Personally, I get tired of always hearing of the God of the Bible being portrayed as a God of love, God of mercy, God of forgiveness, and of so many other benevolent virtues. These are all true, of course, and more so than we can even comprehend. However, that is only one side of God. It seems to me the church has emphasized the love and mercy aspects of God to the point we have painted a false picture of the true God to the rest of the world—a God they don’t have to fear.
It is certainly understandable why we in the church have done this. Most people would prefer a loving, kind, forgiving God to a God of wrath and terror—but God is both. By constantly speaking of only the benevolent side of God, the church has lessened the fear of the true God in the eyes of the world, and inadvertently exalted the counterfeit god of terror, Allah. A lack of fear of God in the churches has also caused sin to abound in them, which will result in churches seeing the terror of God eventually.
The Bible defines wisdom like this:
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding (Prov. 9:10 NKJV).
Has anyone ever actually seen Allah’s terrifying presence except through well-armed men killing innocent men, women, and children on orders from his prophet? Not that I have ever heard. Has anyone ever seen supernatural signs and wonders of Allah or angels fighting on his behalf like they do for the God of Israel?
In the wars of the Israelis, many books, videos, and articles have documented miracles and angels of God that have terrified their enemies and helped them to win the wars. Following is one example:
In the Yom Kippur war of Oct., 1973, Israel was being attacked and greatly outnumbered. On the Golan hills an Israeli commander had only 3 tanks against the approaching 150 tanks of the Syrian ninth division. They watched as the tanks continued to advance knowing they would roll right through their hopeless defense. As they watched them get closer and closer, the Israelis were shocked when suddenly the tanks stopped. Then they began to retreat for no known reason at the time. Years later an Israeli got the chance to ask the Syrian commander why they had retreated for no apparent reason. The commander answered that in between the two sides an army of white angels appeared. Then a great, white hand appeared out of the sky that beckoned them to stop. They retreated in great fear of the God of Israel.
The God of Israel has always caused great fear through supernatural signs, wonders, and manifestations. Egypt, the mightiest nation at the time, saw the mighty signs and wonders of God while He devastated their nation.
So the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and with an outstretched arm, with great terror and with signs and wonders (Deut. 26:8 NKJV).
The Israelites in the time of Moses saw the terrifying presence of God manifest in fire on the top of Mount Sinai.
Now all the people perceived the thunderings and the lightnings and the noise of the trumpet and the smoking mountain, and as [they] looked they trembled with fear and fell back and stood afar off. And they said to Moses, You speak to us and we will listen, but let not God speak to us, lest we die. And Moses said to the people, Fear not; for God has come to prove you, so that the [reverential] fear of Him may be before you, that you may not sin. And the people stood afar off, but Moses drew near to the thick darkness where God was (Ex. 20: 19-21 AMP).
The Israelites were terrified when they saw the fire and heard the thunder and trumpets. They trembled and moved far away. All through the Bible God was known as a God who brought terror to His enemies—and his own people if they were disobedient.
“But if you do not obey Me, and do not observe all these commandments, and if you despise My statutes, or if your soul abhors My judgments, so that you do not perform all My commandments, but break My covenant, I also will do this to you: I will even appoint terror over you, wasting disease and fever which shall consume the eyes and cause sorrow of heart. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it (Lev. 26:14-16 NKJV).
God not only has a reputation for destroying whole nations, but He destroyed the entire world through the flood with only eight people surviving to start all over (Gen. 6).
Job knew about the terrors of God,
For the arrows of the Almighty are within me; my spirit drinks in their poison; the terrors of God are arrayed against me (Job 6:4 NKJV).
The Psalmist also knew of the terrors of God,
I have been afflicted and ready to die from my youth; I suffer Your terrors; I am distraught. Your fierce wrath has gone over me; your terrors have cut me off (Ps. 88:15-16 NKJV).
The prophet Jeremiah knew something of the terrors of God,
Do not be a terror to me; you are my hope in the day of doom (Jer. 17:17 NKJV).
Before God causes peace to rule and the wolf to lie with the lamb, the enemies of God will once again learn the terrors of the Lord,
They shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, from the terror of the Lord and the glory of His majesty, when He arises to shake the earth mightily (Isa. 2:19 NKJV).
Nations who have sponsored terror, such as Iran, will be terrorized by God. Iran is called by its ancient name “Elam” in the following verse.
“There is Elam and all her multitude, all around her grave, all of them slain, fallen by the sword, who have gone down uncircumcised to the lower parts of the earth, who caused their terror in the land of the living; Now they bear their shame with those who go down to the Pit (Ezek. 32:24 NKJV).
This may come as a shock to many people: Not only is Allah not the true god of terror, but the God of the Bible takes credit for creating evil and even the destroyer (Satan).
I am the LORD, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things (Isaiah 45:6-7 KJV).
“See, it is I who created the blacksmith who fans the coals into flame and forges a weapon fit for its work. And it is I who have created the destroyer to wreak havoc (Isa. 54:16 NIV).
I know this verse will blow a lot of people’s theology about their always-good and benevolent God, but I didn’t put these verses in the Bible. If there is actually some demon or evil spiritual prince called Allah, God originally created him. He is only allowed his existence to carry out the mysterious purposes of God. This brings up the age-old question of why God allows evil. Personally I think the answer to this is very simple. What I find so hard to understand is why so many are confused over it.
I may not have all the theological answers to why God created evil as He claims, but this I know: For some things to work you need a negative and positive force. Years ago I used to be an auto mechanic. On all car batteries there is a negative and a positive terminal. The electricity to start the car with only the positive cable will not flow. It has to have the negative also. If you think God should eliminate everything negative in the world, you should also jerk off the cable on the negative side of your car battery in protest. Also, you should cut off the ground cable in your electric box on your house. That will teach God to allow something negative in your life!
The bottom line as to why God allows evil in the world is this: We cannot have free will without it, and He wants us to love Him from our own free will. Having the choice of evil allows us the free will to choose who and what we want to serve. That is really how simple the question of God allowing evil is answered (at least for me). I don’t find it a great mystery at all.
Paul said about the terror of the Lord,
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences (2 Cor. 5:10-11 NKJV).
God’s judgment, however, is often delayed giving people the false sense that they can get away with their crimes and sins.
Because the sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil (Eccl. 8:11 NKJV).
God gives every man a conscience to warn him from doing evil; but when a person accepts a false ideology or continues to do evil, his conscience can become seared and the warning system destroyed.
Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron (1 Tim. 4:1-2 NKJV).
Once a person’s conscience is seared, he has no fear of what awaits him until the moment he dies. Paul said,
Some men's sins are clearly evident, preceding them to judgment, but those of some men follow later (1 Tim. 5:24).
On July, 1944, the brave Colonel von Straffenberg placed a briefcase with a bomb in it under a huge map table at Hitler’s military headquarters in East Prussia, the Wolfsschanze (Wolf’s Lair). The ravaging wolf, Hitler, and his top staff had gathered there to discuss war strategies—or rather to listen to him rant about his own plans. The bomb went off as planned and four people died. However, because it was placed next to a thick, wooden support for the huge table, it protected the wily Hitler from major injury although his pants were torn to shreds. He took this as a sign of his invincibility.
He ordered the Gestapo to do a thorough investigation and find all the conspirators. Then in April, 1944, some of the main people in the plot were hung. These included a fearless theologian and pastor named Bonhoeffer, who seemed to be immune to Nazi terror. I find it interesting that after the final attempt to assassinate Hitler with a bomb failed, Hitler did the job himself—three weeks after these conspirators were killed!
In Bill Wiese’s book 23 Minutes in Hell he writes about his terrifying experience of being taken on a forced visit to hell. He speaks of horrendous monsters, who derive pleasure from torturing people and who seem totally incapable of the concept of mercy. Hell is the ultimate terror from God, created for that purpose for His enemies. Like many radical Islamic militants, Hitler had no mercy; and he brought terror to many millions of people. His conscience was seared largely by the false ideology of the philosopher Nietzsche who taught the Darwinism survival-of-the-strongest concept. This appealed to Hitler’s wolf mentality. What the atheist Nietzsche failed to realize in his warped worldview is that the omnipotent God of the Bible is the strongest. In the end, Hitler had no mercy on his own soul. With a cyanide capsule and a nine-millimeter bullet in his little brain, he thrust himself into the hands of the God of terror, where he is still learning the lesson,
It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God (Heb. 10:31 NKJV).
Many radical Islamists, who want to bring another holocaust, have yet to learn that lesson.
A doctor at the concentration camp where the executions took place testified about Bonhoeffer that he had never seen a man die so submissive to the will of God. What made the lamb-like Bonhoeffer so calm (as many testified about him) even in the midst of terror and death? Bonhoeffer knew God and His Word intimately, and he had made his peace with Him many years earlier. He believed what Jesus had said,
“And I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!” (Luke 12:4-5 NKJV).