The Congo

I have a good friend from a previous USAF assignment that always asks great questions and makes astute observations.  In the latest one he wrote, “This article is pretty tough to read, but details some of the horrors in the Congo.  Makes me wonder how God can allow something like this to occur.” He goes on to ask why God doesn’t stop these acts of violence from happening.

The original article is here.  And he is right, it is hard to read: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/07/opinion/07kristof.html

His question delves into something the best theological minds, past and present struggle to understand.  It is commonly called the problem of evil.

In the end, the best answer I can give is that I don’t know but I suspect one of the answers is that when we ask, “God why don’t you do something about it?” God is asking us why we don’t do something about it.  I think part of the reason we are here is to learn to do something about it.  If we truly care about what is right and what is wrong, we should feel compelled to answer.  Once, when the disciples asked who was to feed the 5000, Jesus turned to them and said, “You feed them.”

This is easy to say and hard to do but I believe if we can put people on the moon and send probes out of the solar system, we have the capability to stop genocide.  But we have to have collective will to do this.  And we have to re prioritize what is important to us.

How would you have answered my friend?

In Christ,

Tom

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2 thoughts on “The Congo

  1. A few thoughts:

    1. Evil comes with free will. Ultimately, God WILL step in and put a stop to evil and even pass judgement, but for the time being people are free to do as they choose, for better or worse.

    2. It is not necessarily true that a system in which bad things happen is a bad system. In fact, a system comprised of free individuals capable of good or evil may be “the best of all possible worlds.” Consider, for example, all of the good things that are done daily by people with free will, and even the good things that can ultimately emerge from evil. If we were all programmed to do only good all the time, there would be no evil in the world, but there would also be no love in the true, sacrificial sense. In other words, a person could not CHOOSE to give their life for their neighbor, they would be programmed to do it and the sacrificial action would mean something else, something lower.

    3. Sometimes the existence of evil is cited as proof that God does not exist. In fact, this is an illogical conclusion. Even if everybody did only evil all of the time, God could still exist and could still be infinitely good. Our knowledge is finite, while God’s by definition is infinite.

    1. I have just learned that I can reply to replies on here. This is going to make this blog more fun as we can dialog. Slowly but surely I am getting used to blogging!
      ~
      1. If evil comes with free will, does that mean we have the freedom to thwart God’s will? If God created you to be a concert violinist and gives your neighbor the freedom to shoot you does that make your neighbor more powerful than God in determining your fate on earth? Is there a purpose, beyond making us feel good inside, in prayer? Can I pray that your neighbor’s will be thwarted and will God intervene? I do believe free will is how evil enters into the equation (as well as much good). But God’s choices for us must be a part, a big part, of the equation. Not only are we free but God is as well.

      2 & 3: Can’t agree with you more.

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