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Why did his parents worship an evil God, Peter MacKay wonders.
In rain, hail or shine throughout my childhood years, my parents attended their local Presbyterian Church in Scotland with faithfulness that would shame a pink-tongued, tail-wagging cocker spaniel.
Carrying their well-worn, gold-edged, leatherbound King James Holy Bible - no New Age gender equality Bibles in our house - my parents listened to our rheumy-eyed, grey-faced, fist-thumping minister, an almost Dickensian character, who would not look out of place in a funeral parlour.
They learnt about God's love and that "God is good''.
They discovered that the God they worshipped was the very apotheosis of love and that they should put their complete faith in Him.
And they did.
The minister will be long dead, as are my parents, but I wonder now why that intermediary between God and His flock, that rake-thin, bulging-eyed minister up there in his pulpit, refused to tell the whole story.
Why did he suppress God's word?
Why did he not tell my parents, for instance, that God created evil?
This information is found in the Bible through one of His major prophets.
"I form the light and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil. I the Lord do all these things'' [Isaiah 45:7, KJV].
If the Lord did "all these things'', it means, ipso facto, that we cannot blame it on the Devil.
Creating evil was God's work.
We read it in the Bible.
It is there for all to see.
He had a hard time of it.
The Bible tells us the nature of the nightmarish afflictions that our "loving God'' imposed upon Job, a simple, upright, blameless man who feared God.
We read that Job's friends and family "comforted him over all the evil that the Lord had brought upon him'' [Job 42:11, KJV].
Looking further back into biblical events, we read: "And the Lord repented of the evil which He thought to do unto His people'' [Exodus 32:14, KJV].
This is a long time before the birth of Christ, yet here we discover that the Lord wanted to do evil to "His people''.
That's right, His people.
I wonder what the Lord would think of His people today, in our multicultural, politically correct, transgender/gender-equal rainbow society, where men have husbands, for instance, where a Christian couple in the US were threatened with jail for refusing to bake a cake for a same-sex couple, where God-fearing parents are forbidden by a Godless government from "using the rod'' to chastise their children.
I wonder what kind of evil the biblical God would unleash today, a God who had no qualms about visiting evil upon a decent, upright, God-fearing family man like Job.
Or has the God of the Bible been dragged into rehab, miraculously transformed into a politically correct, non-homophobic entity, drained of His wrath and venomous anger, to the point of complete non-judgementalism?
After all, the Bible tells us not to judge [Matthew 7:1, KJV].
Maybe I should purchase a New Age Bible after all.
- Peter MacKay lives in Queenstown.