“‘Because he can” is not an appropriate tag for God–my opinion. The saying used to make me cringe because I had only heard it used in connection with evil. The response of people who did unspeakable things, and when asked, “How could you?” simply smirked and said “Because we can.”
I then realized that because we were made to choose, made to develop based on the choices we make, that “because we can” can also be a reason to choose good over evil. We can exercise the gift of free will in any circumstance, no matter how bad. Stories coming out of concentration camps prove it.
That doesn’t make it easy, however, or common. At least not for earthlings, who even when they love good, tend to force everyone else to “love” it too.
And why not make others be good or do good?
The best reason I can think of is that even the one who is all-powerful doesn’t force us to love goodness, right-doing, and peace. Oh I know, many people who say they know God, don’t represent him that way.
I meet so many people who believe that “Might makes Right,” because you are the strongest, you can do what you want. And they believe that the Bible supports their position.
I don’t see that. I know there are portions that appear to support such doctrine, but when you look beneath the surface, take the context into consideration, and take the book as a whole, you see a different picture.
You see, a God who tolerates so much, except in situations when the risk is too great i.e., the flood, Israel in the wilderness, aggression against his people. His actions, seen through our eyes, appear to be severe. But he almost lost contact with us at times. Most of what has happened in the history of this planet was not God’s idea.
We think, How could this be a God of love? And this leads me to perspective.
Perhaps we think too small. Perhaps this whole existence isn’t just for us. Perhaps Jesus mission wasn’t only for us. Maybe there is something much bigger going on here–something of terrible importance and vast far-reaching effects. What if we have become the textbook for the universe.
The developmental model. Started out good, but with the ability to go bad. Why would God do that? Because he needed to demonstrate what he had been saying to questioners turned dissidents for eons. So he gave us everything good, every advantage, even limited evil to 1% compared to the 99% that was good. “You can only approach them if they approach you.”
Eve was deceived and chose to know evil, and we became the war zone. We didn’t have to end up this way, and God has initiated a rescue for those who want what he has to offer, but now we are the demonstration–Evil 101–the class that will stop evil forever, because it will answer every question about evil, freedom, love and God.
So I suppose we can’t understand everything from here, at least not now.
But a few things we can get from putting all the information together. That will have to wait for the next post. But we do know for sure that God is not a bully.
Because if he was, he would have let go of the dissidents. Completely separating from them, he would have let them have the consequences of separation from him (like earthlings have–death). Then he would have gone on his merry way creating a new order to take their place–because he can. But because he wanted to eradicate fear and establish love, he suffers.
What God, but a very wise, loving, extremely disciplined, all-knowing, strong, and trustworthy God, would choose a path of intense suffering for himself and many of his children because freedom and love were so important that it was worth the pain?