Does God will evil in our lives?

Full Question

Does God will evil in our lives?


To be clear, God does not will evil things for us.

As the prophet Jeremiah conveys God’s word in Old Testament times, “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jer. 29:11). And as St. Paul and St. Peter both remind us, Jesus—God who became man for our sake—wills for every created person the greatest good possible: eternal salvation in heaven with him, the Father, and the Holy Spirit (1 Tim. 2:4-5, 2 Pet. 3:9).

On the other hand, Jesus says that we must carry our crosses in emulation of him but that these crosses will be redemptive, not destructive, if we walk with him  (Matt. 16:24-25). Similarly, St. Paul teaches that we might undergo what could be called “severe mercies,” but they are permitted by God for our perfective good, not our destruction (see 2 Cor. 12:8-10).Similarly, in our own lives we can see that achieving worthwhile professional and personal goals requires self-denying sacrifices.

By Tom Nash


1 comment

  1. Patrick Gannon Reply

    The bible is pretty clear that we are but puppets on a string. This goes all the way back to Yahweh hardening the Pharaoh’s heart so he had an excuse to punish the innocent Egyptians. If you read the OT, you will find countless passages indicating that Yahweh is pulling all the strings.
    As for the NT, Here is Paul:h
    “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified (Romans 8:28-30).”
    “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth-in Him. In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will… (Ephesians 1:3-11).”
    There is more than enough evidence in the bible to support predestination, to such an extent that the Calvinists created a religion based on it.
    One would expect that an “inspired” holy scripture would make this crystal clear one way or the other, but there is little in the bible that is not contradicted elsewhere in the same pages!

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