The Mountain Retreat

Biblical Discussions => Apologetics => Topic started by: Kyle on March 25, 2003, 04:32:28 AM

Title: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Kyle on March 25, 2003, 04:32:28 AM
An age old question. But one which not a lot of people have an answer for. I often wonder about this. Why does God allow suffering, and children to be raped and killed, famine and brutal wars, and people being tortured? We all know He could stop it at any time.

I don't know what to tell people when they ask me that. What do you guys say. Help.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: David Oddo on March 25, 2003, 05:36:33 AM
Hi Kyle.

We know there is a reason for everything that God allows to come to pass. And we know that mankind is desperately wicked, and when these awful things like child rape and so forth happen, we are reminded of this.  And in letting us see these evils of men, God's holiness and goodness stands out apart from men's decadence. We are reminded how evil the heart of man can be, and what wretched fallen creatures the children of Adam are. And how desperately mankind needs salvation. Infact, if God were not restraining the wickedness of man to a great degree, things would be far worse.

Jeremiah 17:9
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?  

The fact is, we live in a fallen sin-cursed world, and bad things happen. And we know that these trials of life prove us. God has ordained all that comes to pass, and nothing can happen outside of His control and plan. When some great evil or disaster befalls us, or the people we care about, our faith is tested. Do we curse God? or find fault in Him? Or do we continue to trust in him like Job? We know that even these awful things that occur, God uses for his own sovereign purpose, even though we may not understand why God is allowing them to happen when we see them. We must trust in Him.

Genesis 50:20
But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.  

Romans 8:28
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.  

In Christ

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Layla on March 25, 2003, 08:10:48 AM
Nice Post David!

Peace,
Layla
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Kyle on March 29, 2003, 05:40:46 AM
That's sound advice David. Still it is quite a mystery that it's this way.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: prover2 on March 02, 2004, 10:53:36 PM
An age old question. But one which not a lot of people have an answer for. I often wonder about this. Why does God allow children to be raped and killed, famine and brutal wars, and people being tortured? We all know He could stop it at any time.

I don't know what to tell people when they ask me that. What do you guys say. Help.


Hi !  "Though He were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.  And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all that obey him." Heb 5
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: mattbell on March 23, 2004, 10:53:38 AM
I tell people that Adam and Eve made a choice to sin.  By that choice, all the bad things that happen are a result of sin entering the World.  I tell people that instead of Blaming God, blame Man.  LEt us thank God that he doesn't let the leash go on the world, because can you really imagine if the Lord let every man to himself?  I don't want to.  I thank and bless His name that He is merciful enough to spare the world from being destroyed just yet.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Theo on March 30, 2004, 08:21:59 AM
I recently read this which may shed some light upon the question.

http://www.mountain-retreat.org/sermons/running_to_finish.shtml

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: andreas on April 01, 2004, 01:59:09 AM
Romans 5:3,4 gives us a good answer.
Suffering produces endurance(Gk.hypomone).How can we learn endurance without suffering?Take suffering away, and there would be nothing to endure.Endurance produces character(Gk.dokime),in other words, we are tried and tested,and how are we going to be tested without suffering?The last link is hope.Suffering produces hope.Hope for what?Hope of glory,and God who gives the suffering will deliver the glory.
andreas. 8)
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Diane Moody on April 01, 2004, 06:54:09 AM
Romans 5:3,4 gives us a good answer.
Suffering produces endurance(Gk.hypomone).How can we learn endurance without suffering?Take suffering away, and there would be nothing to endure.Endurance produces character(Gk.dokime),in other words, we are tried and tested,and how are we going to be tested without suffering?The last link is hope.Suffering produces hope.Hope for what?Hope of glory,and God who gives the suffering will deliver the glory.
andreas. 8)


Great answer and scripture Andreas. We all grow by means of trial and suffering, and God uses this to our benefit. We are blessed and grow by means of these trials.

 Mt 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Mitchell on April 04, 2011, 05:31:38 AM
 
  Yes, but what is the purpose of suffering, if there is a purpose?

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Tony Warren on April 04, 2011, 08:51:33 AM
>>>
Yes, but what is the purpose of suffering, if there is a purpose?
<<<

I'll give the short answer again because there is a purpose in everything, though sometimes we may never know that purpose. Yet we should never think like the world, that there is "purposeless suffering" in the world, as strange as that may sound. Because if we are faithful to believe that God is truly sovereign, then there is nothing that happens that is outside of his divine authority and control. So while we may not know nor perhaps understand completely why God allows these sufferings, we know that it is (#1) because of man's sin and ultimately to God's glory and the good of His people.

Romans 8:27-28

Suffering could be to show forth the truth that nothing in this world can be depended upon but God. Not money, nor position, nor doctors or self-righteousness. Suffering could be a chastisement to the one suffering, or it could be a means of our witness or of comfort to another. Suffering could be a demonstration of the fragile nature of man, and his ultimate end without Christ. Suffering could be a means by which we are strengthened or the means where we put greater or total trust in the Lord. Whatever the reason, sound minded Christians should always look upon it in terms of the Sovereignty and glory of God. Even the suffering of our own person is to the glory of God, and we should not despair or "naturally" feel sorry for ourselves. Rather we should count it a blessing, that God has given us the patience and faith to endure, even in this.

Jamess 5:10-11

Look at all the suffering, trials and tribulations Job endured, and yet (unlike many Christians today) he would not turn on God, point the finger accusingly and cry, "Why God?" The Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away. Blessed be the name of the Lord. That should be our position when we see suffering, disasters, trials, and tribulations. God is still in control and God is still on the throne. Nothing is out of control in His sphere.

We should glory in the Churches of God for the patience and faith we continue to have in all sufferings, persecutions, and tribulations (2nd Thessalonians 1:4-5). Because we endure, not because of our own goodness, but because of His. And this is the revealed token of His righteousness, that we may be counted worthy of the kingdom. That in times of disasters, sufferings, and trials, we endure to the end. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints, and here are they that keep the commandments of God and the faith of Christ. For what purpose is the suffering you ask? It is often for the purpose of trial by fire, and the judgment of this world--that in it we may see that when the wicked should naturally turn to the lord, they turn away in anger, judgment, resentment, and disdain.

"nosce te ipsum"
 
Peace,
Tony Warren
"I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. -Psalms 32:5"
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Reformed Baptist on April 04, 2011, 06:14:11 PM
Hey Tony,
  That's our view also, but people who are not of the sovereign grace theology don't really understand this faith, and they feel that God is being "MEAN" if he doesn't make nice and heal people who are suffering. Christians are not immune to these feelings either. I've even heard Christians doubt God.

 Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.

We don't have to fully understand every minute detail of why God wants this or that, as Abraham we simply keep hope and trust in what the Lord tells us.

You really cannot explain to people what would happen to this world in a few years if God healed everyone, every time. No one would ever die and in a few years the world would be unihabitable. People have to die that others may live. Needless to say, suffering, trials and tribulations are necessary in God's creation. Life and death is a part of this world that no one escapes from and everyone cries about.

I say "Thank God" for the time we are here. And if we are unsaved and determined to blame God, then eat, drink and be merry, because tomorrow you die.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Trevor on April 05, 2011, 06:08:57 AM
There is so little written on this subject, and that seems very strange to me because it is the first thing that unbelievers, and sometimes even Christians ask. I think it should be addressed more openly and written about in a frank manner.

There is a good book on the subject by Martyn Lloyd-Jones. If you want to pick it up it is appropriately called, "Why Does God Allow Suffering?"

But if you are looking to find anything else good or free online on the subject, the best you will find is some audio sermons and a few interesting discussions on some forums. The rest are short and uninspiring articles that fail to address the subject adequately or scripturally. Or if you find any good articles, I would appreciate passing on the link here. I'd like to read it.

Is it just me, or did there use to be a lot more articles online on Christian subjects?

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Maurice on April 06, 2011, 08:35:16 AM
There is so little written on this subject, and that seems very strange to me because it is the first thing that unbelievers, and sometimes even Christians ask. I think it should be addressed more openly and written about in a frank manner.

You want frankness? There is no answer to why God allows suffering. I have yet to hear one that answers the question. People should really stop looking for an answer. And maybe that is the answer.


Quote
Is it just me, or did there use to be a lot more articles online on Christian subjects?

It's just you. I don't see any less Christians or their writings  on the web.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: John on April 06, 2011, 08:14:44 PM
Quote
Why does God allow children to be raped and killed, famine and brutal wars, and people being tortured? We all know He could stop it at any time.

There are probably just two competing explanations for suffering: 1) God can't stop bad things from happening  or  2) God allows bad things to happen for His own reasons.

After Japan suffered so much damage and suffering the media went to Franklin Graham (Billy's son) for advice. His reply was that God didn't want the earthquake or tsunami to happen, He doesn't want bad things to happen to people because He loves everyone, but He wasn't able to stop it. This idea is part of the Arminian thought process: God is certainly powerful, but He doesn't meddle in the affairs of men - unless His help is requested. This fits their overall theological framework wherein man is the supreme sovereign and God is sidelined as a cheerleader for good, though powerless to act unless "we let Him into our heart".

The thought for Arminians is that because the defining quality of God is said to be "love", He is bound by the rules of His love (as defined by Arminians) and can only act in 'loving' ways. That is, God can do anything and everything because He is all-powerful, but His "love" constrains Him to be a gentleman, and as such, He is not able or willing to dethrone mankind's lordship by overruling the world of men.

Such explanations don't really answer the question and are viewed as foolishness by most. For if God is all-powerful, which He is, then He must be held responsible for His acting to cause evil or for His failing to act to stop it. If it is as the Arminians say, that love constrains God to permit evil – then how is love still love?

So, Arminians are left with a God whose divine nature constrains Him to helplessly watch evil happen. It's that old refrain from fearful people who would do nothing in the face of evil because:  “I don't want to get involved” – God’s nature is redefined to match the cowardice of men.

The other alternative, a Biblical one, is that God chooses to allow in this rebellious world, a world that is under His curse, to bring forth evil, injustice, suffering, and death, both upon the good and the bad. That means that God’s primary defining nature is not love – but rather Holiness. God is Holy and therefore His will is Supreme – no one can stay His hand.  His ways are not man’s ways – therefore He wills evil (hurricanes, floods, disease, suffering, and death) because man has corrupted the otherwise perfect world he was given – in this there is a real and abiding price that men must pay for Adam's sin, for his own sin, and at the hand of his neighbors' sin.

Men say that a God who allows wickedness and evil to scourge the earth is being ‘unfair’ and ‘unjust’. Fallen men judge God by their own standards – which is, a compelling desire to avoid suffering and death at all costs. Under this rubric, God is indicted for not keeping mankind content and safe – at the same time God is hated for His Character of Holiness. On a sin-ridden earth God’s Holiness demands suffering – and men want release from that suffering – but do not want an end to their sin.

So, with God we have a divine plan of the design for this earth that is mysterious, being beyond our finite understanding – but also in our limited capacity it is understandable.  All men are subject to the privation of sin – whether regenerate or heathen, to include the groaning of the physical earth itself.  The whole cosmos is immersed in the causality of sin’s effect – from the moment Adam (the Federal Head rebelled). In this life we do not get release from the effects of sin – but we are promised in the age to come the restoration of all things, to include ourselves (we have that down payment in the indwelling Holy Spirit and a regenerated spirit).

Therefore, if we are able, we can see the brilliance of the divine plan of redemption. It does not seek to answer or solve the current predicament of all men – we all suffer together under the curse. Why? Because by it we are defined, marked, and our character made clearer through the daily tension of confrontation with evil people and events; either to our condemnation (the unregenerate) or to our glorification (the elect).

john
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Maurice on April 07, 2011, 08:40:24 AM
Therefore, if we are able, we can see the brilliance of the divine plan of redemption. It does not seek to answer or solve the current predicament of all men --

john

 That's all well and good, but why does God allow suffering? We've heard about redemption, we've heard about sin, we've heard about Arminians. What we haven't heard is why does God allow suffering? It must be a rather difficult question.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Reformer on April 07, 2011, 10:46:31 AM
We've heard about redemption, we've heard about sin, we've heard about Arminians. What we haven't heard is why does God allow suffering? It must be a rather difficult question.

 It is not really a difficult question at all for faithful Christians. It is only a difficult question for those who do not believe in the sovereignty of God, hold to free will doctrines, and who want to define God by their own ideas about what it means to be a God of love.

Andreas  explained it, Tony explained it, John explained it, now I'll try a fourth time. So here it is. Get your pencil and write it down so you don't forget. God allows suffering because it is his purpose and sovereign right to do so. And who are you to argue with him about his righteousness in doing so? Suffering is a part of this life. Good Christians have told you time and time again, God doesn't have to take away suffering or have mercy in any way on anyone. By the same token, it is His divine right to have mercy on whomsoever he will. Or NOT! There is your answer whether you like it or not.

 Ro 9:14  What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid.
 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
 16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

God will have mercy on one, and not on another, and he is completely righteous in doing so. To ask why does God allow suffering is to ask why doesn't God have mercy on everyone, heal everyone, take away the pain of everyone. That is in itself a foolish question, considering God plainly tells us he not only won't. But that there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. And he will be the one who will appoint it. It is not his will to end suffering on this earth, or judgment after. It is his will that the good news of a place where there is no suffering be preached.

So, maybe the reason you don't understand is that your god is not the god of the Bible, but an image you have created for yourself.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: John on April 07, 2011, 07:43:41 PM
Quote
We've heard about redemption, we've heard about sin, we've heard about Arminians. What we haven't heard is why does God allow suffering?  

What haven't you heard? You just quoted the main reasons yourself; even stating they were all well and good. They are not just well and good though, they are the primary reasons for suffering in this world. Again, as if it needs repeating: God allows suffering because it is the means that yields the end result that God desires. And that is:  the Redemption of His elect and the hardening in sin and rebellion of the unregenerate.

Perhaps what you are really asking is not why is there suffering but rather, "could God have reached the same end result through a different strategy?" 

The answer to that is a big 'No' - for the cost of redemption was the physical and spiritual death of His Son and the cost to the unregenerate is eternal damnation - nothing could be more serious an outcome, which infers there was no other means that a Holy God would or could utilize. For if there were some other means that would have allowed that "cup" to have passed and avoided this outcome it would have been done. But there was no other way to achieve the goals that God the Father wanted - it was the perfect means to a perfect end.

To keep asking "why?" when we know enough to understand that this was the means the Father designed from the get-go is really to say you think God's plan was a terrible mistake since it involves suffering and death, for which you find in your estimation to be unnecessary and wrong of God to do, and so you seek to put God on trial for failing to do things your way. Obviously to persist in that vein of thought implies that you hold a wrong opinion about God (and many if not most people do). The unspoken presumption here is that:  1) God is inferior to you, or to say it differently:   2) You are in some manner superior to God and are God's counselor   

Since neither option is true for you, or anybody, you should spend some time mulling it over and then realize that God knows what He is doing and does all things perfectly, and you do not.
 
john
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Halle on April 08, 2011, 03:22:21 AM


Reformation Sermons Audio MP3

God Meant It For Good

by Pastor Sam Adams

https://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=21210155072

Why Does God allow Suffering





Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Reformer on April 09, 2011, 08:06:53 AM
Again, as if it needs repeating: God allows suffering because it is the means that yields the end result that God desires.

Amen! It seems so simple, and yet people write in ways seeking to complicate the issue. It is obviously God's will to allow suffering, else there would be no suffering. And all Christians know that God is perfect, so suffering is allowed for righteous, perfect reasons, that His will might be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Now what true Christian would deny that?

 Job 2:10 But he said unto her, Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh. What? shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil? In all this did not Job sin with his lips.

 This is the difference between a humble spirit and a obstinate one. Don't ask why, know it is all done perfectly in God's plan of salvation.


Quote
But there was no other way to achieve the goals that God the Father wanted - it was the perfect means to a perfect end.

Amen! A perfect God would choose a perfect course for a perfect outcome. You can't beat perfection.


Quote
To keep asking "why?" when we know enough to understand that this was the means the Father designed from the get-go is really to say you think God's plan was a terrible mistake since it involves suffering and death, for which you find in your estimation to be unnecessary and wrong of God to do, and so you seek to put God on trial for failing to do things your way.

 Your way! Those are the words that tell the whole story. Man wants to do things his way, and he doesn't like God's way. the word is rebellion or disobedience. Do they really think that they could have done a better job at creation than perfect God, that they can question his construction methods? Yes, they obviously think so.


Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: LivingSoul on April 16, 2011, 07:44:25 PM
I always believe that if you illustrate things in a picture, then people might get to see it in a better light, as JESUS done with the parables. I believe the parables made it so that people could recognise who they were in the picture and that it brings things like conviction so, please allow me to put it like this.. (as basic as it might read, bear with me, I will make a point  :) ).

Think of the world as a particular class where the first two students had a great relationship with the Headteacher and didn't realise just how little they knew because of how simply he put things. They were innocent. However, an assistant teacher came into the class and informed the students of a book that would allow them to obtain the same knowledge as the main teacher, making them as the teachers of the class.. thus the students that entered that class since then were haughty because of that book which became a part of that class. (Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden).

The Headteacher wouldn't enter the class after that because the students believed themselves to know and have enough, so had no need for lessons; but for the sake of keeping the school open, and once again having that closeness with his students, the headteacher continued to bring in teachers to teach them. The last teacher he sent to the students was the one that all the teachers that taught before spoke of and said, "With this teacher, there will be no need for lesson after lesson because he comes with your degree in his hand, and the Headteacher gave him the authority to give it to you."

Well, the book of knowledge remained in the class and most decided to read it but a select few students wanted to have a personal relationship with their teacher and headteacher so they chose to sit at the front of the class and the ones at the back of the class continued to deny the teacher's authority.

The class, apart from the few have chosen to go their own haughty ways so the teacher decides that he will at least provide a way of graduation for those who don't believe themselves to be above a degree so that they can receive the gift of the degree, that will reconcile them with the headteacher on graduation. (Note that the last teacher has the authority to give the students the degree straight away, making the reconciliation immediately after they accept the teacher.)

So... Is it the Headteachers fault if within the class there is bullying and intimidation, and the rich students take lunch money from the poor students and beat them up?? The Headteacher isn't stupid, and neither is the last teacher, they know that once the students have their degrees, no one can take it away from them, even if another student hurts them, they still have their degree. Even more so, if they do not retaliate to bullying students who are influenced by the book, the bullies might see them as a witness, because they know after all that the harmony is so much better than the calamity...

JESUS said that not ONE will he lose!

Because of the sinful nature of man, this whole world has become sinful.
God neither delights in the evil things that happen, neither is he the author of anything evil.
However as people have previously and rightly stated, And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 .

GOD allows suffering because that is the way that the world has chosen. When asking this question you should consider that GOD also offers his Word as an encouragement to those who live in this world, saying that this world will pass away and we can, if we choose, have eternal life in a place that Jesus is preparing for us.

Also, even though the earth and everything that is in it belongs to GOD Psalm 24:1), dominion was given to man. (Genesis 1:28)
Therefore, anything that happens in this earth is a result of mankind and who their influence/motivation is.

Clearly, in the case of evil, the influence is not GOD and therefore is not GOD's fault. This is shown in Matthew 13:24-30 when it shows that the tares sowed among the wheat were sown by an enemy. Furthermore, the only reason the tares are not immediately rooted up is for the sake of the wheat which could end up being rooted up also. So the two were left to grow together.

I hope that this along with all the other answers together, will settle the question for you.  :)
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Maurice on April 19, 2013, 03:44:52 AM
It is not really a difficult question at all for faithful Christians.

I wish you all would just stop saying that. If it was such an easy question, you wouldn't have Christian after Christian asking it, hundreds of articles explaining it, and theological papers written about it. So don't just write the question off as being easy to answer, it is not. And to say it is just means you have no grasp of its complexity.

Why did God allow the bombings in Boston? Why did God allow all those people to die in Texas explosion at that plant? These are all legitimate questions.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Reformer on April 19, 2013, 09:27:17 AM
I wish you all would just stop saying that. If it was such an easy question, you wouldn't have Christian after Christian asking it, hundreds of articles explaining it, and theological papers written about it. So don't just write the question off as being easy to answer, it is not. And to say it is just means you have no grasp of its complexity.

Why did God allow the bombings in Boston? Why did God allow all those people to die in Texas explosion at that plant? These are all legitimate questions.

You're right on both counts. These are legitimate questions, and OK, they are not really easy questions. I think I used the wrong language in effectively saying it's only difficult for unfaithful Christians. What I actually meant was that those who do not believe in the sovereignty of God, hold to free will doctrines, or those who want to define God by their own ideas about a God of love, by definition have to box God into the corner of not being able to stop suffering. Which is not true. God is able to stop suffering but does not.

So if God can stop suffering, and yet doesn't, it must be for his own righteous purposes. That's accepting that we (Christians) all believe God to be righteous and just.

Here are some articles that might help some Christians in answering this "admittedly difficult" question.

http://www.mountain-retreat.org/sermons/getting_what_you_don't_deserve.shtml

None of which changes the fact that an All-Powerful and Sovereign God by definition "MUST" be able to stop suffering if he wanted to. As opposed to those theologians who claim he would like to, but can't.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Emily on May 21, 2013, 11:47:58 AM
 )inter( As I was watching the news the last couple of days, I couldn't help but be troubled why God would allow children in a school to be killed so violently as they were in the Oklahoma tornado that killed 40 or more kids. It just seems so bad. My question today is not so much why God allowed these things to happen, but did he in fact cause it to happen? Thank you so much for your patience.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Sojourner on May 22, 2013, 04:34:26 AM
)inter( As I was watching the news the last couple of days, I couldn't help but be troubled why God would allow children in a school to be killed so violently as they were in the Oklahoma tornado that killed 40 or more kids. It just seems so bad. My question today is not so much why God allowed these things to happen, but did he in fact cause it to happen? Thank you so much for your patience.

Did you wonder a week before the Tornado hit that children were dying tragically every day? Because children die by the thousands all the time. It's a part of the cycle of life. Children are born, and some die. Death is a natural part of the perfect balance of life in this world. Do you know how miserable, diseased and overpopulated this world would be if no one ever died?

Did God do it? No, not directly. Could God have stopped it? Yes, because God is sovereign and not one hair is black or white without His say so. But why should He? Just to appease the sensibilities of unsaved man and stop them from pointing the finger at him? God's not subject to man's judgments. The real question should be, why doesn't God just kill all of us, because we deserve it.

The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away, Blessed be the name of the Lord." That should be our statement in times like these.  It should be a time of reevaluation of ourselves and our faithfulness.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Mitchell on May 22, 2013, 05:38:21 PM
Where Was God in Oklahoma!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/on-faith/wp/2013/05/21/if-god-cared-why-would-he-have-allowed-the-tornadoes/

 Dumb!
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Emily on May 23, 2013, 06:22:55 AM
Thanks everyone, but that doesn't really answer the question of "why"does God allow these things to happen? I know people must die, and I know God could have prevented these kids from being killed, those are different questions I think.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Joe Johnson on May 23, 2013, 07:05:43 AM
As judgment?  Maybe God is trying to tell us something. Maybe we're not listening.

http://thetwilightyears.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/why-did-god-allow-the-oklahoma-city-tornado/ (https://web.archive.org/web/20131116221435/http://thetwilightyears.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/why-did-god-allow-the-oklahoma-city-tornado/)

When a country is constantly promoting homosexuality so that even the Church has been deceived to acceptance, then I'd say consider Oklahoma lucky!
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Reformer on May 24, 2013, 04:49:38 AM
Thanks everyone, but that doesn't really answer the question of "why"does God allow these things to happen? I know people must die, and I know God could have prevented these kids from being killed, those are different questions I think.

Some of these might help Emily.

http://mountainretreatorg.net/searchit/searchit.cgi?why%20does%20god%20allow%20suffering

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Emily on May 24, 2013, 03:26:24 PM
Thanks everyone, but that doesn't really answer the question of "why"does God allow these things to happen? I know people must die, and I know God could have prevented these kids from being killed, those are different questions I think.

Some of these might help Emily.

http://mountainretreatorg.net/searchit/searchit.cgi?why%20does%20god%20allow%20suffering


Thank you Reformer. I'm reading through these now.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Susan on May 26, 2013, 05:50:13 AM
In a related story, after this devastating tornado in Oklahoma killed many children at an elementary school, Reformed minister and author John Piper tweeted this:

"Job 1:19 -And, behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and smote the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young men, and they are dead; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee."

Some time later he tweeted again:

"Job 1:20 - Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped” Job. 1:20.

Do you think his tweet was insensitive? Because it created such an uproar that Piper issued an apology. I guess that he thought he was being comforting, I don't know, but he was wrong. He received a great backlash and scathing rebukes, even from Christians. The reason is that people associated his tweet with God’s judgment of the Oklahoma victims. Was it God's judgment? Was that what he was saying? Who can get into Piper's head to really know.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: John on May 26, 2013, 10:40:02 AM
Quote
Was it God's judgment?

We know that the earth was cursed by God due to Adam's rebellion (Gen 3:17) The effect of the curse is that the earth would no longer by in harmony with man but work against him, bringing pain, sorrow and hardship. Henceforth it would be in rebellion against man in like manner that man was in rebellion to God.

Now, that is the condition of the earth - it is under God's judgment.

So, should God counter the brambles and evil things that happen on the earth so as to nullify His judgment? Should only brambles and thorns grow in the fields of the wicked but not in the fields of the righteous? The answer has to be that God controls the exact outcome of all this - but God will not remove the effects of His curse upon the earth, until it is remade anew.

That is, a snowstorm, flooding, a whirlwind, hail, thunderstorms, hurricanes - you name it, it is all under the guidance of God and performs His will according to His unchangeable plan for the earth.

Job 37:11-13
(11)  Yea, He loads the cloud with moisture; He scatters His lightning cloud;
(12)  and it is turned around by His guidance, so that they may do whatever He commands them on the face of the world of the earth.
(13)  Whether as a whip, or for His land, or for mercy, He finds it.

God can bring a gentle rain or a flood, a warm sun or a drought, a light breeze or a whirlwind and tempest.  We are not going to sit in judgment of God and say "what doest thou". God has the right to do with His creation as He pleases, and to each person to kill or make alive. If a hundred tornado were ordained by God to kill the entirety of mankind we still could still not answer back to God.

Job 9:11-14
(11)  Behold! He goes by me, and I do not see Him; He passes on also, but I do not perceive Him.
(12)  Behold, He takes away; who can turn Him back? Who will say to Him, What are You doing?
(13)  God will not withdraw His anger; the helpers of pride stoop under Him.
(14) How much less shall I answer Him, and choose my arguments with Him?

In fact, rather than wonder what right God has to kill children and bring harm to mankind, all the while forgetting that it is our sin (in Adam) that brought this state of affairs upon ourselves, we should be praising God, for we should realize that His judgments are true and righteous. The tornado that strikes one home and leaves another untouched is the stark reality of God's judgment upon the earth - not based on whether we are good or bad, for we are all worthy of death; but because of the unsearchable working of the plan of God.

Psa 148:7-8
(7)  Praise ye Jehovah from the earth, Dragons and all deeps,
(8.)  Fire and hail, snow and vapour, Whirlwind doing His word;

The world asks "how can a good God do anything to hurt or kill", all the while being completely unaware that at this earth's last day they will to a child stand before the selfsame God and be judged and cast into outer darkness. If anything, the curse on the earth should cause fear within the unregenerate that a greater judgment awaits the wicked. It should be a stark reminder. But do they repent? Do they fear? Or do they mock God and curse Him.

As Christians we should understand that God's purpose is done in all things - even evil things that kill, maim, and destroy. We cannot excuse God from these things - He is in charge of all of it. But we cannot excuse ourselves and claim innocence; we each brought upon ourselves, and the earth, the curse that God enforces today. We were each there with Adam - no better than he, and equally in rebellion with our federal head. We are not happy if children die. We are not pleased when the curse brings death to anyone - for we were created perfect and upright, with endless days before us, and we threw it all away because of pride. Not just Adam - not some long ago past event - we individually did it with him. You were there! And you must suffer and toil and die because of it. When we see the destruction and horrors that happen daily in this world we should remember that we each are the cause of it. But still God brings good out of the very evil we created - that gives glory to Him for His righteousness sake and should be a cause of shame and humility for us.

We as Christians should see the cause and effect nature of rebellion and be more eager to give that testimony to the world that is perishing. On the day of God's wrath, that same rebellion will bring a disaster greater than any hurricane or tornado can do. These are but little reminders of our true situation before God. The world does not like to be reminded that God rules over men - if they are as powerless before an EF5 whirlwind, how will they contend with the Most High God?

john
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: LXX on August 22, 2013, 02:27:09 PM
Emily, there is a great book that I ave read a few times by CS Lewis called "The Problem of Pain". I suggest you read this.
Lewis is much better in explaining it than a lot of people. Hope it helps.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: clark thompson on August 28, 2013, 08:12:38 AM
Most childeren have not reached an age of understanding of the truth so, they will be with the Lord when they die due to them being unable to make this decsion so, if the Lord taking the childeren to Him will when people souls it is just.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Reformer on August 28, 2013, 03:01:51 PM
Most childeren have not reached an age of understanding of the truth so, they will be with the Lord when they die due to them being unable to make this decsion so, if the Lord taking the childeren to Him will when people souls it is just.

There is absolutely no biblical justification for an age of accountability, or what you just said. Nowhere does God claim that understanding is a prerequisite before there can be judgment. I don't know where Christians get these ideas, but I do know they are not from God's word. They are a personal opinion at best, without leaning upon the word of God to inform.

 Pr 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Emily on November 04, 2013, 05:08:00 AM
Death is not Dying
By Rachel Barkey
1972 - 2009
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Nikki on November 04, 2013, 08:19:31 AM
 )GoodPopst( Emily,
  That was one of the best messages I've ever heard. I think she was a friend of Pastor Brian Mcphall also. That's what you call faith. The courage of Christ to face death not as dying, but to live. A saint that understands God has a purpose in everything. Wonderful message well worth listening to.
 &TY
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Oneil on November 05, 2013, 05:38:42 AM
  )ditto(  Awesome Emily! Very Moving.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Cecil on November 29, 2013, 03:35:21 PM
If God does not cause suffering, why does he allow it? Because universal issues, moral ones, raised a long time ago still need to be settled. Let us look at just one of them.
At the beginning of human history, Adam and Eve sided with Satan. They rejected God’s rule and chose self-rule, which was really rule by the Devil.—Genesis 3:1-6; Revelation 12:9.
God’s sense of justice required that time be allowed for evidence to accumulate. What is the inescapable conclusion? Human rule under Satan’s influence leads only to suffering. Really, in the long run, God’s allowance of time has been for man’s benefit. How so? Those who study the evidence and believe it have the opportunity to demonstrate their willingness to be ruled by God. Those who learn of God’s standards and live by them have the prospect of living forever.—John 17:3; 1 John 2:17.
True, for now, Satan has the world in his evil grip. But not for much longer. Soon God will use his Son to “break up the works of the Devil.” (1 John 3:8 ) Under God’s direction, Jesus will mend broken hearts and restore shattered lives. He will resurrect back to life on earth billions of humans who have suffered and died over the centuries.—John 11:25.
The resurrection of Jesus is an example of God’s victory over the works of the Devil—a token of what is to come for humans who choose God’s rule. (Acts 17:31) The Bible directs our thoughts to that time to come with these comforting words: “God himself will be with [mankind]. And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”—Revelation 21:3, 4.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Maurice on February 20, 2014, 09:18:26 AM
How was that a good message? A Woman talking about her impending death and her suffering is a good message? How?
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Tony Warren on March 06, 2014, 12:25:32 PM
>>>
How was that a good message? A Woman talking about her impending death  and her suffering is a good message? How?
<<<

Yes, that was a good message.

"How we deal with death is at least as important as how we deal with life." -WiseManSay

Acts 7:59-60

Some people live well, and some people die well.

"nosce te ipsum"
 
Peace,
Tony Warren
"I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. -Psalms 32:5"
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Margaret on May 29, 2016, 04:02:30 AM
I was also witnessing to a girl and she put forth to me a question which I couldn't answer adequately. The question was, if there is a God, why does he allow evil and suffering? I answered as best I could but I admit I didn't really have a good answer. Can anyone here help me with a good simple answer of why God allows evil and suffering in the world. Thanks so much.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: John on May 29, 2016, 06:22:36 AM
Quote
The question was, if there is a God, why does he allow evil and suffering?

First, the idea of a self-created universe where matter pops into existence and then directs itself into increasing complexity over time, growing greater information/molecular systems via random chaos, to finally conclude this self-improvement with sentient moral beings, which would be the case if there was no God, defies logic and violates all operative physical laws. There must be a God and that God must be the Creator. Any other explanation is to dabble in insanity.

But to your question: why allow evil?  The answer could be framed as a question in reply: Why can't God permit evil to exist? Is there something inherently suspect in God's morality if He has chosen not to prevent wicked people from acting wickedly?

Num 23:19  God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?

Yes, I understand the import of the original question is to stake the claim: since God is good and cannot create evil and since evil exists, then God does not exist or God is evil. Hence, Christianity is a lie.

But, God created everything good ... He did not create evil. The entire creation was in obedience to God originally - until man's heart transgressed God's Law. Since God permitted this rebellion and since Adam and Eve committed this evil we can conclude that it was God's intention to allow the testing of Adam and Eve (by means of Lucifer) and it was His intention that the test be sufficient to disclose sin in Adam and Lucifer.

If God intended to do things differently, then He would have, would He not? The Fall was not a surprise to God. Obviously, the rebellion of His creation and the recovery of His creation in His Son was a better resultant than any other possible moral solution and the one that God chose. If it wasn't the most perfect means, then a perfect God would have done something more perfect -- which we can conclude, whether we like it or not, God's permission to allow sin in the world was the most perfect way.

The evil that we see in the world is not God's doing, it is man's. God is not morally obligated to stop men from sinning (though He does to a degree, else we would kill ourselves off in short order). If God intended to avoid the results of sin: death and disease, He could have eternally prevented Adam and Eve from ever disobeying thus no evil; or simply never issued any decree at all that required obedience, where there is no Law there is no transgression of the Law, isn't that right?

Since God cannot transgress His own Law, God cannot sin or have a nature that is evil. God by definition can only do good and be good. Since God only does good and is in His nature perfectly good He is by definition wise. The wisdom of God is greater (by far) than the wisdom of man.

1Co_3:19  For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.

The wisdom of man says, "God cannot be good to allow suffering and evil to exist". God does not explain His actions to man, as if He must justify Himself before the mind of wicked people. Instead God says to man:

Job 40:1-4  Moreover Yahweh answered Job,  (2)  "Shall he who argues contend with the Almighty? He who argues with God, let him answer it."  (3)  Then Job answered Yahweh,  (4)  "Behold, I am of small account. What shall I answer you? I lay my hand on my mouth.

In other words, God is in charge and does all things perfectly. All the suffering and death this world has experienced was the result of individual people - each one of us. It is the nature of evil people to blame God, but such perverse twisted logic is devoid of meaning. With God we can say:

Job 38:1-2  Then Yahweh answered Job out of the whirlwind,  (2)  "Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge?

There is no knowledge or reasoning in man's assertions against God. Man is like an unreasoning beast before God.

Therefore, the answer to the questioner wondering if God can be trusted is simple:

Psa 147:5  Great is our Lord, and mighty in power. His understanding is infinite.

and

Rev 15:3-4 "...Great and marvelous are your works, Lord God, the Almighty! Righteous and true are your ways, you King of the nations.  (4)  Who wouldn't fear you, Lord, and glorify your name? For you only are holy. For all the nations will come and worship before you. For your righteous acts have been revealed."

The regenerate can praise the holiness and perfection of God, and we know that the source of evil is entirely the fault of man. We even know that God's eternal plan included man's rebellion. But we also know that there was no other way to bring about the prefect end that God planned - the salvation of a people for Himself.

Wicked men can always devise or imagine another way ... where evil would hypothetically not exist, but we must remind ourselves that we are in no position to argue morality with God, for our ideas are foolishness at best.

Dan 4:35  ... and all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?

And after all the words are spoken and the arguments thrown back and forth, in the end those made righteous in Christ, having the Spirit and mind of Christ, agree that the creator of the world will indeed do right. The wicked will receive their due recompense and God will make a people for Himself - all the scales of justice will balance:

Gen 18:25  That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?

john
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Margaret on May 29, 2016, 09:20:37 AM

Thank you so much John, that was very enlightening and well stated. Do you mind if I print this out and give it to my friend?
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Erik Diamond on May 29, 2016, 09:08:07 PM
Quote from: John
Since God permitted this rebellion and since Adam and Eve committed this evil we can conclude that it was God's intention to allow the testing of Adam and Eve (by means of Lucifer) and it was His intention that the test be sufficient to disclose sin in Adam and Lucifer.

Okay, John...

God did not create evil...then where did Lucifer comes from? Where was he before the fall of man? When and how did he become "evil" after God created him (perfectly)? And his role for the original sin of Adam and Eve?

Yes, I have heard some opinions, but I am curious what you think about Lucifer based on comment you made to Margaret.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Maurice on May 30, 2016, 04:11:41 AM
Can anyone here help me with an answer of why God allows evil and suffering in the world. Thanks so much.

Christians have many different explanations for why god allows suffering,war and evil but I don't know that any of them satisfy the question. I don't think that there really is an answer. But that's just my opinion. At least I haven't heard a good answer. Maybe god doesn't allow evil or suffering. Maybe people blame their own evil on a god. And what god are you referring to?
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Maurice on May 30, 2016, 04:14:20 AM

Okay, John...

God did not create evil..



According to who? You?

Isaiah 45:7
   "I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things."

Who said that Erik? Who said I create evil? Wasn't it your god if we're going to believe your bible?
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: John on May 30, 2016, 04:47:42 AM
Quote
God did not create evil...then where did Lucifer comes from?

Here's the way I see it (I make assumptions here so be forewarned - this is mostly conjecture and you are free to disagree)

Clearly, Lucifer and all the angelic beings were created by God, they have a beginning. Since the purpose of angels we are told is to minister to the elect on behalf of God, it is probable that there was no need for angels until the creation event. It is also probable that God intended to have a witness to His glory in creation, and that was via the angels. So, sometime earlier (not recorded) God created the angels, prior to the beginning of Day One.

Heb 1:13-14  But which of the angels has he told at any time, "Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies the footstool of your feet?"  (14)  Aren't they all serving spirits, sent out to do service for the sake of those who will inherit salvation?

The timing of the creation of the host of heaven would be one of the first creative acts ... not mentioned in Genesis (or the Bible) since Genesis 1 describes the creation of all the host of earth, not the host of heaven. Yes it is conjecture, but it is not unlike God to maintain a witness in heaven to the unfolding of His salvation plan (which began with Gen1:1).

Gen 2:1  Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them.

Prior to the "beginning" of God's creative act there was only the Trinity - no time existed. One of the first events that coincided with God's creation plan is the bringing forth of time. The Sun, moon, and stars were not created until Day 4 as markers, but time still existed as creative acts occurred in sequence. Time was divided into two parts on Day 1, but it already existed prior to its division. It seems illogical that the angels had existence prior to the creation of time - their existence doesn't extend into that vast otherness when there was only God.

Heb 1 describes the superiority of Christ to the angels, where the angels are but temporal created beings "who makes His angels spirits" but to God (Christ) the emphasis includes His superior elevation to equality with God, "Your throne, O God, is forever an ever" - defining the infinite nature of Christ and His eternality over-against the subservience and limitations of angelic beings, which are inferior.

So, since angels serve God in the cause of the elect, their creation preceded the creation of those they would serve (lest they have no purpose in existence) and further, their creation would be prior to the cosmos' creation so that they can act as witnesses to all that God did.

That means Lucifer witnessed creation - including the creation of Adam and Eve.

Clearly all that God created was perfect, without sin, both Lucifer, the angels, to include Adam and Eve. Since both Eve and Adam rebelled (being perfect) we know that perfection does not exclude the ability to break God's Law. But what Law existed prior to the first being given in the garden? I think the answer is that there was none.

This is the first moral Law:

Gen 2:16-17   And Jehovah God commanded the man, saying, Eating you may eat of every tree in the garden; (17)   but of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil you may not eat, for in the day of the eating of it, dying you shall die.

Certainly all of sentient creation had knowledge of Good - all that God made and did up to that point was good.  But Adam and Eve did not know evil - unless and until they ate what was forbidden, which was to do evil. The very act was self-fulfilling and transforming within them,  in that they gained this knowledge not through study and observation but via their own doing.  They "knew" evil because now they were evil.

Lucifer was spirit and the commandment did not apply directly to him not to eat. Spirits do not eat. His sin was in deceiving God's elect. Rather than serving righteously on behalf of God, Lucifer misrepresented God to the man and woman. Lucifer violated the very purpose of his creation. For this he was cast out of heaven - meaning his permanent dwelling was no longer tolerated in God's presence (though he could visit to challenge and insult God on a regular basis). The rebelling angelic spirits were to be on the earth with rebel man, whom they now rule over, but no place was left for them in heaven.

So, what caused Adam and Eve to sin? Their sin was the desire to obtain more than God's provision allowed for them - same as you and me when we sin. God illuminates a path for us to walk - but we run ahead (and run quickly into trouble). We think we are missing out if we only have the blessings that God provides. Our pride wants more than God alone - which is idolatry.

Note that, Lucifer and the angels were not created in God's image - they are a lower order of creation (but above the animals). They have a will and to some degree understand God and give glory to Him -- but lack that similitude with God in their nature. They do not correspond spiritually to having a relationship with God, as familiar, with the ability to commune with God. Granted the Fall broke that Family-relationship in man but it is restored in Christ such that we become sons and daughters of God, and inherit all the rights of such. So, Lucifer did not walk with God in the cool breeze of the afternoon - he was a servant to man and God, nothing more (as important as that job is).

Given that Lucifer did deceived Eve, it is possible that apart from Lucifer's clever deception Eve might have continued in obedience to Adam and God, and neither would have sinned. In other words, it was in God's economy to create the perfect angelic being called Lucifer for the purpose of testing Adam. The test did not have to be indefinitely long or severe, simply sufficient to reveal that a perfect man, or woman, rapidly and easily departs from perfect obedience at the mere suggestion to do so. That doesn't make the man or woman less than perfect, as perfection in creation does not demand an impeccable nature.

Lest you think you could do better in the garden, consider that your moral state prior to the fall must be equal to Adam's, no better and no worse - and he fell. So what would prevent you from succumbing? You do not imagine yourself to be more perfect than Adam, do you? Thus, when Adam fell we all fell in Adam, our Federal Head.

Some people demand that Adam and Eve were incapable of sinning because they were perfect. But this is to pour more into the meaning of perfection than God permits. We see in Eve's response to Lucifer her immediate adulterating of God's Law by adding "and you shall not touch it", which God did not say. At the very first challenge she began equivocating. Obviously a perfect being was the one adding to God's word, which is a moral imperfection. Yes, they were perfect in obedience, up to the point they were tested.

Some will say it is unfair of God to make a perfect being that is so easily toppled from its perfect perch? Why? Who are we to reply back to God on how He will order His creation. As a clay pot, currently cracked and damaged, I don't find it my place to criticize the Potter for not making an indestructible pot. His plan is superior to mine - as I know nothing compared to Him. So it is not "unfair" and God has not sinned in doing so.

As an aside, we will never know if the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil was sufficient in itself to topple Eve and Adam into rebellion.  Eve had already considered the tree desirable to the eyes and had fruit that could be eaten (see Gen 3:6), so she was half-way there, all Satan did was add the selling point of how it could benefit their wisdom - that is, appeal to ego. I think the Tree had a dual purpose - to bring out Lucifer's sinful desire as well as Adam and Eve's.

I can concede that Adam and Eve's sin may have required a push from Lucifer, but as stated it is likely the push was not for the purpose of toppling Adam only but for also toppling Lucifer himself. We can say absolutely that God intended from the creation of this forbidden Tree and the command not to eat of it, to bring about the Fall of all three: Man, Woman, and Lucifer, because that was the outcome.  God didn't positively act to overrule their individual nature - He simply passively had to effectively dug a pit, severely warn them to stay away, and in short order they each wantonly jumped headlong into it.

So what caused Adam and Eve to sin? In short: The establishment of a verbal Law. That was all that was required to bring out rebellion. Something so simple. God did not ask them to carry a weight - only to abstain from carrying it. Keeping the Law required no effort. They had blessing galore in other trees with edible fruit. They lacked nothing. Yet they perceived themselves diminished and lacking, for they didn't have it all. Eve's questioning imagination was turning before Lucifer arrived, why did God not give us this Tree too? She was set to be exploited by Lucifer.

What then caused Lucifer to sin? I say it was primarily the creation of two beings, beings who challenged his preeminence before God. Perfect beings, as the angels were, does not mean they were immune to rebellion. God's pinnacle of creation was perhaps the only thing that could manifest rebellion in these angels. The one charge they had was to minister as servants to God's creation - the one area of contention was with the created order. What has been Satan's goal? Isn't it to be worshiped?  It seems to me that the test that toppled Lucifer was the mere existence of Adam and Eve. A symbiotic failure existed between them, each brought the other down to ruin.

Once we permit the idea that perfect beings are peccable, that is capable of sin, we can see that God's testing program was clearly aimed at all parties. It was established exactly to bring forth the intended result. Most angels desired to follow God, some desired to be worshiped by man and rule with Lucifer. What was the difference between the two groups? Those that rebelled likely lacked a full understanding about the character of God so as to know the futility of their quest in rebelling. Being of a lower created nature the angels were never redeemable beings (their sin is never paid) nor are they partakers of God's blessings in the likeness of Adam's lineage.  But as God chose to give insight so the angels made their choice. Once the angels sinned (or didn't) the test was complete - those that remained loyal will always remain loyal.

People will always rejoin "how could the first sin have arisen?” meaning, how sin could occur when there was not a thought of it in anyone's mind. My response is that if God had not made a superior created beings in Adam and Eve, angelic rebellion would never have occurred. And likewise, if God had not given a verbal command to Adam and Eve, then they both would have remained sinless. But God didn't do that, did He? His creative work was on full display before the angelic host - and not every one of them appreciated the new situation that was given them. Lucifer considered a path that seemed to provide victory for himself - and with the forbidden Tree came the means to obtaining his goal. So sin was found in Lucifer because the situation changed. Though created perfect, once God altered the created order sin was made manifest in those who God did not provide the wisdom to see the folly of their actions. This is in God's control - to illuminate some angels so as to avoid folly and to hide wisdom from others. God does not have to give equality of wisdom equally to all - and we know from observation that He does not. 

To continue with that thought: Notice how easily God defeated Satan at the cross. Satan should have realized that Christ (the Anointed) was to be the Redeemer and had to die as the perfect sacrifice. The goal of Satan should have been to prevent anything bad from happening so that the Romans and Jews let Jesus continue to live out His life unmolested. Satan lacked knowledge. I think those angels that fell are just as unaware and ignorant of God's Power then as they were at the Fall. The difference between those that fell and those that remain probably rests in God's desire to reveal Himself to some and not to others. Again, this is God's prerogative, to reveal His attributes or hide Himself - to bring about the desired result.

Certainly Lucifer and his clan did not seek out fully the knowledge of God; their eyes were on the creation. And God did not desire to reveal Himself either to the angels who had already begun to devise mischief against God. Again, God is not mandated or required to stop Lucifer from rebelling, or to even warn him of the consequences. Why didn't Lucifer simply carry out the same level of obedience toward God as the rest of the angels that did not rebel? My conjecture (and that is all it is) holds that God's glory and character were on display - Lucifer was in the highest position to see it and be in awe - but like Adam and Eve, he did not want the path that God provided for him to walk. He saw an opportunity to be more than he was created to be. Just like Eve's ego was inflated with having what she believed was being withheld from her by God. We can ask, "why would a perfect being desire a sinful thing?" but the answer is always the same. Moral perfection is temporary - it last only so long as obedience is maintained. Change the circumstances that affect you, introduce some new players into the mix, and out of perfection comes imperfection - meaning sin.   

In conclusion, the sin of each entity involved was their own. God did not force Lucifer into sin. God did not overrule the perfection of any of them. In their perfect moral state they could not sin ... until the situation they found themselves in changed, then rebellion was revealed. Slightly different for man vs. angel but the test for each was both an appeal to ego, to be something beyond God's intended purpose.

Yes, God knew exactly the outcome, and He intended that outcome for His own Glory. Nothing occurring in the Fall can we blame God for - each party Eve, Adam, Lucifer, the angels ... they all stand guilty and condemned for their evil thoughts and actions. We must be careful not to insist that God is somehow wrong for setting up the events that led to the Fall. God is perfectly within His rights to do as He has - and as stated elsewhere this outcome was the most perfect means to obtain the most perfect goal that a most perfect God could perfectly devise.

john
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Erik Diamond on May 30, 2016, 10:44:23 AM
Quote from: Maurice
Okay, John...

God did not create evil..

According to who? You?

Isaiah 45:7
   "I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things."

Who said that Erik? Who said I create evil? Wasn't it your god if we're going to believe your bible?

You took the phrase out of the first sentence as a rhetorical question for John as if I do not believe God created evil.  I do.  I was curious to know what John's perspective on the subject.  That is all.

I already aware about Isaiah 45:7. God did create evil, but not in a sense that he created wickedness.   
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Erik Diamond on May 30, 2016, 10:46:15 AM
Quote from: John
In their perfect moral state they could not sin ... until the situation they found themselves in changed, then rebellion was revealed.

Interesting. I have not thought about that. I will study into that more.  Thanks, John.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Kenneth White on May 31, 2016, 05:57:10 AM
Romans 5:3,4 gives us a good answer.
God who gives the suffering will deliver the glory.
andreas.

While I think this is one of the most difficult questions for Christians to answer, I also agree with Andreas and John. God allows wickedness and suffering that we might be schooled in this current trial and tribulation how this world really is. And a close examination of the creation account found in Genesis 1-3 will give us the clues as to the origin of human wickedness and suffering. Even as we look at the world today we see the true fallen nature of mankind, and how despite our undeserving nature, God loved us so much that he would choose to have mercy upon those he called. By his spirit, rather than strike out at God as the perpetrator of all the evil as the wicked often do, we are so grateful for patience through his grace. Having us see the world in all its desperately wicked essence, builds the character of the church, and his love for us despite our not meriting it works to endurance in his divine plan. I believe that ultimately, we recognize through all this that we have us look to him for our strength, patience and salvation, and not ourselves. In his love for us, we experience love for him and experience patience and hope through the holy spirit.

 Romans 5:3-5
  "And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;  And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us."

Clearly suffering was brought into the world as a result of sin. Even today, whether someone is the cause of his own suffering or others are the cause of it, clearly it comes down to Adam or mankind. Though suffering is painful, God uses this tribulation as trial, to reveal the patience of the saints and to use suffering to produce good from it. Whether of salvation or mankind in general. No one knows God's divine plan but God, but we do know that there is a reason for everything.

 Genesis 18:25b
  "that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?"
 
God is righteous and he will do what is righteous. Questioning him on sin and suffering in the world is a sign of rebellion, not of concern for the suffering or evil. In fact we already know, those blaming God for these things are those most wicked and unrighteous to begin with.

 Romans 9:20
"Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?"

When the unrighteous as why did God create man that he might fall into sin or why did God create a world that could fall, he's basically asking God the same question. Why have you made us this way. Again, rebellion and not a sincere quest for truth. Christ says, seek and you will find. Anyone truly seeking truth will find it. The rest seek vitriol, to condemn and to find retribution for their lot in life. We can but assure those who ask that while there’s suffering and evil in this world, there’s hope through Christ. The question is, do they want it?
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Maurice on May 31, 2016, 07:36:18 AM

Do you mind if I print this out and give it to my friend?



Beware copyright infringement of personal works as Christians usually put this notice on their works and don't like you to reproduce or distribute their writings without being paid in some way. Another of their hypocritical stances.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Puritan Heart on May 31, 2016, 10:55:21 AM

Do you mind if I print this out and give it to my friend?



Beware copyright infringement of personal works as Christians usually put this notice on their works and don't like you to reproduce or distribute their writings without being paid in some way. Another of their hypocritical stances.

Oh Maurice.......

You have no idea how reading your reply to Margaret, 'cut deep into my heart, as if with a blunt knife....'  :-[

I feel such sorrow when I read the sardonic reply's and responses in some of these threads that I grieve.......

Well did Jesus say...Matthew 18 v 6 But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.

For some of us, 'growing up spiritually' on the pages of this forum has been a tough enough exercise without comments the likes of this.... and others the likes thereof.

James 4 v 8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.

Let us remember, the above epistle was written to Believers !!!!

Margaret, I am 100% certain, that you may indeed print and offer the information should you so deem fit, as long as out of courtesy to the 'writer thereof' you do not edit or change it in any way.

These are public pages, with strict rules to which we must adhere, however, as I understand the rules, all information herein is for public consumption.  How well society would thrive if more would comply with much of the 'spiritual food' offered on the MR site in it's entirety.

Be Blessed Margaret, and keep questioning!! Keep at it... stay in The Word!!  God is Faithful, and a hungry heart, He Will Satisfy!!

Alexandra
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: laurenp on June 01, 2016, 09:48:29 PM
Romans 5:3,4 gives us a good answer.
God who gives the suffering will deliver the glory.


While I think this is one of the most difficult questions for Christians to answer, I also agree with Andreas and John. God allows wickedness and suffering that we might be schooled in this current trial and tribulation how this world really is. And a close examination of the creation account found in Genesis 1-3 will give us the clues as to the origin of human wickedness and suffering. Even as we look at the world today we see the true fallen nature of mankind, and how despite our undeserving nature, God loved us so much that he would choose to have mercy upon those he called. By his spirit, rather than strike out at God as the perpetrator of all the evil as the wicked often do, we are so grateful for patience through his grace. Having us see the world in all its desperately wicked essence, builds the character of the church, and his love for us despite our not meriting it works to endurance in his divine plan. I believe that ultimately, we recognize through all this that we have us look to him for our strength, patience and salvation, and not ourselves. In his love for us, we experience love for him and experience patience and hope through the holy spirit.

 Romans 5:3-5
  "And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;  And patience, experience; and experience, hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us."

Clearly suffering was brought into the world as a result of sin. Even today, whether someone is the cause of his own suffering or others are the cause of it, clearly it comes down to Adam or mankind. Though suffering is painful, God uses this tribulation as trial, to reveal the patience of the saints and to use suffering to produce good from it. Whether of salvation or mankind in general. No one knows God's divine plan but God, but we do know that there is a reason for everything.

 Genesis 18:25b
  "that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?"
 
God is righteous and he will do what is righteous. Questioning him on sin and suffering in the world is a sign of rebellion, not of concern for the suffering or evil. In fact we already know, those blaming God for these things are those most wicked and unrighteous to begin with.

 Romans 9:20
"Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus?"

When the unrighteous as why did God create man that he might fall into sin or why did God create a world that could fall, he's basically asking God the same question. Why have you made us this way. Again, rebellion and not a sincere quest for truth. Christ says, seek and you will find. Anyone truly seeking truth will find it. The rest seek vitriol, to condemn and to find retribution for their lot in life. We can but assure those who ask that while there’s suffering and evil in this world, there’s hope through Christ. The question is, do they want it?


The question is, do they want it?

THEE question indeed!!!
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Sojourner on June 03, 2016, 12:14:05 AM
We could say that God allows evil and suffering for a number of reasons. For one thing, is it not to remind us that the world is broken and groans for redemption, as God stated in Romans 8:20-23? For another, which has already be said, it is to keep us dependent upon Him (Hebrews. 12:6-7) and to show us our mortality, revealing all glory to God in being our strength in times of despair, tribulation and trial.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Melanie on November 23, 2016, 07:27:04 AM
Has anyone ever stopped to think what the world would be like if no one ever died? It would have become unlivable centuries ago. It would make Calcutta look like a resort. God knows what he is doing, and People live out their lives and then die so that there is room for others. There are only enough resources for so many people and if no one died, there would be no earth left.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Trevor on July 03, 2018, 07:35:37 AM
 )Goodpoint( It's a harmony, a synergy, the interaction between God and man, life and death, to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of the individuals living and dying.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Tony Warren on July 03, 2018, 04:39:50 PM
>>>
It's a harmony, a synergy, the interaction between God and man, life and death, to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of the individuals living and dying.
<<<

 )amen( Trevor. I couldn't agree more. Evil, grief and affliction remain here as a God breathed learning experience for mankind. Nothing in this world is in vain, and that including life, death, disease, suffering, calamity or travail. The problem (as I see it) is that because of sin, most people (including professing  Christians) just don't get it. This because they're usually so busy envying or feeling sorry for themselves. They take their eyes off Christ and place them on themselves and the result is incessant whining, murmuring, complaining, grumbling and moaning about every little aspect of their lot in life. The "Poor Me" mentality that so permeates the industrialized world. You would think they were penniless, starving, have one set of clothes, live in Calcutta, Dhaka, Bangladesh or something when they are actually blessed beyond measure. All these life lessons go right over their collective heads. But when there is no learning from misfortune, there is no growth. When there is no growth, there is stagnation and quiescence. The evil, affliction, pain and suffering in this world is for our learning, spiritual acumen and growth.

2nd Corinthians 4:17-18

Why should the faithful Christian worry about the temporal things when in the big picture, our troubles and afflictions are light and but for a moment compared to an eternity with God. What does the child of God really have to whine and complain about, we are the Blessed of the Lord in whose hands if the world could fall apart tomorrow we'd find rest in the glory of God. So then, let our living be with joy, our witness with mourning, and our understanding with the knowledge, illumination and wisdom of Christ. In affliction, life and death we glory in the Lord's doings.

Proverbs 16:4

"nosce te ipsum"
 
Peace,
Tony Warren
"I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. -Psalms 32:5"
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Apostolic on July 04, 2018, 01:46:17 AM
Why should the faithful Christian worry about the temporal things when in the big picture, our troubles and afflictions are light and but for a moment compared to an eternity with God.

Easy for you to say, you're not troubled or afflicted. You've never had a flood destroy your home or a child die from cancer or someone persecute you because you are gay. You sit here in your ivory tower and judge. Where is the love?
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Betty on July 04, 2018, 07:19:01 AM
I agree Apostolic. Walk a mile in their shoes before you start judging. The only lesson in evil is that it is  not of God and suffering is bad for anyone.

May he not let your foot be moved: no need of sleep has he who keeps you.  (Psalms 121:3)
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Philly Dawg on July 06, 2018, 05:44:40 AM
I agree Apostolic. Walk a mile in their shoes before you start judging. The only lesson in evil is that it is  not of God and suffering is bad for anyone.

May he not let your foot be moved: no need of sleep has he who keeps you.  (Psalms 121:3)

What does that even mean?  That God went back on his word by letting Stephen be physically stoned to death?

Or else once again you have taken scripture out of context.

Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Laura Tomlinson on July 07, 2018, 04:27:42 AM
Easy for you to say, you're not troubled or afflicted. You've never had a flood destroy your home or a child die from cancer or someone persecute you because you are gay. You sit here in your ivory tower and judge. Where is the love?

Betty, according to your religion, God is not in control. According to mine, he is. When there was seven years of famine in Egypt and many people suffered, it was by God's providence. When people are killed in a flood or tsunami, it is by God's providence. Do you think that God cannot save a child from cancer if that was his will? God can do anything he wants in my religion. In your religion, it seems you think he should do what you want.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Reformer on July 11, 2018, 02:28:36 AM
Betty, according to your religion, God is not in control. According to mine, he is. When there was seven years of famine in Egypt and many people suffered, it was by God's providence. When people are killed in a flood or tsunami, it is by God's providence. Do you think that God cannot save a child from cancer if that was his will? God can do anything he wants in my religion. In your religion, it seems you think he should do what you want.

  )God-Bless-You(  Betty is just another example of mankind's rejection of God's sovereignty over this world. The spiritual insanity that has grown to epic proportions in the church.

The Lord's prayer: "Thy will be done, in earth as it is in heaven." Not My will be done.
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Tony Warren on August 05, 2018, 05:17:17 AM
>>>
according to your religion, God is not in control. According to mine, he is. When there was seven years of famine in Egypt and many people suffered, it was by God's providence. When people are killed in a flood or tsunami, it is by God's providence. Do you think that God cannot save a child from cancer if that was his will? God can do anything he wants in my religion. In your religion, it seems you think he should do what you want.
<<<

...and all God's people said,  A M E N !

That seems to be the crux of the matter for many people in our day. To look at God as their personal servant, someone who waits at their beckoning call to do their will, rather than they His. Not that He is LORD of their lives, but almost as if they are the lords and masters and He is only there to do their will or make their lives on earth better.

Luke 11:2

His will be done. As it is in heaven, so it is done on earth. Not as my will on earth, so let it be done in heaven. Christ is the central figure in the true gospel of Christ. Let us all be Christ centered rather than self-centered.

"nosce te ipsum"
 
Peace,
Tony Warren
"I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah. -Psalms 32:5"
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Laura Tomlinson on August 18, 2018, 09:15:42 AM
I agree Apostolic. Walk a mile in their shoes before you start judging. The only lesson in evil is that it is  not of God and suffering is bad for anyone.

Isaiah 45:7
"I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things."
I Peter 3:13-14
"And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;"

Betty, why is it that you are almost always on the wrong side of God's word?
Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Melanie on February 21, 2019, 06:25:59 AM
Betty, why is it that you are almost always on the wrong side of God's word?

Now there is a good question that we could ask of a few people here. Why when God's word obviously says something, a few professing Christians always come back with their own thoughts contradicting it?  )thinker(

Suffering is a complex issue that needs dealt with biblically and intelligently, both in the world and in the church. The world suffers because of sin, and the church suffers because of sin. Like Job, we are to receive it as from God for our good and not be bitter.

"Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. 1st Peter 4:12-13"

Trials often change people, they're supposed to. Except for the obstinate that harden their hearts and fight against God. We should ask ourselves, what lessons were learned from tragedies? If none, look at yourself in a mirror.



Title: Re: Why Does God Allow Suffering
Post by: Chicago Bear on February 21, 2019, 10:31:07 AM

The reason that we are all Christians here today is because each and every one of us encountered a God who allowed His only begotten Son to suffer on the cross  That should boggle each and every Christian's mind. Suffering isn't the end, it is the beginning for all who God has delivered from the power of self, bondage and darkness. When we see suffering, rather than blame God, we should rejoice that he has seen fit to come to us and relieve our suffering. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is about "absorbing and transforming" the pain caused by the sin of this wicked world into a joy that exceeds our imaginations. Don't ask why, because we all deserve to suffer. Ask why not, and give glory to God that we can see the light at the end of the tunnel of darkness.