On “the problem of evil”

JP: Good article by Rick Holland.

The Problem of Evil at the Foot of the Cross

Excerpts:

God has not distanced Himself from the problem of evil. On the contrary, He met it straight on. During Jesus’ trial before the Roman procurator of Judea, Pontius Pilate declared that he had the power and authority to determine Jesus’ fate. The response of his Galilean prisoner must have been surprising. Jesus answered, “You would have no authority over Me, unless it had been given you from above” (John 19:11). Instead of pleading for His life, the Savior consented to His execution with a footnote. Jesus repudiated Pilate’s misapprehension of his own authority and alerted him to the fact that God was the source of his governing power. God is the Conferrer of power and prerogative, not Rome or any other human authority.

The impending crucifixion of the Son of God constituted the greatest evil and injustice ever committed. But there was more going on than met the eye. What Jesus revealed to Pilate was that all the perpetrators, conspirators, and evildoers ultimately act under the authority of God.

God’s sacrifice of His Son Jesus demonstrates His mysterious wisdom (Isa. 53:10). The Father’s unfathomable loss and the Son’s incomprehensible suffering were the crux of God’s predetermined plan for His own everlasting glory and our eternal good. “He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?” (Rom 8:32) The only appropriate response is to exclaim with Paul, “Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!” (Rom 11:33)

For the believer Heaven is the time and place where we will enjoy the absence of all evil and suffering and the presence of unmitigated joy. The problem of evil is the cry of the soul for that experience. It is placing upon this world expectations that can only be met in Heaven. Considering our unworthiness in light of the infinite tributaries of God’s goodness, sovereignty, wisdom, grace and mercy can reset the troubled heart with the power of perspective.

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