It’s been one week since the Aurora theater massacre, and people are still searching for answers. Some are even asking,” Where was God in Aurora massacre?” CNN asked the question on twitter. The following is some of the responses. What do you think?
By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor
(CNN) – Where was God in Aurora?
It’s a fresh take on an age-old question: Why does God allow suffering, natural disasters or – if you believe in it – evil?
We put the question to Twitter on Tuesday and got some starkly different responses.
“In short, God was in complete control, exercising His will,” wrote @PastorRileyF, who leads a church in Bethune, Colorado.
That riled @TheTrivia Jockey, who tweeted, “If that was God’s will, God is definitely not deserving of my worship.”
Watch: Survivor of massacre says he forgives gunman
@trentpayne also took issue with the Colorado pastor: “I’m going to respectfully disagree with you Pastor. God gives free will to man, but it wasn’t his will that they die.”
The back-and-forth provoked other believers to chime in on the theological issue of God’s sovereignty vs. human free will, with many Christians seeking to explain how a sovereign God could preside over seemingly senseless bloodshed.
“It is not God’s will or want that people died in Aurora,” wrote @GospelBluesman20m. “God allowed man’s inhumanity to man, rather than intervene.”
The conversation and debate continued in the comments section of this post, with some insinuating that the massacre might be a kind of divine punishment, or at lease divine neglect:
We as a country have been telling God to go away. We told him to get off our currency, get out of our schools, get out of our Pledge of Allegiance, take your Ten Commandments out of our courthouses, get those Bibles out of hotels and no graduation ceremonies in our churches. How can we expect God to give us his blessing and his protection if we demand that he leave us alone?
Liberals have made it impossible for God to be anywhere during the upbringing of a child. Can’t have any religious connotations in schools, libraries, government offices, etc., etc. Young men (and women) are growing up with no real sense of right and wrong. … We no longer have the right of religion, but rather the right from religion. Parents no longer have the ability to discipline their children. We are always looking for the excuses … violent video games and movies, bad teachers and schools … when we should be looking in the mirror. We as a society are the reasons these massacres happen. We have allowed our children to become social misfits that lead to the kind of carnage we have seen on several occasions since religion and God disappeared from what the Founding Fathers once said was a necessity of a successful democracy … faith.
Lots of readers used religious takes on the shooting to challenge the whole idea of God:
Who invited me?
How do you know the people that were killed didn’t go to hell?, and how exactly does any of this show there is a reason? Reason is obviously something that you have replaced with belief, and you threw out logic with it.
“God doesn’t exist, so he wasn’t anywhere. Get over it. A man was evil, and he was evil because he was crazy.
Plenty of others said the shooting was the devil’s work:
Evil things like this happen because Satan is the god of this world … for the time being. God will undo all the damage caused by Satan’s rebellion and man’s disobedience when the time is right. In the meantime we all experience trials and tribulation due to living in an ungodly world. That is why Jesus taught his followers the Lord’s Prayer … ‘to pray for God’s kingdom to come.’
- My Take: CNN readers’ 7 answers to ‘Where was God in Aurora?’ (religion.blogs.cnn.com)
- Palin Reacts to ‘Evil’ Movie Massacre (huffingtonpost.com)
- Christian Bale and Wife Visit Aurora Shooting Victims and Memorial (popsugar.com)