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Coming up:. Next week – THE BIG QUESTION: “ What ’ s God ’ s word on sex? ”. Two weeks - SAMSON. Today ’ s big question:. “ Why do bad things happen to good people? ” OR “ If God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent, and if He is absolutely loving and good…

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Coming up:

Next week – THE BIG QUESTION:

“What’s God’s word on sex?”

Two weeks - SAMSON


Coming up

Today’s big question:

“Why do bad things happen to good people?”

OR

“If God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent, and if He is absolutely loving and good…

then why doesn’t He simply stop evil/hurtful things from happening?”


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Today’s big question:

“Can’t He?”

Or, worse yet…

“Won’t He?!”


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Question: What are we/should we be feeling?

Most people have been feeling grief.

“Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.”

Romans 12:15 (NLT)


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The Lord grieves with us!

The LORD observed the extent of human wickedness on the earth, and he saw that everything they thought or imagined was consistently and totally evil. So the LORD was sorry he had ever made them and put them on the earth. It broke his heart.

Genesis 6:5-6 (NLT)


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Question: What are we/should we be feeling?

Others have been expressing fear.


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The last days are “brutal”:

“…there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God…”

2 Timothy 3:1-4 (ESV)


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Question:

Were those explosions God’s judgment for sin?


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Be careful about answering that too quickly…

About this time Jesus was informed that Pilate had murdered some people from Galilee as they were sacrificing at the Temple in Jerusalem. "Do you think those Galileans were worse sinners than other people from Galilee?" he asked.


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Be careful about answering that too quickly…

"Is that why they suffered? Not at all! And you will also perish unless you turn from your evil ways and turn to God. And what about the eighteen men who died when the Tower of Siloam fell on them? Were they the worst sinners in Jerusalem? No, and I tell you again that unless you repent, you will also perish."

Luke 13:1-5 (NLT)


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Sometimes stuff just happens:

Sometimes something useless happens on earth. Bad things happen to good people, and good things happen to bad people.

Ecclesiastes 8:14 (CEV)


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Don’t be afraid:

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over.


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Don’t be afraid:

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever.

Psalm 23:4-6 (NKJV)


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Some facts about shadows:

Shadows are always bigger than reality.


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Some facts about shadows:

Shadows are always bigger than reality.

Shadows cannot actually hurt you.


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Some facts about shadows:

Shadows are always bigger than reality.

Shadows cannot actually hurt you.

There cannot be a shadow without the light.


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Good to remember:

“If you look at the world,

you'll be distressed.”

“If you look within,

you'll be depressed.”

“If you look at Christ,

you'll be at rest.”

It's your choice.


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The antidote to fear:

Love and be loved

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear…”

I John 4:18 (NIV)


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Question: What are we/should we be feeling?

Others are expressing anger.


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Want to know what makes God “righteously” angry?

You must not worship any of the gods of neighboring nations, for the LORD your God, who lives among you, is a jealous God. His anger will flare up against you, and he will wipe you from the face of the earth.

Deuteronomy 6:14-15 (NLT)


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Be angry, don’t sin:

And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.” Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, for anger gives a foothold to the devil.

Ephesians 4:26-27 (NLT)


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More anger is not the answer:

Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone. Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the LORD


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More anger is not the answer:

Instead, “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.” Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.

Romans 12:17-21 (NLT)


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Love is the answer:

“You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven.”

Matthew 5:43-45a (NLT)


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We love & forgive because He has done so for us:

Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just asGod through Christ has forgiven you.

Ephesians 4:31-32 (NLT)


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Aren’t you glad God is like this?

The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever. He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.

Psalms 103:8-10 (NLT)


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Be like God:

“… quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry.”

Why?

Because…

“Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.”

James 1:19-20 (NLT)


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Question: What are we/should we be feeling?

Some of us are feeling confusion.


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QUESTION:

“Why would somebody do this?”

ANSWER:

Because something has become broken/deceived inside the heart & mind.


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Our enemy has a single-minded purpose:

“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy.”

John 10:10 (NLT)


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God is not to blame; we are:

And remember, no one who wants to do wrong should ever say, "God is tempting me." God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else either. Temptation comes from the lure of our own evil desires. These evil desires lead to evil actions, and evil actions lead to death. So don't be misled, my dear brothers and sisters.

James 1:13-16 (NLT)


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The BIG QUESTION is:

“Why do bad things happen to ‘good’ people?”

ANSWER:

Because Satan is real, this world is broken, and because we are sinners!


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There are no such things as “good” people:

Not a single person on earth is always good and never sins.

Ecclesiastes 7:20 (NLT)


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A BETTER question:

“Why do good things happen to any of us?”

ANSWER:

Only because of God’s goodness, mercy, and GRACE.


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QUESTION:

“Why didn’t God just create a world where everything was perfect and there was no sin?”

ANSWER:

He did.


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QUESTION:

“Why did God create Lucifer and place the forbidden tree in the first place?”

ANSWER:

For His good pleasure and for His glory!


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QUESTION:

“Why doesn’t God just stop it?”

ANSWER:

For God to stop everything BAD from happening, He would have to…


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To stop evil and bad things:

He would have to destroy all sinners.


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To stop evil and bad things:

He would have to destroy all sinners.

He would have to suspend natural laws/natural consequences.


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To stop evil and bad things:

He would have to destroy all sinners.

He would have to suspend natural laws/natural consequences.

He would have to take away our FREE WILL.


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To stop evil and bad things:

He would have to destroy all sinners.

He would have to suspend natural laws/natural consequences.

He would have to take away our FREE WILL.

He would have to totally transform our character.


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To stop evil and bad things:

He would have to destroy all sinners.

He would have to suspend natural laws/natural consequences.

He would have to take away our FREE WILL.

He would have to totally transform our character.

He would have to destroy the source of sin – Satan.


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Justice will one day be served:

Then the devil, who had deceived them, was thrown into the fiery lake of burning sulfur, joining the beast and the false prophet. There they will be tormented day and night forever and ever. And I saw a great white throne and the one sitting on it. The earth and sky fled from his presence, but they found no place to hide. I saw the dead, both great and small, standing before God’s throne.


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Justice will one day be served:

And the books were opened, including the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to what they had done, as recorded in the books. The sea gave up its dead, and death and the grave gave up their dead. And all were judged according to their deeds. Then death and the grave were thrown into the lake of fire. This lake of fire is the second death. And anyone whose name was not found recorded in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.

Revelation 20:10-15 (NLT)


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