1 Peter 3.12 promises, the eyes of the LORD watch over those who do right, and his ears are open to their prayers. But the LORD turns his face against those who do evil.
This promise is what we would expect from a God Who is good. It makes sense to us that a good God would watch over those who do good and hear their prayers. It also makes sense to us that God would oppose those who do evil in the world.
There is a disconnect however from this logic and some of our experiences. Evil in the world is a problem for people.
People expect God to do something about it. The fact that evil appears to be getting worse increases the doubt and concern about God’s reality or His goodness.
The problem with evil in the world is the result of people doing bad things to people. God repeatedly commands people to do good to one another; to love our neighbor as we love ourselves.
People on the other hand either ignore God or choose to follow a different, manufactured God, who gives them permission to do the evil that is in their heart to do. The One True God allows this to happen for two reasons.
First, as the promise we are discussing today states, God is looking for good people to do the right thing. Evil people are to be defeated by good people doing what pleases God. Love, service, humility, kindness, patience are to win over hate, selfishness, anger, and pride.
The godly do win but sometimes the victory takes place after they lose their lives. Jesus is the best example of this but so is Martin Luther King Jr. and numerous others as well.
God plans to reward people for their deeds on earth whether good or bad: God gives good people opportunity to do good for glorifying Him on earth which He will reward in heaven.
Second, because God will punish the wicked by sending them into eternal damnation where they will suffer forever, He gives ample opportunity for the evil person to repent. God does not desire to send any person to hell so He allows the evil person much time to consider their ways, hate their evil, seek His forgiveness and restore their relationship with Him and humanity.
Many people don’t like this about God. They want the rapist to go to hell. God however sees each person as a wayward child and longs with the love of a Father for that child to turn from their wicked ways and embrace His love for them.
Only those who choose to ignore God and His means of salvation through Jesus the Savior their entire life on earth, will finally be sent to hell to regret their decision eternally.
If we would experience God’s presence in our lives today we must do good as He defines it in the Bible then we will experience His positive response to our prayers.
We will also know the joy of doing good in the world today and receive God’s reward for that good when we face Him in person on judgement day.