Is God on Our Side?

Father Dennis Noon
Sunday, January 8, 2017 - 11:15am

If God is all powerful why does God allow terrible things to happen to thousands of innocent people? The voices of grief suffered by family members and friends haunt our thoughts as thousands of human lives and dreams have been affected by on going conflicts throughout the world. God is simply God, infinite goodness, mercy, justice, truth, compassion, forgiveness, reconciliation, beauty. No government can claim that national and international policies can claim the infinite righteousness and absolute integrity of God. The spiritually more authentic and humble statement might be for governments, like individuals, to say they keep striving to be on God’s side. They do this in time of conflict by seeking always to purify their motives and to act in ways that show genuine regard for fundamental moral principles, respect for innocent human life and a true concern for all of God’s creatures. If we presume that God is on our side our moral vision could be blinded. To seek justice is struggling to be on God’s side. In Matthew 5:38-48 Jesus says, “You have heard the commandment, an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But what I say to you is to offer no resistance to injury. When a person strikes you on the right cheek turn and offer him the other. You have heard the commandment, love your countryman but hate your enemy. My commandment to you is love your enemies, pray for your persecutors. This will prove that you are children of God.” It is very understandable why these words are so hard to hear. Our whole journey in faith from our baptism to the present compels us to hear these words no matter how difficult it might be to live by them. We will certainly not be on God’s side in this way which has no boundaries and no foreseeable end if we close our ears to the words of Jesus.