Why do good people die?

It seems this blog is getting to be more and more about death than about the search for a writer’s soul. My last post talked about how much i missed my first dog and the effect his death still has on me. I thought that would be the first and only post regarding this mormid subject. Unfortunately, the fates seem to have other plans in mind.

Two days ago, Anura, a young, married guy from my office was killed in a motorcycle accident. Barely 32 years old, he left behind his wife and a little son to face the future alone. He was one of the nicest guys who worked with us, always having a smile on his face, no matter what his work load was. While there are others in my office with whom people have issues for various reasons are happily going about their lives, this guy is lying in a coffin.

I’m sitting here and wondering to myself why God or the fates or whatever higher power, is given the power to make such fickle and often vicarious decisions. I mean, where’s the justice or the fairplay we’re brought up to believe in? We’re always taught to believe in the greater good and how all things work out for the best. So where the best in this situation?

I really don’t know what I’m trying to say here. In a way, I guess I’m saying goodbye to a guy who didn’t deserve the hand that was dealt to him.

And in the end, I’m still sitting here asking the question why.

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18 Responses to “Why do good people die?”

  1. David Says:

    One day a while back, a man, his heart heavy with grief, was walking in the woods. As he thought about his life this day, he knew many things were not right. He thought about those who had lied about him back when he had a job.

    His thoughts turned to those who had stolen his things and cheated him. He remembered family that had passed on. His mind turned to the illness he had that no one could cure. His very soul was filled with anger, resentment and frustration.

    Standing there this day, searching for answers he could not find, knowing all else had failed him, he knelt at the base of an old oak tree to seek the One he knew would always be there. And with tears in his eyes, he prayed:

    “Lord- You have done wonderful things for me in this life. You have told me to do many things for you, and I happily obeyed. Today, you have told me to forgive. I am sad, Lord, because I cannot. I don’t know how. It is not fair Lord. I didn’t deserve these wrongs that were done against me and I shouldn’t have to forgive. As perfect as your way is Lord, this one thing I cannot do, for I don’t know how to forgive. My anger is so deep Lord, I fear I may not hear you, but I pray that you teach me to do this one thing I cannot do – Teach me To Forgive.”

    As he knelt there in the quiet shade of that old oak tree, he felt something fall onto his shoulder. He opened his eyes. Out of the corner of one eye, he saw something red on his shirt.

    He could not turn to see what it was because where the oak tree had been was a large square piece of wood in the ground. He raised his head and saw two feet held to the wood with a large spike through them.

    He raised his head more, and tears came to his eyes as he saw Jesus hanging on a cross. He saw spikes in His hands, a gash in His side, a torn and battered body, deep thorns sunk into His head. Finally he saw the suffering and pain on His precious face. As their eyes met, the man’s tears turned to sobbing, and Jesus began to speak.

    “Have you ever told a lie?” He asked?

    The man answered – “yes, Lord.”

    “Have you ever been given too much change and kept it?”

    The man answered – “yes. Lord.” And the man sobbed more and more.

    “Have you ever taken something from work that wasn’t yours?” Jesus asked?

    And the man answered – “yes, Lord.”

    “Have you ever sworn, using my Father’s name in vain? ”

    The man, crying now, answered – “yes, Lord.”
    As Jesus asked many more times, “Have you ever”? The man’s crying became uncontrollable, for he could only answer – “yes, Lord.”

    Then Jesus turned His head from one side to the other, and the man felt something fall on his other shoulder. He looked and saw that it was the blood of Jesus. When he looked back up, his eyes met those of Jesus, and there was a look of love the man had never seen or known before.

    Jesus said, “I didn’t deserve this either, but I forgive you.”

    It may be hard to see how you’re going to get through something, but when you look back in life, you realize how true this statement is.

  2. thekillromeoproject Says:

    I wonder if it will be that easy for this guy’s kid to understand and forgive the God that took his father away.

  3. David Says:

    I dont think God takes away people!!! I don’t think He does that! It’s people on the road who are careless andt kill. People and guns kill eachother. God has nothing to do with it … does that help?

  4. brandix Says:

    who decides who gets shot or stabbed with what or where? we are asked to believe that God controls our fate and if that is true, then it should also be true that whenever someone is run down by a careless driver, it was MEANT to happen… yea? so doesn’t that go back to God taking people away?

  5. thekillromeoproject Says:

    Exactly my point Brandy. We’re taught that all things happen according to the greater will and plan of God. I think it’s just silly for people to say all good things happen thanks to God, but God has nothing to do with anything bad. Does that mean He doesn’t have any control when things go wrong, or is it just that he looks the other way?

  6. Human Says:

    They say God is omnipotent and then they say God is such a nice guy who really cares about people so much.

    Clearly both can’t be true. We see lots of bad things happening to good people. Either the God can’t prevent it (He isn’t omnipotent) or doesn’t want to prevent it (He doesn’t really care)

    That’s why I think there’s probably no God. (God please forgive me in the unlikely even that you do exist! And please contact me when you have the time because I have an awful lot of questions for you!)

    But there is a lot man can do to prevent these things without any divine intervention. We all know road safety is a joke in Sri Lanka. Just look at how we drive! Most of the traffic rules are ignored by everyone and not enforced by the police. Anyone can get a license without even touching a car. Is it any wonder we have a very high accident rate? Motorcyclist are the most vulnerable for obvious reasons. Roads are a lot safe in more developed countries. In Sri Lanka the cost of living may be very high. But human life is still cheap!

  7. Amber Says:

    I truly believe that God is good. My belief is that good people are taken from this world because God needs them more than we do. Why do bad things happen to good people? Why would God choose a bad person to walk by his side? Then people question why God gives people cancer… do we not understand that the bad things happening are because of our own sin? I agree with David as well. God does not take people away. He chooses them to walk with Him. And those who are chosen are in a better place then we could ever imagine.

  8. Ashan Says:

    The world’s really messed up. I guess if you want a biblical answer, read Job (before psalms). In it God actually reprimands his friend for telling Job that god was punishing him, when they actually should have said they don’t know and loved him. Which is what we can do i guess. The first bit of the story gives the reason, but God never tells Job why.

    “I have seen another evil thing. The same fate befalls all of us, the good, and the evil, everythign that happens under the sun is worthless” Also from the bible.

    The world’s messed up. One day, at a time…

  9. S Says:

    I am sorry this comment is so long after your original post but I have only just come across it and decided to reply. This deals with issues that have been discussed in depth by many people over time and no doubt many books have been written on “why does God allow bad things to happen to good people.” So while you may find very different views on the subject, I will try and answer it to how I understand it from the bible as it is the book that I adhere to, giving you yet another view!

    You mention in your post about how we are taught that all things work out for the best. This is quite similar to the often quoted scripture “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

    You will note that it says that it works out for good to those who love God. I think what it means is that bad things will happen to good people but those that love God can go to Him for comfort and He can make good out of a bad situation. We see for example in the story of Joseph (the one of the multicoloured coat) that his brothers did something evil to him but God used it to bring about good. Seventeen years after the “evil” event he was able to say to them “But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive. ” Genesis 50:20.

    Your colleagues wife and child now live without a husband and father, does this mean that God has rejected them. I don’t think so, I believe this is now the time when they will want Him even more and He will be there for them.

    In 1987 a pastor of Sinhalese background was killed by the Tigers. He had a young Australian wife of 26, a son of 2 and a daughter of 7. She could have asked why God allowed such a thing to happen to her husband who was doing good, in fact I am sure she probably did ask Him. Ultimately however she could only trust that He would take care of her and make good out of the bad situation. Today both she and her daughter continue to work in Sri Lanka helping some of the poorest people in the country. I believe she can only give back to the country that took her husband because of the power of a loving God working in her life.

    Brandy makes a point about God controlling our fate. I don’t believe that this is actually accurate Christian doctrine. There is the whole question of free will and predestination and it is a debate in itself which I will not go into. Certainly the people that drove carelessly on the roads were not living according to the will of God (for is it not His will that we live according to the laws of the land unless the conflict with His word?) It was a choice that they made and for flouting those laws they have to face the consequence of killing a man. What they did for evil, God can still use for good but perhaps we need to wait to see how God intervenes in the lives of this young family to see His hand at work.

    There is an interesting comment in the book of Luke that someone showed me when the tragedy at the twin towers occurred.

    Luke 13:1-5
    About this time Jesus was informed that Pilate had murdered some people from Galilee as they were offering sacrifices at the Temple. “Do you think those Galileans were worse sinners than all the other people from Galilee?” Jesus asked. “Is that why they suffered? Not at all! And you will perish, too, unless you repent of your sins and turn to God. And what about the eighteen people who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them? Were they the worst sinners in Jerusalem? No, and I tell you again that unless you repent, you will perish, too.”

    I think what Jesus is saying here is that bad things will happen to good people and we can spend our time asking why, what did they ever do to deserve it? However what He would rather have us do is think about our own lives and if we are right with Him because the perishing He is talking about it an eternal “damnation” i.e. the death of the spirit just the death of the body. Perhaps in the tragedy of a good man, God shows His mercy on those of us who aren’t so very good. In taking your colleague and not us, perhaps actually it is Him working it for good, giving us the chance to look and reflect on our own lives because who knows, tomorrow it could be us?

  10. shweta rocky Says:

    i think whatever happens it is alll decided by the almighty.everyone teaches be good with other and leave bad things.its our will if we will behave nicely we will get the good output its a great phrase someone has quoted ‘as you sow so shalll you reap’

  11. michelle Says:

    I’m an Indigo child and I truthfully have no idea why good people die. We have been studying the Holocaust lately and all I can do is think, this man must have died because he looks Jewish but this man does not look Jewish one bit so he survived. I wish God could have stopped the Holocaust from ever happening. Maybe He does not have those kind of abilities because if anything I know God would do anything to keep from people dying.

  12. kyriakos Says:

    well i believe in God(not christian) and i try to do good and even though i have seen the greater good prevail this question puzzles my mind as well evil is not as weak as we are taught it is it is a lot stronger and it wins many times but who said this world is based on logic

  13. Stats Monkeys at work « TheKillRomeoProject Says:

    […] Why do good people die? June 200714 comments 3 […]

  14. Bruce Wilson Says:

    Well,my best friend died for no reason,just collapsed and gone.No warning,no apparant health problems,just died.I felt robbed, i wanted to be there with him to help him in his moment of need.At least i could have said i tried,,sadly never had that chance.Nearly 4 years later,i grieve for him every day,far more than i do for my Mum,my brothers and sisters who are dead..Jim was good,,he treated people with respect,loved his wife and children and enthusiad about the world and had so much to offer to anyone who would listen..I can not believe in the Christian God we are tought from birth.I do believe in right and wrong and good and evil.Sadly the perspectives wain and my heart breaks with every wrongdoing in this world.
    My legacy to this world is 2 sons.I wish i had never made this mistake,i see only darkness

    • thekillromeoproject Says:

      @ Bruce – Thanks for your response. I too have a son who’s just 3 years old right now. While I don’t regret bringing him into this world, I do worry about what sort of future he is going to face. It seems mankind is hellbent on turning this planet into a wasteland torn by war and famine. It seems all there is left to do is trust in the God of my childhood and try my best to bring my son up to be resourceful and independent.

  15. Fred Says:

    You have many lives. Not just one. No one truly dies…

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