E-mail Rumors and God’s Sovereignty

September 29, 2008 at 11:55 am | Posted in God's Love, It's All About God, Questions for Pastor Glenn, Wisdom | 2 Comments

 

The following is a copy (minus names) of an e-mail I got this morning.  The letter was followed by a forwarded message giving “facts” about some people who cursed God in one way or another and died an unusual death shortly thereafter.  The obvious point of the message is that God is real and his enemies will die.  Since many have the same questions about these kind of e-mails as this writer, I thought my response was worth posting today.

Dear Glenn,

I’m unable to check it out, so I wanted to ask you whether the stories about these people are true.  I don’t want to send out lies.

Dear  .  .  .

Thanks for asking, I appreciate anyone who is trying to find out truth, rather than just pass along the latest sensationalism.  However, I couldn’t find anything on the truth of this one way or the other.  My advice is don’t put too much stock in reports like this for numerous reasons:

First, even if it’s true, it proves nothing.  Someone who knows how to do the research could come up with just as many people who cursed God for years and died of old age; I’ve known some of those myself.  The two simply are not related.  I could probably find some people who died strange and untimely deaths after they switched from Coke to Pepsi too!  But that wouldn’t prove anything about the evils of Pepsi.

Second, this kind of thing denies the love and heart of God.  God loves people;  his desire, as spelled out in the Bible, is for those people to come to him in repentance.  “God is not slow about his promises as some understand slowness, but is patient toward you not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”  (2 Peter 3:9)  

Third, this denies God’s grace.  Even those who curse God repetitively are candidates for his forgiveness in Jesus.  Such is the incredible nature of the what Jesus did on the cross.  Some people try to tie this sort of cursing God with the unforgivable sin of “blaspheming the Holy Spirit.”  But that sin is a continual and stubborn rejection of who Jesus is (the context in which Jesus said it is instructive in this matter).  Those who embellish that sin to be anything else simply ignore both the context of the passage and the overall biblical data on forgiveness.  Even Jesus’ words about the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit begin with this promise, “I tell you the truth, all the sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them!”  (Mark 3:28-29)

Fourth, this kind of propaganda denies the sovereignty of God.  Death and Life are in his hands.  How that works with issues like cursing God I cannot tell.  But I do know the answer to this question:  When has a person cursed God to the point of no return?  Really, we all have!  Our deepest sin is not a matter of what we say or do; it’s a matter of being in rebellion against God.  Whether we live that rebellion out in cursing him, indulging our base nature, or religious self-pride, it’s still a grievous sin that brings God’s condemnation on us – all of us.  It’s only because of his grace, given to us on the cross, that any of us can have life at all.  This was exactly the point of my message yesterday.  “Once you were alienated from God and enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior.  But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation!” (Colossians 1:21-22)  Now that’s the message we need to pass on to others!

 

Postscript:  I am usually not a big fan of e-mail stories that go around.  Many of them many be true, but so many are just sensational rumor that gets embellished and passed around for years.  I believe that Christians should never pass along lies when they have the opportunity to verify their truth.  I have found three websites that  research e-mail rumors and report on their truth, and there may be others out there.  All three have search engines to help one find specific rumors.  The three I use are:  www.truthorfiction.com,   www.snopes.com,  and  www.breakthechain.org.   Make use of these great resources before you pass on more untrue rumors.

 

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2 Comments »

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  1. thank you for your web sites on checking out the truth of e-mail matters. I have heard you tell of using these but not where to find them (being the slow nerd I am of the internet!)

  2. You’re welcome! I hope many others also find the links helpful. Let’s seek truth rather than sensationalism.
    GG


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