6. If God exists, why is there suffering in the world? Why do bad things happen to good people
Let’s first consider these quotes about God.
“For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD…” – Ezekiel 18:32
“The Lord…is not willing that any should perish…” – 2 Peter 3:9
“Merciful, gracious, longsuffering, abundant in goodness and truth…AND will by no means clear the guilty” – Ezekiel 34
God didn’t create robots – Genesis 2:17
Adam & Eve chose disobedience – Genesis 3:6
V16-19 They suffered the consequences (but they weren’t left hopeless)
Every human being since (except one) has made the same choice to disobey God when given the opportunity, but every one still has the same opportunity for salvation.
Psalm 73:1 The facts, V3-5 the observation, V17 The conclusion, V28 The conviction
God is a loving Father who cares for his children, but who allows his children to make their own decisions (as every parent must at some stage). This means man, any man or woman, is not immune from the human suffering caused by the conglomeration of all these choices in history, but it does mean that ultimately they are not left without an eternal hope.
Still not easy…
I recently read a report of a young Christian man arrested in a middle-eastern country by the hard-line religious leaders in that country. He was totally innocent but they tortured him almost until he was almost dead, then hung him up to die in front of an angry mob and left him hanging there for a few hours as a lesson.
The question may well be asked, how can God allow such things in the name of religion? Some of you may have discerned that whilst I read this report recently it was an event that took place 2,000 years ago. The man was Jesus. God not only allowed it, but the Bible says:
“God so LOVED the world that he GAVE his only begotten son that whosoever should believe on him should be saved?
In this case God allowed the suffering of one innocent man, his son, to give the whole world a hope of salvation. What a truly loving Father he is!