In Malachi 2:17, we see God has yet another charge against the people. “You have wearied the Lord with your words. ‘How have we wearied him?’ you ask. By saying, ‘All who do evil are good in the eyes of the Lord, and he is pleased with them,’ or ‘Where is the God of justice?’”
I imagine we’ve all felt this way at some point in time. I know I certainly have. As a Christian, life isn’t always a cake walk. Things don’t always go our way or even turn out remotely like we hope they would. Worse yet, life kicks us when we’re already down. Our car breaks down one week then the next the furnace needs to be fixed. We catch a cold only to have something worse come along right after.
When we’re down, we look around at everyone else and it seems like we’re in horrible shape. Worse yet our neighbor who has never set foot inside a church appears to have it all; a nice new car, green grass, a high paying job. Why does God allow me to suffer when a person who couldn’t care less about God is prospering next to me? Or what about your friend who you know routinely cheats on their taxes or even their spouse and never gets caught. If God is a God of justice, why doesn’t He do something about it? Why doesn’t He punish the wicked and reward those who have been following him for so long a time?
The Israelites had this problem. They were surrounded by enemies. There were idols to foreign gods to their right and to their left. While they struggled to live everyone else appeared to be prospering. They were awaiting a Messiah who would come and punish their enemies and establish the kingdom of Israel forever. But the Messiah was nowhere to be found. There appeared to be no justice.
We get very discouraged when it appears that God has forgotten our faithfulness. We get frustrated when it appears that liars, cheaters, cruel people, and thieves get away with everything. We can start to question whether we made a poor decision somewhere along the line. Did I marry the wrong person? Did I choose the wrong career? Did I raise my children the way they should have been raised?
Instead of looking to the past or worrying about the future, when we are faced with times like these, we need to evaluate ourselves in the present. What are we doing and why are we doing it? If we are following God, why? What made you become a Christian and devote your life to serving the Lord? Were you promised that everything would be easier and come out the way you wanted? Or did you choose to follow because you knew that there was a hole inside of you that only God could fill. Was it the knowledge that you are a sinner and that only God could forgive you your sins?
When we find ourselves in frustrating circumstances and we begin to question why God seems to ignore us and yet bless the wicked, we need to remember why we follow God. Then, we can look at history and realize that God does bless his children. Sometimes it is not in the ways that we would want and often it is in ways that we don’t realize. Likewise, God does not ignore the wickedness of those around us who appear to prosper.