Four Worlds and Love

Good and evil.  Love and suffering.  Why not a world with only good and only love and no chance of evil or suffering?  The Bible does offer the former, but it is a result from those who have chosen the path laid out by God for dealing with the latter.  But the Bible also addresses the current situation of the world.

Ravi Zacharias discusses four possible worlds that scholars have theorized concerning regarding good and evil:

There are only four possible worlds that scholars have talked about.  The first is that there be no created versus this world.  Would it not have been better for God to have created no world than to have created this one where good and evil are possibilities?  The second is to have created a world where only good would have been chosen, a kind of robotic world.  The third option would have been a world where there was no such thing as good or evil, an amoral world.  The fourth is this world that we live in, where good and evil exist along with the possibility of choosing either.

As soon as we introduce the question of what would have been better we again invoke an absolute point of reference, and that we can only introduce if God exists.  In the final analysis, of the four worlds described ours is the only one where love was genuinely possible… We must recognize that love is the supreme ethic that we know of, and where love is possible, freedom and the possibility of suffering accompany it.  In His character, God alone is the absolute expression of love that is never separated from holiness.  God cannot be at the same time holy and unloving or loving and unholy. In turning our back upon Him, we lose the source of defining love, live with the pain of unholiness, and suffering remains an enigma – leaving our blemished characters in search of a moral law and our finite minds crying out for an answer.  Which of us does not hurt when we see a pure love abused or despised?  Our hearts reveal a hunger for a love that is pure, and in this world we have lost both definitions because we have denied their source.

When we come to Jesus Christ at the cross, where love, holiness, and suffering combine, we find both the answer to why we suffer and the strength to live in this mortal frame for him… As we come to the cross and from there live our lives for Him, we make the extraordinary discovery that the cross and the resurrection go together.  Where love is possible, there pain is also possible.  Where the resurrection is promised, there is also the promise of tears wiped away.  Heaven is the confirmation of our choice, to love Him and to be with Him.  That is the hope of everyone who is a follower of Jesus Christ, whom to know is life eternal.  Hell is the confirmation of spurning God’s answer and hope and of living with the entailments of our ability to procreate but also to destroy without recovery (Cries of the Heart, pp. 216-217).


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