Q. I am a Christian who shared the Gospel to a co-worker and was he was not satisfied with my answer. His question is why God created & allows Satan to exist & cause so much pain, death & suffering, especially if He knew that he would do this. He is a Vietnam veteran ( Marines) who seen much action. Would you please help me to learn the biblical truth to better answer his & anyone who asks me this question?
A. This is a complex question and we’re not privileged to know everything that goes on in God’s mind. But keep this in mind. Usually when people ask things like this they’re really trying to deflect the discussion off of them and onto God so they can avoid having to confront their own situation.
The simple facts are these. God does know everything in advance, and he could wipe Satan out at any time. But where would that put your friend? If he destroyed Satan today He’d have to destroy your friend as well because everyone who doesn’t choose to follow Jesus belongs to Satan. So out of love for us, He allows Satan to live to give people like your friend a chance to make a choice to be saved. 2 Peter 3:9 says, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”
But he won’t be patient forever. One day He will put a stop to things and then it’ll be too late. We think that day is coming soon. So tell your friend that instead of worrying about why God does this or that he should be thinking about what he’s going to do about his own situation. After he becomes a believer he can take all the time he wants to study difficult questions like the one he’s posed, and then he’ll have the Holy Spirit to guide him into all understanding.
But right now the questions are simple. Does he believe that he’s a sinner in need of a savior? Does he believe that Jesus came to be his Savior? And is he going to let the Lord’s death pay for his sins or not?