Though He Slays Me

Each of us has asked the question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” Why, despite their faithfulness and supplications, do many Christians become ill and die from horrible diseases? Why do so many not experience the emotionally satisfying presence of God, see visions, or have angelic visitations? Can anyone explain by war, poverty, and starvation persist in this world?

Today, many popular voices in Western churches are promising Christians great prosperity, mighty revivals, and an abundance of material and spiritual blessings. Perhaps with God, it is “one size fits all.” While some congregations, no doubt, do experience revival and abundance, many do not. For some believers, life is a breeze. Yet for others, it borders on drudgery if not worse.

Desert Storm - Photo by Eugene Aikimov on Unsplash
[Photo by Eugene Aikimov on Unsplash]

Despite all that the death and resurrection of Jesus put into motion, his followers continue to get sick, age and die. While we might seek several biblical answers to these questions, at best, they provide intellectual explanations.

According to the claims of today’s “spiritual” elite, they feel the awesome presence of God and hear His voice daily. Since millions of others either do not or rarely have such experiences, the question arises, “What is wrong with them?” Perhaps they lack faith, or they are simply not in tune with the “spirit realm.”

We can only speculate as to why the person sitting next to us in the pew experiences God’s overwhelming presence while others do not, or why one man is healed of cancer, but another man is not.

Contrary to what some preachers claim, following in the footsteps of Jesus is NOT a cookie-cutter operation, and one size does not fit all. Why are some men called to martyrdom, but most are not?

So, what is the right attitude toward all this for disciples of Jesus? It begins with walking according to the biblical principles NO MATTER WHAT OCCURS. Regardless of what we felt or received from God yesterday, good, bad, or indifferent, we must walk by faith and live the same way each day whether we experience supernatural blessings, or not. What if God never blesses us again, heals us, or enables us to feel His awesome presence? What will we do then?

THE FIERY FURNACE


The story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego highlights the correct attitude. No, not their miraculous deliverance from the fiery furnace, but their declared commitment to Yahweh regardless of all else.

After Nebuchadnezzar had threatened them with death if they did not render homage to his “golden image,” they declared that “Our God whom we serve is well able to deliver us. But if He does not, be it known to you, O, King, that we will not serve your gods or worship the golden image that you have set up.”

Though he slays me, yet will I trust Him.” The words of Job are a most fitting description of the attitude of the three Jewish exiles, and THAT reaction from ancient times is a far cry from the self-centered religion practiced today by far too many churches.

After all, when we were yet miserable sinners and “enemies of God,” Christ died a horrific death for us, thereby reconciling us to our Creator from whom we were alienated and separated. His sacrificial death “as a ransom” for us was an act of sheer grace, therefore, who are we to demand or expect anything of Him now or ever!?

In the grand scheme of things, whether we receive supernatural miracles today matters very little. Many men have experienced great revivals and deep spiritual encounters with God, yet today, they no longer walk with Him. Apparently, it takes something more than miracles or deep emotional experiences to stand victoriously before Him on the day when it truly counts.

Approaching Storm - Photo by v2osk on Unsplash
[Photo by v2osk on Unsplash]

In contrast, other men of God have
NOT experienced supernatural things, emotional highs, financial prosperity, or good health, yet they have remained faithful to Jesus and their ministry to the bitter end. One can almost hear the words of Job on the lips of those men as they face fiery trials, persecution, and even death – “Though He slays me, yet will I trust him!

Moreover, that is the kind of disciple who epitomizes Christ’s description of the faithful servant - “So likewise, you, when you have done all those things which are commanded you, say: We are unprofitable servants. We have done that which was our duty to do.

I cannot answer most of these hard questions. “Why do bad things happen to good people”? Sorry, but I have no easy answer. Regardless, I must remain faithful to Him and the tasks He puts in my hands to do whatever else may occur, trusting Him always to guide me, meet my needs, and make a way where there is none.



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