In the middle of all that chaos and mayhem

2015/11/21 § Leave a comment

Black_and_white_Paris_landscape
Behold, the Lord is riding on a swift cloud
and comes to Egypt;
and the idols of Egypt will tremble at his presence,
and the heart of the Egyptians will melt within them.

In a post for First Things yesterday, Peter Leithart reflects on a powerful selection of Isaiah, chapters 19 and 20, in which God comes to Egypt and redeems everything amidst a blur of chaos. Ultimately, and if I am understanding his explication, I have to part ways with what he attributes to God in these present circumstances.

I agree wholeheartedly that it is God that redeems this world, and that He redeems it, oftentimes, through violence and through chaos. But is this the same as saying God causes evil, that He is responsible for causing the decisions that each man makes? Is this occasionalism?

Leithart states that God is the one that brings “tyranny and savage repression, random violence and terror in stadiums and restaurants.” But is this so? Is this not merely the means by which God chooses to redeem our world? Another question to ponder: does the existence of violence and terror and the like indict God? Does the existence of evil mean that God is held responsible? For so many very good reasons, I must disagree.

This much I know: Through pain, violence, and chaos (even terrorism), God is affecting the world for good, for His perfect purpose, with the ultimate goal of the “restoration of life and order”.

When the world seems to have gone crazy, when there is a war of all against all, when cruel kings reign, when advisors seem deluded or drunk, when the economy is falling apart – in the middle of all that chaos and mayhem, God is at work, the Spirit is active, the Spirit has come like storm, like a hurricane, unsticking a world stuck in sin and death, blowing the world back into motion, back into motion toward God. All that chaos means that the Lord has come riding His cloud, stirring up the world by the Spirit until all nations turn to Him in worship.

What are your thoughts, dear readers?

Read the whole article here.

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