I am following the story about Ariel Sharon's stroke and Pat Robertson's comments with amusement. Our (Deist) Rabbi at our Reform Temple says that God doesn't judge people or hold them responsible in this life for anything that we do, so Pat is an idiot for saying God would take action to remove someone from office who declined to retire voluntarily.
I am wondering what Bible he is reading, because mine if just full of warnings and threats by the prophets to people who were doing sinful and stupid things - warnings that they would suffer results in this lifetime. And I don't mean being suspended from the local country club, I mean plagues, droughts, persecutions, military attack, starvation, even cannibalism, slavery and forcible removal from their homes and country. Which part of that did the Rabbi not understand?
The question is not whether or not God does such things - because it is clear that He does. Even the "new testament" says that if you continue sinning after you are "saved," then there is no further excuse or sacrifice for you, just fiery judgement (Heb. 10:24ish, I think). Paul mentions somewhere else that people will even be turned over to Satan, and if necessary killed, to stop them from becoming depraved or hopelessly lost.
- The Rabbi's complaint is that a God of "love" wouldn't, nay couldn't, do such a thing. But I have to ask you, class, since when does love not include discipline? If you love your child, do you let them run wild and ruin their life if you can possibly prevent it? Of course you would not let that happen if you could prevent it. And so does God.
The real question here is the one the liberals don't want to ask: Is God angry that Israel's government has decided to give away part of the promised land instead of trusting God to take care of their enemies? What do you think, class?