Skip to main content

Why do bad things happen to good people?

By Webmdave ~
When I was Christian, one of the paradoxes that I pondered was the question of why bad things happen to good people. The unsatisfying (at least to me) explanations from many true believers included statements such as “God’s ways are not our ways,” and “We will understand these things when we get to heaven.”

Right. Got it. You guys don’t know the answer.

So, why do bad things happen to good people?

For that matter, why do good things happen to bad people?

The thing is, Jesus supposedly answered that question in the Sermon on the Mount, specifically in Matthew 5:45. However, most clergymen and Christians gloss over this important aspect of what he is reported to have said in the “love your enemies” section of that historic sermon.
Matthew 5:45 45 that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
The rising sun and the falling rains are the effects of nature and are neither bad nor good. These are natural phenomena. And natural phenomena happen without prejudice to all people. No one is immune from the effects of nature, whether the effects are mild and pleasant or harsh and destructive.

We know that reality, time and again, demonstrates that for every cause in nature there is a natural effect. Storms form as the result of atmospheric pressures, which can cause storm winds to blow and make trees topple. It is the nature of trees to eventually fall. People and structures near those toppling trees can be crushed. A storm is neither good nor evil. Falling trees are neither good nor evil. The resultant destructive effects on people or their possessions are neither good nor evil. A storm (or falling trees) no matter how severe, is nothing more than a manifestation of nature, which is the result of various natural causes and effects.

The effects of nature may be viewed as inconvenient or undesirable by those adversely affected, but bad things did not happen to good people. Nature is the quintessential definition of equal opportunity. Nature happens to everyone regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, or character.

The same idea holds true for sickness, disease and death. All these things that people fear or wail or bemoan, are merely manifestations of unprejudiced natural phenomena. Storms, sickness and mortality are not punishments for evil. All living things are born and all eventually die. Plants, animals and people are all equally part of the natural universe. I am part of nature. You are part of nature. Storms, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, sickness, and death are not supernatural or unnatural. These things are all natural. And these things can and do happen to everyone and everything.

But what about crime and war?

Crime and war are anti-social manifestations of human nature. Just as we build shelters to weather storms and develop medicines to treat diseases, we create law and order mechanisms to inhibit or alter anti-social behaviors. Human nature is also a part of nature. Sometimes the effects of human nature are mild and pleasant. Sometimes the effects are harsh and destructive. Human nature, like all of nature, happens to everyone.

So, the next time someone asks “Why do bad things happen to good people,” you might want to let them know that bad things do not happen to good people. Nature happens to us all.


Popular posts from this blog

Are You an Atheist Success Story?

By Avangelism Project ~ F acts don’t spread. Stories do. It’s how (good) marketing works, it’s how elections (unfortunately) are won and lost, and it’s how (all) religion spreads. Proselytization isn’t accomplished with better arguments. It’s accomplished with better stories and it’s time we atheists catch up. It’s not like atheists don’t love a good story. Head over to the atheist reddit and take a look if you don’t believe me. We’re all over stories painting religion in a bad light. Nothing wrong with that, but we ignore the value of a story or a testimonial when we’re dealing with Christians. We can’t be so proud to argue the semantics of whether atheism is a belief or deconversion is actually proselytization. When we become more interested in defining our terms than in affecting people, we’ve relegated ourselves to irrelevance preferring to be smug in our minority, but semantically correct, nonbelief. Results Determine Reality The thing is when we opt to bury our

So Just How Dumb Were Jesus’ Disciples? The Resurrection, Part VII.

By Robert Conner ~ T he first mention of Jesus’ resurrection comes from a letter written by Paul of Tarsus. Paul appears to have had no interest whatsoever in the “historical” Jesus: “even though we have known Christ according to the flesh, we know him so no longer.” ( 2 Corinthians 5:16 ) Paul’s surviving letters never once mention any of Jesus’ many exorcisms and healings, the raising of Lazarus, or Jesus’ virgin birth, and barely allude to Jesus’ teaching. For Paul, Jesus only gets interesting after he’s dead, but even here Paul’s attention to detail is sketchy at best. For instance, Paul says Jesus “was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures” ( 1 Corinthians 15:4 ), but there are no scriptures that foretell the Jewish Messiah would at long last appear only to die at the hands of Gentiles, much less that the Messiah would then be raised from the dead after three days. After his miraculous conversion on the road to Damascus—an event Paul never mentions in his lette

Christian TV presenter reads out Star Wars plot as story of salvation

An email prankster tricked the host of a Christian TV show into reading out the plots of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and Star Wars in the belief they were stories of personal salvation. The unsuspecting host read out most of the opening rap to The Fresh Prince, a 1990s US sitcom starring Will Smith , apparently unaware that it was not a genuine testimony of faith. The prankster had slightly adapted the lyrics but the references to a misspent youth playing basketball in West Philadelphia would have been instantly familiar to most viewers. The lines read out by the DJ included: "One day a couple of guys who were up to no good starting making trouble in my living area. I ended up getting into a fight, which terrified my mother." The presenter on Genesis TV , a British Christian channel, eventually realised that he was being pranked and cut the story short – only to move on to another spoof email based on the plot of the Star Wars films. It began: &quo


By David Andrew Dugle ~   S ettle down now children, here's the story from the Book of David called The Parable of the Bent Cross. In the land Southeast of Eden –  Eden, Minnesota that is – between two rivers called the Big Miami and the Little Miami, in the name of Saint Gertrude there was once built a church. Here next to it was also built a fine parochial school. The congregation thrived and after a multitude of years, a new, bigger church was erected, well made with clean straight lines and a high steeple topped with a tall, thin cross of gold. The faithful felt proud, but now very low was their money. Their Sunday offerings and school fees did not suffice. Anon, they decided to raise money in an unclean way. One fine summer day the faithful erected tents in the chariot lot between the two buildings. In the tents they set up all manner of games – ring toss, bingo, little mechanical racing horses and roulette wheels – then all who lived in the land between the two rivers we

Morality is not a Good Argument for Christianity

By austinrohm ~ I wrote this article as I was deconverting in my own head: I never talked with anyone about it, but it was a letter I wrote as if I was writing to all the Christians in my life who constantly brought up how morality was the best argument for Christianity. No Christian has read this so far, but it is written from the point of view of a frustrated closeted atheist whose only outlet was organizing his thoughts on the keyboard. A common phrase used with non-Christians is: “Well without God, there isn’t a foundation of morality. If God is not real, then you could go around killing and raping.” There are a few things which must be addressed. 1. Show me objective morality. Define it and show me an example. Different Christians have different moral standards depending on how they interpret the Bible. Often times, they will just find what they believe, then go back into scripture and find a way to validate it. Conversely, many feel a particular action is not

On Living Virtuously

By Webmdave ~  A s a Christian, living virtuously meant living in a manner that pleased God. Pleasing god (or living virtuously) was explained as: Praying for forgiveness for sins  Accepting Christ as Savior  Frequently reading the Bible  Memorizing Bible verses Being baptized (subject to church rules)  Attending church services  Partaking of the Lord’s Supper  Tithing  Resisting temptations to lie, steal, smoke, drink, party, have lustful thoughts, have sex (outside of marriage) masturbate, etc.  Boldly sharing the Gospel of Salvation with unbelievers The list of virtuous values and expectations grew over time. Once the initial foundational values were safely under the belt, “more virtues'' were introduced. Newer introductions included (among others) harsh condemnation of “worldly” music, homosexuality and abortion Eventually the list of values grew ponderous, and these ideals were not just personal for us Christians. These virtues were used to condemn and disrespect fro