Dr. Kerry precipitated a great internal debate in me, as well as others, in class recently. One student commented about how he wished more professors would talk about how God’s hand was involved in history to bring certain things to pass. Usually we talk about God’s hand in the founding of our country. But was God’s hand in the French Revolution, where thousands of people were executed systematically? That’s where all of the democratic ideals of our country come from. Was it God who led the framers of the constitution to say that 3/5 of a black counted as a person during the 18th and 19th centuries? If god promised the Jews Israel, did He instigate World War I and II to bring the Jewish question to a head so the country could be formed by 1948?
That has always frustrated me about those who say God is over everything. Does god blatantly kill people to bring other things to pass? Even the Book of Mormon says states that yes, that is possible, with the Alma and Amulek watching people burn so condemnation can be brought upon the perpetrator’s heads. That, to me, is a pretty weak doctrine, and doesn’t say much for a merciful god.
Many people look more at the microcosm to consider how God deals with them. Did I get the job? Way to go, God. Did I get the wife? Thanks a million, God. Thanks for bringing that to pass.
I think we all need to carry out the logic of our thinking a little bit. Either god meddles in everything, and therefore causes both good and bad, or he doesn’t meddle at all, and everything happens in its due course independent of God. Otherwise, we have just described Zeus, who plays with people like they were chess pieces.
I’ve found it funny at times to see how I, and others, will swing as a pendulum from the side that believes, “Ask and ye shall receive” to the other side that says, “most everything is up to us.” If God’s hand is in everything, then let’s thank him for the miracles as well as the genocides. If it’s not, then why not take a little pride in our own handiwork instead of giving glory to someone else.
Let us reason one with another and discuss this more.