As I continue to make preparations for developing curriculum for a free online K-12 Christian academy, I want to start compiling my thoughts and those of others regarding answers to what are probably among some of the most important questions in life, beginning with... Why does God allow evil? In Mark 10:18 the Messiah said, “No one is good except god.” And in 1 John 4:8 the Bible says that “…God is love.” So, given that God is good and God is love, why does He allow evil? Well, first of all, recognize that evil came into the world through mankind. So, to get rid of it outright, God would have to annihilate the human race right here on the spot. But as stated in 2 Peter 3:9 in the Amplified Bible, Classic Edition… “The Lord does not delay and is not tardy or slow about what He promises, according to some people’s conception of slowness, but He is long-suffering (extraordinarily patient) toward you, not desiring that any should perish, but that all should turn to repentance.” That God allows evil makes Him merciful—not a monster. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Moreover, without evil, everyone would think nothing is wrong anywhere, and as a result, would probably be dumbfounded when, upon their deaths, found themselves consigned to an eternity of pain and suffering. The evil that is on the Earth is an indication of how terrible it is to be separated from God. As awful as it might be—it is nothing compared to the suffering that will be experienced by those who elect to spend forever in opposition to their Creator, effectively shutting themselves off from the goodness and the love of God. But there are at least some people who will recognize evil as a warning that being out of the plan and presence of God will ultimately result in nothing good, and who will therefore seek His kingdom and His righteousness while they have the chance here in this life. Moreover, unlike most of us, God has an eternal perspective. He created time, but He does not exist in it. From where He stands (or sits) the destruction of evil is already a done deal. God has made it clear that the devil, death, Hades and “anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.” As far as God is concerned, even as of now, the destruction of evil as good as accomplished. But, our problem is that we’re waiting to see it realized in our dimension. Also, God uses evil to bring about good. For example, there has been no more heinous crime throughout time than when the human race stripped, mocked, beat, spit in the face of and crucified God Himself (in the person of the Son). Yet the Father used that evil act to extend salvation to the entire world. As the life of Joseph illustrates so clearly, “You meant evil against me, but God meant if for good…” Sometimes we see how this plays out, but more often than not we don’t. Nonetheless, the fact still remains that “God causes all things to work together for good…” (Romans 8:28) As awful as evil seems to us, it is even more offensive to God. So perhaps we, like the Apostle Paul, should consider “that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” It appears life with God is going to be so wonderful that all this evil will seem of little consequence. In the light of eternity, the evil we are now experiencing, as awful as it may be, is “just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.” (James 4:14) So, how will believers spend eternity? Let me paraphrase: “God will dwell among them, and they will be His people. He will wipe away every tear and there will no longer be death, mourning, crying or pain; the first things have passed away.” God’s original plan was to gather a people to Himself that He would call His very own. That plan cannot be thwarted. As the Apostle Paul wrote, “a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.” So, God needs more time to gather all those He chose in Christ before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). Consequently, until He is finished gathering His people, He will allow evil to continue on the earth, but only a little while longer. In short, God allows evil as indisputable evidence that the world is not as it was meant to be. When an individual feels intense pain, he or she had better get to the hospital and have it diagnosed before whatever is causing it kills them. Likewise, the pain of evil should lead us to God, our heavenly physician (Exodus 15:26) to find the cause of our spiritual death (sin) and embrace its cure (Christ, the Messiah).