Antiquarian Anabaptist

Apologetics from an Anabaptist perspective

“It was just his time to go”

Whenever someone dies unexpectedly it can be counted on that some kind soul will say, “Well, I guess it was just his time to go.” This is supposed to be a comfort to the bereaved family. How is this going to make the tragic loss of a loved one easier to bear? Shall they cancel their grieving in submission to the inexorable will of a God who decided that “now was the time for this person to go,” no matter how gruesome the circumstances?

I don’t get it. How far would these people be willing to push this line of thought?


The dozens of prostitutes that Robert Pickton picked up in Vancouver, killed, put through a meat grinder and fed to his pigs, was it “just their time to go?” Why then was Robert Pickton convicted of murder? He would merely have been the instrument to accomplish that which God had decreed must happen.

I cannot stomach that kind of belief that makes God responsible for all the horrific evil that goes on in this corrupt world. I know that there are true believers in divine election who can spin elaborate arguments to prove that a person such as Robert Pickton is entirely guilty for the things he has done, even though he could not have chosen to do otherwise. My poor mind is just not capable of such mental gymnastics.

Neither can I simply accept it on faith, because it contradicts everything that the Bible tells me about God. “Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. Do not err, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” (Jamies 1:13-17).

There is a curious resemblance between the convoluted arguments put forward by believers in divine election and those who believe in evolution. There are individuals who argue that not only is man a random blob of protoplasm with no meaning or purpose, but even his thoughts are nothing but random, meaningless electrical impulses. It appears that they see no irony in using their intellect to prove that their thoughts are completely devoid of meaning.

Both election and evolution deny that man has any freedom of choice. The proponents of these arguments believe that they are spinning an exquisite garment of the finest thread. Many people looking on are impressed with the vigour of their claims and assume they must be true, even though the threads are so fines as to be invisible. We should rather announce the obvious truth: the emperors are completely starkers!

It was Robert Pickton who decided it was time for those women to die. Despite their lamentable choice of occupation, they were individuals made in the image of God, who said: “As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?” (Ezekiel 33:11).


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