Any Bible-believer among my readers might be thinking that no Christian should be even mentioning “luck”. Aren’t all things under God’s control? Isn’t the concept of luck ungodly and demonic?
Well yes, I do believe that God is in ultimate control of all eventualities and outcomes, and that for the believer, “all things work together for good”. And let’s not forget that this reference applies to good things as well as bad: God works both for our ultimate good. However, there’s an enormous difference between circumstances being foreknown by God and then used and manipulated by Him, and the direct pre-planning and enforcement of every single thought, action and reaction that there ever was or will be, as though we were just mechanical constructions.
If all things are orchestrated by God, there is no such thing as luck, but also no such things as free will. Any claim that God orchestrates all things but that you still have free will is ambiguity and equivocation.
If all things are not directed and caused, then in a genuine physical universe with natural laws, there must be such things as coincidences, randomness, unexpectedness, and luck, or its opposite…bad luck. Luck doesn’t have to be anything spiritual at all. However, as I’ll note later, it may be. In this case “bad luck” , or even good luck could fit into the subject of spiritual opposition as a cause of suffering.
I’m convinced that God knows all things, from the start to the finish of time. He knows the end from the beginning, and His Plan is at the center of it all. He didn’t plan what you would have for breakfast today, though He could and would do even that if it was within His purposes. God foresaw and foresees all events, but He doesn’t plan them all. He plans some things, so that Jesus Christ is “the Lamb who was slain from the creation of the world” (Revelation 13:8). He probably pre-plans some of the events of your life, but certainly not all, and certainly not what you choose to believe. If He did, He would be responsible for Hitler’s Final Solution, and Pol Pot’s Killing Fields.
Some Christians think that God plans and directs all events, right down to which parking space you will occupy next time you go to the gym. Other people are sure that we are totally under the power of fate, karma, determinism, Dao or any other forces or philosophies, and that everything which happens is decided by some spiritual force or being or beings beside God far above us. There’s even a form of determinism in secular science these days, in which for example, while you think you are choosing beef over chicken for dinner today with the power of your free will, you are mistaken: it was already decided by the science of life, your own biological make-up, and the universe, that you would choose beef, long before you even started to apply your mind to the decision.
In Biblical theology true coincidence and true free will has to be a reality, in my strong opinion. If not, then all of the history and plan of God that we read about in Scripture is a sham, including the crucifixion of Jesus Christ: it was unnecessary. It was all an act, if there is no free will. If there is no free will, God himself planned for Adam and Eve and all of us to fall into sin. He planned for us all to get sick and die. He planned for literally billions of people to go to hell. What kind of a God is that? I’ll tell you that it isn’t the kind of God I would worship or love.
I once wrote about the link between Murphy’s Law and the spiritual world we Bible believers are aware of. I began by pointing out the likelihood of a slice of toast falling from your plate ending face down on the floor, and I concluded finally that while the descent of toast to the floor from your plate may most often be directed by gravity and other laws of nature, it may also be directed on site, at the time, by some unseen and malevolent or mischievous force, which vary in their degree of evil.
As I’ve written before, I think that fallen spirits are employed and allowed by God to help in the implementation of the Curse, among other things. They don’t want to serve God but they all do. I know this sounds like heresy and madness to some people-perhaps most- but I believe its a fact heavily hinted at in Scripture. Why didn’t God send the devil and his cohorts to the pit long before now? Why was Satan allowed to roam the Garden and to tempt Eve? Why does God allow them to wander the earth and, within limits, to tempt, attack, frustrate, annoy, lie, confuse, mislead and destroy?
Why will God release Satan from the pit at the end of the Millennium for a short time? Read Revelation 20:7-10.
And so luck, or its opposite, may be the result of the laws of probability and the laws of nature, and perhaps sometimes the result of the work of those around us who wish to demoralize, tempt, mislead and destroy us, even by giving us the good luck which will lead us away from God.
My post mentioned above goes more deeply into the subject, with several Bible references:
Toast, Murphy’s Law and the Bible.