Where is God and why doesn’t he intervene?
By: Hussein Al-Rumaithi
Where is God and why doesn’t he intervene? Doesn’t he see what is happening on earth? All the wars, genocides, crimes, child abuses and catastrophic chaos, if he is the absolute power and justice, why doesn’t he prevent bad things from happening? These are questions that are not asked exclusively by atheists and anti-religion activists, as many believers of the major religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam) are putting forward similar questions. Therefore, it has become a necessity to address such wonderings in an academic and logical approach, which leaves no doubt for any free mind. However, it must be noted that such questions when asked by atheists, are rhetorical questions, which are intended for weakening the notion of a divine entity rather than presenting a solution or an alternative. An atheist person has to adhere to the rules of engaging in a theological discussion, which mandates solving the notion of a divine entity within the principle and attributes presented by theologians, rather than his/her own illusions and illustration of a God or a creator.
Therefore, these types of questions require a primary believe in God and his divinity prior to addressing them, as the question itself, suggests that the person asking the question apprehends God’s powers and attributes. However, due to lack of knowledge, social and academic struggles, he/she has developed certain doubts due to enormous amount of pressure and exposure to doubtful claims and wonderings.
Therefore, based on the question, the person asking the question acknowledges God’s wisdom, power, justice and all of the attributes affiliated with his divinity and existence.
As mentioned in previous articles and similar pieces about this topic, the obligation and the power, which has been given to mankind is free-will and the ability to comprehend and acquire intellect. Therefore, the notion of God’s intervention in preventing crimes and genocides neglects the notion of granting free-will, as this power will hold no value and humans are subjected to pre-destiny, fatalism or what theologians call necessitarianism. Individuals are responsible for the actions and decisions, and they should acknowledge that each decision and action have consequences, which they should be willing to face. Therefore, when a tyrant decides to commit a genocide against a specific race or group of people, other equally share the responsibility to prevent him/her and save the lives of those facing the danger. Free-will is the strongest power that has been granted to humans, which enables them topple regimes, diminish civilizations and introduce new norms and values. Therefore, this strong and astonishing power should be utilized to prevent crimes and genocides as well.
In addition, if under any circumstances God decides to intervene and prevent a certain action, the notion of justice has been lifted from God and his attributes. This notion means, if God decides to prevent a bad or corrupt individual from committing a specific crime or action, he should do the same for all humans. (Why is God preventing X from committing a wrong action and saving him/her from facing the consequences, and he is not doing the same for Y?) Nonetheless, this type of argument also annuls the legitimacy of equality and judgement, as God shall not be able to judge humans, if he decides to intervene in certain cases and prevent atrocities from happening.
God has granted humans with free will, and although evil is also present to deceive and alter people’s intention, the righteous path has been presented and paved by messengers and prophets. Therefore, the excuse has been lifted and all humans hold equal opportunities to accept their obligations and responsibilities toward themselves and others. There is a verbum in Arabic that states, Pharaoh was asked: how did you become pharaoh (tyrant)? He responded: I found to one to stop me.
Ignorance and surrendering to corruption and deceitful tendencies itself is a crime that should be primarily prevented by the individual him/herself, as no one holds the authority and the power to force a specific position upon another. Therefore, instead of accusing God and requesting his intervention, the presence of conscience and intellect is always necessary to make the right decisions through free-will and save humanity from any sort of atrocities and calamities.