Friday, February 28, 2014

Why Do Good Things Happen To Bad People?

I know you have all heard someone ask the question, "Why do bad things happen to good people?" I recently heard this asked and it got me thinking. I never hear anybody ask, "Why do good things happen to bad people?" The more I considered this, the more I realized that this is actually the better question.

There are a couple of things we need to consider regarding these statements. We need to define our terms. What is "good" and what is "bad"? I discussed this topic previously in the post about a car accident I had a few years ago. We define the words "good" and "bad" much differently than God does. For starters, as individual human-beings, we could go through the exact same situation and not agree on whether it was good or bad. It would be subjective based on our personalities, previous experiences, etc. God, however, does not change (Malachi 3:6).

We tend to compare ourselves to others, convinced we are doing better than our neighbor, and therefore are "good people." This reminds me of an analogy about sheep. When we see a group of sheep grazing in the grassy fields, we think to ourselves, "wow, look at those white sheep in the green grass." If however, we see those same sheep in a snow covered field, we would say, "wow, those sheep are dingy and grey compared to the pure, white snow." This is what we are doing when we compare ourselves to others. The sheep didn't change color; they looked very white when compared only to the green grass. When you look at them next to a pure white background, the snow, you realize they aren't as clean and white as first thought. We can seem "good" when compared to someone who is worse than we are, but when we compare ourselves to the pure and holy standards of God, we quickly find we are dirty and dingy, and left wanting.

God alone sees the whole picture and knows fully what things are good and bad. As sinners, we justify our actions, thinking we are good people, but scripture is clear- we all fail to live up to God's standards. The Bible says that there are none who are righteous (Romans 3:10). God's good and perfect gift, Jesus, was given to us while we were yet sinners, not because of any good in us, but by grace we were saved (Ephesians 2).

Christ is the (ultimate) good thing that has happened to this bad person....and to all who believe.


  1. Mrs. C, what a coincidence! I literally just got done writing a paper about this very question. Thank you for the insight.