Is God a murderer

I suppose if He is God and that was His prerogative then who are we to question His reality based on His response or our understanding of His response to the treatment of humanity.

He is the potter and we are the clay. What right or power do we have to question the one who fashions the clay for His divine purpose.

Job who endured great suffering questioned God’s character and the Lord Himself responded in calling Job to answer all the great mystery’s in life. Yet he was left speechless when he realized the enormity and awesome power and presence of God’s glorious being.

However, God’s sovereignty does not end with God acting arbitrarily or indifferently towards His creation. His character is perfectly righteous and just. He is a good God whose basic definition is love.

It is a contradiction of His character for this loving God to create life for the sole purpose of destruction without a just cause or purpose.

It’s at this point that their is a divergence in thought on how we relate to justify life and how God views his right to execute judgment as the supreme magistrate of the universe.

Many times when we read the biblical text, especially in the Old Testament, we see that there were whole communities that were destroyed and swept away under God’s directive such as the Flood,Sodom and Gomorrah, plagues of Egypt, and the Israeli occupation of Canaan, foreign occupation of Israel, and finally the future apocalyptical judgement of God or the “Day of the Lord.”

This may see ironic until you begin to look at the circumstantial evidence underlying these situations. Sometimes the effect overshadows the cause because of its finality.

Yet when God made man he was created in the image of God and declared good. Mankind as an expression of his humanity was given the capacity to be a free moral agent through the exercise of the will. This freedom gave opportunity for our chief and perfect representative, namely Adam, the ability to declare his rule as a self imposed god therefore eliminating God’s theocratic rule and reign over his life.

Adam elevated his purposes above the creator therefore making himself out to be a god in establishing his own criteria for existence. Instead of mankind giving gratitude and worship to the creator he now sees God as a competitor to his own personal goals, desires, and agenda therefore surpassing the  boundaries of God’s righteous economy and transgressing the role and relationship as creature/creator.

Adam as our earthly ancestor and therefore the progenitor of the human race has yielded a repeat production among his offspring who have added to the sinful folly of mankind and his endeavor to impose the will of “self.”

How we see this practically is not only in how we relate to God but on how we treat each other. If we were to look at just the ten commandments alone we would all sense our violation to both God and our human counterparts.

Jesus himself summed up this law by stating  “love the Lord your God with all of your heart soul, mind, and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself.”

We dishonor God by not acknowledging Him and by using His name as an opportunity to pronounce a curse or by substituting Him with false religion or alternative philosophies.

We violate others when we dishonor our parents, when we murder or wrongfully take another life which Jesus equates to being angry with our brother (if God is a murderer then he is a hypocrite to his own rules and laws), committing adultery which Jesus corresponds with looking lustfully at another person as if to possess them sexually, stealing, bearing false testimony which is a contemptuous expression of slander and malignancy, and to covet another one’s property or spouse which leads us into a state of ingratitude towards God for our personal provision. Amazingly this last sin, which is an attitude of the heart, can lead to violating many of the other previously mentioned commandments.

Mankind stands guilty before the heavenly court since we have all violated to some degree or another these basic elements of law. These laws have also served to guide many of our world courts regarding the sanctity of life through the rendering of this general prudence.

We as humans are innately hardwired by God to have a conscious in knowing that life is to be valued which should lead us into another question of asking ourselves who created this moral aptitude. It was programmed  by God as an evidence of His existence as being the originator of the universe through intelligent design versus us being unattached to our universe by some kind of haphazard cosmic accident of chance. So it serves not only to awaken the reality of conscious towards a creator but it also confirms to us a relational and moral responsibility towards His person with the end result of being either justified or condemned .

Sometimes we treat sin flippantly and what seems trivial or relative to us is really an extreme and hostile violation as well as an affront to God’s person. Sin isn’t merely just missing the mark but rather it is being completely off target to the holy will of God.

God’s temporal punishment for sin on earth was regulated to the severity of the violation or crime and this is only a precursor and reminder to the future impending and eternal judgment of God of which we are all found guilty. Even our conscious bears witness to this by feeling guilt and shame because fear has to do with judgment. That is why on that day of judgment that ever mouth will be silent as God will have no accusers as we stand  before the divine judge of the universe as He states His case for our guilt.

Though I have stated and emphasized God’s arm of  justice I have neglected to speak of His tender  hands of mercy which He extends to men who have violated Him as an enemy.

God gives mankind the opportunity to repent by changing the course of their action through a heart felt expression of contrition over their willful acts of disobedience towards the one who has given them the privilege of drawing the precious gift of breath in the sustenance of life.

1 Peter 3:20 says that God waited patiently during the 120 year duration that the ark was being constructed, giving them ample opportunity to repent. Yet God saw that mankind’s heart was continually bent on evil continually and was grieved that He had even created them.

Abraham bargained with God concerning the outcome of Sodom and Gomorrah of which God was unwilling to destroy if there were enough righteous to preserve its existence. Yet the stench of sin was so foul and the lack of righteousness was so insignificant that all God could do was to save a remnant or a  few righteous souls that were living in the midst of this evil and corrupt society. These vial,crude, and obstinate acts of sin called for drastic measures of destruction because of the evil of exploiting others. Instead of enjoying the God given gift of intimacy with a beloved spouse these inhabitants  had unnatural, unbridled, and unrestrained sexual appetites whose sole purpose was a deviancy in sexual gratification.

“The Exodus” and the plagues on Egypt resulted in part because of the genocide committed against the Hebrew male children and the harsh labor laws of the Egyptians.

I think that one of the greatest and most memorable acts of complete destruction is when the Israelites invaded the landscape of Canaan and completely annihilating every living thing in sight.

Yet when referring to the Canaanites in Genesis 15:16 it says that the sin of the Amorites was not yet complete. In other words, God gave them 400 years to repent before exacting judgment on this land and these people.

There were also other variables that played into this scenario likewise. He was calling Israel as a covenant people out of Egypt into a promised land whereby they were to occupy but only after the original landholders violated their plot of land as tenants. The reason why they were removed was so they would not pollute or violate God’s covenant community through intermarriage of which would draw the people away into serving false gods and violating His holy seed.

Eventually this move would lead to their own demise likewise because they were unable to dispossess the land of its people and idolatries and therefore it vomited and purged them out as well which was done by the hands of the enemies of Israel.

God is just and is not a respecter of persons. After all, when Israel joined themselves in covenant with God they took an oath of blessing and curse of which unfortunately they became the benefactor of the latter.

Yet all along He sent his prophets to warn them and get the people to turn their hearts back to God.

God has given us these events as examples and reminders concerning His disciplinary actions as a warning concerning His future and final judgment of which all mankind will be judged. He has not only sent His prophets but now He has sent the “Messiah” His Son to seek and save those that are lost in sparing us from the gavel of God’s judgment by declaring us innocent.

God’s care for mankind has culminated in a universal and merciful provision of redemption through God’s prevailing grace.

However, God’s action of justice would not be forfeited but rather applied and satisfied through the execution of His Son Jesus who would bear our sin, shame, and guilt therefore preserving our lives from eternal destruction in fulfilling God’s plan of preserving humanity of which He states that His desire is that none should perish but that all should have everlasting life.

We are quick to see His judgments an slow to learn of His salvation. We put more value in human life and freedom than we give to the author of life.

Jesus life was demonstrated with great love for mankind. The scripture tell us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us. He taught us to love our enemies and to turn the other cheek. Most of what we call humanitarian acts are often inspired as a result of the life of Jesus and the Bible.

So how can we possibly confuse the motive of God. Do we think that because God is good that he cant also be just in punishing violators?

I would  like to give an example of this through the human agency of law. Imagine you know a judge that  is confronted with someone who trespasses a law, of which was meant to protect innocent victims, and instead of prosecuting him the judge just lets him go.  Where then is the justice in this ruling and how about the preservation of the innocent who are the victims of this crime and how are they to be equally represented.  What kind of judge would do such a thing? Is this action representative of one who would be regarded as good or evil? You be the judge? A good judge is not just letting every violator go free who has not upheld the law but he is seen as being good only if He upholds the penalty of law.

God was so determined in His judgements that He exacted the full measure of His judgment through a fatal blow of justice on His innocent and guiltless Son who acted on  behalf of humanity as a new “Adam.” Had it not been for this act of benevolence then all mankind would of stood guilty before a holy God. Jesus is our defense, having stepped in and took our rightful place under the judgment of God’s justice of which we would have otherwise have all been condemned.

This gift of God’s grace  does not release mankind from the due responsibility of temporal punishment resulting in consequences for the crime of sin committed during this dispensation. For instance, if you committed a felony you will still have to undergo the penalty for your actions as determined by the society in which you have transgressed. However, this action will not serve as an eternal or mortal transgression, which would completely cut oneself off from the presence of God, unless one rejects the provision of God’s redemption.

This may seem ironic how that God can penalize the innocent while acquitting  the guilty but where would we be without this substitutionary act . What hope would we have unless somebody would come to our defense and plea bargain our case to the one who has the power to condemn or preserve life. We all can sight examples of people who have payed with their precious life blood to help others but what about God who was willing to go the extra mile in giving a life towards those who did not deserve his representation. This phenomena is the prevailing act of mercy of which God having seen the thoughts and intents of the heart and is confronted with the sincerity of a repentant heart who out of humility and brokenness sees his true spiritual state reaches out for clemency by taking hold of the mercy seat of God in obtaining favor because another posted our bond of freedom not just temporarily releasing us from justice but perpetually granting us release from death row.

Therefore it is only those who do not believe in the Son who stand condemned already because they have not trusted in God’s redemptive provision. Those who have not placed their reliance in the deeds of the Messiah must stand alone before God without representation or counsel and they will not be found guiltless because all men sin.

Lastly I would like to conclude with a well know bible story concerning Jonah. Many just remember this story from their childhood as the unfortunate soul who was swallowed up by a large fish and yet their is much more that we can learn from this story line.

Jonah was a prophet and his job was to forewarn people of God’s judgment which included a redemptive twist of calling nations and individuals into repentance which would ultimately result in a restoration of peace with God.

This isn’t always such a fun job considering you have to confront sin hardened people and the health benefits were sometimes terrible as they would often put themselves into perilous conditions.

Jonah was an Israelite and he was told to go to Nineveh, of which he despised as a gentile or a foreign nation. In the process He is determined to run away from His prophetic responsibilities by taking a small detour to Tarshish. At this point God counters and intercepts Him with a belly of a fish which in turns puts him back on course to Nineveh.

The greatness of this story happens after all of this drama occurred. Why do you suppose Jonah was dragging his feet? Was it because He didn’t want the unpopular task of speaking out in judgment over these people? No, it was because He knew that if they repented that God was a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity, Jonah 4:2.

Jonah didn’t like how God had let the Ninevites of the hook much like how some people may protest  God’s provision of grace through Jesus. God’s final answer to Jonah concerning this matter was a sovereign statement  questioning him on what right he had to be angry over this  act of mercy. Remember we are all sinners in need of God’s mercy and therefore we shouldn’t despise his graciousness towards others, after all you may be one of those others. Jesus summed up the situation by stating  “Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy.”

Finally some philosophers have perpetrated the “death of God” movement and now we have a godless society. So who is the murderer?

Is it God or is it the unrightful hostility of others who are denying the living and loving reality of our creator?

If today you hear his voice do not harden your heart but rather submit to Him and may  His kindness lead you to repentance.

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