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It is only natural, I think, for humans to doubt things they believe in –-religious things-— when things go wrong. People, crushed by tragedy or hardship will look skyward and ask "Is there really a god?" This is an arguably human response. We will all, at some miserable point in our lives, ask ourselves "how can the God of the Bible –-a loving, caring, forgiving God—- allow such bad things to happen?" We all find our own answers to that question. Some will decide that there really is no God. Others might come to the conclusion that all things –-even awful, rotten, and downright evil things-— happen in accordance to God’s cosmic plan. I, however, have come to believe that our omnipotent and all-knowing God simply chooses to sit on His divine hands. He looks down on us, wallowing in our self-pity, sorrow, and sin -– and does next to nothing.

The belief that God is always in control is neither correct nor is based on basic Biblical truths. It is wishful thinking at best. The Bible tells us that we were created with a free will. That is, God gave us the power to decide how to live our lives. This fact alone shows that God does not exercise exclusive control over us. He chose to instead let us make our own decisions. The concept of free will is incompatible with the belief that God controls everything; they are mutually exclusive.

But, then, not every Christian believes that God is responsible for all that happens; some believe that God plays an active -–but not an ever-vigilant-— role in determining the happenings of the world. I am certain that this is an erroneous belief as well. God has the power to do whatever He desires, but He chooses not to exercise it. Time and time again, we see that God depends on people to do His work. He does not act directly. When the Jews were threatened in the time of Queen Esther, it was a person -– not a direct act of God-- that saved them. When the Nazis threatened to exterminate the Jews in the Twentieth Century, did God step in to end the slaughter? No, He waited for the Nazis to be defeated. God simply does not play a direct role in directing mankind. He "speaks" to and influences those that believe in Him, but He refuses to step in and assert Himself as an almighty deity. He is not impotent, but He chooses not to control us as if we were puppets. In fact, He does not control us at all.

God does not govern our planet like He did in the Old Testament. The reason behind this change in strategy will remain a mystery. God once destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because they were sinful cities. Does He do anything quite so drastic and direct now? No, He leaves things to His human agents. Does He strike down those that take his name in vain? No, He has taken the role of spectator. I do not believe He will remain passive forever. One day He will return and do everything He promised to do. But for now He remains a governor on leave. Did He stop terrorists from destroying the World Trade Center and ending thousands of innocent lives? History has countless examples that illustrate a simple point: God does not swiftly dispense justice, nor does He control what happens in the world. God expects His people to carry out His policy. He expects us to punish evildoers and bring criminals to justice; He does not do it for us. One day, He will return to play an active role as our leader. But for the time being, He is a passive God. He watches over us, but He does not interfere. And under that kind of supervision, bad things can happen.

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