Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

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You Are A Soul

Friday, December 18, 2020
     I have the most wonderful son in the world; he is seven and has Down syndrome.  My question is: after he dies and goes to heaven, will he still have Down syndrome, or will he be like us?

Sincerely,
Mom

Dear Mom,

Down syndrome is a body issue, not a soul issue.  Your wonderful son is a soul (Gen 2:7); he has a body.  When we die, our spirit separates from our body (Jas 2:26).  At that moment, your son will never again face the health issues he does now.

Already Revealed

Thursday, December 17, 2020
In the end times, the Bible says Babylon will be destroyed in an hour.  Is America Babylon?

Sincerely,
Patriotic

Dear Patriotic,

The idea that the Babylon of Rev 18:10 is referring to a current or future nation comes from a wrong understanding of what the book of Revelation is about.  The book of Revelation is primarily dealing with events that have already happened.  That is what the apostle John said in Rev. 1:1 and Rev. 1:3.  Revelation deals with suffering that the church faced in its early history and the perseverance and victory of the church through those trials.  If you would like a better understanding of the book of Revelation, we recommend you listen to our sermon series on the topic.  It can be found here.

Ill All Over

Wednesday, December 16, 2020
I am sick with allergies (environmental and food), bronchitis, and stomach issues that include GERD and IBS.  I have also found out that I have chronic ear disease with a hole in one eardrum.  I have all sorts of little things going on.  My question is: is it something I have done?  I want to fix it whatever it is, but I first need to know what it is that I have done.  How do I find out if it is my fault?

Sincerely,
Sick Of Being Sick

Dear Sick Of Being Sick,

You might be hurting for living unfaithfully… but that is only one of several reasons why people suffer.  Here are the two other reasons why people suffer:

  1. Sometimes bad things simply happen because they happen.  Job suffered greatly, and his children died, but it wasn’t his (or their) fault.  Job hadn’t done anything wrong, nor had his kids.  It all happened because Satan wanted to do evil (Job 1:6).  As long as we live in this world of sin, there will be troubles.  Sometimes, there isn’t anyone at fault… just time and chance wreaking havoc in a sinful world (Eccl 9:11).
  2. Sometimes people suffer so that God can be glorified.  Jesus’ disciples asked Him why a certain man had been born blind, and Jesus answered, “So that God’s works might be revealed in him.” (Jhn 9:1-3)  This man’s ailment provided an opportunity for God to show His glory.  There are times that we suffer, so God can teach us and teach others through our pain (Eccl 7:2-3).

You are doing the right thing by examining your life and making sure that you are right with God.  If you would like to have Bible classes or need a congregation, we can help you find a faithful one near you (our e-mail is askyourpreacher@mvchurchofchrist.org), but unfaithfulness isn’t the only cause of suffering.

Alone In A Crowd

Tuesday, December 15, 2020
Recently, I’ve been struggling with my faith.  I am eighteen years old.  I was wondering... why does it feel like the entire world is becoming atheist or agnostic?  Whenever I go on the internet, it seems like there's always some argument about why believing in God is stupid.  People bash the Bible all the time at school.  I am afraid to go to college now because I feel like I will lose my faith all together.  I find it really hard to believe.  My brother even told me today that he is "agnostic".  I feel very lost right now.

Sincerely,
Disheartened

Dear Disheartened,

The U.S. is struggling with losing its biblical ties, but it isn’t as bad as we perceive it to be.  Statistically, only about 4% of Americans categorize themselves as atheistic or agnostic.  That means that the vast majority of the United States believes in God.  Sadly, the voices most often heard in media and culture make it sound like only a fool would believe in God.

Ironically, the Bible says the opposite (Ps 53:1).  The responsibility that Christians have is to make the evidence of God’s existence clear in a culture that is opposed to God.  The evidence of God’s existence is staggering.  We recommend you read our articles “Does God Exist?” and “Who Wrote The Bible?” because both of those articles cover some of the evidence that will help you stand firm by your convictions – you might even share some of it with your brother.

Hang in there.  It sounds like you could use a faithful congregation, so you don’t feel so alone.  The Bible says that is one of the purposes of the church (Heb 10:24-25).  Not all churches do this, but we would be happy to help you find a congregation near you that is faithful, gives Bible answers, and will help you to stand strong.  Just e-mail us at askyourpreacher@mvchurchofchrist.org.

Why We Suffer

Monday, December 14, 2020
     I'm going to be up front with you; I am not a Christian.  I have no desire to be.  My fiancé, on the other hand, is.  I am trying to understand how he believes, so we will have a more harmonious union.  I asked him this question, and he did not know the answer.

My question is: if the Lord is so wonderful, why would He want to see His children suffer?  Why would He take away a life that has not yet even begun?  Why would He hurt the innocent when the evil continue to live?  I don't understand this.

If you could please explain this in simple terms – the preachers in my area get very upset when someone doubts the Lord’s amazing-ness.  Thus, I am turning to you, whoever you are, to give me a straight answer.  Thank you so much.

Sincerely,
Unbelievable

Dear Unbelievable,

Many people don’t believe in God because religious people are unwilling or incapable of giving logical answers to questions like this.  We are so sorry that you’ve never gotten the answers that the Bible offers because the Bible does give an answer to this question.
This world is full of all sorts of disease, pain, violence, and strife – but God didn’t cause those things; sin did.  All bad things are a result of sin.  When God made the world, He placed mankind in the Garden of Eden and gave us a joyously blissful existence in that paradise.  Who caused the pain?  We did.  It is sin that has brought all of the death, disease, decay, pain, suffering, troubles, and heartaches into our world.  We all, in varying degrees, are reaping the benefits of a world with sin in it.  Sickness is a consequence of Adam and Eve’s sin in the Garden of Eden.  One of the curses of their sin was that we all must face our own mortality – life is finite.  Sickness, disease, and pain are a part of the human existence.  Sadly, this is true even for our children. When God gave us freewill, He gave us the right to cause problems for ourselves and others, and if He simply removed all the consequences for our actions, He would be removing our freedoms as well.  The flip-side to this is that all children go to heaven, so after a child dies, God immediately comforts them on the other side.

God gives mankind the freedom to make decisions, but He also has the wisdom to know how those choices will affect the future (Job 12:13).  God planned before the foundation of the world to save us by sending His own Son to die (Eph. 1:3-4).  Even though He isn’t responsible for our choices, God sent the perfect cure. This world isn’t fair – if it were, it would be heaven.  Instead, we live in a fallen world where man has been exiled from paradise.  This world is not our home; Christians await a better world (Heb 11:16).

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