As we look at our world, it is a world in trouble. A world consumed with war, famine and poverty. A world writhing in sickness, disease and sorrow. From these conditions springs one of life's basic questions. What is the origin of the suffering, sickness, and death so prevalent in our world?
Why do the good as well as the bad suffer? Why are there birth defects and cancer? Why do earthquakes, famine, and tornadoes cause thousands of innocent victims to die? Who is behind violence and war? These questions will not go away by attempt-
ing to ignore them. They demand an answer.
1. Is God the author of human suffering? Jeremiah 29:3; 31:3.
MY BIBLE SAYS:"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love."
2. If God is not responsible for human suffering, where did it originate? Matthew 13:2428.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field; but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat. . . So the servants of the owner . . . said . . 'Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have tares?' He said to them, 'An enemy has done this."
3. Who is the enemy? Matthew 3:39
MY BIBLE SAYS. "The enemy who sowed them is the devil,..."
4. Where did this diabolical being come from? Luke 10:18.
MY BIBLE. SAYS: "And He said to them I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.' "
5. Did God create a devil? Ezekiel 28:1245.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. . . . You were the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; you were on the holy mountain of God; . . . You were perfect In Your ways from the day you were created, till Iniquity was found in you."
God created Lucifer a beautiful, glorious angel. Yet He gave him the capacity to choose. To remove the power of choice is to remove the power to love. Biblical love is not forced or coerced. It springs from divine love. It can never be forced.
6. What occurred in Satan's mind to lead to open rebellion? Isaiah 14:12-14.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "How are you fallen from heaven, 0 Lucifer, son of the morning! . . . You have said in your heart: 'I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; . . . I will be like the Most High.' "
Satan desired God's power and authority, thus he attempted to set up a rival government.
7. What did this open rebellion lead to and what ultimately happened to Satan as a result? Revelation 12: 7- 9.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, . . . So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, . . . he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him."
Every angel chose either the path of loyalty or rebellion. The same option is available to every human being. There are only two ways: the way of loyalty to God or the way of rebellion against God.
8. How did our world become involved in the conflict between good and evil? Romans 5:12.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—."
Through deliberate disobedience Adam, the in death. Our world was not created as a "dumping off' place for Satan. It was created
perfect (Genesis 1:14). Through sin Adam's dominion was forfeited. But we must not lay all of the responsibility for sin upon our first parents. The Apostle Paul writes, "For all have sinned and and fall short of the glory of God, Romans 3:23. Thus we live on a planet in rebellion.
9. As a result of man's fall, what does Satan now claim as his? Luke 4:5, 6.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "Then the devil, . . . showed Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, 'All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.' "
10. What has God done to redeem this planet that has yielded to Satan's temptations? John 3:16; 1 Peter 1:18, 19.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." ". . . You were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, . . . but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot"
With a heart of inexhaustible, infinite love God decided to pay the price of sin Himself. Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, came to this sin-cursed world. He entered into the arena of human affairs to redeem us from the curse of sin.
11. What is Satan's ultimate fate? Ezekiel 28: 16-19.
MY BIBLE SAYS: ". . . You became filled with violence within, and you sinned; therefore I cast you as a profane thing out of the mountain of God; . . . Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom . . . Therefore I brought fire from your midst; it devoured you, and I turned you to ashes upon the earth . . . You have become a horror, and shall be no more forever."
Satan is soon to be defeated and destroyed.
12. What will God eventually do with this planet? II Peter 3:10, 13.
MY BIBLE SAYS: "But the day of the Lord will come . . . the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. . . . Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells."
MY DECISION: I accept Jesus as my Saviour and surrender my life to Him. I desire Him torule in the kingdom of my heart. I choose Jesus as Master of my life.