This is a good world but it's broken
Published 6:22 am Monday, February 2, 2004
A dear friend, who happened to be a Language Arts teacher at an exclusive all-girls academy in Palm Beach often testified, "Ain't God good!" Now Don knew better grammar but he humbly remarked that he knew no better theology. Do you agree? If God is good, please help me to understand why this world He has made is not good. Or is there another explanation?
The world is good and God did make it. Our world is beautiful because God made it. Creation is radiant -- designed to tell of the character of God Himself. A flower in the meadows, a shell on the sea shore, a star in the night, all in symmetry and splendor proclaim the beauty of our Father's world. The vastness of galaxies and complexity of creation (especially the human body) reveal God's glory and goodness. By design and in wisdom God has provided sufficiently; the earth is capable of producing enough food and providing adequate shelter for all the people of this planet. It is our flawed distribution system and our mismanagement of the earth's resources which is broken. It is the heart of man which broke the world. Sin, pride and unbelief, which resulted in behaviors of disobedience and rebellion, broke the world.
The world is good because God made it but the world is broken because we broke it. Like a child breaks a toy to see how it works and then is frustrated with the inability to put the toy back together again -- so we are broken in a world of brokenness. We experience brokenness and see its ugliness every day. The drug lord, peddling in addiction to provide for themselves profits of unbelievable wealth at so great a cost to the suffering broken lives, traffics in brokenness. The law enforcement officers who look the other way in apathy in the face of injustice and cruelty contribute to brokenness. The agents of the judicial system who neglect to be responsible in carrying out the mandates of justice allow the brokenness to be perpetuated. The greed-motivated businesses that create images to identify material things as worthy of our love, to the neglect of loving God and neighbor as self, solicit brokenness. The jealous neighbor who wears a smirk of a smile and rejoices when things go wrong for his neighbor fosters brokenness. The proud politician who campaigns as if he or she has all the answers to fix all our problems and degrades those who are presently working to make life better, votes to live in a broken world too.
Into this good world of brokenness God sent His Son to heal our brokenness. It is in His good life given up on a cross that we see clearly our own brokenness and there we see His goodness that alone can provide our healing. "Ain't God good!" Good grammar is not the ultimate judge of character. This is a good world but it is broken.
Rev. Michael King
is Pastor of North Brewton Baptist Church