Throughout time, people have always tried to understand why evil things happen to good people. The teaching that comes from seminaries claiming that, "God is in Control," has been a pitiful, human attempt to answer this question by blaming all evil upon a loving Heavenly Father, which is supposed to ‘some-how,’ make you feel better after a tragedy has occurred. "God is not in Control," as we shall see, thereby placing evil and wickedness on the responsible parties. When I say, "God is not in Control," it is not to say that Yahweh is not the Creator who is Good, Loving and Powerful but rather Yahweh’s creation, Man, who was created in the image of Elohim, has been given great responsibilities, authorities and powers. With mankind came sin and all of its consequences, which has been carried down through the generations. I believe the teaching that, ‘God is in Control,’ does not bring peace to a troubled soul as the Church hopes but rather anger and resentment against Yahweh. If a child dies a premature death and the Church says, ‘God is in Control,’ then one could say, "with a friend like God who needs an enemy." If a man had committed such evils that the Christian Church has attributed to their loving Creator, Yahweh, he would have righteously been put to death many times over according to the Law of Yahweh. If, ‘God is in Control,’ then he is an accessory to every crime that has ever been committed. The man-made doctrine that, ‘God is in Control,’ is blaspheme!
I will give you an example of how horrifying this teaching is, which by the way, comes through Dallas Theological Seminary:
"Before dawn on March 1, 2008, two young men broke into Terry Caffey’s home in Emory, Texas. They shot Terry and killed his wife, Penney, and then went upstairs and murdered the Caffeys’ two young sons, Bubba and Tyler. They then set fire to the house and left the family for dead. Although shot five times, Terry escaped through the bathroom window and crawled three hundred yards to a neighbor’s house. To make matters worse, Terry’s daughter Erin was implicated in the crime. Overnight Terry Caffey lost his entire family. A few months later Terry returned to his property. The remains of the house had been bulldozed, and little was left. Unable to understand why God had taken his family and allowed him to survive, Terry cried out to God, asking, "Why did you take my family? Why didn’t you take me, too? I don’t understand." As he stood there, Terry noticed a scrap of paper stuck to the trunk of a nearby tree. He went over and picked it up. The paper was part of a page from the novel, Blind Sight, written by Jim Pence (MA[BS], 2002), who received writing training at DTS before launching his freelance career. The edges of the page were scorched and it was difficult to read, but the words struck Terry as being like a direct message from God. The viewpoint character in the portion Terry found was Thomas Kent, a man who lost his wife and children in an auto accident that he survived. After the accident Kent met a woman, Justine, who along with her children needed his help. Here’s the portion that Terry found perched against the tree:
"‘I couldn’t understand why You would take my family and leave me behind to struggle along without them. And I guess I still don’t totally understand that part of it. But I do believe that You’re sovereign; You’re in control.’ In those paragraphs Terry found the strength to go on. Now he shares his testimony in churches across the country. When he speaks, he brings the page from Jim’s novel, now preserved in a frame. Because the page was only partially preserved, Terry didn’t know what book it had come from until December. One morning when he spoke at a Greenville, Texas, church, Jim Pence’s daughter was present in the congregation. She and the pastor’s wife both recognized the quotation as having come from Blind Sight. That very afternoon Terry called and told Jim his story. "Tears streamed down my face as I listened," Jim said. "Not only had the house burned, but the site had been long since cleaned up and the debris bulldozed and hauled off. What little material was left had been exposed to the weather for months. And out of a nearly four-hundred-page book, the only scrap that remained was a brief passage where a man who had lost a wife and two children came to grips with the sovereign goodness of God, submitted to His will, and decided to move forward."
Like I said, "With a friend like that [who they say was God], who needs Satan!" Does hearing this story bring you peace and comfort knowing that ‘God is in Control?’ The theologians say, "God allowed or caused this to happen so Terry, like Job, could learn a lesson." We might ask, "What lesson did Terry’s wife and children learn because like Job’s children, they are all dead?" We have been commanded to be imitators of Yahweh, as was Christ. Can you see yourself, as an imitator of Yahweh, killing a man’s innocent wife and children? Can you see Christ, who is the exact image of Yahweh, performing murderers and rapes; setting houses on fire and burning children alive as Yahweh is supposed to allow? What if Terry had a Christian neighbor who watched the whole thing on his front porch but did not attempt to help Terry in any way, because he thought he would be interfering with God’s work? Would he be walking in love by saying ‘God is in Control’? Would he be Christ like? Terry has been told that, ‘God is in Control,’ which means that ‘God’ allowed or caused this man’s family to die a horrible, tortuous death for some unknown supposedly ‘godly’ reason because as we all know, Yahweh will only do or allow godly things to occur.
Charles Stanley has written a book called, "God is in Control." He states:
"Never forget. God Is in Control. I recall that in one of the most painful and difficult seasons of my life, a time when I felt very discouraged and fearful, when moments of loneliness were most intense, I would seek out my best friend for his wisdom…Over and over again he would say to me, "Remember, Charles, God is in control." That factual statement became an anchor to my life. No matter how hard the wind began to blow or how much the adversity seemed to intensify, my soul remained anchored in that simple truth: God really is in control."
Twila Paris sang a song in 1994, which was a number one hit, called, "God is in Control." The lyrics state:
This Is no Time For Fear
This Is a Time For Faith and Determination
Don't Lose the Vision Here
Carried Away By Emotion
Hold On to All That You Hide in Your Heart
There Is One Thing That Has Always Been True
It Holds the World Together
God Is in Control
We Believe That His Children Will Not Be Forsaken
God Is in Control
We Will Choose the Remember and Never Be Shaken
There Is no Power Above Or Beside Him, We Know
God Is in Control
"There Is no Power Above Or Beside Him," sounds lovely but is a lie according to scripture! How about the scriptures that state, "For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places" (Eph. 6:12). If ‘God is in Control,’ why is he telling us to, "Put on the whole armor of Yahweh, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil" (Eph. 6:11)? Why doesn’t Yahweh just wipe out the spiritual wickedness in the heavenly places that come against us if he is in control? Why does he tell us to "above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one" (Eph. 6:16). Why doesn’t Yahweh just quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one or even better just get rid of the wicked one all together if he is in control?
The people who are mentioned above are used only for references. These are not bad people but they are deceived in this area of their lives, as was Saul before he became the Apostle Paul. By looking at the above accounts, which is just to list a few, we must conclude that the phrase, "God is in Control," is used when traegdy, fear, pain or suffering is being experienced. The phrase is not used in the Church when they want to evanglize the world. For example, if ‘God is in Control,’ then we do not need to tell heathen nations about Christ, because ‘God is in Control’ of the nations. When the Church needs to raise money, can we not say, ask God for the money because, ‘God is in Control.’ If ‘God is in Control,’ then why lock your doors at night or go to a doctor when you are ill or why have policemen or armies or seatbelts in cars or prisons or medicine or why go into a basement when a tornado comes or leave your home when a flood threatens? Do we become hypocrites when we say, ‘God is in Control,’ but go to a physican when we are ill or fasten our seatbelts when we drive our automobible? Yes we do! We all know why we lock our doors at night because down in our hearts we know that ‘God is Not in Control,’ when it comes to locking our house. You can bet that Dallas Theological Seminary, Charles Stanley and Twila Paris all lock their doors every night even though they all proclaim, ‘God is in Control!’
First and formost, the statement, ‘God is in Control,’ does not exist anywhere in the Word of Yahweh. Can it be said, "it is written, God is in Control?" Absolutely not! This man-made teaching was designed to act as a pain killer, a narcotic, an explaination of why evil has occurred because many of the Church leaders are powerless. They do not believe, nor do they act upon the scriptures. They are ignorant of the scriptures or bewitched or beclouded or maybe they are ministers of the adversary disguised as ministers of righteouness. I believe this teaching came from Yahweh’s adversary, the dragon, through religious men. This adversarial tactic is not uncommon. Christ was accused, by religious men, of casting out impure ruahs (spirits) by Beelzebul.
Control means, "The fact of controlling, or of checking and directing action; the function or power of directing and regulating; domination, command, sway." It appears that when people state that, ‘God is in Control,’ they are implying that Yahweh is restraining (synonym of controlling) man, beast and the elements. The Hebrew word that means restrain is ‘atsar.’ Atsar is used 46 times in the Old Testament. Its first occurrence is in Genesis 16:2; "So then Sarai said unto Abram, Behold, I pray thee, Yahweh, hath restrained [atsar] me, from bearing…" Other examples of atsar’s usage would be, "So would the anger of Yahweh kindle upon you, and he would shut up [atsar] the heavens, that there should be no rain, and, the ground, would not yield her increase,––so should ye perish speedily, from off the good land, which Yahweh is giving unto you" (Deu. 11:17); "And the word of Yahweh came unto Jeremiah, the second time, when he, was yet, imprisoned [atsar] in the guard–court, saying" (Jer. 33:1). Yahweh does do some restraining but he is not in control of mankind.
Terry in the above story spoke unto Yahweh, "I do believe that You’re sovereign; You’re in control," making the two words, sovereign and control, synonymous. Charles Stanley also believes the same thing. He states, "David introduces us to a fundamental attribute of God: His total sovereignty. In other words, He has complete authority and control over all human beings and every aspect of the universe…The Lord intends for us to live another way, confident of His absolute and loving control over every aspect of our existence. When we trust in the Father’s sovereignty, we understand two assurances. First, He is intimately and continuously involved in our daily life...We are not "lucky." As blessed children of a sovereign God, we are able to live confidently in the knowledge that He is in control." Terry’s and Charles’s usage of the words, ‘sovereign,’ and ‘control,’ are incorrect usages according to their meaning. Total control (restraint) or absolute sovereignty over an individual would mean 100% possession of their mind and body. Free will would not exist. The phrase, ‘God is Sovereign,’ does not exist in the Word of Yahweh. The NIV uses ‘sovereign’ in their paraphrase but no other translation agrees with it. Young’s Bible Translation, NKJV and the ASV version, to name a few, never use the word ‘sovereign,’ in their translations. The NIV Bible, which is a paraphrase, uses, ‘Sovereign,’ 303 times while the Rotherham Bible uses it 3 times.
The word ‘sovereign’ means, "One who has supremacy or rank above, or authority over, others; a superior; a ruler, governor, lord, or master." The NIV used Sovereign in select cases to represent the Hebrew word, ‘adon.’ "Adôn means Lord, master, owner. Sarah used it in reference to her husband, (Ge 18:12) Abraham used it in addressing the angelic visitors (Ge. 19:2). Abraham’s servant repeatedly called his master by it in Genesis 24. The pharaoh of Egypt was called by this title, (Ge 40:1) as well as Joseph his ‘vizier’ (Ge. 42:10). Ruth used it of Boaz before they were married. Hannah addressed Eli the priest by this term (1 Sa. 1:15). Saul’s servants called him by the title as well (1 Sa. 16:16). Likewise, officers less than the king, such as Joab, had this appellation (2 Sa. 11:9). The prophet Elijah bore the title ‘lord’ (1 Kg. 18:7)." As illustrated above, adon, (lord) is not the title of a person who has absolute control over a person. The NIV Bible, by using the word sovereign over 300 times is attempting to create a man-made doctrine.
Machines, such as a robot, can be controlled absolutely but this is not possible with people. I can control or restrain a person to some degree when I have them in prison. I can control what they have access to, such as information and food, but I can not control them to the degree that they will believe or eat what I tell them. Control in a prison can stop a person’s destructive behavior but I can not control them to produce godly or constructive behavior. Animals are controlled to an extent by Yahweh instilling in them certain tasks to perform, such as mating, migrating and protecting their young. They are not taught these instructions neither do they have much of an option not to obey them but there are always exceptions such as a bird not migrating resulting in its death. Plants are absolutely controlled because they have no options but must obey the instructions placed in them by Yahweh. We can exercise some control over animals and plants, making us their lords. Mankind, on the other hand, were made in the image of Elohim. We are in a totally different class than animals and plants.
The opposite of restraining or controlling is giving liberty or freedom. Once a person has been given liberty then you can no longer say that he is being controlled. I can control a prisoner to some degree as long as I can restrain him but when I give him liberty; I no longer have any control over him. I have given him his freedom. I can restrain him in the future but at the moment, he is free to do good or evil. Yahweh gave Adam and Eve and their children, freedom, which is why we have the ability to choose between doing good or evil. When mankind chooses to do good works, they have no restraints placed upon them by Yahweh.
When mankind practices evil, Yahweh can choose to use restraints, such as stopping the rain; empowering another nation to imprison them, such as was done with King Nebuchadnezzar; killing them such as was done with the people of Sodom; torture them such as was done in Egypt and will be done in the book of Revelations.
Yahweh only puts restraints on men when they are in disobedience as does our legal system. Yahweh only restrains the heavens from producing rain when men have been evil, such as is the case with Elijah and the two witnesses. Yahweh has also put to death men and women because of their wickedness and refusal to repent, as in the case with the people in Noah’s time, Pharaoh and Sodom. We are also instructed to do the same thing.
Death is absolute control of a person at the moment of his death. After they are dead, there is nothing else to control or restrain, because they are no longer alive (contrary to religious teachings) but rather are awaiting the resurrection of the just or unjust, where they will either freely live with Christ and Yahweh or be absolutely controlled (die) by throwing them into the lake of fire, which is the second death. (They are not alive in the lake of fire, which is why it is called the second death. There are only three beings thrown in the lake of fire alive; the beast, the false prophet and the dragon all others perish; are destroyed.)
In the beginning, Yahweh ruled and guided Israel (not the world) through the anointed prophets and judges, who were his representatives. Samuel, the anointed representative of Yahweh, was the last judge of Israel; "And it came to pass, when Samuel was old…So then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together,––and came unto Samuel, to Ramah; and said unto him––Lo! thou, art old, and, thy sons, walk not in thy ways: Now, appoint for us a king to judge us, like all the nations. But the thing was displeasing in the eyes of Samuel, when they said, Give unto us a king to judge us. So Samuel prayed unto Yahweh. And Yahweh said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people, in all that they shall say unto thee,––for, not thee, have they rejected, but, me, have they rejected, from being king over them. According to all the doings which they have done, from the day I brought them up out of Egypt, even until this day, in that they have forsaken me, and served other gods, so, are they doing even unto thee" (1 Sa. 8:1-8). Does this account portray ‘God in Control’ or does it portray the liberty Yahweh has given men? Israel, with the liberty received from Yahweh, dethroned Yahweh.
The Law of Yahweh
Paul said, "…the law, indeed, is holy, and the commandment, holy, and righteous and good" (Rm. 7:12). The law is holy, righteous and good because its maker, Yahweh, is holy, righteous and good. The existence of the Law is proof that Yahweh is not in control of mankind but rather has given them that authority and power over themselves. We and not Yahweh are supposed to enforce this code of justice. The 10 commandments say the word, ‘You,’ 12 times. Laws are only for free men; men who are not controlled. A man who is 100% controlled, which, by-the-way is impossible, has no need of laws. Animals and plants do not have laws to obey. The laws that direct their controlled behavior have been written in their DNA.
If ‘God is in Control,’ then Yahweh must obey his law or he becomes a transgressor of his own law. The Law states, "A sorceress, shalt thou not suffer to live" (Ex. 22:18). If Yahweh does not kill all sorceress, he becomes a transgressor of his own law. If ‘God is in Control,’ as proposed, then Yahweh is the owner of every man, woman and child. If a man who has committed murder in the past is not constrained by his owner, who is Yahweh, and this man commits another murder, according to the Law of Yahweh, he and his owner, who is Yahweh, are to be put to death; "And, when an ox goreth a man or a woman, and death ensueth, the ox shall, surely be stoned…But, if, the ox, was wont to gore before that time and it hath been attested to his owner, and he hath not proceeded to put him under guard, and he causeth the death of man or woman, the ox, shall be stoned, and, his owner also, shall be put to death" (Ex. 21:28-29). If Yahweh kills an innocent child, then he is supposed to die according to his Law; "He that smiteth a man, so that he die, shall, surely be put to death" (Ex. 21:12).
If Yahweh can control evil people but does not do so, then he becomes an accessory to every crime ever committed by aiding or contributing in a secondary way or assisting in or contributing to as a subordinate. An accessory is one who, without being present at the commission of an offense, becomes guilty of such offense, not as a chief actor, but as a participant, as by command, advice, instigation, or concealment; either before or after the fact or commission of the crime. As presented above, the man-made doctrine of ‘God being in Control,’ is absolute folly.
People use the false teaching that ‘God is in Control,’ or that ‘God is Sovereign,’ when adversity happens, making the adversity somehow being Yahweh’s will. Storms are called ‘Acts of God.’ This dangerous thinking comes not from the scriptures but from the thinking that if Yahweh is the Creator, then he can do whatever he wants at any time; he has no rules. So therefore, anything that happens was either caused by Yahweh or Yahweh allowed it to happen, making it his will in both cases. None of this reasoning is scriptural but rather is sheer foolishness. The foundation of the Word of Yahweh is that mankind has been given freedom of will, unrestrained to choose between good or evil, life or death. This choice began in Genesis chapter two when Yahweh gave Adam and Eve freedom to choose the tree of life or the tree of knowledge of good and evil and ends in the book of Revelations.
Does the above scriptures sound like ‘God is in Control’? Yahweh has given mankind, who was created in the image of Elohim, the earth. Sin, death and the consequence of sin came about because of the disobedience of our parents, Adam and Eve. This was not Yahweh’s will but mankind’s choice. This fatal decision has resulted in death, disease, genetic defects, harmful weather conditions, wars, dangerous animals and all other undesirable and harmful matters. None of these things would have been present in the Garden of Eden. Yahweh gave life, while death, with all of its ramifications, came through Adam.
Yahweh tied his own hands in many areas of our lives because he gave so freely and thought so highly of us, his creations that were made in his image:
When I view thy heavens, the work, of thy fingers, moon and stars, which thou hast established, What was weak man, that thou shouldst make mention of him? or the son of the earthborn, that thou shouldst set him in charge? That thou shouldst make him little less than Elohim, with glory and honour, shouldst crown him? Shouldst give him dominion over the works of thy hands,––All things, shouldst have put under his feet: Sheep and oxen, all of them,––yea even the beasts of the field; The bird of the heavens, and the fishes of the sea,–– the passer–by on the paths of the seas? O Yahweh, our Lord! How majestic is thy Name, in all the earth. (Ps. 8:3-9)
Many of our struggles are against "…principalities, against the authorities, against the world–holders, of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenlies" (Eph. 6:12). Who are these beings and why doesn’t Yahweh get rid of them? They are probably creations, like us, who were given freedom of will. Some of them chose life, while others chose death. The ministering ruahs (spirits) are probably asking Yahweh the same question about us; "Why did you create men and why don’t you just get rid of them?" The manifold wisdom of Yahweh will be made known someday but at the moment, we are told that spiritual wickedness does exist and we have been given the means to protect ourselves from it.
Yahweh has instructed us that if we are to reduce adversities in our lives, we are to obey his commandments. This enables him to protect and prosper us. He has also given us power through his gift of ruah (spirit). If we choose not to operate this power source, which Yahshua demonstrated throughout his ministry, then we have no one to blame but ourselves. It would be as if I gave a gun to my son to defend himself but he refused to use it against the enemy that killed him. Can he blame his death on me? No, he must take the responsibility of his lack of preparation and action.
Who is responsible for the evil things that happen to us? First, Adam and Eve are to be blamed for bad weather conditions, death, genetic defects etc. because of their sin. Second, evil men are to be blamed for sowing seeds of wickedness not Yahweh. Third, there are "…principalities, authorities and world–holders of darkness, the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenlies. Fourth, the works of the flesh of men are "…fornication, impurity, wantonness, idolatry, enchantment, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of wrath, factions, divisions, parties, envyings, drunkenness, revellings…" (Gal. 5:19-21). Fifth, we are to be blamed if we do not live, believe and act upon Yahweh’s Word, which is the tool to stop evil things from occurring in our lives. Yahshua told his disciples, "Verily, I say unto you––Whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be lifted up, and cast into the sea, and shall not doubt in his heart but shall believe that, what he speaketh, cometh to pass, it shall be his. For this cause, I say unto you––All things, whatsoever ye are praying for and asking, believe that ye have received, and they shall be yours" (Mk. 11:23-24). Yahweh has told us to put on the whole armor of Yahweh, one of which is the shield of faith that shall extinguish every fiery dart of the wicked one. If we do not want to believe and act upon these promises, this is our choice but we can not blame Yahweh for our failures but rather we must accept the fact that we are to blame. (For more information on ‘Why does it appear that Yahweh does Evil,’ read the article with the same title under the heading, ‘Hell and Death.’)
The image of Yahweh, in the books of Genesis through Malachi, is different from the image presented in the four Gospels. In the former books Yahweh is presented as someone who could bring sickness, even unto death, on His servants, while in the Gospels He heals and brings the dead back to life through His Son, Yahshua. What accounts for this contrasting image of Yahweh in the Old Testament and Yahweh in the New Testament as revealed through his Son? Did Yahweh’s nature change between the time of Malachi and the ministry of His Son, Yahshua? No! Then what accounts for this contrast? The only possible explanation is that in the Old Covenant, Yahweh had not revealed the adversary and his methods to Moses or to any other prophet. Therefore good and evil acts committed in the Old Covenant had to be attributed to Yahweh, the only spiritual being that the Hebrews knew; even though the adversary, his workers and other factors were actually responsible. The truth about the adversary and his methods was not revealed until Yahshua began his ministry. Yahshua, who was spiritually endowed to conquer the slanderer, then instructed the believers that evil did not come from Yahweh but rather our fight was against spiritual wickedness in the heavenlies (Eph. 6:12). Yahweh’s true nature had now been manifested in its fullness, through the life of His Son. Yahshua did not inflict disease, death or evil spirits upon his servants as Yahweh had appeared to do in the Old Covenant but rather healed, raised the dead and cast out unclean spirits.
The doctrine of ‘God is in Control,’ comes from passages of scriptures that are taken literally when they are actually idioms. An idiom "is an expression, word, or phrase that has a figurative meaning that is comprehended in regard to a common use of that expression that is separate from the literal meaning or definition of the words of which it is made." Our words, ‘sunrise,’ or ‘sunset,’ are idioms we use every day. These words are not used in a literal sense because the sun is not rising or setting but rather the earth is spinning around the sun. A literal express for sunrise would be, "the earth has rotated on its axis causing us to see the sun on the eastern horizon." Then, we might ask, how do we know whether a passage of scripture is literal or an idiom? An idiom or a figure of speech is idenified when a passage or word can not be taken literal, such as in the case when Yahshua is called the Lamb of Yahweh. Christ is not a lamb, so this expression is a figure of speech.
Yahweh idenifies himself as a lover of lovingkindness, righteousness and justice (Ps. 33:5) and a hater of "…Eyes that are lofty, a tongue that is false, and hands shedding innocent blood; A heart contriving iniquitous devices, feet hasting to run into mischief; One that uttereth lies––a false witness, and one sending forth strifes between brethren" (Pr. 6:17-19). If any scriptures referring to Yahweh apparently contradict these attributes of Yahweh, then they must not be taken literally but rather they must be idioms or figure of speeches. Scripture tells us, "The face of Yahweh, is against such as do evil [ra’ ah], to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth" (KJV Ps. 34:16). This verse states that Yahweh is against evil and it goes without saying that Yahweh does not commit what he is against, which is evil but Yahweh told Moses that he was going to consume the people because of their sin of making a molten calf. Moses tells Yahweh, "Why doth thy wrath wax hot against thy people, which thou hast brought forth out of the land of Egypt with great power, and with a mighty hand? Turn thou from the kindling of thine anger, and be grieved over the calamity to thy people…And Yahweh repented [nacham] of the evil [ra‘ah] which he thought to do unto his people (KJV Ex. 32:7-14). The phrase, ‘Yahweh repented [nacham] of the evil [ra’ah],’ is used 7 times in the scripture as seen in the KJV of the Bible. This phrase can not be taken literally in these verses because it contradicts Yahweh’s attributes of lovingkindness, justice and righteousness as presented in the Word of Yahweh, making the phrase an idiom or figure of speech. Another example of a scripture that can not be taken literal is 1 Samuel 16:14; "But the spirit of Yahweh departed from Saul, and an evil [ra’ ah] spirit from Yahweh troubled him." Evil spirits do not come from Yahweh because he is righteous and just, so this phrase must be an idiom or figure of speech and also can not be taken literally.
In the epistle of John we read, "…that, Yahweh, is, light, and in him is, no darkness at all" (1 Jn. 1:5). In the book of Acts, Darkness has been attributed to satan; "To open their eyes; that they turn from darkness unto light, and the authority of satan unto Yahweh…" (Acts 26:18) but in the book of Isaiah it appears that Yahweh creates darkness; "I, am Yahweh, and there is none else, Besides me, there is no, Elohim,––I gird thee, though thou hast not known me: That men may get to know, From the rising of the sun, And from the west, That there is none besides me,––I, am Yahweh, and there is none, else: Forming light, and creating darkness, Making prosperity, and creating misfortune [ra’ ah = evil],––I––Yahweh, who doeth all these" (Is. 45:5-10)? This verse can not be taken literally but rather is an idiom because Yahweh does not create darkness and evil, both of which contradict his very nature of lovingkindness, justice and righteousness.
A few other scriptures that are commonly used by the people, who proclaim that ‘God is in Control,’ are:
We know, further, that, unto them who love Yahweh, Yahweh causeth all things to work together for good,––unto them who, according to purpose, are such as he hath called; (Rm. 8:28)
In everything, give thanks,––for, this, is a thing willed of Yahweh, in Christ Yahshua, towards you: (1 Th. 5:18)
We know that these two verses can not be taken literal because the statements are not always true. Are we supposed to give thanks for Satan, abortions and sodomy? Do all things work for good in our lives? It would be hard to recognize what good came to the Apostle James when he was murdered by Herod. Yahweh does cause things to work together for good to those that love him but all things are not in his control. Obviously these statements are idioms. Another example of an idiom is the verse, "Whoever has been born of Yahweh does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of Yahweh" (1 Jn. 3:9). This verse if taken literal contradicts the clear verse that say, "If we say––Sin, have we none! we are deceiving, ourselves, and, the truth, is not in us" (1 Jn. 1:8). Idioms occur throughout the scriptures.
We know that Yahweh, is a "…El of compassion, and favor,––Slow to anger, and abundant in lovingkindness and faithfulness" (Ex. 34:6). He has every right to plague or kill those who practice evil but it would not be righteous or just for him to plague or kill innocent people. This is illustrated in the accounts of Noah and his family and Lot and his family. He delivered these innocent people before his judgment was poured out upon the evil people. Any verse that appears to say that Yahweh is killing innocent people or giving them diseases is an idiom or figure of speech. Verses such as Deuteronomy 32:39 which says, "See, now, that, I, I, am, he that is, And there are no elohims with me,––I, kill––and make alive, I wound, and, I, heal, And there, is none, who, from my hand, can deliver" can not be understood as literal when applied to the innocent because it would contradict Yahweh’s attributes of lovingkindness, justice and righteousness. Another verse viewed in the same light would be Exodus 4:11; "Then Yahweh said unto him––Who appointed a mouth for man, or who appointeth him to be dumb, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not, I, Yahweh?" This verse can not be taken literally when applied to the innocent because a just and righteous Creator would never do such a thing. Christ, who is the image of Yahweh, came to heal the dumb, the deaf and the blind and not to make innocent people dumb, deaf and blind. Yahweh has and will judge wicked people by killing or plaguing them but before he issues his judgment, he always sends his prophets in first to warn the inhabitants to change their ways, as was done with Nineveh. Yahweh does no evil neither does he allow evil to occur to innocent parties in order to teach them a lesson, as taught by some. Death, sickness and disease of the innocent are the results of fallen mankind.
People who proclaim that, ‘God is in Control,’ will use difficult verses of scriptures, as mentioned above, to make their argument. They will literally interpret these verses even though by doing so contradicts the very nature of Yahweh as revealed by hundreds of clear scriptures. Yahshua, as revealed in Hebrews 1:3, was the, "…eradiated brightness of Yahweh’s glory, and an exact representation of Yahweh’s very being…" What man did Yahshua control? What innocent child did he kill? What storm did he send? What disease did he give? Yahshua unveiled the kingdom of darkness by casting out impure ruah’s (spirit’s), healing the diseased and identifying the children of the adversary. Yahshua was a shepherd in the Gospels. In the future he will be putting wicked people to death as a righteous judge as recorded in Revelations and the Psalm. This other side of Yahshua is also an image of Yahweh.
If Yahweh is not in control, then what happen to Terry’s family? Yahweh has given us ruah (spirit) in order that he can communicate with us. Many Churches reject the scriptures dealing with spiritual power as does Dallas Theological Seminary, of which, it appears that Terry was a member. Yahweh would have warned Terry and his wife about the danger that he and his family were in but it appears that they did not heed the warning. If people are instructed that Yahweh doesn’t speak to us today then when Yahweh’s thoughts are communicated to us, they probably are not recognized as coming from Yahweh. At one time or another, all of us have dismissed communications from Yahweh, thinking at the time that the communications were only coming from our own mind. Another factor is that sometimes, we are so busy that we do not take the time each day to listen for spiritual guidance from Christ or Yahweh. Utilizing the ruah (spirit) that Yahweh has given us will help protect us from harm.
Evil occurs because this is not the Garden of Eden. Why do we not live in the Garden of Eden? Yahweh gave Adam and Eve complete freedom to do good or evil and they chose evil, while living in a perfect world. Sin brought death which has passed on to all mankind. All of us have been given liberty to choose to live, by obeying Yahweh, or to choose death, by disobeying him. Yahweh is not a controller but rather a loving Creator who gives liberty, justice and righteousness. Man has a tendency to avoid responsibility thereby blaming Yahweh, saying ‘God is in Control.’ Adam responded to Yahweh after he had sinned by saying, "The woman whom thou didst put with me, she, gave me of the tree, so I did eat" (Gen. 3:12). One is born handicapped while another is born to live to 100 years of age; both had righteous parents but both are the result of their parents genetics, which have come down through Adam and Eve and not because ‘God is in Control.’ Yahweh wills no one to be born handicapped but because of sin, imperfections have entered our world. Many people were healed by the Apostles and Christ because they believed and acted upon their words. Others were not healed because they did not believe and act upon the Word of Truth. These people can not say, "God must want me sick because he is in control."
We must all accept the fact that we live in a fallen world. This world will never be a Garden of Eden but there is a day when perfection will come. We must be thankful for all the good things Yahweh has given to us but at the same time, we must realize that all things do not come from Yahweh. As Yahshua (Joshua), we must be ‘firm and bold.’ All of us will sleep (die), if our Lord tarries, because of Adam but Yahweh’s promise is that we will receive a spiritual body, as did Christ, never to die again; to live in a Garden where dwells righteousness, holiness and justice; such a Garden where pain and crying are no more; where Yahweh will wipe away every tear; a Garden where we choose to be because our loving Creator has not controlled us as robots but rather given us liberty to choose to live with Him and our Lord for ages without end.
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(*When quoting scriptures, from the Rotherham Emphasized Bible New Testament, I will substitute the Hebrew word Yahshua for Jesus, Yahweh and Elohim for God and the LORD and Anointed for Christ.)