I’ve already shared how God said, “If you obey my rules, you won’t get sick like those who ignore Me.” Let’s look at some other natural consequences He has built into the world:
“The people in this land are not honest or loyal. They don’t really know God. They are always cursing, lying, killing, stealing, and committing adultery. They murder one person after another. So the country is like someone crying for the dead, and all of its people are weak. Even the animals of the field, the birds of the sky, and the fish in the sea are dying.” Hosea 4:1-3 EtrV
Is God mean to do this to a whole land? To punish all the innocent animals? Shouldn’t He be forced to punish only the bad people and leave everything else in peace?
Here’s the deal: God made everything. Then He put Adam and Eve in charge of the whole earth. What they did had to have an effect on their kingdom. Remember what happened when Adam first disobeyed?
God said, “I commanded you not to eat from that tree. So I will curse the ground because of you. You will have to work hard all your life for the food the ground produces. The ground will grow thorns and weeds for you.
You will work hard until the day you die, and then you will become dust again. I used dust to make you, and when you die, you will become dust again.” Genesis 3:17-19 abridged EtrV
God didn’t turn the world into a painful, harsh place on a whim. He could no longer protect His creatures because their leader had disobeyed. God also knows that if we (His favorite creatures) are perfectly comfortable, we won’t change. It takes sorrow, emptiness and discomfort to remind us we need God.
Everything that God made is waiting with excitement for the time when he will show the world who his children are. The whole world wants very much for that to happen.
Everything God made was allowed to become like something that cannot fulfill its purpose. That was not its choice, but God made it happen with this hope in view:
That the creation would be made free from ruin—that everything God made would have the same freedom and glory that belong to God’s children.
We know that everything God made has been waiting until now in pain like a woman ready to give birth to a child.
So we are waiting for God to finish making us his own children. I mean we are waiting for our bodies to be made free. We were saved to have this hope. Romans 8:19-14a EtrV
So, is God really just a mean, heartless bully in the sky? Here’s what God Himself says about how He feels when wicked people have to be punished:
“You must say to them, ‘The Lord God says: By my life, I swear that I don’t enjoy seeing people die—not even evil people! I don’t want them to die. I want them to come back to me. I want them to change their lives so that they can really live. So come back to me! Stop doing bad things! Why must you die, family of Israel?’” Ezekiel 33:11 EtrV
God isn’t passively sitting in heaven listening to lovely music while the world screams in agony. Far from it!
Paul said, I am happy in my sufferings for you. There is much that Christ must still suffer. And I gladly accept my part of those sufferings in my body for the good of his body, the church. Colossians 1:24 EtrV
When birds are sold, two small birds cost only a penny. But not even one of those little birds can die without your Father knowing it. Matthew 10:29 EtrV
Lord, all living things depend on you. You give them food at the right time. Psalm 104:27 EtrV