also don't get how we respond a lot of the time either. Nor do I know how we should respond, for that matter.

I am rambling now. Perhaps I've got my point across somehow, if I have one...  angel
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« Reply #52 on: July 20, 2013, 04:15:44 PM »

I came for the philosophical discussion. I stayed for the Berdyaev. (love that guy)

Yeah, until he'd poke his tongue out at you in the middle of a conversation. He had this curious tic, they say.

I sometimes feel like there is a double standard when it comes to this stuff. If Pat Robertson blames natural disasters on evil or sin we point the finger and ridicule. If a saint of the Church does so... well are we ok with that? Because they did, so...?  St. Gregory the Theologian, for example, blamed a drought and hail storm (and I think one other thing) on the sinfulness of the congregation. To my modernistic ears this just sounds horrible. God didn't allow a drought--or, if I remember correctly, send a drought as a warning--because of sinfulness; it happened for completely natural reasons. Or so I assume. Though I can't prove it. Either way, if St. Gregory was alive today and blaming hurricanes and whatnot on whatever sins are particularly infamous, would be point the finger and laugh, or scoff?

Ever been to a Vigil for the Feast of St. Demetrius?

Quote from: Menaion for October 26th

COMMEMORATION OF THE GREAT AND DREADFUL EARTHQUAKE AT
CONSTANTINOPLE IN 740 A.D.

Stichera for the earthquake, the composition of Symeon of the Wondrous Mountain:

In Tone II:
When the earth trembled with fear at Thy wrath, the mountains and hills did quake, O Lord; but, regarding us with the eye of Thy compassion, be Thou not wroth with us in Thine anger, but, taking pity on the works of Thy hands, free us from the dreadful threat of earthquake, in that Thou art good and the Lover of mankind.

Stichos: He looketh on the earth and maketh it tremble.

In Tone IV:
Awesome art Thou, O Lord, and who can abide Thy righteous wrath? Who can entreat Thee? Who can render Thee mild concerning Thy sinful and despairing people, O Good One? The ranks of heaven: the angels, authorities, principalities, thrones, dominions, cherubim and seraphim, cry out to Thee in our behalf: Holy, holy, holy art Thou, O Lord! Disdain not the works of Thy hands, and in the compassion of Thy mercy save Thou Thine imperiled city.

Stichos: Thou madest the earth to quake and troubled it.

The Ninevites, because of their offenses, heard the threat of destruction by earthquake; ye, through the resurrection of Jonah in the intermediate sign of the whale, cried out in appeal. Thus, taking pity on Thy people and their babes and cattle, Thou didst accept their cry. So also take pity and have mercy on us that are being chastised, for the sake of Thine own Rising on the third day.

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« Reply #53 on: July 20, 2013, 04:23:13 PM »

Yeah, until he'd poke his tongue out at you in the middle of a conversation. He had this curious tic, they say.

That's not a tongue sticking out in my avatar, it's a tooth. Smiley

Quote
Ever been to a Vigil for the Feast of St. Demetrius?

Not that I can recall--which is what almost everyone except you and LBK would say to that question. However, good passage, I admit. Having said that, I'm not sure that it's relevant in the larger scope of what I was asking about. What you quoted seems to fit perfectly well within... well... the mindset and thought of the time in which it must have been composed. Today though...?  angel
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« Reply #54 on: July 20, 2013, 04:45:48 PM »

Yeah, until he'd poke his tongue out at you in the middle of a conversation. He had this curious tic, they say.

That's not a tongue sticking out in my avatar, it's a tooth. Smiley

I had no idea that was Berdyaev there in your avatar. Unrecognizable metamorphosis! 



I thought that was Einstein's Maya mortuary mask...



What you quoted seems to fit perfectly well within... well... the mindset and thought of the time in which it must have been composed. Today though...?  angel

If they still chant it in Church nowadays, I reckon it must be perennial Orthodox phronemaangel
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« Reply #55 on: July 20, 2013, 07:14:57 PM »

Do I have to type out St. Basil's "God is not the creator of evil" homily/writing thing now?
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« Reply #56 on: July 20, 2013, 07:21:45 PM »

Do I have to type out St. Basil's "God is not the creator of evil" homily/writing thing now?

The Youtube video would be great!  Wink
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« Reply #57 on: July 20, 2013, 07:44:31 PM »

Do I have to type out St. Basil's "God is not the creator of evil" homily/writing thing now?

Nah, you don't have to do that... (link -- though I think about 4 pages are missing)
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« Reply #58 on: July 20, 2013, 09:12:59 PM »

Do I have to type out St. Basil's "God is not the creator of evil" homily/writing thing now?

The Youtube video would be great!  Wink

Only if St Basil himself is reading it. 
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« Reply #59 on: July 20, 2013, 09:37:28 PM »

My wife found this on Facebook this morning.  I think it says a lot.

Quote
Me: God, can I ask You a question?
 God: Sure

 Me: Promise You won't get mad
 God: I promise

 Me: Why did You let so much stuff happen to me today?
 God: What do u mean?

 Me: Well, I woke up late
 God: Yes

 Me: My car took forever to start
 God: Okay

 Me: at lunch they made my sandwich wrong & I had to wait
 God: Huummm

 Me: On the way home, my phone went DEAD, just as I picked up a call
 God: All right

 Me: And on top of it all off, when I got home ~I just want to soak my feet in my new foot massager & relax. BUT it wouldn't work!!! Nothing went right today! Why did You do that?
 God: Let me see, the death angel was at your bed this morning & I had to send one of My Angels to battle him for your life. I let you sleep through that

 Me (humbled): OH
 GOD: I didn't let your car start because there was a drunk driver on your route that would have hit you if you were on the road.

 Me: (ashamed)
 God: The first person who made your sandwich today was sick & I didn't want you to catch what they have, I knew you couldn't afford to miss work.

 Me (embarrassed):Okay
 God: Your phone went dead because the person that was calling was going to give false witness about what you said on that call, I didn't even let you talk to them so you would be covered.

 Me (softly): I see God
 God: Oh and that foot massager, it had a shortage that was going to throw out all of the power in your house tonight. I didn't think you wanted to be in the dark.

 Me: I'm Sorry God
 God: Don't be sorry, just learn to Trust Me.... in All things , the Good & the bad.

 Me: I will trust You.
 God: And don't doubt that My plan for your day is Always Better than your plan.

 Me: I won't God. And let me just tell you God, Thank You for Everything today.
 God: You're welcome child. It was just another day being your God and I Love looking after My Children...
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« Reply #60 on: July 20, 2013, 10:04:13 PM »

My wife found this on Facebook this morning.  I think it says a lot.

Quote
Me: God, can I ask You a question?
 God: Sure

 Me: Promise You won't get mad
 God: I promise

 Me: Why did You let so much stuff happen to me today?
 God: What do u mean?

 Me: Well, I woke up late
 God: Yes

 Me: My car took forever to start
 God: Okay

 Me: at lunch they made my sandwich wrong & I had to wait
 God: Huummm

 Me: On the way home, my phone went DEAD, just as I picked up a call
 God: All right

 Me: And on top of it all off, when I got home ~I just want to soak my feet in my new foot massager & relax. BUT it wouldn't work!!! Nothing went right today! Why did You do that?
 God: Let me see, the death angel was at your bed this morning & I had to send one of My Angels to battle him for your life. I let you sleep through that

 Me (humbled): OH
 GOD: I didn't let your car start because there was a drunk driver on your route that would have hit you if you were on the road.

 Me: (ashamed)
 God: The first person who made your sandwich today was sick & I didn't want you to catch what they have, I knew you couldn't afford to miss work.

 Me (embarrassed):Okay
 God: Your phone went dead because the person that was calling was going to give false witness about what you said on that call, I didn't even let you talk to them so you would be covered.

 Me (softly): I see God
 God: Oh and that foot massager, it had a shortage that was going to throw out all of the power in your house tonight. I didn't think you wanted to be in the dark.

 Me: I'm Sorry God
 God: Don't be sorry, just learn to Trust Me.... in All things , the Good & the bad.

 Me: I will trust You.
 God: And don't doubt that My plan for your day is Always Better than your plan.

 Me: I won't God. And let me just tell you God, Thank You for Everything today.
 God: You're welcome child. It was just another day being your God and I Love looking after My Children...

Food for thought!


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« Reply #61 on: July 20, 2013, 10:42:09 PM »

My wife found this on Facebook this morning.  I think it says a lot.

I've seen that before.  It's nice, in a "Footprints" kind of way.  Hardly "theology", let alone "Orthodox theology", but it's nice.  It reminds me of this:

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« Reply #62 on: July 20, 2013, 10:53:41 PM »

My wife found this on Facebook this morning.  I think it says a lot.

I've seen that before.  It's nice, in a "Footprints" kind of way.  Hardly "theology", let alone "Orthodox theology", but it's nice. 
The point of it is, stop blaming God for things you don’t understand or like.  Sounds pretty Orthodox to me.
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« Reply #63 on: July 20, 2013, 11:10:22 PM »

"Hey God, why do you let millions of innocent children get molested and sold into child prostitution everyday?"
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You're really on to something here. Tattoo to keep you from masturbating, chew to keep you from fornicating... it's a whole new world where you outsource your crosses. You're like a Christian entrepreneur or something.
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« Reply #64 on: July 20, 2013, 11:12:54 PM »

"Hey God, why do you let millions of innocent children get molested and sold into child prostitution everyday?"
"Hey people, why do you do everything you can to spite God and live for your own desires resulting in many innocent children getting molested and sold into child prostitution every day.  Repent and live a godly life."

James, place the blame where it belongs...on the people doing the evil deed.
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« Reply #65 on: July 20, 2013, 11:38:49 PM »

"Hey God, why do you let millions of innocent children get molested and sold into child prostitution everyday?"
"Hey people, why do you do everything you can to spite God and live for your own desires resulting in many innocent children getting molested and sold into child prostitution every day.  Repent and live a godly life."

James, place the blame where it belongs...on the people doing the evil deed.

+ 1


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« Reply #66 on: July 20, 2013, 11:39:31 PM »

@op.  Why does God allow bad things to happen?  (not sure why you capitalized the word "bad," but ok)...

Because where sin abounds, grace abounds much more.  Even the innocent would be selfish persons unable to empathize with others.  I would be a selfish person had I not had to suffer what I did.  I thank God for every bit of suffering he has put in my path.  It is up to you as to whether suffering makes you a better or worse person.  My suggestion is to get off your rearend and go visit lonely people at a nursing home for a week rather than posting here.  Then report back.  God make a difference in the world and maybe you will see God working in you.  If we are not willing to visit the sick and lonely, feed the hungry, clothe the naked, our existence is pointless.  Go make a difference, become a saint, and report back that others should do the same.  
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« Reply #67 on: July 21, 2013, 02:58:44 PM »

The point of it is, stop blaming God for things you don’t understand or like.  Sounds pretty Orthodox to me.

I understand that this is the intention behind that FB piece, and agree with you that "blaming God" is spiritually unhealthy and unproductive. 

At the same time, IMO that piece (and many like it) is a caricature of the truth just as much as its opposite (of which there are examples in this thread).  That piece transforms God into a benevolent version of the Teddy Bear in the illustration I posted.  The opposite view denies any human responsibility (as you correctly note), turns God into a monster, and transforms men into God's marionettes.  Neither reflects the Scriptural, Orthodox position on God, on man, or on the "problem of pain". 

Again, it is spiritually unhealthy to "blame God".  But I am not sure if everyone who appears to be "blaming God" is actually doing so, as opposed to seeing and experiencing negative aspects of life, wondering why it is this way, and bringing that struggle to God--struggling with this issue, but doing so with God, in God's presence, in communion with God.  Simple answers like "It's our fault, stop blaming God" or "God can stop it if he wants, but he doesn't, so he's evil" really don't cut it because of how incomplete they are in general and not just when applied to a particular situation.  This problem is really an invitation to enter into a relationship with God, within which things "will click" in their own time.  It's not simply an academic exercise to attack or protect God, as if he could be defeated or needed help.           
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« Reply #68 on: July 21, 2013, 03:19:05 PM »

Do I have to type out St. Basil's "God is not the creator of evil" homily/writing thing now?

Nah, you don't have to do that... (link -- though I think about 4 pages are missing)

oh good that is much easier! you have it too? Smiley



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« Reply #69 on: July 21, 2013, 03:21:38 PM »

I used to own that book, but I donated it at some point.
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« Reply #70 on: July 21, 2013, 07:33:51 PM »

My wife found this on Facebook this morning.  I think it says a lot.
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« Reply #71 on: July 21, 2013, 07:33:51 PM »

"Hey God, why do you let millions of innocent children get molested and sold into child prostitution everyday?"
But didn't you read Kerdy's thing? God didn't want the children to starve to death so he got them involved with sex slavery.
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« Reply #72 on: July 21, 2013, 07:34:03 PM »

James, place the blame where it belongs...on the people doing the evil deed.
So you didn't read JamesR's post. He asked why does He let...
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« Reply #73 on: July 21, 2013, 07:42:06 PM »

"Hey God, why do you let millions of innocent children get molested and sold into child prostitution everyday?"

I have to say, this question hits much closer to home than the Facebook dialogue or the picture do for me. I mean, yes, technically I suppose God could be something like that Teddy Bear in the picture who is working out completely rational and agreeable ends to all of our problems throughout the day, but it just seems like a horribly lacking answer to me. When we're dealing with "My car took forever to start," the Teddy Bear God sorta fits; when we're dealing with child molestation and prostitution, it just feels far-fetched.

It's not that I don't believe God cares for us the way the Facebook dialogue or the picture make him out to, I just have some sympathy with JamesR in that there are some deeply heavy, emotional, and horrible questions that I just can't work out a satisfying and comforting answer to -- questions like the ones Job deals with. The God in the Facebook conversation seems much more human and agreeable than the God of Job. I guess I just feel it's better to remain agnostic about questions like this than put happy words into God's mouth. Thoughts?
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« Reply #74 on: July 21, 2013, 07:51:43 PM »

I read somewhere a nice contemplation, I think by Fr. Matta al Maskeen in the "Communion of Love", where the question of why does God all bad things to happen was never really answered with a satisfactory response until the incarnation and suffering of Christ, where bad things happen to God incarnate Himself.  And thus, the world may bring forth bad things, but no longer are they looked upon as a curse, but as a partaking of the life of Christ, who deserved nothing bad to be happened to, and took it upon Himself as a form of sacrifice on behalf of all those who do and do not deserve it.
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« Reply #75 on: July 21, 2013, 11:28:35 PM »

I read somewhere a nice contemplation, I think by Fr. Matta al Maskeen in the "Communion of Love", where the question of why does God all bad things to happen was never really answered with a satisfactory response until the incarnation and suffering of Christ, where bad things happen to God incarnate Himself.  And thus, the world may bring forth bad things, but no longer are they looked upon as a curse, but as a partaking of the life of Christ, who deserved nothing bad to be happened to, and took it upon Himself as a form of sacrifice on behalf of all those who do and do not deserve it.

Doubtless the response to this will be something like, "If you are the Son of God, save yourself and us."
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« Reply #76 on: July 22, 2013, 04:46:15 AM »

My wife found this on Facebook this morning.  I think it says a lot.
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« Reply #77 on: July 22, 2013, 04:48:18 AM »

"Hey God, why do you let millions of innocent children get molested and sold into child prostitution everyday?"
But didn't you read Kerdy's thing? God didn't want the children to starve to death so he got them involved with sex slavery.
Being purposely obtuse again I see, but to what end?
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« Reply #78 on: July 22, 2013, 04:50:46 AM »

If there is no evil, then where could we get our concept of good?  I think evil has to exist in order to make sense of man's moral struggle on Earth.  If everything was just love and roses, that would be Paradise, but this is not Paradise.

Man's constant questioning the concept of evil and suffering, to me, points to one thing and one thing only - we all want to go back home, back to Eden.

So God was not good before Satan's fall?
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« Reply #79 on: July 22, 2013, 04:52:02 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed. 

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

If I know for a fact that my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, and yet I do nothing about it, do I bear responsibility?
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« Reply #80 on: July 22, 2013, 04:53:58 AM »

Simple answer is, God doesn't, they just happen.

God isn't like a parent who holds their kids hand while they ride a bike down the street. He's like a parent who allows their kid to ride down the street on their own. If they fall, then it happens and he will be there to help the child up, but even so the child has to want to get up.


But at the same time, if a parent saw that one of their children was brutally beating another, would all they be "help the child up," or would they stop the brutalizer?
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« Reply #81 on: July 22, 2013, 04:55:05 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed. 

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

If I know for a fact that my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, and yet I do nothing about it, do I bear responsibility?

Yep. Just like we bear responsibility for the murder of unborn innocents that occurs down the street with our apathy and indifference.


Selam
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« Reply #82 on: July 22, 2013, 04:55:54 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed. 

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

If I know for a fact that my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, and yet I do nothing about it, do I bear responsibility?
Satan fell because he attempted to equal himself with God.  I would be careful if I were you.
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« Reply #83 on: July 22, 2013, 04:55:59 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed.  

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

We believe God can make icons weep, perform various miracles, communicate with prophets, and so forth. We don't worship a deistic God who put everything into motion and then left to make some popcorn (and never returned!). Christianity's God is an interacting and intervening God.

You say that placing blame on God removes all human responsibility. But humans simply cannot prevent a good deal of suffering that takes place. For instance, over 98,000 women have died in childbirth already this year. Ouch. Most of them probably lived in poorer countries with less access to modern medical facilities and doctors. But if you contemplate the amount of women and children who have died throughout the centuries in the birthing process alone, the numbers must be staggering. And there hasn't been anything humans knew or could do to prevent it. Then there are natural disasters, diseases, birth defects, and so on. I agree that humans need to take responsibility for the harm that their actions cause other people and creatures. And we must do our best to alleviate the suffering of others. But if God can do something about certain cases of suffering, and does not do something, and humanity lacks the resources or advanced knowledge to do something effective, then is it not safe to surmise that God allows such things? I personally cannot see any way around this. Additionally, many Church fathers say that we must accept everything that comes to us as being allowed by God (for our own purification, humiliation, or what have you) .

You blame God all you want.  I won't.

You must be able to prove God allows something before you can ask why He allows it, but since no one can do this...


Kerdy, do you believe in a God of Power and Might, or in a God Who has no force, Who has no ability, Who has no control?

If God is capable of stopping me from burning down a home with 10 people locked inside, and doesn't, then He has allowed it.  If God can prevent something from happening, and doesn't, then He allows it.

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« Reply #84 on: July 22, 2013, 05:00:34 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed.  

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

We believe God can make icons weep, perform various miracles, communicate with prophets, and so forth. We don't worship a deistic God who put everything into motion and then left to make some popcorn (and never returned!). Christianity's God is an interacting and intervening God.

You say that placing blame on God removes all human responsibility. But humans simply cannot prevent a good deal of suffering that takes place. For instance, over 98,000 women have died in childbirth already this year. Ouch. Most of them probably lived in poorer countries with less access to modern medical facilities and doctors. But if you contemplate the amount of women and children who have died throughout the centuries in the birthing process alone, the numbers must be staggering. And there hasn't been anything humans knew or could do to prevent it. Then there are natural disasters, diseases, birth defects, and so on. I agree that humans need to take responsibility for the harm that their actions cause other people and creatures. And we must do our best to alleviate the suffering of others. But if God can do something about certain cases of suffering, and does not do something, and humanity lacks the resources or advanced knowledge to do something effective, then is it not safe to surmise that God allows such things? I personally cannot see any way around this. Additionally, many Church fathers say that we must accept everything that comes to us as being allowed by God (for our own purification, humiliation, or what have you) .

You blame God all you want.  I won't.

You must be able to prove God allows something before you can ask why He allows it, but since no one can do this...


Kerdy, do you believe in a God of Power and Might, or in a God Who has no force, Who has no ability, Who has no control?

If God is capable of stopping me from burning down a home with 10 people locked inside, and doesn't, then He has allowed it.  If God can prevent something from happening, and doesn't, then He allows it.
Asking more questions doesn't prove the claim.
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« Reply #85 on: July 22, 2013, 05:04:37 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed. 

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

If I know for a fact that my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, and yet I do nothing about it, do I bear responsibility?

Yep. Just like we bear responsibility for the murder of unborn innocents that occurs down the street with our apathy and indifference.


Selam

And if my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, what then of God, who doesn't stop it?  Does He bear responsibility?
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« Reply #86 on: July 22, 2013, 05:05:26 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed.  

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

We believe God can make icons weep, perform various miracles, communicate with prophets, and so forth. We don't worship a deistic God who put everything into motion and then left to make some popcorn (and never returned!). Christianity's God is an interacting and intervening God.

You say that placing blame on God removes all human responsibility. But humans simply cannot prevent a good deal of suffering that takes place. For instance, over 98,000 women have died in childbirth already this year. Ouch. Most of them probably lived in poorer countries with less access to modern medical facilities and doctors. But if you contemplate the amount of women and children who have died throughout the centuries in the birthing process alone, the numbers must be staggering. And there hasn't been anything humans knew or could do to prevent it. Then there are natural disasters, diseases, birth defects, and so on. I agree that humans need to take responsibility for the harm that their actions cause other people and creatures. And we must do our best to alleviate the suffering of others. But if God can do something about certain cases of suffering, and does not do something, and humanity lacks the resources or advanced knowledge to do something effective, then is it not safe to surmise that God allows such things? I personally cannot see any way around this. Additionally, many Church fathers say that we must accept everything that comes to us as being allowed by God (for our own purification, humiliation, or what have you) .

You blame God all you want.  I won't.

You must be able to prove God allows something before you can ask why He allows it, but since no one can do this...


Kerdy, do you believe in a God of Power and Might, or in a God Who has no force, Who has no ability, Who has no control?

If God is capable of stopping me from burning down a home with 10 people locked inside, and doesn't, then He has allowed it.  If God can prevent something from happening, and doesn't, then He allows it.
Asking more questions doesn't prove the claim.

Then let me restate my conclusion: If God can prevent something from happening, and doesn't, then He allows it.
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« Reply #87 on: July 22, 2013, 05:09:15 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed.  

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

We believe God can make icons weep, perform various miracles, communicate with prophets, and so forth. We don't worship a deistic God who put everything into motion and then left to make some popcorn (and never returned!). Christianity's God is an interacting and intervening God.

You say that placing blame on God removes all human responsibility. But humans simply cannot prevent a good deal of suffering that takes place. For instance, over 98,000 women have died in childbirth already this year. Ouch. Most of them probably lived in poorer countries with less access to modern medical facilities and doctors. But if you contemplate the amount of women and children who have died throughout the centuries in the birthing process alone, the numbers must be staggering. And there hasn't been anything humans knew or could do to prevent it. Then there are natural disasters, diseases, birth defects, and so on. I agree that humans need to take responsibility for the harm that their actions cause other people and creatures. And we must do our best to alleviate the suffering of others. But if God can do something about certain cases of suffering, and does not do something, and humanity lacks the resources or advanced knowledge to do something effective, then is it not safe to surmise that God allows such things? I personally cannot see any way around this. Additionally, many Church fathers say that we must accept everything that comes to us as being allowed by God (for our own purification, humiliation, or what have you) .

You blame God all you want.  I won't.

You must be able to prove God allows something before you can ask why He allows it, but since no one can do this...


Kerdy, do you believe in a God of Power and Might, or in a God Who has no force, Who has no ability, Who has no control?

If God is capable of stopping me from burning down a home with 10 people locked inside, and doesn't, then He has allowed it.  If God can prevent something from happening, and doesn't, then He allows it.
Asking more questions doesn't prove the claim.

Then let me restate my conclusion: If God can prevent something from happening, and doesn't, then He allows it.
Like I said, blame God all you want.  I will place the blame where it belongs, if it belongs anywhere.  Man brought pain and suffering into this world.
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« Reply #88 on: July 22, 2013, 05:11:21 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed.  

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

If I know for a fact that my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, and yet I do nothing about it, do I bear responsibility?

Yep. Just like we bear responsibility for the murder of unborn innocents that occurs down the street with our apathy and indifference.


Selam

And if my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, what then of God, who doesn't stop it?  Does He bear responsibility?

The responsibility is that of the neighbor and you if you do not report it.  It sure is easy to blame God for every little thing.  It's more difficult to accept people do bad things.  It is sort of like saying guns kill people.
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« Reply #89 on: July 22, 2013, 05:13:09 AM »

Who says God "lets" bad things happen?  The question itself is flawed. 

Why is it flawed? Please explain.

Mainly as the result of making an assumption God actually does allow bad things to happen.  Placing the blame on God when, in fact, it most likely is not His fault is a flawed approach.  It denies all human responsibility at every level.  Whenever I hear this type of statement, my mind immediately thinks of atheistic rhetoric.

If I know for a fact that my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, and yet I do nothing about it, do I bear responsibility?

Yep. Just like we bear responsibility for the murder of unborn innocents that occurs down the street with our apathy and indifference.


Selam

And if my neighbor rapes his 12 year old daughter every night, what then of God, who doesn't stop it?  Does He bear responsibility?

The responsibility is that of the neighbor and you if you do not report it.  It sure is easy to blame God for every little thing.  It's more difficult to accept people do bad things.

Who isn't accepting that man is responsible?  Does one person being responsible for something mean that no one else is?  Man is certainly responsible for the injustices done to man, but why does that mean that God shares no responsibility?
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