Yesterday, twenty kindergarten children were mercilessly murdered by an evil young man. Some have shouted, “Where is God?” in the face of this utterly unspeakable tragedy. A friend of mine posted a quick reply to the cynical inquisition: “Where is God? He was kicked out of schools in America years ago.” There is truth to that remark.
I heard a news panel discussing the situation this morning, and one of the newscasters observed that we refuse to allow mention of God in the schools throughout the year, and, yet, we want to know where He is when tragedy strikes. This particular news commentator then said that prayer returned to the Sandy Hook school yesterday, and he recounted a story of a teacher huddling her children into a closet and praying over them. In crisis, we return to foundational principles of faith to offer some sense to the senseless.
But what good is faith in this situation? Where is God? Actually, God has spoken to this situation. In these last days, God has spoken to us in His Son (Hebrews 1:2). God, in love, sent His Son, so that whoever believes in him would never perish but would have eternal life. Jesus did not come to play religious games. He did not come to teach meditation techniques. He did not come to establish a religious cult. He did not come as a football for American politicians to kick around. He came to deal with the serious curse of death which has reigned since the time of Adam and Eve, our original human parents.
Adam’s son Cain committed the first human murder, perhaps wiping out ¼ of the human population at that time. Abel was innocently worshiping God when his brother Cain fell upon him and mercilessly slaughtered him. Murder has had its allies ever since. Jesus did not come to earth to rid the planet of murder—at least not yet. There will be killings until Christ returns.
However, though Jesus did not come to answer murder, he did come to answer death. Death is a curse over all humankind. In love, God has offered human beings an answer for the curse of death. Christ paid the death penalty for all who believe. He also has been raised from the dead, demonstrating that death is not final; it need not be the final word. There is another word: Life! Jesus Christ even called himself the resurrection and the life. He said He is the truth, the life, and the way. Christ did not say this because he was on some exclusive power trip. He said it because it is true. There is only one answer for death: the resurrection life of Jesus Christ.
Where was God yesterday? The same place He remains yesterday, today, and forever—speaking to us in His Son, saying death is a curse that you are all under. Young and old alike will die. Some, sadly, will kill. But Christ gives life. Christ is the Resurrection and the Life.
When Martha’s brother unexpectedly died, she was hurt and confused. She turned to Jesus for answers, and this is what He said:
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, 26and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?”