Jenny: A parable
A rich man had two daughters, called Julie
and Jenny. Julie was the oldest and Jenny was adopted. When they
grew up to be adults, they wanted their independence, so their
father bought them a house to live in. They enjoyed the
independence for a while, but they still felt constrained, because
their father owned the house. He was a kind man, so he arranged
for his solicitor to transfer the legal title for the house into
the name of his daughters.
He said to them, "I want to you to be
totally free from my control, so I have transferred the legal
ownership of the house to you. It is now your house. You are free
to do what you like in it. However, you need to understand that
you are also responsible for it. Enjoy your freedom, but guard it
carefully." He knew there was a risk, but he had taught them
about life and money, so he trusted them.
The two daughters really enjoyed their
freedom, but after some time Julie got bored and decided to leave
home and travel overseas. Jenny was left with a house to herself.
One day Jenny heard Mr Banker advertising
on the radio, "You will have just received the new government
valuation for your property. I can show you how to use the
increase in equity for your benefit." Jenny thought that this
sounded pretty good, so she contacted Mr Banker. He agreed to loan
her $500,000 and took out a mortgage over the property. Jenny had
a great time with the money and lots of friends, but eventually
the money was gone. Jenny was unable to pay her interest, so Mr
Banker foreclosed on the mortgage and sold the property in a
The new owner of the property was Mr
Saddun. He could have forced to leave, but he said she could
continue to live in large hall cupboard. He then rented the rest
of the house to three families of gang associates.
Life for Jenny was soon absolutely
miserable. Her new neighbors invited all their friends around and
gradually started wrecking the house. Jenny was stuck with people
she hated in a house she loved that was being trashed.
When Jennyís friends heard what had
happened, they were shocked. Some said that Jenny had been stupid;
but that would not be a very good ending to a story. Some said
that Mr Saddun was cruel and mercenary, but everyone knew that
already. He said that he was generous, because he could have
thrown her out of the house.
Many people said that Jennyís father
should have done something to prevent the tragedy. But what could
he do? He had given legal title over the house to his daughters,
so he had no legal right to prevent the mortgage or the sale. Some
might say that he made a mistake in giving the girls their
freedom. Perhaps he should have retained legal ownership of the
house, but then his girls would not have been totally free.
When Jennyís father heard what had
happened, he wept, because he loved his daughter. He had known the
risk when he gave her the house that things could go wrong, but he
had chosen to giver her freedom, so she would grow to maturity.
Some people are saying, "If God is a
loving God, why did he allow the Tsunami to destroy the lives of
so many". The reason that God did not stop the Tsunami,
because he did not have the legal authority to do so.
When God created the world it was good and
beautiful with no Tsunamis to kill millionís of people. There
was no death at all.
God saw all that he had made, and it was
very good (Gen 1:31)
God then did two things. He gave man
(mankind) perfect freedom to choose how they would live, and he
gave them legal authority over the entire earth.
God blessed them and said to them,
"Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and
subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the
air and over every living creature that moves on the ground (Gen
The highest heavens belong to the LORD,
but the earth he has given to man (Psalm 115:16).
You made him a little lower than the
heavenly beings and crowned him with
glory and honor. You made him ruler over the works
of your hands; you put everything under his feet: all
flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, the birds
of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the
paths of the seas (Psalm 8:8-5).
God gave us dominion over the earth, but
we did not use it wisely. The devil tricked us into obeying him,
and seized our authority over the earth from us. This is why he
was able to show Jesus all authority over the earth and say that
it had been given to him.
The devil led him up to a high place and
showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And he
said to him, "I will give you all their authority and
splendour, for it has been given to me (Luke 4:5,6).
The fall didnít just affect our
relationship with God, it also brought about a dramatic change to
the entire earth, as the devil has used his authority to wreck
destruction upon it. Although its original goodness has not been
eradicated, it has become a much more dangerous place to live.
For the creation was subjected to
frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one
who subjected it (Rom 8:20).
Creation is no longer totally good, as God
created it, but is in bondage to death and decay and is groaning
in pain (Rom 8:21,22). The groaning and graunching of the earth on
Boxing Day, was the result.
We expect God to honour his promises and
he does. He promised authority over the earth to man and he will
not get involved, even when things go wrong, unless he is invited by
man. He could not even send Jesus to earth on a rescue mission,
until Mary and Anna and Simeon gave him permission by praying for
a messiah. (I understand there were some places where people of
prayer gave God permission to intervene, he did
back the tsunami.)
Some people say that the Tsunami was an
"Act of God". My bible says that God is good, kind and
The LORD is gracious and compassionate,
slow to anger and rich in love.
The LORD is good to all; he has
compassion on all he has made (Psalm 145:8,9).
The death and destruction we have seen on
television over the last week, does not look like an act of this
Jesus said that the devil "comes to
steal and kill and destroy" (John 10:10). The
killing and destroying, we have seen over the last few weeks looks
to me more like the results of his efforts.
Satan used a lightening storm and a mighty storm
to attack Job and his family (Job 1:16,19). This shows that he has
power over nature as well as the world system.
Psalm 18:7-11 could be a description of the devil
causing an earthquake, as it is doubtful that God would make darkness his
The earth trembled and quaked, and the
foundations of the mountains shook; they trembled because he was angry.
Smoke rose from his nostrils; consuming fire came from his mouth, burning
coals blazed out of it. He parted the heavens and came down; dark clouds
were under his feet. He mounted the cherubim and flew; he soared on the
wings of the wind. He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him-
the dark rain clouds of the sky.
The devil is the cause of most bad things
on earth, so we should blame him and not God.
God gave legal authority over this earth to us, so we
must take responsibility for what happens. The immediate
responsibility rests with the devil, but since we continue to give
him a place on this earth, the ultimate responsibility is ours. Godís
is only responsible in the sense that he gave us freedom, but we
cannot really object to that.