So, evil exists (the few people who really deny its existence are rare, and if I may be so bold...delusional.) And as per my last post none of us are immune from doing evil. Since evil is also the cause of death, and since it brought about the curse of disasters and suffering, we are all to blame when things go horribly awry. It is our sin, collectively and throughout history, that has brought nature to a state far below its original.
This is, again, not to say that particular acts of evil or suffering are directly attributable to any one person's sin, or the malfeasance of a region. God has many purposes at work, and as His ways are beyond our comprehension we should be careful not to get too far in front in assigning blame for a hurricane on the debauchery of a city, or for a tsunami on the sin of many nations whose faith is different from ours. God uses suffering for displaying His glory, for disciplining and correcting, for building character, for teaching us new things and helping us grow.
It is hard to see the silver linings in the rapidly whirling clouds of a tornado, but God has put them there. We may never see them this side of death, but that is where faith comes into play. I don't have the answer to the question of "why" evil exists (other than we bring it on through sin.) But I do know that there is One sovereign and omnipotent, who can redeem even the worst situation.
I also use faith to see mercy in tragedy. Why, we ask, would a loving God do or allow this? What we fail to ask in our self-centeredness is how a just and righteous God can be so merciful that we haven't suffered even more. It is by God's grace that Katrina killed as few as it did, and that the damage was as limited. Not an easy thing to say about an evil that destroyed many cities and towns, and ended many lives. But it is true; were we to all get the due penalty for our sin we wouldn't be here at all. God's grace and mercy limit the damage we've actually earned.
I'll wrap up this series with some links to what other bloggers and commentators are saying about evil. That will be tomorrow. Then on to who knows what?