Thursday, November 15, 2007

When Bad Things Happen To Good People - Kong Hee

When Bad Things Happen To Good People
By Pastor Kong Hee

Have you met a Christian who lost his faith in God after experiencing a crisis? It is a common fact that some Christians lose their fire for God when they go through hard times. Especially during a financial crisis when help doesn't come; when a loved one suddenly dies; and often when expectations in God have yet to come to pass.

Doubt sets in and we start questioning the goodness and faithfulness of God. If we are not careful, there is a chance that we may let down our guard, compromise our faith and lose our fire. James encourages believers to "count it all joy when you fall into various trials," and stay true to God in spite of the challenges.

Notice that James uses the word "when?" That means trials are a part of life!

Many people find it impossible to believe that bad things can ever happen to Christians. Because Christians claim that they serve a good God. A Christian is often challenged with this question, "If your God is so good, then why is this happening in your life? If there is a God, why is there so much suffering in this world?"

The truth is, it is impossible for this world to be a utopia and the sooner we realize this and accept it as reality, the better off we are! We will all experience "trials," because we live in a broken-down world.


God created a perfect world and gave it to Adam and Eve. But Adam and Eve sinned against God and thus, rulership of the world was transferred to Satan."... For the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me." John 14:30When mankind sinned against God, everything in the world broke down. The world became no longer perfect, as with mankind.Let us not be naive. Strength comes from a position of knowing. And knowing that this world is broken down makes us ready to handle what lies ahead!We look forward to eternity when everything will be perfect again. But from now till then, struggles and sorrows in life is a promise of this life. That's the bad news.But the good news is, in spite of all the tribulations, we should never need to lose our joy in God, for Jesus said,"

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." John 16:33


Because of this broken-down world, mankind now has 4 basic facts of life to live with:

1. Sickness and Death
While we believe in divine healing by the power of God, we must also bear in mind that in this broken-down world, sickness and death is something no man can escape.

Our imperfect body is susceptible to aging, injury, sicknesses and ultimately, physical death.

We read in the Bible of how even anointed, faithful servants of God like Elisha, Timothy and Epaphroditus were not exempted from this fact of life.

2. Unexpected Accidents

Very often we read of people dying tragically in car accidents and especially in recent times, airplane crashes.

Once in a while, we also hear of babies born handicapped, or with physical deformities.

Imagine how a mother would feel if she was told her child was born handicapped because of some apparent sin she'd committed?

Christians must realize that while we acknowledge the sovereignty of God, some things should not be over spiritualized.

We just have to accept the fact that this world we live in is no longer a perfect world!

3. Poor Standard of Living

This broken-down world we live in is filled with war, famine, catastrophe, economic mismanagement, poor standard of living ... and the list goes on.

That is why the Word of God exhorts believers all over the world to pray for government leaders:"

Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence."1 Tim. 2:1-2

Christians need to pray for their national leaders so that God's blessing and wisdom will be upon them to manage the nations well.

4. Demonic Harrassment

This life we live is in constant spiritual warfare against Satan and his demons. As Jesus says so clearly that the devil has come "to steal, to kill, and to destroy" the believer, you can be sure he will throw every possible temptation at us to make us angry with God.

The truth is, many people are naive and ignorant about the facts of life. So when bad things happen, people blame God or blame those hit by the crisis for their lack of faith in God, or for a sin they'd committed that led them to such a state.

If you are going through a rough patch in your life right now, know that God is not unaware of your pain, neither is He punishing you for something that you've done. He knows that we're living in a broken down world.James wrote his epistle to encourage us that God allows trials to happen to build strength and character in us! Without difficult times, faith and trust wouldn't be necessary.

When we can't see His hand, God wants us to TRUST His heart.

If we can only trust God in good times, then our trust is not genuine. Because faith is trusting God even when things look bleak ... even when the persecution is severe ... faith is trusting God even when it seems like you're not getting what you prayed for.

God is using all these trials to perfect something great in our lives.So bad things do happen to good people. But like how bitter medicine brings cure, suffering can be good for the Christian. Suffering need not be fatal or destructive. Instead ...

1. Suffering is a good cure for PRIDE

"And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure."
2 Cor. 12:7

Paul was a man who received more revelation from God than anybody else. And yet, he suffered a "thorn in the flesh" so that he would not become proud.

You see, there is a danger when we begin to think that we've arrived. Pride will begin to set in.

God is more interested in our character than in our comfort.

"... My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." 2 Cor. 12:92.

2. Suffering presses us into God's GRACE

Grace is God's supernatural strength to help us do what we can't do by ourselves.

As Christians, sometimes we pride ourselves religiously, thinking that if we fast and read the entire Bible, God has no choice but to give us what we pray for.

But when we go through suffering for the sake of the gospel, we can lean on God's supernatural strength to overcome any fear or sorrow ... and press on for Jesus!In fact, when there is no suffering, there is a tendency to become complacent and casual in our walk with God.

3. Suffering is a training ground for STRENGTH

The way to build muscles is to work out with weights. Suffering is like life's "weights" to help us train up spiritual muscles.

Jesus is coming back for a Church that is pure and strong!

4. Suffering reveals the true nature of our FAITH

Take a check to see how real is your faith in God.Would you still love Jesus passionately ... When you don't receive prayer answers? When your life is threatened because you are a Christian? When you know following Him will require a great price? Suffering reveals the true nature of our love for God.

"That the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ." 1 Pet. 1:7

God allows us to go through various fiery trials so that we can see for ourselves just how much we are willing to follow Jesus! But too many Christians give up on God and their destiny so easily.We all want to follow Jesus to the green pastures. But are we willing to follow Him to the cross? Let's be genuine believers that really live for Him, and not just for His blessings!

1 comment:

melissa RN said...

thank you for this commentary. It was very helpful My husband was seriously injured when a tree broke his back and paralyzed him. We have become much stronger in our faith since then, even though many times we have prayed for his supernatural healing, we realize God is sovereign and always knows what is best for us.
again, thank you. melissa