As far as you are able, imagine that you are God. I will wait while you get in character. Tic, tic, tic… Are you there yet? No?… Tic, tic, tic… How about now? The robe doesn’t fit, does it? Or the shoes? Not easy, is it? That will have to do. You’re as close as you’re gonna get.
So, as God, how would you save us from ourselves?
I suppose one could say, “If I were God, the people wouldn’t need saving because everything would be perfect already. There would be no suffering because I wouldn’t allow it in the perfect world I created. The people I created would have pure hearts, so they would not be inclined to evil. There wouldn’t even be a word for evil because it would not exist. No murders, assaults, or even anger. No rape or even lust. No theft or even the thought of it because the people would never be jealous of what someone else had. There would never be a reason for theft because everyone would have everything they could ever need or want.” And that is right, because you are God. Your game, your universe, your rules.
Let me ask you this though: Do the people have free will? If there is no evil, they could not have made the choice to do good. It was their only option. So, you deserve credit, but do they? Aren’t they a bit robotic? And isn’t it hard to love a robot?
Do the people love you? Maybe they love their perfect life, and you gave it to them so they appreciate you to a degree but they didn’t choose you over something or someone else. They had no choice. Is that love?
My meandering imagination has taken me up and down paths like this one and many others. If I were God, could I have done it better? If I did it this way or that way, what would the end result be?
I hate the fact that there is evil in this world, and, though I don’t believe God created the evil, I do believe he created the beings that created the evil. Unspeakable things are being done to people by other people. That is messed up. Obviously, mankind is to blame for what mankind does. We messed up this world. We are the ones who are stealing, raping and killing. But can we blame God for allowing it?
He could have created a world with no possibility of evil as in the above scenario, or he can snuff out all evil with a thought right now. But God has chosen to let mankind as a whole choose its own way and suffer the consequences of our choices. He is treating us like grownups, and mankind as a whole is acting like the civilized children in “Lord of the Flies” who quickly turn into savages when they find themselves on a deserted island.
It seems to me that the only reason God would allow evil or wouldn’t wipe out evil right now is free-will. Why would God want robots or puppets as children or friends? Why would he not want authentic relationships with those he created? Can any relationship be authentic without free-will?
So, the question now is, could he have created us with free-will but without the possibility of evil? I don’t know, but what good is free will if there is no choice to make with it? Having free-will implies that there will be reason to use it, choices. If there is no alternative other than goodness, then we didn’t choose it. If there is no alternative other than God, then we didn’t choose him.
I trust God. I trust him because I have an inkling of the enormous difference between his knowledge and mine, between his wisdom and mine. I trust that despite the heinous things WE are doing to our fellow man and ourselves, God will work it out, and His Kingdom WILL come for those that choose Him.
It has always been our choice. God has put enough knowledge in each one of us to reason that he exists and to understand his absolute right to judge what we did with the life of free-will He gave us. We all fell immeasurably short: that’s no secret. Nevertheless, he still allows it to be our choice. Will we trust him to save us? Do we choose Him? What will we do with our free-will?
I am light years from being a perfect follower, but my choice is made. If I am to be insulted and ostracized, shunned and persecuted, tortured and murdered; Let it come. I choose Him. I choose Jesus.