As He was walking along one day, Jesus saw a man who had been blind since birth. His disciples, picking up on the object of His attention, asked Him, "Teacher, whose sin caused this man's blindness? Was his own sinfulness the source of the problem, or did he inherit some generational curse from his sinful parents?" Jesus answered them, "Why do you assume that his blindness is the direct result of sin? And even if it were the result of sin, why is it so important to you to know whose sin it was? You need to change your perspective and your priorities. When you see someone in need like this, your immediate response should be to look for a way for the works of God to be displayed in his or her life, and nothing more."
(John 9:1,2 - John In The Now
Let me get right to the point...Haiti only needs our prayers and support right now, not our smug judgment and bogus attempts at explaining the unexplainable. I don't want to mention any names...don't want to bash any ministers or televangelists...but on a day when people are devastated, and their whole life is in ruins (we have people in our church who don't even know yet if their relatives in Haiti are dead or alive), I think that it is beyond insensitive for anyone to get on TV and say that the earthquake is the result of a pact that the nation made with the devil 200 years ago! If that were the case, then why did the earthquake just now get here? And what's the reason, then, for all the other earthquakes in other parts of the world?
I'm so tired of ministers making such ridiculous claims! Katrina was not God's punishment on the "sin" of New Orleans. I was there last year and visited Bourbon Street, and I can tell you that that area of the city is just fine...virtually untouched by the hurricane. If God were going after the city because He hates Mardi Gras (as I heard a minister friend of mine claim recently), then He has terrible aim! Furthermore, if He were taking out "sinful" cities, then how did Las Vegas, San Francisco, New York, or any other city escape His wrath?
After the 911 attacks, these same ministers were on TV that night claiming that the events of the day were God's punishment on feminists and abortionists. Again, if God was punishing America for "sin", then where in the world was He during centuries of slavery? These types of ministers are also quick to say that AIDS is God's punishment on gays, to which I also ask, then why weren't there cases of the disease before 1981? There certainly were homosexuals before then.
The bottom line is that Jesus said that it rains on the just and the unjust. David said, "If You mark iniquities, then who would stand?", and "He has not dealt with us after our sin, nor rewarded us according to our iniquities...". Look, I'm not inviting debate on this, and I've read the Old Testament, so no one needs to tell me about Sodom and Gomorrah and Tyre and Sidon, et al... (get my teaching 'A Tale of Two Trees' for an explanation of those things)...
Also, when a disaster like this happens, the question always comes up about why innocent people have to suffer...why do bad things happen to good people? I have two things to say to that....first, from a natural perspective, some things just happen in the earth...earthquakes are the result of geological movement that goes on all the time...hurricanes are the result of temperature changes and winds over the ocean...they are just forces of nature. Secondly, when you try to make sense of why "good things happen to bad people" or why "bad things happen to good people", you can never come to a rational conclusion. The world never makes sense when you look at it through the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.
I pray that we are entering a new season...a new generation...in which people of faith will just begin to help in times of disaster, instead of wasting time trying to explain why the disaster happened...that ministers will use their pulpits as a platform to bring about positive change, instead of exploiting them as an outlet for foisting their own agendas and prejudices on their sphere of influence. In the above passage, the disciples were preoccupied with the reason for the man's blindness...Jesus was simply focused on making him well.
Just pray for Haiti. Send some money if you can. If you can do more, do it. If your loved ones are alive and well today, then hold them close, and be grateful that you are not in the situation that the Haitians are in today. And then just be quiet...