160 Dead as church collapses.

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Jac3510
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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Jac3510 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:15 pm

That's not an answer. Where in Scripture does it say that God has a purpose planned for things like the OP describes?
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Philip » Thu Dec 15, 2016 7:58 pm

Where in Scripture does it say that God has a purpose planned for things like the OP describes?


Where does it say there is NOT a purpose in such an event? It involves people, who God loved enough to die for. They are clearly important to Him. To me that greatly suggests that such an event is considered by God. His will either allowed it or not - and it allowed it. This is one of those pointless discussions over the unknown that has no particular value. There are more important fish to fry! HOWEVER, the idea of a "plan" suggests that you can separate out parts of God. But God, His decisions, what He's made possible, His Holy Character, all of these flow from Who He is - and is so eternally. Are there purely neutral things that God doesn't care WHAT happens. Maybe. But such things I would imagine are neither good or bad. Choose the blue socks or the red ones - does it really matter? And why would it? A young child dies from a beating - does that matter to God? If He allows it, is there a purpose to it? That's a very different kind of issue - because that child was a human being made in God's Image. And THAT matters. Did God have no purpose in creating such a life? We just can't know what might be the purpose behind these things. Useless speculation.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Jac3510 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:03 pm

So, no chapter verse. In other words, the Bible doesn't say so. Got it. :wave:
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby B. W. » Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:18 pm

Jac, not sure what you are trying to convey but what of these verses?

Rom 8:35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
Rom 8:36 As it is written: "FOR YOUR SAKE WE ARE KILLED ALL DAY LONG; WE ARE ACCOUNTED AS SHEEP FOR THE SLAUGHTER."
Rom 8:37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
Rom 8:38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,
Rom 8:39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. NKJV

Also, I am not sure if you are going after predeterminism by your comments or not concerning the OP question.

For me. just know things happen and for us who belong to Him, it does not matter if the Church collapses in the scheme of things nothing will separate us from His love - we have heaven.

Now, is there some good can out of all this? Maybe a move for stricter building codes... and for those in the USA should you move out of the West Coast because of earthquakes?

I do not have an answer other than life is short and what Eccl 3:1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8 mentions..
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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Jac3510 » Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:13 pm

I'm trying to convey the opposite of predeterminism, BW. I am saying that God does not have a plan for such things. The verses you site just say that nothing that happens in life will separate us from God. It doesn't say anything like God causing bad things to happen for some mysterious good reason. If anything, I'm worried that phil's position implies a sort of predeterminism.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Philip » Fri Dec 16, 2016 2:40 pm

I'm worried that phil's position implies a sort of predeterminism.

Predeterminism as it relates to WHAT? How are you defining it and what are you applying it to?

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Jac3510 » Fri Dec 16, 2016 3:33 pm

Philip wrote:I'm worried that phil's position implies a sort of predeterminism.

Predeterminism as it relates to WHAT? How are you defining it and what are you applying it to?

If God had a purpose and plan for the church collapsing and killing 160 people, that seems to me to imply that it was determined by God to happen. From the foundations of the earth even. And if that, then everything would be predetermined. Suppose the church collapsed because it was set of fire by an arsonist. If that was God's plan, then God literally predetermined the arson.

You can't wiggle out of this by saying "No, God didn't cause it--He just allowed it." That's not what "a plan" is. And even if you start talking about God's plan allowing this or that, you get into trouble because now you have God effectively responding, reacting, or replying to what He didn't directly plan for. I'm sure you can see the problem with such a position.

The only theologically sound position, as far as I can tell, is that God had no plan or purpose for the church falling and killing those people. That's not to say that God didn't know it would happen. You can, I suppose, say God allowed it, but that seems pretty vacuous to me. Everything that happens happens because God allows it. So you're back to either saying that everything is as it is because God's plan allowed it (which is back to predeterminism) or you recognize the vacuousness of the statment "it happened because God allowed it." The "because" in that sentence is absolutely meaningless, in that it doesn't point to a cause at all. Better to say that God did not plan for such things. He can, of course, in His goodness use the broken things in our lives for our good. And He does if we let Him. That's just following His daily leading which is gracious and good even in bad times. But none of that means God planned the bad thing to happen or had a purpose for the bad thing to happen.

In short, we should affirm that gratuitous evil exists. There's no sense in asking "Why, God?!" Because the answer will be, "There is no why. It just happened." Not comforting, nor does it need to be. What's comforting isn't knowing a reason but knowing that God is there for us in the midst of our pain.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Philip » Fri Dec 16, 2016 4:23 pm

Jac: There's no sense in asking "Why, God?!" Because the answer will be, "There is no why. It just happened."


Great speculation, but that's all it is. We can't know. We shouldn't try to figure it out. That doesn't mean that God didn't have purpose in allowing it. And you nor anyone else can speak to the truth of the matter. And all the philosophers can all geek out on the topic til their last day - to what gain?

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Jac3510 » Fri Dec 16, 2016 4:47 pm

There is a lot to gain. Look at ST's post. He mentioned the emotional struggle of wondering about God's plan. The problem of evil only has any force at all because people want to say God has a plan. And lets not forget that God was angry with Job's friends because they said what was nit true of Him. So you accuse God of having a plan for something when He said no such thing and you risk sinning.

So no, Phil, this point is not academic. It has very real emotional and theological consequences.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Philip » Fri Dec 16, 2016 5:27 pm

Jac: So you accuse God of having a plan for something when He said no such thing and you risk sinning.


And you're risking sinning by asserting I am saying something I am not. I'm saying, in any given situation, you can't know. If you do, please tell us how you do.

Jac: So no, Phil, this point is not academic. It has very real emotional and theological consequences.


So, one has EMOTIONAL consequences over getting all worked up over some aspect of God's unknown will or plan that they can't possibly know. They don't need a theologian, they need other help - psychological or spiritual counseling. But if they think they are only going to have peace about some difficult event when they understand the mind of God, or that a puny human mind is going to figure these things out - well, they'll just have to either let it go and trust God, or they can waste time and effort on contemplating the unknowable.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby Jac3510 » Fri Dec 16, 2016 7:04 pm

1. Misunderstanding you isn't risking sinning. Don't equivocate. If I've misunderstood your position, feel free to clarify. I can only respond to what I've understood you to say.

2. You can't distinguish emotional, theological, psychological, and spiritual issues. When someone says they can't see God's plan and you reply by talking about how we just can't understand some things, then you are conceding the premise that God planned the atrocity. That's unacceptable. And I've already said repeatedly how I know that it's not true. I've also asked you for Scripture that says God does plan such things. You've not provided any. And please, don't ever say, "Let it go and trust God" -- it's a platitude, and when people are hurting, that's much more likely to cause more harm than to be healing.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: 160 Dead as church collapses.

Postby neo-x » Sat Dec 17, 2016 12:17 am

Jac3510 wrote:
Philip wrote:I'm worried that phil's position implies a sort of predeterminism.

Predeterminism as it relates to WHAT? How are you defining it and what are you applying it to?

If God had a purpose and plan for the church collapsing and killing 160 people, that seems to me to imply that it was determined by God to happen. From the foundations of the earth even. And if that, then everything would be predetermined. Suppose the church collapsed because it was set of fire by an arsonist. If that was God's plan, then God literally predetermined the arson.

You can't wiggle out of this by saying "No, God didn't cause it--He just allowed it." That's not what "a plan" is. And even if you start talking about God's plan allowing this or that, you get into trouble because now you have God effectively responding, reacting, or replying to what He didn't directly plan for. I'm sure you can see the problem with such a position.

The only theologically sound position, as far as I can tell, is that God had no plan or purpose for the church falling and killing those people. That's not to say that God didn't know it would happen. You can, I suppose, say God allowed it, but that seems pretty vacuous to me. Everything that happens happens because God allows it. So you're back to either saying that everything is as it is because God's plan allowed it (which is back to predeterminism) or you recognize the vacuousness of the statment "it happened because God allowed it." The "because" in that sentence is absolutely meaningless, in that it doesn't point to a cause at all. Better to say that God did not plan for such things. He can, of course, in His goodness use the broken things in our lives for our good. And He does if we let Him. That's just following His daily leading which is gracious and good even in bad times. But none of that means God planned the bad thing to happen or had a purpose for the bad thing to happen.

In short, we should affirm that gratuitous evil exists. There's no sense in asking "Why, God?!" Because the answer will be, "There is no why. It just happened." Not comforting, nor does it need to be. What's comforting isn't knowing a reason but knowing that God is there for us in the midst of our pain.


Well said, Jac, I agree completely.
People treat facts as relevant more when the facts tend to support their opinions. When the facts are against their opinions, they don't necessarily deny the facts, but they say the facts are less relevant or insignificant. This is ofcourse because believing things that make you feel comfortable, takes a priority. And I think that should not be the case if one is after truth.

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