#3 Wisdom of divine impartiality.
We think it’s cruel that the cruel sting of evil falls indiscriminately on sinner and saint alike. It’s indifferent to those who deserve/don’t deserve. This appalling impartiality baffles us! What are we to say of a world which enthrones a Herod, and crucified a Christ?
At first sight the gospel has very little comfort to give. It does not suggest that if two parents follow Christ that death will never rob them of a child. There is no promise of supernatural intervention. We wonder, would not the world be far more just and divine if evil got its desserts and goodness went immune?
Would it? On second thought it would be decidedly less divine. The laws of the universe would have to be suspended often and would lead to chaos. For if a Christian escaped the troubles that visit other folk, if religion got you out of all troubles, faith would become just a gigantic insurance policy, a quid pro quo–and that would be the ruin of faith and character forever.
Righteousness is and should be its own motive.
#4 The awakening of the conscience of humanity.
The reality of suffering stabs the human conscience wide awake and sends us out crusading for a better and happier tomorrow and a world nearer the will of God.
If poverty, unemployment and war were the will of God, then, of course, we should simply have to accept them without trying to improve them (i.e. karma in Hinduism). But if these things are not the will of God at all but simply the product of selfishness and sin then clearly we are not meant to lie down under them and accept them with resignation.
What do we expect to happen? God expects his hands and feet in the world to touch it and try to make it right. That is OUR responsibility.
There is a fifth beam that is perhaps the greatest…