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WCF 6:1  Why Did God permit the Fall?

"Our first parents, being seduced by the subtlety and temptation of Satan, sinned in eating the forbidden fruit. God was pleased to permit this sin of theirs, according to his wise and holy counsel, because his purpose was, through it, to glorify himself."

Here is a one sentence description of Mankind’s fall into sin. Eve and Adam listened to Satan’s lies and rebelled against God. The emphasis, though, falls on the reason that God allowed this rebellion. Before the reason is given, we are reminded that God is Wise and Holy in all His decisions, because we will be tempted to doubt them when we hear His explanation. That reason is to glorify Himself. Ok, but we ask ourselves, “How is it possible for evil to work for the glory of God? Why evil and pain and suffering at all? Isn’t there a better way? I will not believe what I cannot fully understand!” And so we descend into the tiny confines of human reason and the limited sight distance of our understanding and rail against a good God that we cannot fully comprehend. There is mystery here; biting and painful mystery, but God does give an answer. He permitted sin and evil and pain so that the glory of His justice and mercy would be fully known. (Romans 9:21-24) We cannot ‘trace the rainbow through the rain,’ (George Matheson, “O Love, That Wilt Not Let Me Go”) but we know that it is there. There is rest in faithful submission to a Father that we know, even when we cannot fully understand. Even the fall, in the providence of God, works to the glory of God! Confusing but still amazing! I cannot wait until the end of the story when I will fully understand. Until then, it is time for a faith workout! You can trust Him with the pain and the confusion.

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