How to Handle This Question
(The parts in quotes are just examples of what you might say or ask.)
It is best to ask them a few questions first and to listen to their answers
- “Tell me about what you know about God’s judgement the Bible?”
- “Have you ever wondered why God judges sin?”
- “What is your understanding of sin? What is it?”
Let them know you understand
- “I can understand how you might ask this.”
- “I actually can relate to how you feel.”
- “I’m hearing what you are saying, and I think I understand.”
Relate to them
- “When I first heard this question, it seemed to challenge what I know to be true.
- “I used to feel the same way.”
- “At first glance, this gives the appearance of being a problem.”
Tell them what God has shown to you
- “Would you like to hear what God has revealed to me?”
- “God is God and we are not. He is the One Who is all knowing. We know almost nothing. Do you think that it might be likely that God would know something that we don’t know?
- “God knows every hidden thought and every hidden act. He knows about every circumstance, so He alone can judge rightly.”
- “The things in the Bible must be taken in the context of the entire Bible. You must understand God’s purpose. Only by God’s power can you receive God’s revelation and understand these things.”
- “God looks at things differently from the way we look at them. Throughout time, people have accused God of not being fair. However, God has authority and the right to do all these things. His judgment is perfect. Our place is to believe and trust Him.
- When something goes wrong, it may be something He brings to purify you.
- Death is not a great problem to God. Those who die as infants, for instance, are brought into God’s presence. When the righteous die young, it is to spare them from seeing all the evil that will be done in the Earth.
- God will be fair and just. He is doing something much bigger than we can understand and His plan goes to the eons of the eons.”
It is then good to ask an open followup question (not a “yes” or “no” question) to allow them to process what you have said.
- “How do you see this as applying to your life?”
- “What are your thoughts?”
- “Where do you see this as different from your point/question?”