– Romans 5:18-19. If there was no sin in the world there would be no suffering. Job 1:11-12). MESSAGES THAT MOVE US TO ACTION. What to do when suffering comes; 4. God must have a reason for allowing evil and suffering but the reason is beyond human understanding. What do many religious teachers say about suffering? What is important to remember, is that suffering in this life does not negate or cancel out God’s love and concern for humanity. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. In order to understand some of the big questions that surround this topic we have to look at God’s plan as a whole. Why do bad things happen to good people? Because we have been comforted through the Word of God, we in turn may be able to comfort others. James 1:2-4 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. God works within the fallen world to effect change, and He uses fallen people to accomplish His will. In Second Corinthians we read: Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. But God has revealed answers through the Bible and through the Person of His Son, Jesus Christ. Suffering holds a message of comfort. Now that I have thoroughly depressed you, let me explain why you don’t have to be. In Islam, the idea of God suffering is nonsense—it is thought to make God weak. Before we even dive into the topic, I want to say that this is not easy. In an interview, Governor Robert List talked about the good times at the MGM only 24 hours before. November 30, 2007 5 Pastors, priests, and religious teachers often say that it is God’s will that people suffer. God has not made us like trees, he’s not made us like mountains, he hasn’t made us like animals. Home In Buddhism, to reach divinity is precisely to move beyond the possibility of suffering. This is a question that has baffled people for generations and I am going to give you a great theological answer right now: I don’t know. As challenging as this life can be, there is one experience of suffering you and I will never have to experience. Suffering carries a message of mystery. Find hope, peace, and security today. With the most amount of care, grace, and compassion, I want to attempt to address this very delicate issue. God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. God took the initiative in giving His Son, Jesus Christ. I will get to the reason why in just a moment. What I have discovered is that there are some questions that just won’t get answered in this life. I saw compassion in action. However, it does point to a truth that we sometimes forget. There is a mystery as to why He put people on this earth. If there were two words or ideas that don’t belong in the same sentence these would qualify. We will never have to suffer the eternal punishment for our sin, because Jesus suffered in our place. The Bible teaches that we are to be patient in suffering. The Bible contains a lot of suffering, but surprisingly says little about it. Why does God allow suffering? Temporary suffering is the result of the fallen sinful world we live in; but is limited to this life. There is comfort we never thought was possible. If you remember the story of Joseph in Genesis, look at some of the conditions of his story. by Dr. David Jeremiah. Man said, “I don’t need You, God. Jesus prayed “that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You” (John 17:21). Why are we here? Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. – Genesis 50:19-20. Remember what Joseph said to his brothers at the end of Genesis: But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. And he will supply deliverance. Joseph was elevated to the second-highest leadership position in Egypt and because of his interpretation of a dream, that entire region was saved from famine. Virtually every passage on suffering in the New Testament deflects the emphasis from cause to response. Why Does God Allow Suffering? 2. That means we can choose to sin, and the natural consequence of disobedience to God’s beneficial laws is suffering. God Permits Suffering First, the Bible affirms that God has chosen to permit suffering. Yet the story doesn’t end with his suffering. For the Christian, then, there is one final reason why God allows our suffering: to point us back to the sufferings of Christ. They will ask, “How is it that Christ is so in control of his or her life that he or she was able to help others?”. It ends well for him and for everyone. One of the most pressing challenges to Christianity is the problem of evil. Yet it's still important to grapple with the question of why God allows suffering in our lives. Suffering does not have to have the last word in our lives. When I was asked to explain the tragedy of the fire at the MGM Grand Hotel, I had to say, “There’s a mystery to tragedies like this. Just as often as they encourage us, these words of Jesus may make us feel uncomfortable. You can! Here are sixteen Bible passages that help us understand why God allows the presence of evil and suffering in the world: God has a purpose in everything he allows. They will be punished with everlasting destruction and shut out from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might – 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9. I know that doesn’t offer much comfort, especially if you are suffering right now. I have called you by name; you are mine. Third, our attitude in suffering should glorify God. Some day, for all of you, if you don’t know God, the music will stop. When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. All of our problems and our suffering, including death itself, are a result of man’s rebellion against God. God allows the suffering, then comforts you and brings you through it, so then you can in turn comfort someone else. Toll Free: 1-877-247-2426. The curse that brought us sin, suffering and death has been overturned by Christ who brought us righteousness and eternal life. Does the Bible Explain Why God Allows Suffering? There are no simple answers related to suffering because the pain is too great to treat lightly or to randomly dismiss. So why does God allow suffering? 5. Bible Study Resources - Tips, Online Bible Search, Devotions. What Should I Expect From Myself in 2021? Because tragedy happened to you, it gives you a greater sense of oneness with others who experience tragedy. Yet within that sin and evil God has the ability to turn the most difficult pain and suffering into something that becomes good and blesses many people. In suffering there is a message of unity. He was: - thrown in prison for a crime he didn’t commit. Two of the biggest are suffering and death. It is a struggle for any believer wondering why God allows suffering to admit, “I don’t know.” But sometimes that is the best answer we can offer, unless it is, perhaps, no answer at all. At the root of all suffering as we established is sin and evil. 4. First, He uses pain and suffering to draw us to Himself so that we will cling to Him. This is a difficult question and also a very common one. Previous article The Death of Christendom. We are all under the curse of Adam’s sin, which means you will experience pain, hardship, and tears in this life—and one day you will experience death. Article Images Copyright ©. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous. God allowed evil and suffering in the world to bring His Son to the cross so that we might have the opportunity to obtain eternal life. I have always believed that the suffering you may experience in this life, that God allows, is not for you. Job never asked why those things were happening to him. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4). But why does God allow suffering? Does Satan have authority over the world? Even though we can't understand everything about it, I believe we can understand some things. God allows the suffering, then comforts you and brings you through it, so then you can in turn comfort someone else. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. I want to forgive you. Suffering draws us closer to God Jesus said, “for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me” (Matthew 25:35-36). “Our suffering may be intended by God to draw out of others something they wouldn’t otherwise have experienced.” The Bible doesn’t address the particular situation of each person. He sees our life every day and knows exactly where we stand. Certain narratives during Jesus’ life, however, give us guidance. The answer to this question is that none of us are truly innocent or undeserving. Give me grace to endure and wisdom to understand the purpose behind what you are doing. One of the questions that lie beneath the surface for many people is...does the bible explain why God allows suffering? A Prayer for Peace in Confusing Times - Your Daily Prayer - January 19, 6 Major Differences between Christianity and the American Dream, 5 Powerful Prayers for Protection in the Storms of Life, Amazing Children's Choir Sings 'I Can Only Imagine', I'm Happy For You... (Not) - Crosswalk the Devotional - January 20, Prayers for President Joe Biden, on Inauguration Day and Beyond, 10 Things Never to Say to Your Adult Children, 10 Encouraging Bible Verses about Not Giving Up, This site is a proud member of the Salem Web Network, a subsidiary of, Copyright © 2021, Crosswalk.com. My ‘I don’t know’ answer to the question of why God allows suffering may not feel very theological. That’s the hardest thing of all, to be patient, to have songs in the night. O Israel, the one who formed you says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. Share: Our pain is real. Where Are You, God? Will Graham Q&A: What Good Can Possibly Come from COVID-19? There is no such thing as gratuitous suffering. Why God Allows Suffering. As believers, how can you identify and understand someone else’s pain if you have never experienced it? Ask God to help you have a trusting, patient attitude, and flee from bitterness. Second, we should ask God to teach us all He would have us learn about Him, about ourselves, about others and how we can minister to those who are suffering. “And how quickly,” he said, “the music has stopped.”. There are great Christian apologists and scholars who tackle this question. Here are five reasons why God allows suffering in life. But some people ask, why doesn’t God just get rid of evil once and for all? Amen. The Bible chooses to focus more on the response to suffering rather than the causation. He was innocent. Some may say that everything that happens to a person, including tragedies, has already been decided by God and that we can never understand why. But in this fourth part, the subject of God’s love is brought into question. First, it should be one of worship. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. I can build my world without You.” God said, “If you take that position, you will suffer and die.” Man took that position, and he began to suffer, and he has been dying ever since. Clarence L. Haynes Jr. is a speaker, Bible teacher, author and co-founder of The Bible Study Club. Contact Us. I know it’s hard when you go through suffering, but God will use that suffering to lift someone else who may be going through something similar. Privacy Because it was his suffering that brought about our salvation. BGEA is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. God has a purpose even for evil and suffering. Billy Graham’s Answers for Hard Times. However, just understand there are things that will happen in this life that you won’t be able to explain, and to which you will never get an explanation. God has not left us alone in our suffering. If we turn to Him, there is strength we never thought we had. ©2021 BGEA God is still there despite any tragedy you may be experiencing. All rights reserved. God’s ways and purposes are higher than ours, and we won’t always figure them out. Follow the Steps to Peace online to learn about Jesus or recommit your life to Him. If your spirit is separated from God for eternity, it will be lost forever. Are you prepared to meet God? 1. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their … Adam’s decision brought with it all the consequences of sin. Photo Credit: ©Unsplash/Suzanne D Williams. Babylon = Baby-Land, Part 4: “Why Does God Allow Suffering?” In the first three parts (click here) of this topic, several aspects of Mankind’s childish behavior were discussed. But God has provided a rescue in the Person of His Son, Jesus Christ. Our loving and merciful God has a perfect plan to use that suffering to accomplish His threefold purpose. If there is anything that doesn’t make sense and is hard to come to terms with, it’s the idea of a loving God and suffering. God will one day set things back in order, and suffering will be no more. The Bible does not seem to provide a single, clear answer to the question of why God allows suffering. This may not be the case. Why not nip the entire suffering business in the bud – at the beginning of the world? Yet, even though we can understand what evil is, we can define and see what suffering is, it’s very difficult to understand why God allows it to continue. The Bible says, “It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). And that’s the way we ought to be as Christians, one in Christ. However, I want you to be careful not to automatically equate any suffering you may be going through right now with some specific sin you have committed. This doesn’t remove the temporary suffering in this life, but it gives us the hope of freedom from suffering in our eternal life. No. I would encourage you today in your suffering to know that God has neither forgotten you, nor rejected you, and he is not mad at you. I know we don’t often think of it in this light but I think it’s an important question for you to ask. All suffering is the result of sin which ultimately produces evil. The LORD has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble. Why does God make people suffer? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. In suffering there is also a message of compassion. My child is suffering. Once you clear that hurdle, we can now look more intently at the question: does the bible explain why God allows suffering? That’s because God wants to be in a relationship with us. “But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you. Will Graham: A Story on Social Distancing from the Old Testament, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, NC 28201 That’s where a lot of people stop and say, “Oh, we don’t know why. In suffering there is also, I believe, a message of warning. All of our problems and our suffering, including death itself, are a result of man’s rebellion against God. You are brothers and sisters. God's ultimate purpose for suffering is redemption for mankind ( 1 Corinthians 15:22) and renewal of all creation ( Acts 3:21 ). He has spent more than 30 years serving the body of Christ in various capacities and has just released his first book, The Pursuit of Purpose. The reality of the fallen world we live in is that people are going to suffer (see John 16:33). Maybe the answer to the question does the bible explain why God allows suffering is found here in the person of Jesus Christ. When the Bible speaks of suffering, if you sum them all up, there are really two types that matter most: temporary suffering and eternal suffering. Even a quick look at the Bible bears witness to the fact that we aren’t the first to walk down the difficult roads of disappointment, persecution, and bitterness. That is what heaven is. Paul refers to this in 2 Corinthians 4:17: For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. It may be to bless someone else. Physical death is just the death of the body, but the spirit lives on. He does this to shows us that the home we long for is with Jesus Christ, by whom we were created and in whom we find our life. God draws us to Himself and makes us holy. It is not an easy thing to go through, but if you understand the positive effects of suffering it will help you endure until the end of your trial. What do you have to do to be ready? Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned. Eternal suffering is the result of rejecting God’s love and mercy while in this life, coupled with paying the ultimate price for it throughout eternity. And there is hope for today and tomorrow. It is so important to remember that we will face hardships in this life, but it’s more important to remember those hardships won’t last forever. • Topics: Suffering. But man rebelled against God. In fact, you will gain these things from your pain. The question, “why does God allow pain and suffering,” is always asked of pain and suffering experienced by those we deem to be innocent or undeserving of such affliction. You can feel for them in that suffering situation. Even if I don’t understand why I know that I can trust you. He will punish those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. Why Does God Allow Suffering? God’s chosen people (the Hebrews) suffered when they disobeyed the Mosaic Covenant (Deuteronomy 28). Because He allows us to have free choice—to be humans and not preprogrammed robots. Delivered Sunday, July 22 at Cherry Hills Community Church in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. Local: 704-401-2432 What does God’s patience allow us to do? On the other hand, eternal suffering is the worst of both worlds. Permissions In suffering there is also a message of compassion. Ultimately, God is glorified through Job’s suffering, however, that still does not explain why God allowed Job, or why he allows anyone else, to suffer. This I believe is one of them. Yet God never promised that he would wipe away all tears and pain in this life. At least not to the end of why God allows suffering. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior…” – Isaiah 43:1-3. As fire swept through the MGM Grand Hotel, I saw the emergency crews, the military people, The Salvation Army, the Red Cross, the doctors, the nurses and the people coming to donate clothes and food. If you’d like more on the question of why God allows pain and suffering, please see The Case for Faith, which is available for free through local libraries. By But, it is true: the sinful condition of our world is the result of one man’s sin. It will all be over. If you are in Christ, then the moment this life ends, so does any suffering you may be experiencing. That’s why He rose from the dead. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”. This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged. And not only that, He is a God who actually addresses the issues that are responsible for our pain and our suffering. 2. – 2 Corinthians 1:4-5. That’s why Christ died on the cross. You may never fully understand the sufferings and trials of this life...I know I don’t. Suffering as an offering of self in the imitation of Jesus. The Bible says, “Great is the mystery of godliness” (1 Timothy 3:16). The devil said to God, “If You take all those possessions away from him, he’ll curse You and turn from You.” But God replied, “You can do anything to him, except you can’t kill him, and then we’ll see” (Cf. Sometimes in the midst of trial and pain, we have to look forward. I want you to go to heaven.” But you must respond to Him. – While suffering can be a big divider, it also brings people together and allows them to be of service to one another. I want to share these two: Romans 8:18I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us, Revelation 21:3-4And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! This framework is important. If you are suffering, as difficult as it may be, when compared to eternity, your current suffering is only for a little while. Am I in the place of God? I don’t understand all the things that are happening in my life, but, O God, I trust in You.” The opportunities of suffering; 5. God wants people to follow the example of Jesus and help those who are suffering. Why would an all-loving God allow suffering? To learn more about his ministry please visit clarencehaynes.com. He didn’t deserve that. 7 Biblical Answers for Dealing With Adversity 5 Surprising Reasons God Allows Adversity When You Feel Discouraged… Do This Immediately 4 Ways to Meet God in Hard Times Overcoming Anxiety: How to Win Against Worry Trusting God When Your Prayers Aren’t Answered 5 Psalms for Hope in Hard Times What if your trial was the one thing that God used in your life to win one lost soul to him? Whether our sufferings come from the consequence of sin, the curse of sin, or are a chastening for sin, we view them all through the lens of the cross, and rejoice: “ there is now no CONDEMNATION for those who are in Christ Jesus ” (Romans 8:1). He allows trials and suffering because He hopes that it will purify our … God has uniquely given human beings the ability to make meaningful choices. Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. Suffering reminds us … In this, God has not stepped away from fallen creation but has stepped into it by becoming Jesus. God is the designer of a plan that allowed for sin and suffering. The Bible teaches that Satan is the author of sin. Because to get a handle on suffering you must learn to look at it in its proper perspective. If God is a God of love, why is there so much evil and suffering in the world? 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