-We trust advice on suffering only from the suffering. So this cannot be advice.
-There is a challenge in shifting from “permission” to maranatha. “Why did God allow this” is anwered, for believers, by some sense of purpose or reason, but we are incomplete if we rest here and perhaps not even faithful to the true horror of the original suffering. When will the Lord not just justify but reverse this?
-“God permits” is not “God greenlights”. Think Lincoln permitting slavery vs. Douglass permitting it. Douglass allowed for perpetual slavery, Lincoln allowed only a road to ultimate extinction.
-The critique of Christianity as opium is first addressed to those who have fallen into the comforting despair that we can merely be consoled and not redeemed.
–Job and Satan. The free will defense includes the devils.
-Satan’s non serviam is his own interpretation of what God called him to.
-The Fall made suffering just. The Incarnation made it an evil that demands justification.
-“When the Son of Man comes, will there be faith on earth?”, i.e. when the final eschatological promise is revealed, will anyone have been waiting for it, crying out for it, even demanding it? Or did we just get tired of seeing the same sky everyday? There is an eschatological despair in our sense of the heavens as the paradigm for necessity/ determinism.
-In Christ man demands a new heaven and a new earth. His physicality is the assurance of a new physical world where all is justified and reversed. Those in the early church who expected his immediate return were not tricked by some botched reading of an obscure prophesy, they simply saw Christ as physical and drew the obvious inference.