Why Do Good Things Happen To Bad People But Bad Things Happen To Good People? (Part 2)
“And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”
This subject has been one that many Christians and non-Christians alike tend to ask religious & spiritual authorities. This is a valid question and one that, to those who ask, demands an answer. According to the bible, we will see five things that explain why good things happen to bad people and bed things happen to good people.
Disclaimer: The following devotional is not intended to serve as an all inclusive explanation for life events. It is intended to explain life events in a biblical perspective and not exhume past memories and hurts. Our intention is to help and not hurt.
According to our text, we see that God had entrusted Adam with great responsibility. With this responsibility, Adam had free reign to make choices as he saw fit, with the things that God had gave him but Adam made a mistake and there were consequences. According to the bible, God told Adam that if he disobeyed that he would surely or most certainly die. “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” So we see that the consequence of Adam’s decision was spiritual death for humanity as stated in Romans 5:12 “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” This scripture, along with many others, proves that our behavior, action and decisions can impact others.
The definition of a consequence is:
As a result of bad decisions we, or others, endure commensurate consequences. During times where you make split second decisions or any decision or that matter, do you carefully consider the consequences? In an earlier devotional series from our ministry I cited this principle from Reformers Unanimous:
“We lose our freedom to choose when we give in to temptation. Our consequences are inevitable and incalculable and up to God.”
Yesterday we spoke about some common factors for people making decisions which include:
- Impulse – “I like what I see so I will choose this”
- Values – “I will decide on this because I have been taught to think this way”
- Morals – “I will make a decision based on whether it is right or wrong”
- Finances – “I will choose this because it will not cost me as much”
- Social Influence – “If I choose this then what will people say or think”
- Logic – “This decision makes the best sense and will produce the best result”
- Fear – “I’m afraid to make a decision because what if….”
- Ignorance – “What’s the use of choosing because it doesn’t matter anyways.”
We also spoke about why they make these decisions as well:
- Impulses – They have very little care for cause & effect. Uncaring Spirit.
- Values – They care a great deal about why & what they choose. Understanding Spirit
- Morals – They care about the effect that it will have on others & themselves. Unified Spirit
- Finances – They see the price tag before they know the cost of the choice. Unprofitable Spirit
- Social Influence – They see others as judge and jury of their lives. Unusual Spirit
- Logic – They must make decisions based on a scientific & realistic approach. Unbelieving Spirit
- Fear – They make decisions by what is least scary. Upset Spirit
- Ignorance – Refuse to decide because of information or indecision. Unwilling Spirit
Here are some consequences of making decisions from each of the aforementioned logic:
- Impulses – People will respond in one of two ways: 1. They will respect your decisiveness and depend upon you in crunch times when they cannot make a decision. This will strain and stress you. 2. They will call you uncaring and disconnected because you are able to separate emotions from decision making.
- Values – People will respect your judgement and hold you as one that cannot be corrupted. They may ostracize you because you don’t fit into their world. You are too straight for them. If you do make a mistake, your mistake is amplified one hundred fold because people see you as perfection that they cannot achieve yet. You are their God!
- Morals – People will see you as the type of person that ONLY sees black and white. They will seek you out for justice in their favor but stay away from you when they have transgressed because they know that you will be fair and unmerciful. When this person makes a mistake, they loose friends and no one will trust them for a long time.
- Finances – People will see you as a type of scrooge McDuck! In their eyes you only care about the bottom line and nothing else. You could be seen as a person that is more passionate about what you save & buy. People could see you as material & uncaring about the feelings of others.
- Social Influence – People will look at this type of person as two faced. Why? Because this type of person often adapts their approach to interact with different types of personalities. Some friends may feel left out when this person chats with various personalities which they may or may not get along with personally.
- Logic – Most people see this type of person as a Walter O’Brien. All smarts and can fix any issue but terribly hurts others in so doing. This person is viewed by others as a careless carpenter. Why? They only care about fixing the issue. When that is done, they leave the area with a huge mess larger than the one they were called to fix.
- Fear – People will see this person as a coward and unable to make decisions without second guessing each segment. They will suffer from paralysis by analysis; in other words, they think too much about what could go wrong that they fear taking action. People will totally avoid these types of people because they see them as a dark cloud.
- Ignorance – People will do one of two things when it comes to this personality. 1. They will flock to them because for some reason they tend to be more popular and attract people. 2. They will repel people away like one with bad body odor. Why? They will have controversial ideas. They usually have bad attitudes that aren’t congruently appealing to peace. Their bad attitude rub people the wrong way!
I find that most people will become distracted because of the consequences of their choices. Here’s why:
I know a story of a man that went to church and sought to do the right things in life. He actually lived a wholesome life or a while and even raised a family in church. One day he saw a lady being attacked by a much stronger man in a supermarket. The man, whom we will call Bill, rushed in to help the damsel, named Kate. Kate’s attacker was her estranged husband that had recently been served a restraining order for physical violence, of which he had obviously violated. Bill stepped in to help as a large group of bystanders watched this encounter and did nothing. As Bill approached the two struggling lovers, he was immediately shot and killed by Kate’s former lover named Joe. As Bill laid there dying on the ground from his gunshot wound, the crowd began to watch more intently and not help. When the police arrived, Joe had already killed Bill and seriously wounded Kate before turning the gun on himself and taking his own life.
I bet you are wondering “What does this story have to do with consequences?” Let me break it down for you.
With any consequence, there is usually a victim and a violator. In this story, we see that the victim is Bill. Why? Because he had no part in this except to help out a person in trouble. Kate made a decision to engage Joe in an argument instead of fleeing or attempting to leave the area. The consequence of Kate’s decision was a serious confrontation and injury. The consequence of Joe’s choice to assault and confront Kate was a murder suicide. The consequence of Bill seeking to help a stranger in need was a fatal injury at the hand of an insane person with a gun. Is this fair? No but what is the alternative? You see the crowd that stood by and watch two people die and one person get seriously injured and did nothing. I ask the question, which one could you live with? Would you be able to live with the knowledge that your father or husband died trying to help someone in need or that they were a coward and watched an evil man seriously injure someone and kill another? The bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 5:14 “For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead:”. Should I change my kindness to others because of fear, logic or social influence? If I decide to do nothing to help my fellow man in my own power, when I have the means to do so, what does that make me? What does it make me if I do my best to help others? Because we see what could go wrong, we decide how things best benefit us personally. Most people will make decisions and do things that benefit only themselves instead of helping others.
If you were about to take a parking spot in a supermarket that was close to the front of the store and at the last minute saw an old lady with a handicapped placard in her car and there were no handicapped spots left, what would you do? Would you have compassion on her and drive by to allow her to take it or would you take the spot and think nothing else of the matter? Consider each decision carefully. What if you allowed her to take it and you were rear ended by an impatient driver that damaged your car and you had to walk from the back of the parking lot to the front in order to grab security. What if you took the space and the older lady got hit. She then attempted to walk the long distance, that was an inconvenience for you, but gave her a massive heart attack. The consequences of your decisions affects others and can be the reason why innocent people suffer. In tomorrow’s devotional, we will cover more about what happens to people like Joe that hurt innocent people without remorse. Join us again as we address real life issues with biblical answers on Worship With Willie.