Benjamin Franklin invented the lightning rod in 1749. Yet because of opposition from local clergymen–man should not dare ‘avert the stroke of heaven’–the lighthouse did not receive protection from God’s thunderbolts for more than two decades. –The New York Review, May 26, 2016
Imagine the thinking of some people: We shouldn’t protect ourselves from lightning, lest we interfere with God’s judgment.
Abandoning their responsibility, criticizing those trying to help, and blaming their warped thinking on God.
“This is how God set things up.”
Interesting theology, I think we can agree.
If we carried that reasoning to its natural lengths, no one should wear seat belts or repair the brakes on cars just in case the Father in Heaven had planned to kill us that morning.
God should always be given a free hand in these things.
According to the authorities, the San Andreas Fault, that break in the earth’s crust running up and down California, has long been overdue for delivering the mother of all earthquakes. One (ahem) expert said, “The San Andreas is 10 months pregnant.”
When that happens, as they keep assuring us it will, two things will follow: devastation on a massive scale and lazy theologians blaming it all on God.
“Why did God allow this to happen?”
Remember, you heard it here.
Following the Katrina-related flooding of New Orleans in 2005, these shallow thinking/self-appointed theologians of the worst ilk announced, “God is judging you.” As though the laws of physics are arbitrarily enforced or restrained by the Lord, depending on whether He chooses to bless or curse today.
The painful thing about this is in most cases these self-appointed judges consider themselves Christians. Good ones, even. They would leave people to drown in flooded houses and abandon devastated cities all because “God did this.”
Lazy theologians blame God because they prefer not to do any actual thinking about these things. When they try to think about great issues like this, their brain hurts. When someone introduces scriptures to contradict their presumptions, they resist.
Calling natural disasters “acts of God” is the lazy man’s way of identifying a normal occurrence which was put in place by the Creator for the safety and well-being of this small planet, held there and kept operating by a complex system that requires volcanoes and earthquakes as well as storms.
This planet needs storms and earthquakes to keep it functioning. Pressure-relief valves, some call them.
What Earth does not need is a) people building on quake fault-lines and in flood plains and b) lazy theologians blaming God for anything they dislike.
It’s perfectly fine, pastors and Bible teachers, to tell people, “The question is not why did this happen, but what are you and I going to do now? Let’s help the people affected.”
Let us love one another, brethren.