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If God Permits it ...

dimanche 1er mai 2016, par Casimir E. CAKPO

“Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents : but that the works of God should be made manifest in him” John 9:3

Like me or like Christ’s disciples, you might have, at times, asked yourself or a close person, the question to know why God permits (or has permitted) a tragedy, a failure, a sickness, a situation of lack…. Almost instinctively, we all always tend to pair a misfortune situation to a cause and most often we look for it in a violation of divine law. That was what Christ’s disciples did when they set eyes on the borne blind only relating that situation to a sin he or his parents might have committed. “His disciples asked him, ‘’Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind ?” (v.2).

But Jesus’ answer, (v3) to the question he was asked by disciples would help shed light on two truths regarding our “Why God has permitted… ?” questions : (i) Sin and sickness (or our issues) are not automatically interrelated and (ii) troubles could be divine means to trigger manifestations of the Sovereign Creator’s glory or open doors for divine blessings.

(i) Sin and troubles are not automatically interrelated : A good number of Bible stories point out that misfortune does not always happen as a result of non-application of commandment of God, but that God sometimes permits painful events in the life of his beloved ones for sovereign reasons He does not always unveil to them. In the book of Job, Satan received from God authorization to strike Job, first by taking away all his belongings and children, then by striking him with a painful sickness. Job’s three friends attempted to demonstrate to him, by way of long speeches, that it is not in God’s nature to strike an innocent and they concluded that unless Job had committed scaring sins and hidden them, he could not be stricken the way he was. Job protested saying he was innocent and trusted God for justice… Besides, the Bible tells us that in the time of Herod, King of Judea, there was a priest named Zachariah, who belonged to the priestly division of Abijah ; his wife Elizabeth was also a descendant of Aaron. Both of them were righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly. But they were childless…. (Luke 1:5-7)

(ii)The Lord Jesus will then point out in his answer that troubles could be opportunities to trigger divine blessings or manifestation of His glory on earth. The end of each of the three stories aforementioned shows how well they have wonderfully contributed to manifest God’s deed and, at the same time, how they were springs of great blessing for the involved ones as well as for their immediate neighborhood and their nation.

If God permits it, it is to make his glory shine by means of instruments he has devised to serve His will on earth. That is the reason for example why Fanny Crosby’s handicap did not prevent her from becoming one of the most renowned hymnists of Christians’ songs through more than nine thousand written hymns among which the most sung ones today are : “Blessed Assurance”, “To God Be the Glory”… A famous statement from Fanny : “It seemed intended by the blessed providence of God that I should be blind all my life, and I thank him for the dispensation. If perfect earthly sight were offered me tomorrow I would not accept it. I might not have sung hymns to the praise of God if I had been distracted by the beautiful and interesting things about me." seems to confirm that she had understood that if God had permitted it, it was for a good reason.

A Prayer Today : Lord, test me if needed, but please don’t cast me in the scrap

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