Not all natural disasters are sent by God (Job 1:12-22), but some are. According to the Bible, He sent the greatest natural disaster in the history of mankind (the Flood). This thought will make some uneasy and it may cause some to protest, but nevertheless God used a natural disaster to prevent all of mankind from being corrupted by Satan for the remainder of eternity. God Himself said:
And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die (Gen. 1:17).
Another well-known example is God’s destruction of the cities ofSodom and Gomorrah. It is clear that God did it after He acted to protect Lot and part of his family. The Word says:
Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven (Gen. 19:24).
God will send more disasters in the future. It is the loving Jesus that will open the seven terrible seal judgments in the Book of Revelation. And it is the good angels of heaven that will blow the seven trumpets and dump the seven bowls that releases the other disasters. The Bible says God will even give power to the Two Witnesses to stop the rain and smite the earth with all kinds of plagues as often as they desire (Rev. 11:6).
As we study Scripture, we create or develop our image of God. If we ignore large sections of the Bible (such as the Old Testament or Bible prophecy), the image we create or develop is an incomplete image. For example, several Old Testament passages teach that God sends natural disasters to destroy the wicked, protect His people, get His people to repent, etc., but if we ignore these passages, our understanding of God will be limited. Then, if God decides to send a flood, drought, tornado or whatever, we may think it is global warming, climate change or whatever and totally miss what God is doing and never arrive at the understanding that God wants us to have. Notice the passage below:
And I also have given you cleanness of teeth in all your cities, and want of bread in all your places (famine & hunger): yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD. And also I have withholden the rain from you (drought), when there were yet three months to the harvest: and I caused it to rain upon one city, and caused it not to rain upon another city: one piece was rained upon, and the piece whereupon it rained not withered. So two or three cities wandered unto one city, to drink water; but they were not satisfied: yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD. I have smitten you with blasting (excessive heat) and mildew: when your gardens and your vineyards and your fig trees and your olive trees increased, the palmerworm (locusts) devoured them: yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD. I have sent among you the pestilence after the manner of Egypt: your young men have I slain with the sword, and have taken away your horses; and I have made the stink of your camps to come up unto your nostrils (the stench of unburied dead bodies): yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD. I have overthrown some of you, as God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, and ye were as a firebrand plucked out of the burning: yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the LORD. Therefore thus will I do unto thee, O Israel: and because I will do this unto thee, prepare to meet thy God (in death), O Israel (Amos 4:6-12).
God sent many devastating disasters on Israel because He loved Israeland wanted Israel to repent and return to Him, but they refused. If we don’t believe God sends natural disasters because He loves His people and wants them to repent, we will probably never get the message. We will probably remain in an unrepentant state and some may never come to Christ because we have chosen to silence God on this issue. Some of the most educated preachers in America are guilty of this sin. They actually try to re-create God in the image they want Him to have by tossing out Scriptures they don’t like or agree with.
II Chron. 7:14 is clearly one of the most famous and oft quoted verses in the Bible. Many churches seem to treat it like it means schedule a revival at the same time every year. But that’s not what it says. Here it is in context with the verses before and after:
And the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said unto him, I have heard thy prayer, and have chosen this place to myself for an house of sacrifice. If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place (II Chron. 7:12-15).
God sent Moses to tell Pharaoh to let His people go. But Pharaoh refused to heed the message. So God sent plagues on Egypt to teach all of us a lesson (Gen. 7:14-12:30). How many plagues should it take to get America’s leaders to understand that God sometimes uses disasters to send people a message? Sending disasters to end slavery, bring people to repentance, bring people to service, bring the lost to Christ, etc. is part of God’s character too.
Instead of limiting God to the image we want Him to have based upon our favorite portions of the Bible, we need to let all of the Scriptures speak and believe God exists as He really is. We are not going to improve on God by editing out part of His Word. Natural disasters are heartbreaking, but we need to really believe that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose (Rom. 8:28). Natural disasters are not good, but our holy God can bring good out of them.
He can also bring us through them and we need to learn to rely on Him to do that because the birth-pains principle indicates that there are going to be more frequent and more intense as we approach the end of the Church Age. Listen to these words:
Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine. Our soul waiteth for the LORD: he is our help and our shield. For our heart shall rejoice in him, because we have trusted in his holy name (Psa. 33:18-21).
Prophecy Plus Ministries
Daymond & Rachel Duck