Why does God allow Suffering?

In a recent sermon, Rev. Dr. Mark Duggan had a go at dealing with the problem of suffering. Here is a summary of what he said.

We will never have a complete answer to the problem of evil and suffering in this life, but there are some points of lights to guide us:

  1. God is not the creator of evil and suffering. God created a perfect world which humanity messed up.
  2. Though suffering isn’t good, God can use it to accomplish His good purposes e.g. to draw us to Jesus Christ; to discipline us (Hebrews 12:10-11) and to refine our character and make us more like Jesus (Romans 5:3).
  3. The day is coming when suffering will cease and evil will be judged (2 Peter 3:9).
  4. Our suffering will pale in comparison to what God has in store for his followers. (Romans 8:18).
  5. We have a choice in how to respond to our suffering. We can decide whether to turn bitter or to turn to God for peace and courage.

Jesus said; “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." (John 16:33). Jesus warned us we will face trouble in this life, but he promises his followers, peace to deal with our present and courage to deal with our future.

Remember: God’s ultimate answer to suffering isn’t an explanation. God didn’t write us a letter of sympathy. God sent something much better. God sent us his Son. … God entered into our world and into our pain”.

 


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