Why Do Bad Things Happen?
by John E. Miller, Dr. Min.
Presented by Saint Luke Evangelical School Of Biblical Studies

As one book is entitled, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” A few years ago I heard about a tragic car accident that happened to a family of Christians on their way home from Church. There were four people in the car, father, mother, and two small children. The children were killed instantly. A Christian man was walking home from his place of employment, when suddenly a car coming from behind swerved over to the side of the road that he was on. He too was killed instantly. Who can ever forget the terrible events that occurred on September 11, 2001? Over Two Thousand and Twenty Eight people died in The World Trade Center and Hundreds died in The Pentagon Building.

The fact is, bad things happen to good people as well as bad people. In the Bible, Luke 13:1-8, Jesus gives two examples of bad things that happen and goes to explain why they happen to people. “Now there were some present at that time who told Jesus about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worst sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? I tell you no! But unless you repent, you too will perish.”

Evidently, some worshippers from Galilee were condemned by Rome, perhaps because they were seditious zealots and were sought out and killed in the temple by Roman authorities while in process of offering a sacrifice. Then in verses 4 and 5, Jesus says, “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 perish.” This tower was probably one of the towers guarding the aqueduct perhaps collapsing while it was under construction, more than likely the tower was located at the south end of the lower city of Jerusalem, where there was a well known pool (John3:7-11).

Jesus here, did not deny the connection between catastrophe and human evil, for all such afflictions ultimately stem from the curse of humanity’s fallen-ness. (Gen. 3:17-19). Furthermore, specific calamities may indeed be the fruit of certain iniquities (Proverbs 24:16). Jesus responded by saying that such a calamity was not God’s way to single out especially evil group for death, but as a means of warning to all sinners. Calamitous judgment was eventually coming to all if they did not repent. The fact is, thousands of people die on America’s highways, in home accidents, in related accidents, from armed robbers, and a multitude of other ways, that more than likely would take up more space to write about than this article. None of which happened for any other reason than time and chance, “I have seen something else under the sun. The race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong, nor does food come to the wise or wealth to the brilliant or favor to the learned; but time and chance happen to all.” (Ecc.9:11).

The main point that Jesus makes is that one should be ready to have his life come to an end. That one should not expect that he or she will be forewarned about their death, that it might come within the very next instant. Jesus is telling us in Luke 13:1-8, be sure that you are ready for your appointed time to die, be sure that you repent of your sins, because if you do not, you will “likewise perish.” Notice, Jesus did not say, maybe you will perish. There are some that teach that if a person dies with out repenting they will be given the opportunity to do so after they die, Luke 13:1-8 leaves no question of what happens to all that die without repenting, they will perish.

The Bible tells us in 2 Corinthians 6:2, “For he (God) says, “In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you now in the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.” It’s important for us to realize that God gives us this life to live and gives us this life and a time in it to receive salvation. God says that if a man says that God has not revealed himself, it is because of this mans wickedness. God says that He made Himself known by His creation of the world. God says that through the creation “His eternal power and divine nature have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are from what has been made, so that men are without excuse” (Rom. 1:18-20).

So, we can see that even though God does not cause terrible tragedies such as what happened to the World Trade Center, He never the less allows them to happen. These events should stir all of us to action. We should all fall upon our knees in repentance before the living God, asking Him to forgive us.

This is fact is what does occur in some peoples lives. When one is confronted with the finality of death, it causes some to be shaken into repentance. Some, however will not repent, they will refuse to regard the plain warnings of impending death that all men face... The Lord ways to your right now, “I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you will all perish.” Turn to the Lord Jesus Christ my friend. John 3:16-18 tell us, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemn, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only son.”

In the end we must ask ourselves, where do we stand? Is it without excuse before God to face the final judgment and to be eternally separated from the living God, having no hope whatever. To be separated from anything that is good. To be one that is condemned, and who will perish. Heed the warning my friend receive Christ as your Savior today. Confess your sins ask God to forgive you and he will. (Rom. 10:8-13)

Scripture references from N.I.V.

Other references - John Mac Arthur “The Study Bible”

copyright 2003 by John E. Miller, Dr. Min.
Used by permission.