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Author Topic: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil  (Read 1820 times)

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mikeincanada

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God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« on: November 06, 2016, 01:17:12 PM »

I've been having a little exchange with a local pastor who I know through a friend.  The topic that came up was the Sovereignty of God, He seems to have a unitarian belief, but I had quoted him a few things from Rays free will paper on how God created evil and is using it to bring about a good outcome.

The question came up on how God is the cause of all things, but I said that God didn't force us to murder,etc, because we are drawn away by our own lusts.

It begs the question well is God still the one influencing it to happen, or still the cause?   I'm trying to find a way to explain this better, I've read a number of Rays emails, where he explains that no God didn't force anyone, but how do we reconcile this with the fact that God IS the cause of all things?

Any help would be appreciated!

Mike
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Dave in Tenn

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2016, 03:36:38 PM »

Mike, it's your conversation, so I don't want to wedge myself too deeply in it.  But here's an observation:  In any exchange, it's good if both sides agree on the meaning of the words (and this seems to me to be especially true in discussions of this type).  It seems you and he may be conflating the meanings of "evil" and "sin". 

Here's a fine example:

Joh 9:1  And passing by, He saw a man blind from birth.
Joh 9:2  And His disciples asked Him, saying, Teacher, who sinned, this one, or his parents, that he was born blind?
Joh 9:3  Jesus answered, Neither this one nor his parents sinned, but that the works of God might be revealed in him.
Joh 9:4  It behooves Me to work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day. Night comes when no one is able to work.
Joh 9:5  While I am in the world, I am the Light of the world.

To be born blind is an evil, but it is neither a sin nor (necessarily) the result of a sin.  "...God created evil and is using it to bring about a good outcome." 

Headaches, sickness, earthquakes, etc are "evils".  They are not sins. 

Evil is contrasted with Good.  These are the "big things" contained in the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil.  Sins (and all their relatives) are part of the experience of Evil, but experiencing Evil is not necessarily sin.

Did God influence Eve to eat of the fruit?  He set the tree in the midst of the garden and made it beautiful to look at.  If that is "influence", then God did "influence" Eve to eat.  But I think of it more as God set the stage (both in the placing of the fruit and in the forming of Eve) and made the eating of the fruit the only possible outcome.  What "influenced" her was her own lust and the enticement and lie of the devil to fulfill them.

Now, if God had not made the tree, nothing would have happened.  If God had not formed Eve weak as He did, nothing would have happened.  And if you carry that back to the "beginning", He made all things and without Him nothing was made.  But just as he said, "Let the earth bring forth..." in Genesis 1, what comes out of His creation is also a part of His creation.

Instead of seeing myself as a puppet, I think of myself as more of a marionette.  Some of the strings that operate me are very long.  Some are very short.  Some are outside of me, and some are inside.  Some cause other agents to pull mine.  And the great majority are not connected to me directly at all, but to other marionettes in the play.  Of course, we're not marionettes.  We have minds, emotions, and wills.  We just don't have the deciding access to the "strings" that operate these things.

I'll stop there, lest my "figure of speech" replace the sound words of Scripture.           

   
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Heb 10:32  But you must continue to remember those earlier days, how after you were enlightened you endured a hard and painful struggle.

lilitalienboi16

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2016, 08:08:11 PM »

Mike,

Its probably best to avoid trying to convince anyone, let alone your pastor, unless they approach you and ask you for the reason of your hope. Peter was over zealous in his new found conviction for the Lord and ended up only cutting off ears in the process.

It takes a long time before one can stand before the snakes and wolves. Until then, theyll eat you for breakfest.

Ray had a unique ministry by God and was constantly on the front of the assaults made on God's Word. We are not all called for that.

To answer you in brief,

God does not do evil nor make us sin ("let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God, for God tempts no man'). Man volunteers to sin with little outside influence. God has a plan He set in motion a long time ago which involved creating His own adversary to do the dirty work, God created evil, and made man subject to moral futility because of a weak heart He gave man. When God brings His spirit in us He begins a work which He will complete that in the end conforms us to God's very spiritual image. For all these reasons God takes responsibility for sin and the process of saving mankind ('Who can be saved? With men this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible') and for these reasons also man is accountable for his sins. Without the spirit of God we are slaves to sin, the beast within is powerful, as Paul said, 'there is none good, no, not one,' but with the Lord we come to a place in our lives where sin no longer reigns in us and when He appears, we shall finally put off this flesh and be birthed into His kingdom, invisible and powerful like the wind--Immortal--The Sons and Daughters of God.

Without God there is nothing. All things have their cohesion in Jesus. He is the ultimate cause of everything as it all goes back to Him for the creation is out and through Him and to Him. But, just because God is the original and ultimate cause does not mean He needs to directly cause anyone to sin nor does He need to tempt directly, because of the way He perfectly planned out and created all things, Its practically automatic. God is working all things after the law of His own will.
Hope this helps some.

God bless,
Alex

« Last Edit: November 06, 2016, 08:17:30 PM by lilitalienboi16 »
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1 Cor 1:10 "Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment."

Dennis Vogel

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2016, 09:13:55 PM »

Copied from Ray's "IN THE DAY OF THE GREAT SLAUGHTER, WHEN THE TOWERS FALL" paper:

"That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there if none beside Me. I AM THE LORD, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, AND CREATE EVIL [Heb: ra--#7451, ‘bad, evil.’ Same word translated "evil" 442 times in the Old Testament]." (Isaiah 45:6-7).

"Out of the mouth of the Most High proceeds not EVIL and good?" (Lam. 3:38).

"…and experience of EVIL has God given to the sons of man to humble him thereby" (Ecc. 1:13, Concordant Old Testament).

"…I [the Lord] will raise up EVIL against you out of your own house…" (II Sam. 12:11).

"…I [the Lord] will bring EVIL from the north, and a great destruction" (Jer. 4:6).

"…thus said the Lord, Behold, I frame EVIL against you, and devise a device against you…" (Jer. 18:11).

"…so shall the Lord bring upon you ALL EVIL THINGS, until He have destroyed you from off this good land… (Josh. 23:15).

"What? Shall we receive good at the hand of God and shall we not receive EVIL?..." (Job 2:10).

"…shall there be EVIL IN A CITY [New York City?] and the LORD has not done it?" (Amos 3:6).

Etc., etc.
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stello

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2016, 12:32:45 PM »

Thanks all for your response to the original topic. Alex and Dave you both explained so eloquently. Thank you Dennis for those scriptures as well.

Hi Mike, i've learned that unless God calls someone gives them an ear to hear His word, nothing any human can do to change their minds. Yes we must try to be ready to give an answer for the hope that we have but trying to convince anyone of the truth of God's word is not going to go well  :-\. But we have the assurance from God that everything is working according to His plan and purpose so no need to worry!!!
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Job 13:15 "Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him."

lareli

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2016, 12:58:52 PM »

Alex that's the second time in a couple weeks that you've said 'God does not do evil'.

The first time I read that I thought of 'can there be evil in a city and the Lord has not done it?'. I thought about it for a while and then left it alone. I figure I'd ask your thoughts this time though. I did read an email to Ray where Ray pointed out that God does deceive. God is the One who sends a delusion that they should believe a lie. God made Moses think He was going to wipe out the Hebrews. God made Noah think He would wipe out Noah's family along with everyone else. Jesus made the people walking along the road think He was going to keep walking etc.

As Dave said or implied, evil is not the same as sin. God doesn't sin but is it true to say He doesn't do evil? Just a question.
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lilitalienboi16

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2016, 01:33:21 PM »

Alex that's the second time in a couple weeks that you've said 'God does not do evil'.

The first time I read that I thought of 'can there be evil in a city and the Lord has not done it?'. I thought about it for a while and then left it alone. I figure I'd ask your thoughts this time though. I did read an email to Ray where Ray pointed out that God does deceive. God is the One who sends a delusion that they should believe a lie. God made Moses think He was going to wipe out the Hebrews. God made Noah think He would wipe out Noah's family along with everyone else. Jesus made the people walking along the road think He was going to keep walking etc.

As Dave said or implied, evil is not the same as sin. God doesn't sin but is it true to say He doesn't do evil? Just a question.

Hello Largeli,

I am at school right now so my reply will be brief. If you need more please let me know.

The reason I say God does not do evil is because He doesn't. If you want to understand how God, brings, frames, sends , etc.. evil, you need only read the book of Job. That is exactly how there can be evil in a city, 'and has not the Lord done it?'

If it weren't for God, satan would have no power to do the evil he does. So God isnt the one directly doing the evil, but certainly without Him it would never have existed because He did create it, frame it, bring it forth etc... Evil is a necessary part in produce mature sons and daughters of God who like Him possess its knowledge but are not evil themselves.

Side Note: the word in amos used for 'done' is the same word used in Isaiah translated 'create' evil.

The book of Job answers many questions when it comes to how God bring evil but not be the one to directly do it.

Hope this helps. Let me know if it doesnt and when I get home i can participate further ib the discussion.

God bless,
Alex
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1 Cor 1:10 "Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment."

lareli

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2016, 06:27:42 PM »

Thanks for taking the time Alex. That was helpful especially where you pointed out the words used for 'done' in Amos and 'create' evil in Isaiah.


Here's the email I was talking about..

http://forums.bible-truths.com/index.php/topic,2444.0.html

So is deceiving not necessarily evil?

Dave what are your thoughts? You said earthquakes are evil, does God not directly do earthquakes?
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lostANDfound

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2016, 10:11:59 PM »

If you read through Job you'll see this more clearly, who directly does what.
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Dave in Tenn

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2016, 02:23:24 AM »

Dave what are your thoughts? You said earthquakes are evil, does God not directly do earthquakes?

If to frame, cause, bring about, send is not to "do", then God doesn't "do" earthquakes.  If they are to "do", then He does.  The shifting of the earth causes earthquakes and tsunamis.  My pulling the trigger sets in motion the events which cause the bullet to fire and the shell to be propelled.  He isn't some huge invisible creature in space poking his finger to make the earth shake.  But if the earth shakes, it's because of Him. 

In HIM, we live and move and have our being.  All things are of Him, and He is reconciling all things to Himself.  No agent or other cause exists without Him, even though they exist.  They exist because of Him, because without Him, there isn't anything.

If someone is not that far out of Sunday School, however, then it is "righter" to say God does evil than to say that God doesn't do evil.  Jesus didn't scold the religious leaders because they attributed the works of Satan to God.  He scolded them because they attributed the works of God to Satan.  Satan is a tool in the Hand which formed him.       
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Heb 10:32  But you must continue to remember those earlier days, how after you were enlightened you endured a hard and painful struggle.

lareli

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2016, 03:35:32 PM »

If I shot someone and they died You could technically say I didn't kill him. The bullet killed him. I however set into motion the sequence of chain reactions that set the bullet on the path to kill him.

So I guess you could say I didn't "do" the killing. I only "did" the pulling of the trigger.

Got it. Thanks guys.



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Joel

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2016, 04:41:53 PM »

The way I see it everyone will have to give account unto God for their actions/choices, good or evil.
Pray that God is, or will deliver from the many evils that we must face in this earthly journey.
If God is with you, you will fear no evil.

Joel
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Dave in Tenn

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2016, 07:20:20 PM »

Besides preaching, I revealed my ignorance of how ammunition works.   ;D  It's the shell that "fires" and the bullet that is projected, not the other way round.  That's probably still not right, but "righter".

The way I see it everyone will have to give account unto God for their actions/choices, good or evil.
Pray that God is, or will deliver from the many evils that we must face in this earthly journey.
If God is with you, you will fear no evil.

Joel

Yep.
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Heb 10:32  But you must continue to remember those earlier days, how after you were enlightened you endured a hard and painful struggle.

indianabob

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2016, 09:33:54 PM »

Hi Dave,
That's funny about the shell case being projected.

When I was much younger a friend and I had .22s and BB guns and one summer afternoon we were experimenting with both. We stuck the .22 cartridge in the earth, bullet down with the shell rim projecting up and fired at it from behind a barricade with our BB guns striking the .22 shell rim with a BB pellet.
As  you can imagine the shell ruptured and flew a few feet away while the bullet stayed in the ground where it had been lodged. So as you said there was a violent reaction but the result depended upon the specific conditions. Action-reaction, cause and effect.
Neither one of us was injured by our foolishness.
Indiana bob
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Dave in Tenn

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2016, 01:32:46 AM »

If I shot someone and they died You could technically say I didn't kill him. The bullet killed him. I however set into motion the sequence of chain reactions that set the bullet on the path to kill him.

So I guess you could say I didn't "do" the killing. I only "did" the pulling of the trigger.

Got it. Thanks guys.

You side-ways bring up the subject of "intention", and it reminded me of what Ray said about the situation between Joseph and his brothers.  The Lord didn't pick up the pieces of this mess and make something good out of it.  He INTENDED the evil the brothers did to Joseph FOR GOOD.  And not just for Joseph, but for the brothers!  I love that.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2016, 01:39:13 AM by Dave in Tenn »
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Heb 10:32  But you must continue to remember those earlier days, how after you were enlightened you endured a hard and painful struggle.

Dave in Tenn

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #15 on: November 10, 2016, 01:35:41 AM »

Bob, it was case of kinda understanding the mechanics, but not knowing the terminology at all.  That's "preaching" too, I reckon.   ;D

I do know what a BB gun and a .22 are, though--even though nobody ever set me down to teach me.
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Heb 10:32  But you must continue to remember those earlier days, how after you were enlightened you endured a hard and painful struggle.

lilitalienboi16

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #16 on: November 10, 2016, 11:25:24 AM »

If I shot someone and they died You could technically say I didn't kill him. The bullet killed him. I however set into motion the sequence of chain reactions that set the bullet on the path to kill him.

So I guess you could say I didn't "do" the killing. I only "did" the pulling of the trigger.

Got it. Thanks guys.

You side-ways bring up the subject of "intention", and it reminded me of what Ray said about the situation between Joseph and his brothers.  The Lord didn't pick up the pieces of this mess and make something good out of it.  He INTENDED the evil the brothers did to Joseph FOR GOOD.  And not just for Joseph, but for the brothers!  I love that.

I agree this is another good example of how God can 'intend, purpose, plan, send, create' the evil, but not be the one doing it directly.

No doubt Satan was involved as he is with all the evil around us. Ray was wise to understand that evil itself has no moral bias and so God uses it  without sinning to bring about salvation, which is good, just as joseph said, 'to save many this day alive.'

God bless,
Alex
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1 Cor 1:10 "Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment."

mikeincanada

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #17 on: November 14, 2016, 02:04:28 PM »

Thanks for these great replies!  So we can say ultimately, God is the one that creates evil, yet gives the job of directly bringing about it to the destroyer/waster Satan as the god of this age, and the evil that is done was INTENDED to bring about a good end result.

This brought to mind a few verses about Satan and how he works, we see it in the book of Job as well as verses like " deliver you unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh"   or "  Simon, Satan has obtained permission , that he may sift you like wheat"  "  "   for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, who accuseth them before our God day and night."






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Dennis Vogel

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Re: God creates evil, is the cause, but doesn't force to do evil
« Reply #18 on: November 14, 2016, 03:45:05 PM »

I think we should all keep in mind that one reason we are here is to learn about good and evil.
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