Divine Protection or Just Plain Lucky?
Earlier this week on The Today Show, Robert Robertson, a pilot who survived a plane crash by landing his plane a few feet away from I-95 in Florida said he was no longer an agnostic. His survival was truly a miracle since his plane literally disintegrated around him and he was left sitting in his seat dazed but ok.
In cases like this, it’s easy to conclude “divine intervention.”
Psalms 91 is a beautiful Psalm talking about the God’s protection for those who “dwell in the secret place of the Most High.”
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.
A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you…
…No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
On the same day as the crash mentioned earlier, another plane crashed into a restaurant in North Carolina. However, in this crash, the pilot was killed and several injured.
Did God divinely protect Robert Robertson and kill the pilot in North Carolina?
I recently read the novel “Just One Look” by Harlan Coben. In this novel, a father or a young man killed in a concert stampede had this conversation with a survivor:
“He [the son] was standing next to Ryan. They were body to body. But when the crush began, this Reed kid somehow got lifted up on someone’s shoulder. He got on the stage.
You remember what his parents said?
Jesus lifted up their son. It was God’s will. You see, Mr. and Mrs. Reed prayed and God responded. It was a miracle, they said. God looked out for their son- that’s what they kept repeating. As if God didn’t have the desire or inclination to save mine.”
As a Christian, I could never figure out what to say in the face of tragedy. It is so easy to “praise God” for miracles but what about all the cases where “God” does not provide the “miracle?” If God saved Mr. Robertson, where was he for the pilot in North Carolina?
– The de-Convert