After Japan: How Can Christians Defend God’s Goodness?

I have been wondering inside for awhile where have all the defenses of divine omnibenevolence gone. It seems that these voices are long gone, and those who believe in a god who loves to look in the mirror at HIMself and say, look at me, look at me, like Vanity the Smurf (Piper’s calvinianism) suppress any traditional understandings of God’s goodness. That is because their guilt-ridden religion leads them to proclaim a faulty view of God’s justice. If God throw temper tantrums 80% of the time, then when exactly was God’s wrath actually satisfied? It don’t need no satisfaction? Ala penal substitution?

“The Good News of Jesus Christ is that God has been born into the world, in the flesh, dwelt among us as a man, opposed Satan, healed the sick, raised the dead, inaugurated the reign of God in this world, was himself murdered, then rose from the dead by the power of the Spirit. Jesus Christ’s death on the cross paid the penalty for sin redeeming us, ransoming us, rescuing us. Jesus paid it all!

The American author who wrote the post on Japan’s disasters holds a very different view of the cross: that God poured out all his wrath against sin on Jesus that we deserved. For the American author, the cross “satisfies” the wrath of God like the proverbial virgin “satisfies” the volcano. However, this is directly at odds with the implication that Japan’s earthquake is an outflow of God’s wrath against sin. That implication would suggest that Jesus’ death on the cross only partially satisfied God’s wrath. Or that God’s wrath is greater than God’s grace.

If the Japanese earthquake is a result of sin and God’s wrath, as this author implies, then Jesus may not have paid our debt in full—because we’re still paying interest.”

For more, read T.C. Moore’s A Black Sun Has Not Set On Japan: Challenging So-Called Answers For The Japanese Disaster.

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One thought on “After Japan: How Can Christians Defend God’s Goodness?

  1. Every time I hear the words natural disaster and God’s judgment in the same sentence I shudder. Jesus, in Luke 13:1-5 has something to say about this:

    There were some present at that very time who told [Jesus] about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

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