OPINION: LAS VEGAS: WHERE IS GOD WHEN ALL HELL BREAKS LOOSE?
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”
This saying by Edmund Burke in 1770 is ringing true in light of the Las Vegas shootings.
Mass murderer Stephen Paddock may have killed 59 people and injured hundreds more, but he did not triumph!
Good people rose up and ran back into the rain of bullets to help strangers. Selfless men became human shields for their wives and those weaker than themselves. First responders and regular people with trucks ran into the fray not knowing if they would be targets themselves.
Goodness was there! It battled evil and evil turned the weapon on itself.
Let me tell you this: there is nothing impressive about evil. Stephen Paddock is just one in a very long list of men who’ve played demonic roles in history. In short, he is evidence that man’s basic condition is the same as it has always been.
The heart is desperately wicked; who can know it? – Jeremiah 17:12
Yes, man’s heart is still deceitful and in need of a savior. There is nothing impressive about that at all, is there? Jesus doesn’t want us to be impressed with evil or give it power through fearing it. Instead, He wants us to overcome evil with goodness.
If you’re asking where was God when hell was raining down on innocent lives, He was there. He was comforting the dying, mourning with the hurting and leading the fallen home – away from this world where one man’s darkened agenda can cause so much devastation. Remember this: hundreds of people lived!
If you want to know where God was, I can tell you: He was in the hearts of the fallen, and the people who sacrificed themselves, who laid it all on the line to help, and in the hearts of the millions praying for clarity and healing this very day.
It’s impressive how quickly good reigns over destruction because God is the master at turning things around for good.
Of course, when the worst Satan has to offer is unleashed on this earth, I get asked, “Pastor, if God is good, why didn’t He stop this from happening?”
Here’s my answer: who told you God’s job description was keeping bad things from happening? God didn’t. As a matter of fact, Jesus said in John 16:33, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
Did Jesus have trouble? Yes, and plenty of it. If the God of the universe who became flesh and dwelt among us suffered personal tragedies – and He did – why would we expect the opposite for ourselves? Protecting us from any harm is not God’s job. It would be taking away our free will to do so.
A gift that’s demanded is no gift at all. Because He loved us and wanted us to love Him back, God gave us free will to choose Him. We also have the ability to choose hate over love, light over darkness and evil over good.
Look back at that long list of mass murderers. They chose poorly. But that doesn’t have to be you! You can choose the goodness of God.
Jesus says in Revelation 3:12 “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.”
Amazing! Jesus doesn’t knock with His hand, but with His voice. If you let Him into your life, He will treat you like family. Do you hear Him knocking? Listen and OPEN THE DOOR!
What’s truly impressive is the goodness of God in a life that’s been redeemed and set free. We should be impressed, stirred and just plain blown away by goodness.
Troy Brewer is the Senior Pastor of OpenDoor Church in Burleson, Texas. He is the author of 10 books. His daily radio show “Experiencing Real Life” is heard in nearly 60 markets across the U.S. and he is also the co-host of Daystar Television’s top rated “Dreams and Mysteries” program. TroyBrewer.com