Where was God?

The tragic shooting in Aurora, Colo., has led many to ask the question, “Where was God?”

The simple answer is God is where He has always been – in His kingdom and here with those who call on His name and seek to do His will. His covenant name, Yahweh, in the Old Testament, means “The One Who Is Always Present.”

In times like these, those who have questioned God’s very existence suddenly turn in to “true believers” in order to place the blame squarely on His shoulders.

“Why did God allow this to happen?” is the question many are asking. The unchurched can be forgiven their ignorance. Unfortunately, far too many Christians are left struggling for the answer.

One prominent Aurora pastor, if properly quoted in the media, left his parishioners dangling. According to NBC’s Miranda Leitsinger, Pastor Jeff Noble admitted to his congregation at New Life Community Church, “I don’t know (the answer to that question).”

Is Noble suggesting that God is responsible for this tragedy?

If God is in control and simply “allowed” this to happen, then God is responsible for this evil. However, This would be against His character, which He revealed to us in His word. God is good. He is also righteous and just.

God controls and uses evil, but He is never morally responsible for it. (Ephesians 1:11)

God created man in his very image and provided for his every need. However, sin entered the world in the Garden of Eden when Satan persuaded Eve to reject God’s authority and trust her own ability to discern good and evil. Adam went along with his wife, and as a result, God rightly brought a curse on Adam and Eve subjecting them, and all of humankind, to physical death and separation from His holiness. (Romans 5:12)

One survivor lamented to a reporter, “We’re better than this!”

Oh, really?

As a result of Adam and Eve’s actions, all of us are born into sin. There is none righteous, no not one. (Romans 3:10, Romans 3:23) “Out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false witness, slander” (Matthew 15:19).

The wages of sin is death. (Romans 6:23)

Fortunately for us, God is also a God of love. (Psalms 37:7) He sent His Son, Jesus, who knew no sin, to die in our place so that those who believe in Him will not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16) Through His grace and power we can overcome sin and live a life that is pleasing to Him. (James 4:7)

God is not willing that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9), but he has given us free will (Deuteronomy 30:15) to accept Him or reject Him. As a result, we are free to disregard His will for us and commit all kinds of sin. (I Thessalonians 4:3-8) Yes, even mass murder.

Before Jesus went to His death, He prayed to God the Father for His own: “I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the evil one.”

God was in that theater Friday night comforting His own and taking those who were fatally wounded to their heavenly home.

The Bible tells us not to fear those who kill the body but the soul. (Matthew 10:28)

The world views death as an end. However, Christians know that death is just the beginning. (2 Corinthians 5:8) Nethertheless, it is normal that we grieve over the loss of a loved one.

God is there to comfort the families and friends of the victims. Because Jesus was fully God and fully man, He understands loss and identifies with our pain. While living as a man, Jesus wept for Mary and Martha when they grieved over the death of their brother Lazarus, even though He later raised Lazarus from the dead. (John 11:35)

Satan meant this horrible act in Colorado for evil, but God will use it for good in your life if you will let Him. (Romans 8:28)

None of those people who went to the theater that night expected that it would be their last night on earth. However, some were prepared.

Are you?

4 thoughts on “Where was God?

  1. “[M]y religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed. God has fixed the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me. That is the way all men should live, and then all would be equally brave.” –Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson

    Not so long ago, Christian thought was much clearer. There is no battle between good and evil here on earth; God is fully in control, omnipotent. If it were not so, he would not be God. Sinless Jesus was beaten and murdered…God’s will…so that we may have eternal life…God is good.

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  2. You summed this up perfectly, Jane; sin comes from humans misusing their free will. Imagine a father gives his teenage son the keys to a new car with an admonition to drive safely. The son ignores the father, takes the keys, drives drunk and smashes the car into a tree, killing a passenger. Then the son defends himself in court, complaining that the father should have prevented the accident.

    Three men gave their lives protecting their girlfriends from bullets in this shooting, displaying a selfless love that Christ described: “No greater love hath a man than to give his live for another man”. Those are the people we should focus on.

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  3. Jane you wrote a very good article.
    We all have to be ready; this could be our last hour here on earth. We all need to ask our self, am I ready to go home with Jesus because our life could end at any second – our heart could stop beating or we could have an accident.
    The alternative to heaven is not a good choice!
    Heaven and Hell are real and we need to tell everyone!
    I fell off a roof in 2003 breaking and dislocating my neck between C6 and C7. This left me in a straw controlled wheelchair but God gave me several small miracles and let my body wake back up so that I could finally use my fingers and walk with a cane. During the time (4 years) that my body was regaining movement, I was on 4 pain meds to reduce the pain, but I found out that when I praised God my pain eased up better that when I was taking the pain meds. One real bad day I was hurting all over and the pain from my fibromyalgia pain turned into a hot burning pain that I felt all over my body even in my eyes, inside my mouth and on my tongue. I said, “Lord what is going on!” “Why am I hurting like this?”
    God said: This is what hell feels like and you are letting your friends go there, because you are afraid to tell them about me!
    I said; Lord, forgive me. My pain instantly left that day and God reduced my pain when I witnessed to others then from November 07 through February 08 God greatly reduced my pain. To this day the more I take my eyes off myself give praise to Jesus and witness to other about Him the less I hurt.
    From March 2008, 6 years combined, I have taken less pain medicine than I used to take in just one week even though I have had 3 surges including a Bilateral Hernia repaired in 09.
    Jesus is the best doctor that I know. Remember He never promised us any pain while we were on earth – He promised NO Pain When We Get to Heaven. Store your treasures in Heaven where no one can take them away – neither Satan nor even IRS can touch your treasures that you have stored in Heaven!
    Again
    Thank you for this great wonderful article that you wrote
    Perry Abernathy

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  4. Timely commentary spelling out Biblical truth with many references for reading and contemplating by any who have questions about “Where Was God?” or have doubts about their eternal salvation. Right from the pulpit.

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