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HT: Dwindling in Unbelief


Ron said…
Wow, that was intense. It surely can bring a lot of ill feelings about the God of the Old Testament to the fore. Years ago, I wondered some of the same things when I first read the OT. In response to the man's question of why God created the Egyptians and others if he was just going to order that they be brutally punished and/or destroyed, I'd claim that he created them to be blessed through Abraham's seed. Israel was supposed to be God's light to the world. Much of the Bible is about God trying to shape Israel into being that light. In the midst of their suffering in Babylon, they developed the belief in the general resurrection out of the belief that God and creation were good.

God uses times of great suffering for the greater good, even though we do not see that greater good at the time. The greatest evil in the world, the murder of God's own Son, was what finally brought God to all people.

What those OT stories tell us, whether they are history or myth, is that there is real peril that faces us. Our choices matter ultimately in the larger scheme of things. Yes, what was reported to happen to those ancient people was horrible, but we must not forget that we are only getting one very human side of the story.

God has the right and also the obligation to judge them for their sins. A God that never punishes is not just. God is also merciful and I am sure that those people can or already have repented. They could be with God in heaven right now for all we know. It is my hope, and I think the proper Christian hope, that Hell is ultimately empty in the end.

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UPDATE: Thanks!