Rethinking My Beliefs about God Apart From Traditional Christianity

Why God Will Not Destroy The Evil World (No Matter How We Define Evil)

In Church, Freedom, Good and Evil, Heaven, Life, Suffering on February 9, 2011 at 11:38 pm

In my search to understand what is good and what is evil, I found that both continued to elude me. What I once thought was good turned to evil. Such as church or even money. And what was so evil, such as sinners, became honest-to-goodness beautiful souls to me. But they could all switch places just as easily, especially depending on who you’re talking to.

Although I had heard the concept before, I was finally starting to believe that good and evil is not something outside of us, but it comes from within. Good and evil is simply my perspective on things, at least at the moment.

So, how does this affect my understanding of the Christian religion? Besides the psychological issues and the recurring nightmares, I’m realizing that injustice in the name of God is really not that big of a deal. And I’m wondering, is this what freedom from religion feels like?

This might sound a little heartless to all the people that suffer (including families of Christian suicide victims) at the hands of the religious institution; yet my entire blogsite might sound completely absurd to those who enjoy attending church every Sunday morning. And that is my point. One man’s treasure is another man’s suffering, and the reverse is true as well, depending on who we are and what we’ve experienced.

I realized that the people preaching Armageddon and doomsday as God’s punishment upon our evil world seem to actually be happy about God destroying people. I don’t understand how anyone can be happy about destruction, especially if that destruction pertains to their loved ones. They might not actually love the people who will be destroyed. Thankfully, I can believe that God does love them. But do they still have a good point? What is good to one person (evil being destroyed) is evil to another person (me.)

What if we both believe exactly what we are supposed to believe at this point in time? What if our understanding in the future changes our beliefs now? What if different people believe different things at different points in our different lives? What if we are both right and both wrong?

It really annoys me when well-intentioned Christians defend their religiosity that has damaged so many. And it annoys me even more when they tell me to just get over it. Communication (and friendship) is hardly possible between us in this case, which is part of the process for both of us, I think.

But I also think they have a really good point, which I can see when I’m ready to accept it. (And it’s a lot easier to accept it when people are not pressuring me to accept it. I think I have a better chance of discovering it when others stop correcting me. And when I do discover it, it’s certainly not going to make me like any better the people who shame me .) Applying this mercy to myself naturally causes me to apply it to others. We will all see something when we are capable of seeing it.

It seems that the only way to really be free from something or someone, is to accept both the good and evil of it. For decades I thought Christianity could do no wrong. It held absolute authority for leading me and the rest of the world to the truth. When I realized that I had been conditioned to believe so and that it might not exactly be true, I became rightfully angry; then it was almost like I had to make up for lost time. At one point all I could see was the goodness of the Christian religion. At the next point, all I could see were its evils.

And this is part of the process of letting something go – something that might have its talons wrapped around our neck. It’s how we break free from any addiction or codependency. Whether it was our doing or we were enticed into it or even forced into it, at some point we will want to demand our soul back. And that can be a serious battle. I had to defend my freedom just to fight the battle while people were telling me that I just need to do what’s right, forgive people, love people, be positive and all kinds of other blodity, blah, blah, blah. It was a foreign language to me.

 

We need time to see and accept the evil of what we thought was our great Savior and God.


But we are still slaves to something as long as we view it as purely good or purely evil.


How might this apply to God? If we view God as purely good, does this make us a slave? I think so. This idea has caused all kinds of problems. As a Christian, I thought that happiness and blessing was of God and problems and pain were from the devil. If I had issues or failures it meant that God was withholding his blessings on my life. I think this is one cause of the proverbial Sunday morning fake smile.

If God is the creator of all, then we have a creator of good and evil. If God is all, then God does not forsake us in trouble. I think this was the main point of sending Christ to the so-called sinful earth where he dined with sinners. Goodness? God is in it. Evil? God is still omnipresent. Can we see the good purpose of evil? Then maybe we can believe that a holy God loves sinful man unconditionally. If God dwells within us, and if we can dare to say that we are one with God… then maybe evil also comes from God… for the ultimate purpose and expression of good. Good and evil working together result in goodness for all. So God may be ultimately good, but evil plays a role in that goodness (for lack of better terms and understanding.)

When we are set free from something, we can accept the good fruit that came from our deception and maybe even understand its appropriate purpose in the world. For me, religion proved that striving to be somebody I am not can be a very artificial way to live life. But I also saw how religious rituals can be very meaningful to people. I imagine I’ll be writing more in the future about other reasons we can relax about the religious evils in the world.

Once we accept the good and evil of something, we can be set free from that thing. And there is no rush in the process. If the world was created to grow, then we can rest assured that we are naturally growing as well. We are free to simply be. To the extent that I can live this way, I can allow others to simply be, as well.

What is goodness to one person can be an evil to another person in a different situation. And we all need good as well as evil to grow. The friction between the two creates the energy to strengthen and enlighten us. So while good might be very good and evil remains evil, we can still appreciate the very different purposes of each. We can also see how good and evil are intertwined within everyone and everything.

Good will never let evil conquer all, and yet evil is necessary for good to even exist. And this is why I do not think that God will completely destroy evil out of existence one day so that we can all live in a happy utopia of perfection everywhere. That makes me think again of fake, happy smiles. It also reminds me of people who want a vacation to paradise without actually paying for it. If we try to escape evil (as if that was possible) without allowing it to work its purpose, we would miss out on the glory that results from it.

But I think that as time goes on, we will have been made so strong through the battle of good and evil that we will be able to enjoy life in so much more abundance no matter where we are or what our circumstances. Evil, although it may still exist, will no longer be a threat to us. We now understand it’s usefulness.

By accepting the fact that both evil and good exist in all, the end result seems to be a contentment and freedom beyond words. So much so that good and evil really don’t matter so much anymore. And that, my friends, seems to be the essence of experiencing our ultimate freedom from anything, no matter whether we live or die. Everything is part of growing. Through happiness and suffering, all is continually being transformed into newness of life.

I form the light, and create darkness, I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord that do all these things. ~ Isaiah 45:7

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  1. Punky, “Get over it.” I’m not so sure of your conclusions re/evil, just not sure, and that’s ok these days. But thanks for this article, it has given me another facet to consider in something I’ve been wondering about.

    • Well if nothing is purely good or purely evil, you can be sure that I’ve got some mistaken ideas in my post, Skippy. Take whatever might be helpful and blow the rest away, or log it away for another time. This is only what I think I’m discovering at this point in my journey. Not everyone will be able to relate, and I am learning to respect that. 🙂

  2. Perhaps you havn’t considered all the dynamics of evil. Perhaps there is a dynamic of evil that God constitutes as divisional. Entertain the notion that you don’t have all the answers for a moment. Sooooo pompus to conclude our own observations are conclusive without considering that there are logical angles we havn’t considered yet. Shame on all those that instruct God that He can’t have a place for soul entities that, given free will, don’t want to have anything to do with Him. How dare any of us put God in a box that proclaims that we are more loving than He because we wouldn’t entertain a place where souls could dwell for their choice of wanting to be equal or less dependant upon God.

    If a million years from today we all were confronted with the same persuasive argument that convinced 1/3 of the angels that God was rotten, what makes us so confident that we wouldn’t be convinced also that God was rotten?

  3. “By accepting the fact that both evil and good exist in all, the end result seems to be a contentment and freedom beyond words. So much so that good and evil really don’t matter so much anymore.”

    Exactly! Perhaps good and evil don’t matter so much anymore to the point that they need not even exist. ALL THINGS have become new. No more good. No more evil. We are new creatures – I AM that I AM. How to explain “what” that new creature is I haven’t a clue lol! I AM FREE!

    • Louise, that makes a lot of sense and answers a few Bible dilemmas as well. It’s nice to know a fellow sojourner. 🙂

  4. To me, this post perfectly describes what it’s like to live from the Tree of Life, rather the the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. It’s all Life to me, the good and the evil, because God is in all of it, and I learn so much from both sides. I just can’t label things any more as good or evil. It’s all Life and I love it all.

    • Evil is from an ancient word meaning “to break in pieces”, or perhaps to divide. In contrast, Good must be about bringing together, the kind of togetherness only love could provide.

      So it’s all the same, whether the pieces of the puzzle are linked into a beautiful picture, or scattered all over the floor.

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