I cringed yesterday when I heard a comment made by Pat Robertson saying that what happened in Haiti was God’s judgment on that country’s people for “making a pact with the devil”. That was such an unfeeling and uncalled for comment.
I was pleased today to read a very Biblical and compassionate response to the earthquake in Haiti in an article by Albert Mohler. I have copied an excerpt below, but please do follow the link and read the whole article – it is worth it!
God does judge the nations — all of them — and God will judge the nations. His judgment is perfect and his justice is sure. He rules over all the nations and his sovereign will is demonstrated in the rising and falling of nations and empires and peoples. Every molecule of matter obeys his command, and the earthquakes reveal his reign — as do the tides of relief and assistance flowing into Haiti right now.
A faithful Christian cannot accept the claim that God is a bystander in world events. The Bible clearly claims the sovereign rule of God over all his creation, all of the time. We have no right to claim that God was surprised by the earthquake in Haiti, or to allow that God could not have prevented it from happening.
God’s rule over creation involves both direct and indirect acts, but his rule is constant. The universe, even after the consequences of the Fall, still demonstrates the character of God in all its dimensions, objects, and occurrences. And yet, we have no right to claim that we know why a disaster like the earthquake in Haiti happened at just that place and at just that moment.
The arrogance of human presumption is a real and present danger. We can trace the effects of a drunk driver to a car accident, but we cannot trace the effects of voodoo to an earthquake — at least not so directly. Will God judge Haiti for its spiritual darkness? Of course. Is the judgment of God something we can claim to understand in this sense — in the present? No, we are not given that knowledge. Jesus himself warned his disciples against this kind of presumption.
Why did no earthquake shake Nazi Germany? Why did no tsunami swallow up the killing fields of Cambodia? Why did Hurricane Katrina destroy far more evangelical churches than casinos? Why do so many murderous dictators live to old age while many missionaries die young?
Does God hate Haiti? God hates sin, and will punish both individual sinners and nations. But that means that every individual and every nation will be found guilty when measured by the standard of God’s perfect righteousness. God does hate sin, but if God merely hated Haiti, there would be no missionaries there; there would be no aid streaming to the nation; there would be no rescue efforts — there would be no hope.
The earthquake in Haiti, like every other earthly disaster, reminds us that creation groans under the weight of sin and the judgment of God. This is true for every cell in our bodies, even as it is for the crust of the earth at every point on the globe. The entire cosmos awaits the revelation of the glory of the coming Lord. Creation cries out for the hope of the New Creation.
In other words, the earthquake reminds us that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only real message of hope. The cross of Christ declares that Jesus loves Haiti — and the Haitian people are the objects of his love. Christ would have us show the Haitian nation his love, and share his Gospel. In the midst of this unspeakable tragedy, Christ would have us rush to aid the suffering people of Haiti, and rush to tell the Haitian people of his love, his cross, and salvation in his name alone.
Everything about the tragedy in Haiti points to our need for redemption. This tragedy may lead to a new openness to the Gospel among the Haitian people. That will be to the glory of God. In the meantime, Christ’s people must do everything we can to alleviate the suffering, bind up the wounded, and comfort the grieving. If Christ’s people are called to do this, how can we say that God hates Haiti?
If you have any doubts about this, take your Bible and turn to John 3:16. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. That is God’s message to Haiti.
There are many relief agencies providing aid and supplies to the people of Haiti. I have heard that Doctors Without Borders is an organization that has been working in Haiti and will continue to provide the much needed medical care the injured will need.
There is an orphanage called God’s Littlest Angels that operates near Port au Prince, Haiti. They are not only caring for the children that were already living in their orphanage, but expect to be receiving more children through this disaster.
Please consider giving financially to one of these organizations or another one you have heard of. These people need to know that there is someone out there who cares about them and wants to reach out and give them a hand. Please also be in prayer for the men, women, and children of Haiti and those who are traveling there to offer aid.
Another circumstance to keep in prayer are families who are in the process of adopting children from Haiti and this disaster has interrupted the ability to get the cases through court. There are even children whose famlies had completed court procedures, but just needed a passport to be issued by the Haitian government – which no longer really exists. Pray that these children will be able to go to their adoptive families.