Friday, January 22, 2010

Haiti: Jesus or Judgement?

Is God judging Haiti? After all, this is a country known for its witch craft and child slavery. Did God finally get fed up and zap them?

I had a college professor who once insinuated that God doesn't do things like that. In the cafeteria of my Baptist college, some students were debating whether or not AIDS was God's judgement on homosexuals. Some felt a loving God would not do such a thing. I pointed out that God once sent poisonous snakes as a wake up call to his children in the wilderness.

My professor was incredulous, "Do you think God actually did that?" he asked.

"The Bible says he did," I replied. (See the book of Numbers chapter 21.)

The fact is, our loving God sometimes takes desperate measures to get the attention of the people he created.

So, what about Haiti, or AIDS for that matter?

My answer is this: Be very careful about drawing any conclusions.

Does that sound like sitting the fence? Perhaps it is. But to me, it's fearing God.

To say that God would not do such a thing is to subject God to our human and limited understanding of love. He is simply not bound by our definitions.

But to say that he has judged another person, or another people group, is kind of like reading another person's mail, only worse...much worse. It's presuming a higher level of holiness than those you think are being judged.

Jesus addressed such an issue in Luke 13. Some people were talking about a group of Galileans who were killed by Pilate. We don't know exactly what they said, but they must have implied that the Galileans were experiencing God's judgement. Here's what Jesus said:

Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.
In other words, when calamity strikes, soul searching is the proper response. To check out the other guy's guilt is wrong. To evaluate your own relationship with God is right.

The other response is compassion. God is always glorified by the loving responses of his children. Now is the time to extend a hand of love to Haiti. Two of my favorite charities are Samaritan's Purse and Compassion International. Of course the Red Cross, the Clinton-Bush fund, and a number of other charities are helping, too. I hope you will do what you can.

And don't forget to pray, pray, pray.

Gettin' Real!


  1. Amen Melodie. I totally agree. Why do we sit around wasting time discussing what God is up to when we will never, ever understand His ways? People need help and Jesus. That's the most important thing.

  2. BRAVO for approaching such a sensitive topic for ALL people. Is it God or is it something else...that is the question. But you are right when we jump to a conclusion and shout that this is a clear sign of God's judgment upon a people. I LOVE your line and i hope to quote it often that it "presumes a higher level of holiness..." Soul searching, approaching our inware self and gazing deep in to the reflection therein is the true call of God on all of our lives in times of calamity. I agree that especially in times of such horror we do not have time to sit on the judgment seat - it's alread occupied. Say a pray for your OWN soul and then do all that you can within your human capacity and limited understanding to feed the hungry, offer water to the thirsty...and in so doing to the last of these, so too, do you do it unto Him.


What do you think?