Summary: Why does God allow Christians to suffer?
Why Must We Suffer
Doesn’t God love us? Why does he allow us to suffer?
These are common questions. Let’s look at the answers taken from God’s word.
(We suffer because of the) Aging Process
Since man no longer has direct access to the Tree of Life which was in the Garden of Eden, we must face an aging process. Most young people don’t fully realize the aging process. However, with aging there may be lost of sight, hearing, teeth, strength, memory, and mobility.
We are limited by God to how long we can live. Genesis 6:3 Then the LORD said, “My Spirit will not put up with humans for such a long time, for they are only mortal flesh. In the future, they will live no more than 120 years.”
Jacob, who God called, Israel, experienced the aging process. Genesis 48:10 - Now Jacob was half blind because of his age and could hardly see.,,
(We suffer because of the) Evil in the World (drunk drivers)
We all suffer to some degree because of evil in the world. First, we see a general suffering because of evil. Psalms 107:17-18 - Some were fools in their rebellion; they suffered for their sins. Their appetites were gone, and death was near.
Second, others suffer because of the evil of some. Noah lost everything but his family because of the evil in the world. Lot lost his city, his home, and his wife because of evil in world.
Third, sometimes we suffer as direct result of evil in our own lives. II Kings 15:5 - The LORD struck the king with leprosy, which lasted until the day of his death; he lived in a house by himself……
In the New Testament we find that King Herod was struck by an Angel because of his sin of pride. Acts 12:21-24) - When the day arrived, Herod put on his royal robes, sat on his throne, and made a speech to them. The people gave him a great ovation, shouting, “It is the voice of a god, not of a man!” Instantly, an angel of the Lord struck Herod with a sickness, because he accepted the people’s worship instead of giving the glory to God. So he was consumed with worms and died.
But God’s Good News was spreading rapidly, and there were many new believers.
So his death brought glory to God and expanded his kingdom.
(We suffer because of) Pruning (you could have ended up here so you can help someone)
Sometimes we suffer because God is doing some pruning in our lives. It does not have to be something bad that God is taking away. God may be removing something "good" and then He can replace it with His best.
John 15:2 - He cuts off every branch that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more.
(We suffer) For the Glory of God
All suffering is not the direct result of sin. There was a man that suffered blindness so Jesus could heal him, and that God might receive the glory.
John 9:1-5 - As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man who had been blind from birth. “Teacher,” his disciples asked him, “why was this man born blind? Was it a result of his own sins or those of his parents?”
“It was not because of his sins or his parents’ sins,” Jesus answered. “He was born blind so the power of God could be seen in him.
Then Jesus healed him and that action brought glory to God.
In the Old Testament, King Hezekiah got sick and was about to die, but he appealed to God based upon his righteousness. II Kings 20:1-11) - About that time Hezekiah became deathly ill, and the prophet Isaiah…. went to visit him. He gave the king this message: “This is what the LORD says: Set your affairs in order, for you are going to die. You will not recover from this illness.”
When Hezekiah heard this, he turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD, 3“Remember, O LORD, how I have always tried to be faithful to you and do what is pleasing in your sight.” Then he broke down and wept bitterly.
4But before Isaiah had left the middle courtyard, this message came to him from the LORD: 5“Go back to Hezekiah…. Tell him, ‘this is what the LORD, the God of your ancestor David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears. I will heal you, and three days from now you will get out of bed and go to the Temple of the LORD. 6I will add fifteen years to your life…..
Hezekiah’s life was put in danger with an illness, then he was healed and his life extended so God might receive the glory for the healing and lesson taught by the illness.