God is Not Unfair: Sermon Notes

by | Nov 15, 2020

Life is not fair.
  • This is a problem we all face.
  • This is a problem that the writes of the Bible didn’t shy away from (Jeremiah 12:1, Habbakuk 1:13, Ecclesiastes 9:11, etc.)
Who’s to blame for the unfairness of things?
  • This is not a philosophical problem but a personal one.
  • Different frameworks try to answer this:
    • Atheism says that life’s unfairness is a clear indicator of the reality that there is no God. So you can’t blame Him.
    • New Ageism believes pain and suffering are maya (an illusion). Evil doesn’t exist but is a state of mind.
    • Karma doesn’t blame God because those who experience unfairness deserve it.
    • How is a Christian supposed to think about this problem?
The tension for a Christian.
Maybe you’ve had this thought: If God is the author of life (which the Bible claims) and life is not fair (which we know), then maybe God’s not fair. 
  • You wouldn’t want to play a game with someone who didn’t play fair. You wouldn’t want to work for a boss who wasn’t fair. So why would you choose to believe, serve, and worship a God that is not fair?
  • This is a problem.
  • Everyone, regardless of when they started work for the day, received the same wage.
  • This doesn’t seem “fair,” but it’s also not “unfair.” The landowner was good to his word to the workers who showed up early. He just was really generous to the workers who showed up late.
  • The landowner operates in a whole different category than the fair/unfair paradigm.
  • And that’s a good thing. This parable is talking about eternity, salvation, and heaven. And when it comes to those things, you don’t want God to be fair. You don’t want to get what you’re owed.
For all have fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23)
  • We have all ‘missed the mark.’ The ‘glory of God’ was revealed in Jesus.
  • No one, besides Jesus, has lived a perfectly moral life. We have all done things we know we ought not to have done, and we haven’t done things we know we should’ve. We have ignored God trying to get our attention. We have done things wrong to ourselves, to others, and God. This is the definition of sin. Why does that matter?
    • For the wages of sin is death… (Romans 6:23a)
    • Sin creates a relational barrier from the Author of Life, which results in our death.
    • We want God to be like the landowner in Matthew 20. We don’t want to get what we deserve. We want grace.
    • For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23) 
    • God is better than fair!
Why is life unfair?
  • Although we don’t know the answer in full, we know that it can’t be because:
    • God doesn’t love us.
    • God doesn’t take evil or suffering seriously (the cross proves that).
  • God is better than fair. He gives us that which we don’t deserve. The wages of our sin is death. Our sin leads us to relational separation with God. But the grace and gift of God is eternal life in Jesus, that starts now and lasts forever for those who put their faith in trust in Him.


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