Who causes storms and earthquakes?
Is it God, is it Satan, or is it nature? Whenever a great storm passes through a community, it is called an Act of God. Natural disasters are considered acts of God, but are they? While it is true that God is the one who controls nature (Job 38:1-35), and the secrets of the universe, He is also the one who shows mercy and grace toward those who believe (Ephesians 2:4; 1Timothy 1:16; Hebrew 4:16; James 4:6; Peter 1:3, 2:10; 2John 1:3).
It is normal for people to think God is upset with them when natural disasters come in forms of severe storms or earthquakes. People's first reaction is usually God sent the storms or disasters. Then they start wondering why did God send this upon them?
The messenger that reported to Job concerning Job's properties and family, said the fire that fell from heaven and killed his sheep and servants, was fire from God (Job 1:16). It was not fire from God, it was fire from Satan. God told Satan in Job 1:12 that all Job has, Satan could have power over it. The devil is the prince and the power of the air (Ephesians 2:2). It was nothing for Satan to send fire from the sky. But people naturally think it is God who sends these things. As you grow in knowledge and revelation in Jesus Christ you will learn that very seldom God brings these type disasters, while Satan is going to and fro on the earth looking for ways to bring destruction (Job 1:7).
Jesus shows us the different characters of God and Satan when he said in John 10:10 "The thief does not come except to steal and to kill, and to destroy, I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly." Jesus comes to give life not take it, while Satan is the destroyer (Isaiah 54:16). Jesus comes giving abundant life while Satan comes to kill life. This is why Peter wrote in 2Peter 5:8 and said, "Your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour."
Nothing shows this argument better than the story of Job. The Book of Job shows Satan's desire to do all he can to destroy any and all human beings, because they are the glory of God's mercy and grace, in his creation (Psalm 8:4-5). In Satan's arrogance, God uses Job to put Satan in his place. In Chapter One, God tells Satan he has power over all Job has, but leave his person alone. Satan wasted no time trying to destroy him by sending the following:
1. Sabean raided - These were descendants of Sheba who was the ancient Semitic civilization of Saba in Southern Arabia, in Yemen. They killed and took away Job's servants (Job 1:15).
2. Fire from the Sky - consumed the sheep and servants caring for the sheep (Job 1:16).
3. Chaldean raided - took the camels and killed servants (Job 1:17).
4. Great Wind - Destroyed the house killing his children (Job 1:18-19).
Job's response is a famous quote that people use all the time, however the last part of the quote is not truth, "The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away" (Job 1:21). Job is speaking out of ignorance because it was not God who did these things to Job, it was Satan; God gave Satan power over all that Job had (Job 1:12). Much of the book of Job is things they spoke out of ignorance, with no truth in their statements. Starting in Chapter 38 God begins show Job how he and his friends were not speaking truths when He said in verse 2 and 3:
"Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Now prepare yourself like a man; I will question you and you shall answer Me."
For the next three chapters God continues questioning Job and accusing him of not speaking in wisdom or knowledge. In Chapter 40:2 God demanded an answer from Job by saying,
Shall the one who contends with the Almighty correct Him? He who rebukes God, let him answer it?
Too often people will accuse God for the things someone else has done. In the book of Job, his acquaintances were accusing God for all that be fell Job, when it was Satan that was trying to destroy him.
God has brought storms and destruction.
There are scriptures that show God causing destruction because of his anger toward people.
1. The flood of Noah's day (Genesis Chapters 6-7).
2. Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 18:16 - 19:12).
3. He told Moses to separate himself from the congregation because he was going to consume them out of his anger toward them (Numbers 16:21).
4. He brought a great wind to cause a storm when Jonah was on the ship headed to Tarshish Jonah 1:4).
God can cause fire from heaven and the earth to quakes (Exodus 19:18); or arrows to shoot out of heaven (Exodus 19:12-13).
God has caused the earth to open up and swallow those he was angry with (Numbers 16:30).
God is capable of causing storms and earthquakes (Isaiah 28:2; 29:6; Jonah 1:4).
Does God still cause storms or natural disasters today?
God is merciful and did give warnings to those who he was about to send destruction down upon.
In the examples above (Exodus 19 and Numbers 16) God uses Moses to warn them first.
Jonah was sent to warn Nineveh in the book of Jonah.
He sent the prophets to warn Israel and Judah (Matthew 23:34 and 37).
God still shows the same mercy to us today by giving us warnings:
Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus (Colossians 1:28).
God's mercy and grace would not leave us only having grace for our souls, but God will also give warnings concerning attacks by Satan. The Apostle Paul was warned by the Holy Spirit to not go up to Jerusalem in Acts 21:4. This is why it is important to have close fellowship with God and be walking in the Spirit.
I have on several occasions where I experienced warnings from the Holy Spirit that resulted in protection over me or my family. In 2014 my daughter Robin, told me her sister-in-law was taking Robin's children to the beach on this certain day. That night as I was sleeping, the Holy Spirit told me "Do not allow anyone to take the children to the beach tomorrow, if they do, Andrew would not come back alive"! Andrew is Robin's son. The warning was so strong it woke me up. I called my daughter and shared the warning with her. She did not let them go the next day and the children stayed safe from Satan's desire to kill Andrew. We can receive warnings by God of the things Satan is trying to do. And God will give us warnings to keep us safe.
We also have certain protections provided by God. He will protect the righteous who honor him in the midst of storms or disasters (Proverbs 10:25). He was willing to show mercy and grace to Sodom and Gomorrah because of the righteous that may have been in those cities (Genesis 18:22-33).
God puts a hedge of protections around those who are righteous. In Job 1:10-11 Satan points out that God placed a hedge of protection around Job and all that he had. Satan was not able to break through that hedge. God had to lift the hedge of protection be for Satan could touch him. Since we are made righteous in Jesus Christ (Romans 3:21-22; 5:19) today, we have a greater hedge of protection than Job had.
Satan does try to destroy or kill you if he can (1Peter 5:8; John 10:10). But thanks to God and the works of Jesus Christ, he does not have that power. Jesus stripped him of this power by gaining victory over sin on the cross, and victory over death in his the resurrection. Then Jesus disarmed Satan and made a public spectacle out of out of him, triumphing over Satan in all things (Colossians 2:15). You can study more about this hedge of protection by clicking this link: http://manthanolibrary.blogspot.com/2015/11/hedge-of-protection.html, or go to the study later by looking up "Hedge of Protection" in the titles list.
When earthquakes, tornadoes, or hurricanes threaten where you live, don't automatically think God is upset or He is pouring out judgment upon the people where the storm hit. It most likely is an attack from Satan. God does not use evil to tempt people to do right (James 1:13; 1Corinthians 10:13). Today God always makes a way to escape evil that tries to destroy us and he protects us in the midst of destruction. If for some reason God was allowing the destruction to be a form of judgment upon you, he would have somehow warned you or make a way for your escape. If you did not take the safeguards to be safe, physically or spiritually, that might be the reason you endured what you did. God is blamed for many things that are not his doing. People do things wrongly and blame God because the wrong things resulted in bad consequences.
IIf you were hit and your families remained safe, and no one was injured or died, rejoice for the protection of the Lord. Why God protects some and not all we may never truly understand, but we do know faith, dependency upon Him, living in a life of holiness, commitment to the Lord, and claiming things in the Word of God has proven to be a means of protection for those who believe. Why one who believes it hit and even killed yet another is not, I am not sure. We cannot try to balance who is save and who is not. All we can do is be responsible for ourselves and trust in the Lord where we are in faith. The rest is up to God and his mercy. We rejoice when we see the hand of the Lord over us and we seek his protection when we see anything less.