Summary: A child suffers horrific abuse for years, where is God? A woman is raped, where is God? An evil dictator goes on the rampage and commits genocide, where is God?
30, October 2005
Dakota Community Church
Where is God?
A child suffers horrific abuse for years, where is God?
A woman is raped, where is God?
An evil dictator goes on the rampage and commits genocide, where is God?
1. God is there.
The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.
"Am I only a God nearby," declares the LORD, "and not a God far away?
Can anyone hide in secret places so that I cannot see him?" declares the LORD. "Do not I fill heaven and earth?" declares the LORD.
"The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. From one man he made every nation of men that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. ’For in him we live and move and have our being.’
Where can I go from Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, You are there; if I make my bed in the depths, You are there.
God is there even when we do not feel His presence.
About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?"—which means, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me, so far from the words of my groaning?
If God is there what is He doing?
2. God is weeping.
When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. "Where have you laid him?" he asked.
"Come and see, Lord," they replied.
Then the Jews said, "See how he loved him!"
But some of them said, "Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?"
"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.
Jeremiah 23:5, 6, 9
"The days are coming," declares the LORD, "when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land.
In his days Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety. This is the name by which he will be called: The LORD Our Righteousness.
Concerning the prophets: My heart is broken within me; all my bones tremble.
I recently ministered to a Christian woman who told me that as a young girl she was victimized by a babysitter who took her into her bedroom closet and abused her. She always wondered where God was, and why it happened. She had forgiven the boy long ago because she was tormented with thoughts of revenge and could not move on with her life until she did.
a.) If God is so compassionate why doesn’t he strike the perpetrator dead on the spot?
God has compassion on both parties.
He is not willing for any to perish and miss out on what he created them for.
b.) Well why doesn’t He at least stop it from happening?
He does not stop it for one reason only: love.
There is no love without choice.
There is no choice without free will.
There is no free will if we can only use it to choose what God wants.
When I got my first computer I programmed the screensaver to say, “Dan is great”.
There is no satisfaction in that!
We want our lover’s heart don’t we? Not out of a sense of duty, not some programmed response. We want our lover to choose us.
(Ralph’s valentine on the Simpson’s)
Where does that leave us? What now?
3. God is restoring, healing, and using us.
We were born out of the laughter of the Trinity.
- Meister Eckhart
Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground."