God is not to blame for tragic death of Corey Brown

Mike Tupper’s Jan. 29 column concerning Corey Brown’s tragic death was a compassionate and accurate explanation of an otherwise inexplicable event. The community support described in the Feb. 1 article by Adam Sodders was appropriately reflective of the love that Corey’s family and friends had for him, and that he had for them. May the Brown family continue to draw comfort and courage from the community’s expressions of love and support during the difficult months ahead.

What was not a compassionate and accurate explanation of what happened is the cartoon that appeared in the Feb. 2 Editorial Forum that, in essence, points the finger at God as the one responsible for the tragedy. As Mr. Tupper expressed, “When tragedy strikes, we want answers. We want accountability. There must be someone or something to blame.” But, is God the one to blame or hold accountable?

Scripture teaches that God is love (1 John 4:8, 16), and that his love and goodness far surpasses that of even a parent for a child (Matthew 7:9-11). In any civil society, when someone takes the life of another, they are justly prosecuted and condemned. Then, why are we expected to trust a God who supposedly takes the life of a healthy, vibrant young child? No thinking person can misconstrue that as an act of love. There are over 31,000 verses in the Bible, and not a single one talks of God taking the life of a young child because he needs them in heaven. Such a thought is pure fiction. Such a thought does harm, not good.

What parent is able to approach God with joy and thanksgiving when they believe that he took their beloved son away from them? God is the one who gave his only begotten son, to die in our place – so that we might have a more abundant life (John 10:10). God’s will for his children is that “it may go well with you, and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” (Ephesians 6:3). So what words, what visual image does God offer as comfort for those experiencing the indescribable pain of loss?

“….and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18)