Rabbi Schneider - Does God Create Evil?
The truth beloved, that I'm revealing is truth that is not often taught and it's really fundamental, really cutting edge truth that can help you get into a path of power in your relationship with your Creator. After all, if we want to know who we are and why we're here we should go back to the owner's manual and the owner's manual beloved, is the book of Genesis in which the Lord tells us how He made us and why He made us. Again, please watch every episode in this series. Now let's do just a little bit of review today out of respect for those that have been tuning in for every episode. I'm going to keep my review quick, but I do want to just touch on a few key points.
Let's go to the first verse, Genesis 1 verse 1. "In the beginning," what beginning? It's not the beginning of God, because He is unlimited. He's without beginning. He's without end. He's beyond fully ever knowing. He's that big. He's that grand. He's that majestic. He's always more. He's beyond naming. When Moses asked Him His name He said, "I am that I am and I will be who I will be". God is so great and this is why we're in awe of Him. We can't ever fully describe God. He's that big beloved. He's limitless. And so when we read, "In the beginning," this is not the beginning of God's history. He has no beginning. This is the beginning of our history. "In the beginning Elohim, God created the heavens and the earth".
The fact the word here is Elohim, which is God plural, speaks of His multi dimensional nature; Father, Son, Holy Spirit, within Him there's both the male and female attributes. He's one God and yet within Him there's a multi dimensional aspect. You can't expect to understand this, God is spirit, even as you can't understand how He has always been and didn't come from anywhere. Let's continue on. "In the beginning Elohim created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void". When it says here in verse 2, "The earth was formless and void," He's not speaking here about what you would see from outer space.
When you look from down from outer space unto the earth you see a globe, right? You see a round sphere, with blue for the water and brown or green from the dry land. But in verse number 2 when it says, "The earth was formless and void," you couldn't see a globe yet. You couldn't see dry land separated from the waters. This is just a primordial state. The earth was formless. It didn't have a form yet. It didn't have a shape yet. It hadn't been created yet. The scripture says, "It was formless and void". It was empty and like a wasteland. "And darkness was over the surface of the deep". Now let's go back once again, a verse earlier. Hear the Word of God. "In the beginning God created". So we're talking about the creation story. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void". Now get it, "And darkness was over the surface of the deep and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters".
Beloved, listen to something that's important to understand. God takes responsibility for creating even the darkness. We're listening to the creation story. As God reveals the creation story we find that He created even the darkness. Listen what the Lord said in the book of Isaiah chapter 45 verses number 5 through 7. Beginning with verse number 5, "He said, 'I am the Lord'". And when we see the word Lord there, once again, that's the Hebrew name of God composed of the four Hebrew letters Yod Hei Vav Hei and it means the Eternal One. "I am that I am. I will be whom I will be". God alone is the Creator. Everything else that exists beloved one, things both visible and invisible, everything else has been created by Him. "I am the Lord and there is no other, besides me there is no God". Then the Lord said this, "There is no one besides me. There is no other," verse 7, "the one forming light and creating darkness".
Look again, God takes responsibility for the darkness. He said, "The one forming light and creating darkness, causing well being and creating calamity". The King James actually translates that verse, that word calamity for evil. Listen again, "I am the Lord, there is no other. The one forming light and creating darkness, causing well being and creating calamity. I am the Lord who does all these things". You see one of the benefits of studying the Hebrew Bible, is we get such a broader picture of God's nature, personality and the ways that He operates. And church, when we study the Hebrew Bible, what we find is that God takes responsibility for bringing hard times into people's life, as well as from bringing times of refreshing and blessing.
Let me give you some examples of this. What about when Israel sinned and God caused thousands of the Israelites to be bitten by serpents in the wilderness, where they died there? I could go on and on. What about when Korah's company was rebelling against Moses and the Lord caused an earthquake to open up and the earth swallowed them into the earth. You see today if something bad happens, no one wants to say that God could be responsible for that, but you and I have to understand that God uses even the darkness to accomplish His own purposes. God takes responsibility church, for governing the universe. I know that there's many questions that you would ask, but I want to delve a little bit deeper right now before we try to address some of your concerns and questions, by giving you more scriptural ammunition and understanding for this truth that I'm proclaiming.
Think about for example the Apostle Paul. I'm going now to the book of 2 Corinthians and I'm looking at the 12th chapter, verses number 7 through 10. I want you to hear the Word of God and I want you to listen very carefully, because when we read this remarkable section of scripture, you're gonna see how God sent a messenger of Satan himself to torment Paul and God did it for a purpose and the purpose that God had was a good purpose and it brought about fruit and life. In other words, God used evil to accomplish a higher good. Hear the Word of God. Once again, book of Corinthians, 2 Corinthians 12 verse 7-10. Paul is speaking. He says this, "Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations". Paul is saying here, because of all the revelation that he had received. Continuing on, "For this reason to keep me from exalting myself there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me to keep me from exalting myself".
So I want to stop for a second. We'll continue on. I want to just take a pause to put it in perspective. Paul is saying that this messenger of Satan was sent to him, because of the abundance of revelation that he received to keep him from exalting himself. In other words, God sent this messenger of Satan into Paul's life to torment him in order that Paul would stay humble and would stay dependent, because God knew that if He didn't do this, if He didn't send this thorn in the flesh, that Paul actually caused a messenger of Satan into his life, Paul would have had a tendency because of the natural humanness of the flesh, to begin to become prideful.
Once again, "because of the surpassing greatness of the revelation, for this reason to keep me from exalting myself there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me to keep me from exalting myself. Concerning this, I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me". In other words Paul is saying, "Father, God, take this away. Take this torment away. Take this messenger of Satan out of my life". And he continues on, verse 9. "And He has said to me," in other words God said back to him, "Paul My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness". In other words, God was saying to Paul, "Paul listen, I'm not gonna take it away. My grace is gonna get you through this and Paul I want to tell you a mystery. As this messenger of Satan is hurting you and you become more and more dependent on Me, as this messenger of Satan weakens you and in your weakness you have to depend more on Me," God says, "Paul I'm gonna use that to empower you to bring empowerment to your life by My spirit".
Listen again, "And He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness'. Most gladly therefore," Paul continues, "I will rather boast about my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties for Christ's sake. For when I am weak then I am strong". So beloved one, you can see here that God is using darkness, He's using persecution, He's using distress, He's using weakenesses, He's using this messenger of Satan to make Paul weak, so that Paul would become more dependent upon the Lord. And in Paul's dependency out of his weakness the power of God is perfected in his life.
Consider this, the first thing that the Father did in Jesus' life after Jesus was baptized in the Jordan River, right after the Spirit of the Lord descended on Jesus as He came out of the Jordan River. And the voice spoke from heaven saying, "You are my beloved Son and in You I am well pleased". The very next thing we read about beloved children of God, in the Biblical narrative, is that the Spirit of God, not the devil, but listen, but the Spirit of God led Jesus into the wilderness where Jesus was tempted by the devil. Says, "He fasted and prayed for 40 days and 40 nights". Jesus, listen now, He's doing battle against the powers of darkness. And the scripture says that after that 40 days Yeshua came out of the wilderness, listen now, "In the power of the Spirit," because as He did battle against the forces of darkness, depending on the Father, He was strengthened.
In other words listen, the Father knows that in order not just for Jesus to come out of the wilderness fully empowered, but for all His sons and daughters to become fully matured and empowered, in order for that process of maturity and empowerment to take place, listen, we need an adversary. Father created the darkness, because He knew in order for His sons and daughters to fully develop they needed an adversary. They needed to overcome resistance. Seven times in the first several chapters of Revelation, in chapters 2 and 3, Jesus said, "He that overcomes will inherit these things". God knew that in order for us to fully mature we needed resistance. Just as athletes have to train themselves using resistance, whether it's lifting weights, whether it's running, whether it's through exercise, they all involve resistance against the muscles, because the resistance makes the muscles strong.
God created the darkness beloved ones, because He has a purpose for it and He causes all things to work together for good to those that love Him and are called according to His purpose. And His purpose is to conform us to the image of His Son. I want you to understand, you don't have to make excuses for God when bad things happen. He is Adon Olam, He is master of the world. He runs the universe. He's got a plan that's so much bigger than our puny minds can conceive and He's using it all for good and He's accomplishing it all for His purpose.
Listen, there was a woman that we read about in the Gospels, those of you that have read the scriptures. She was a prostitute in her former life. She came to Jesus, because she had been delivered. She fell in love with Him. She was delivered from her bondage and her sin and she took a bottle of perfume that was worth a whole year's worth of wages during that time period in history. And when she poured that bottle of perfume on his feet weeping, the people around were aghast and they said, "What is she doing? What a waste of money. That bottle of perfume was worth a whole year's worth of wages and she just poured it all out on His feet". And Jesus turned to those that had no understanding of what was going on and He said, "You don't understand. He that's been forgiven much loves much. He that's been forgiven little loves little".
You see the point beloved one, is that because that woman had come out of a life of such darkness, of such bondage, her love for Jesus was greater than those that had been delivered from lives where they were fairly moral before they got saved. In other words, God used the darkness that she had once experienced to actually birth in her and create from her a greater love than from those that simply were you know mediocre in their former lives in terms of their morality. God uses even the darkness to create something beautiful and something good. Out of our ashes beloved ones He produces joy.
So I want you to know as we begin to close today's episode, you can thank Hashem. You can thank Father God for everything that happens in your life and the reason why church is He uses everything for the good, even the darkness He uses for good. I want you to practice faith. I want you to recognize Father God runs the world, nothing takes Him by surprise. Jesus said, "Not even a sparrow falls to the ground apart from Him". I know there are some things we don't understand, but don't let what you don't understand keep you from believing what God has plainly revealed. He loves you and you can trust Him. I love you too. God bless you and shalom.