It’s an evil world
Two angels were traveling about and stopped to spend the night in the home of a wealthy family. The head of the family was rude and refused to let the angels stay in the mansion’s guest room. Instead they were given a small space in the cold damp basement. As they made their bed on the hard floor, the older angel saw a hole in the wall, where the foundation of the centuries-old mansion was apparently beginning to crumble, and repaired it.
When the younger angel asked why he had done it, the older angel replied, “Things aren’t always what they seem.” The next night the pair came to rest at the house of a very poor, but very hospitable, farmer and his wife. After sharing what little food they had, the couple let the angels sleep in their bed, where they would be comfortable and get a good night’s rest. When the sun came up the next morning, the angels found the farmer and his wife in tears. Their only cow, whose milk had been their primary source of income, lay dead in the field. The younger angel was infuriated and asked the older angel, “How could you have allowed this to happen? The man who had everything, yet was rude and selfish toward us, you freely helped. But the poor farmer and his wife were willing to share everything with us and as a reward you let their cow die!” The older angel respectfully replied, “Things aren’t always what they seem to be. When we stayed in the basement of the mansion, the hole in the wall was where someone had hidden some gold years ago and the hiding place was crumbling open. Since the owner was so obsessed with greed and unwilling to share his good fortune, I sealed the wall up so he wouldn’t find it. Then, last night as we slept in the farmer’s bed, the angel of death came for his wife; I gave him the cow instead.
[Hebrews 13:2] “Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it.” I find it very difficult to write in the shadows of the recent tragedies of the last few weeks. “Why?” is the biggest question on the minds of people, and the closer to the tragedy one is, the more reasonable is our request to God for an answer. Why did four out of five family members, minding their own business, die in a car crash at the hand of a drunk driver going the wrong way on the interstate? Why the Boston bombings? Why the explosion in West, Texas, each bringing about death and destruction? “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12). Do I believe angels are among us? Yes. I also know that not all angels are obedient to God. I believe that there are spirits among us and some are evil as evil can get. “And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14). But I refuse to believe they can control me physically or mentally.
God gives me the right to invite and analyze all things of the world and it is ultimately my decision whether or not to place God in a competitive position or embrace him as my one and only sovereign. Why do evil things happen in the world?
Because the world is evil. Why do people do evil things? Because they embrace the evil things in the world. Why do bad things happen to good people? Because they can’t get out of the way of evil-thinking people fast enough. The world has a serious mental superiority complex and restrictive legislation isn’t going to fix it. God’s principles and the sanctity of life will fix it, right.
Thomas W. Bonham is an associate minister with the Floresville Church of Christ. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Find his column on his blog at http://wilsoncountynews.com.
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