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Series: Luis Palau | Why does God Allow Suffering?

Many people ask, “If God is good, why is there suffering in the world?”  It’s a tough question, and one that Luis Palau answers from scripture this week on “Reaching your World with Luis Palau.”  

God doesn't Cause Pain Friday, September 25, 2020

When we don’t understand something about God, some people are tempted to discredit Him completely. But you don’t have to understand everything to believe in something. As recorded in John 9 in the Bible, Jesus met a man who was born blind and forced to beg just to get by. Jesus’ disciples wanted to know whose fault it was that this man was blind. Was it his fault? His parents?
 
For some reason, it’s human nature to want to place blame.
If someone gets cancer, some wonder – what did they do to get cancer? If someone’s spouse leaves them, people criticize saying If they had been a better husband or wife . . . If teenagers are rebellious, hardened onlookers gossip – if that kid’s parents had been more involved, this wouldn’t have happened.
 
Just because God can use what happens in our lives doesn’t mean He causes it. Much pain – maybe most of it - is not caused by God. Recognizing this doesn’t relieve our pain but it’s an important distinction. We can learn to correct our understanding of how God can allow pain but not cause it.
Let’s rejoice in that today!
 
God is with us in the worst of times. As we get to know God, we learn to trust that He is good even in the pain. He is loving, and wise in everything He does. Even if we don’t know why things happen, we can still trust Him.                   
 
This is Andrew Palau.

Why does God Allow Suffering? - 4 Thursday, September 24, 2020

How we respond to suffering—whether we brought it on ourselves or not—is going to either make us or break us as Christians. Circumstances often do more to reveal our character than to shape it. But by properly responding to trials, we can develop patience and a proven character [Romans 5:3-4].

Problems, stress, calamity, or the death of a loved one often cause us to search ourselves for any sin in our lives [see 1 Kings 17:18]. Pain plants the flag of truth in a heavy heart. But we must be cautious not to let Satan overwhelm us with excessive and false guilt or grief [2 Corinthians 2:7].

Job’s wife told him to curse God and die. He refused to give up and remained faithful to the Lord. Notice that in the end, God gave him all he had before and even more [Job 42:10-17].

Instead of looking at our circumstances, we need to keep our eyes on our Lord Jesus Christ, the source of life. He will bring us through whatever situation we face, and as a result we will be stronger Christians, better able to serve Him because of our trials.

This is Luis Palau.

Why does God Allow Suffering? - 3 Wednesday, September 23, 2020

You and I suffer a great deal in this fallen world as a result of pandemics and other natural disasters, as a result of man’s inhumanity to man, and mostly as a result of our own erroneous actions and rebellious choices.
 We suffer whenever we break creation’s natural laws against falling from great heights. We also suffer whenever we break God’s moral laws and break the Ten Commandments.

Again, much suffering can be traced to the evil choices that we make. Some, but not all, suffering is allowed by God as a punishment for sin. Often God simply forces us to live with the consequences of our actions [Galatians 6:7-8].

Whenever people break God’s laws, others are bound to suffer as well. I refer you to the story of Achan in Joshua 7. When he coveted some of the spoil from the battle of Jericho, his sin cost the lives of 36 men in battle against Ai. It is inevitable that others will suffer in the wake of an individual’s disobedience.

How we respond to suffering is going to either make us or break us. By properly responding to trials, we can develop patience and a proven character [Romans 5:3-4].

This is Luis Palau.

Why does God Allow Suffering? - 2 Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Only by turning to the Bible can we begin to understand the problem of suffering.

The first type of suffering results from natural disasters such as volcanoes, earthquakes, large storms, horrible cancers, and massive pandemics.

A second type of suffering can be called man’s inhumanity to man. War would be classified under this type of suffering. Because of man’s greed and pride, he tries to hurt his fellow man [James 4:1-2].

A third type of suffering is best seen in the life of Job in the Old Testament; it came as a result of Satan’s attack on him. After receiving permission from God, Satan moved in and caused incredible suffering to Job and his family.

A fourth type of suffering is that which comes as a result of our own erroneous actions. For example, if I walk off the roof of my office and fall to the ground, breaking my leg, I am suffering because I broke God’s law of gravity.

We also suffer when we break God’s moral laws. Often we are forced to live with the consequences of our actions [Galatians 6:7-8]. In contrast, we read in Psalm 1 of how God blesses those who walk in His ways.  He says whatever they do will prosper.  So often, our sufferings are a result of our own wrong choices.

This is Luis Palau.

Why does God Allow Suffering? - 1 Monday, September 21, 2020

A philosopher from Paris once commented, "God is dead. Marx is dead. And I don’t feel so good myself." His attitude illustrates the pessimism rampant in our culture today.

If there really is a God, people wonder, why has He allowed so much suffering in the world? Many a Christian honestly struggles with that same question. Only by turning to the Bible can we begin to understand the problem of suffering.

The first type of suffering results from natural disasters such as volcanoes, earthquakes, large storms, horrible cancers, and massive pandemics. The Bible says that both bad things and good things happen to both the righteous and the unrighteous [Matthew 5:45].

In a day of pessimism and suffering we can say with the psalmist, "The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?" [Psalm 118:6].

The Lord Himself, as the great Sufferer, is our comfort and hope in troubled times. He said, “In the world you will have troubles, but cheer up, I have overcome the world.” And He would remind us, “I live in you.” So when you’re under pressure, don’t forget this wonderful truth: Christ lives in me, Christ lives in me. Therefore, I am a temple of God. You can face anything with that reminder.

This is Luis Palau.

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