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Sin

23
Why does God Allow Evil?
If God is all powerful, all knowing, just and loving, and if He's all goodness and graciousness then why is there such evil in the world?!  Where is God's love then?  Where is His justice?  If He's all powerful, why can't He stop the injustice?  If He's all loving, then why does He not protect His children from evil?  Why do we always hear about these terrorists and their heinous acts of evil?  Why does God allow such evil?   This is a question that comes to everyone's mind at some point in their lives and the answer to it might surprise you...  It is because of God's love, mercy and justice that He allows evil in the world!  Perhaps this might sound very strange at first, but allow me to explain and I hope that by the end of this article you might thank God for allowing evil for so long!   There's Evil in the World Because God is Merciful God is merciful upon all His creation.  Some of His children have strayed from His way and inflict evil upon the world.  God however is a "gracious and merciful God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, One who relents from doing harm." (Jonah 4:2)  God is patient because He has "no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live." (Ezekiel 33:11)  This is why St. Peter says "The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some ...

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09
The Effects of My Sins
Quite often we hear arguments that sound like the following: "I can do whatever I want even if it's wrong as long as I'm not bothering anybody", or "It's my body, I can smoke or do drugs as long as I'm not affecting anyone", or "Me and her are in agreement, if we sleep together, what's it to you?!", or "Why do you care if I pray or not, go to church or not, etc...  I'm only impacting my spiritual life"... etc. Basically an argument that follows a pattern like "I can do ______ (a negative action) as long as I'm not bothering anybody or affecting anybody".  Sound familiar?  The answer to this argument comes in Genesis in the following verses: "The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.  So God looked upon the earth, and indeed it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth."  (Genesis 6:11-12) At a first glance the second sentence might seem redundant.  However, after carefully reading it we see that it adds a new concept.  The first verse simply says that the earth was corrupt and filled with violence.  This could be understood as "the people on the earth" were corrupt and filled with violence.  Then comes the second verse to clarify and make the point that "the earth" was corrupt because "all flesh" corrupted their way.  As in, the earth and the nature were...

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17
Noah, and the Extent of Man's Wickedness
In Genesis 6, in the story of Noah, we read "Then God said, 'I will blot out man whom I created from the face of the earth, from man to cattle, and from the creeping things to the birds of heaven, for I am grieved I made them." (Genesis 6:7) But why would God destroy the creation which His hands have made?  Shouldn't God give them another chance to repent and live?  Where's God's mercy?  This seems too harsh at the first glance.  However, after careful examination, we discover the extent of man's wickedness and understand the amount of grief man caused God. Earlier in the chapter the Holy Scripture offers the explanation in the following verse "Then the Lord God saw man's wickedness, that it was great in the earth, and every intent of the thoughts within his heart was only evil continually." (Genesis 6:5)  Man's wickedness was great.  It wasn't simple offenses.  But even great offenses could be forgiven if man were to repent.  The scripture however adds that evil was in "every intent of man".  Not just some or most, but man reached a state where every intent of his heart was displeasing to God.  Not only that, but each intent was also "only evil".  It wasn't partially good and partially evil.  It wasn't good towards some and evil towards others.  It wasn't good in certain situations and evil in ot...

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08
Out of the Presence of the Lord
Genesis 4 talks about how Cain kills his brother Abel.  Verse 16 describes Cain's condition after his sin by saying: "Then Cain went out from the presence of the Lord and dwelt in the land of Nod opposite Eden." (Genesis 4:16) Cain could have and should have repented to God, like King David when he sinned, and say "Do not cast me away from Your presence..." (Psalm 50:13)  However, not only did Cain not repent, he also chose to live away from the presence of God.  Notice that it was Cain's choice to live in this state.  The bible says that "Cain went out from the presence of the Lord..." not that the Lord cast him out of his presence.  Never!  "'Do I ever will the death of a lawless man,' says the Lord, 'since My will is for him to turn from the evil way and live?'" (Ezekiel 18:23)  The Holy Scripture also says "Who desires all men to be saved..." (I Timothy 2:4) But what does it mean to live "out from the presence of the Lord"?  Living out from the presence of the Lord means living without the following: Love: for "God is love" (I John 4:16) and "love is of God" (I John 4:7) Protection: "But You, O Lord, are a shield for me" (Psalm 3:3)  Also, "The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace." (Exodus 14:14) And "I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; For You alone, O Lord, make me dwell i...

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30
God's Mercy Seen in His Punishment
In Genesis Chapter 3 we read about man's fall.  Adam's sin caused mankind to be exiled from the paradise of joy.  Even during the punishment however we see God's mercy and His compassionate hand start to heal us. We see that God punishes Adam by exiling him from the paradise of joy.  This punishment however is out of God's mercy and love for us "lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever." (Gen 3:22)  God did not want man to live forever in sin, away from Him. Even the punishment of death we see His mercy.  St. Gregory the Theologian says "Yet here too He provides a benefit--namely death, which cuts off sin, so that evil may not be everlasting. Thus His punishment is changed into mercy." So too are our personal experiences with God.  Whenever God punishes us, He does it with mercy and utmost love.  He might bring temporary pain so that we may turn to Him for help.  And when He delivers us, the harsh experience becomes a solid foundation for faith which we can build a lasting relationship with Him.  In this case the pain is without a doubt for our benefit.  He prunes us that we may bear more fruit (John 15:2)  Job discovered this fact when he said "He bruises, but He binds up; He wounds, but His hands make whole." (Job 5:18)  In the RSV translation it reads "he smites, ...

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