tornado alley

Talking Dallas, twisters, theodicy and the Book of Job -- from one theological perspective

Talking Dallas, twisters, theodicy and the Book of Job -- from one theological perspective

Spring is approaching in the Sunbelt, which means one thing to people in places like North Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Arkansas and Western Tennessee.

Here come the tornadoes.

As someone who was a child in Wichita Falls on April 3, 1964 (and several other relevant dates), I know quite a bit about the astonishing, random, mysterious power of twisters. If you were looking for a natural phenomenon that can jump start a debate about "theodicy" -- the technical term for "God in the dock" arguments about good and evil -- a tornado will do the trick.

What does it mean when a twister destroys a neighborhood and leaves a church standing? What does it mean when the church is destroyed, as well? No, I don't think this is a denominational thing.

To cut to the chase, I was glad when The Dallas Morning News did something interesting the other day, offering a question-and-answer piece that ran with this headline: "Texas Faith: How a loving God can permit killer tornadoes." It's well worth the time and raises some interesting questions and hints at ONE TAKE on some answers. Hold that thought.

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