Evil, pain and suffering are never far from us. Why does God allow it? Can a loving God allow suffering? Why does God allow suffering? How do we reconcile a caring god, a god of power, with a god who allows evil to happen?
* Tragedies and suffering flood the news. Why?
* Evil and pain afflict loved ones, friends and communities. Why does God allow this?
* Suffering seems to leave no one untouched.
People ask why God allows pain in their lives – emotional pain, physical suffering, sadness and loss. They say God must not care, or perhaps he is not powerful.
God allows us to be human, to make choices. He cannot allow human freedom without allowing suffering or humans would be puppets. Much of the evil and pain in the world is human evil, humanly-caused pain, the result of human sin.
God allowed Adam and Eve to make choices. Their choice to sin brought suffering and chaos into the whole world. But it’s not over! God’s Word promises that he will create a new heaven and a new earth and there will be “no more mourning or death or pain” because man’s sin will be gone and God will dwell with mankind.
God does not want suffering. God allows mankind to make choices – but sinful choices come under his judgment. He allows evil but judges it, too.
* Free will to love others and God himself is not free if it disallows other options.
* Sinful desires bring natural consequences including pain.
* Sinful choices carry spiritual consequences – including God’s judgment.
Pain and suffering result from sin in the world – peoples’ own sin. Even though God allows suffering and pain caused by sin, he alone can judge sin justly. God’s Word warns us not to judge others.
Though God allows suffering, he overcomes it.
Do you have more questions about God and suffering? This is such a big question it’s not possible to address every issue in one short article. Sign up for a free Alpha Course in your town so you can express your opinions and find answers to all of your questions about why God allows pain, suffering and evil in the world.
Rev. Wayne D. Shemwell, Sr. is a former member of the United States Marine Corp holds a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and a Master’s in Divinity. Rev. Shemwell has also been active for a number of years in the local community. He has been married to Dr. JoAn Shemwell for 23 years; they have two children Wayne, Jr. (21) and Whitney (19). Rev. Shemwell served as Pastor of First Baptist Church of LaGrange KY for three years. Currently he is the director of New Harvest Ministries located in Louisville KY.
He is a lifetime member of the NAACP and has served as treasurer for the Louisville, KY branch. Additionally he has served as unit commissioner for the Boy Scouts and Chairperson for the Louisville Urban League’s Annual Youth Golf Scramble. Furthermore Rev. Shemwell hosted and produced for eleven years the award winning community affairs television program the Shemwell report.
He served as the chaplain for the Oldham County Sheriff’s Office and as the press secretary for Interdenominational Ministerial Coalition as well as a board member of other community organizations. He is also the author of two books “Now Run and Tell That, the crack cocaine of the Christian community”, “Transformed By Trouble” and” The Oyster Principle, turning life’s problems into life’s pearls”