Sometimes it seems like our world is full of unexplainable tragedies and calamities. This past Sunday, a shooter at a Texas church took the lives of 26 people and injured 20 more. Last week a pickup truck ran over several bicyclists in Manhattan. Earlier this year, 58 people died in a mass shooting in Las Vegas, large scale destruction was caused by hurricanes, and the list goes on.
We are not the first, and we won’t be the last. The Old Testament prophet Habakkuk struggled with what everyone does at times, Christians and non-Christians alike. His struggle was basically twofold: “Why don’t you hear and why don’t you do something?” He wanted to know how long sin and injustice would abound while God seemed indifferent.
How do we respond when non-Christians ask a similar question: “Why is there so much injustice in the world?” They want to know why God doesn’t do something if He’s all-powerful and all-good.
- Compliment them for their honesty. God is not upset and neither should we be when people ask sincere questions about Him.
- Remind them of our limited perspective and ability. God sees things that we don’t. We see what is happening; God sees everything. We know what has occurred; He knows what will occur. Just because injustices haven’t been dealt with doesn’t mean they won’t be.
- Encourage them with God’s record and reputation. God has never broken a promise and is never untrue to His character. He promises injustices will be dealt with and no one will escape.
- Urge them to look ahead. Scripture is clear. There is coming a day when those who know Christ could not fare better. Those who don’t could not fare worse. The present is not the eternal future.
- Inform them of what honors God: our faith. He wants us first and foremost to trust Him for salvation, and then trust Him with everything in and about our lives. When we do so, not only can we experience God’s grace rather than His wrath on the injustice in the world but we can also be a part of God’s mercy and goodness in the midst of unjust world. The Lord told Habakkuk, “The just shall live by his faith” (2:4).