Immanuel Voices
January 30, 2019, 6:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Explore God--Why Does God Allow Pain and Suffering? 3


Why Does God Allow Pain and Suffering?

 

Romans 3:23
for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. . .

 

Romans 6:23

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

Thought for Today

The question of why God allows pain and suffering in the world can lead us to some very deep and disturbing answers. One of the most important answers is that if God decided to get rid of all the evil in the world, He would have to deal with us, too. You see, evil isn’t all out there in the world. There is evil in you and me, too. God created us with the ability to love and follow Him or to reject and turn away from Him. As we saw on Monday, we chose to rebel against Him and follow our own inclinations. The Bibles tells us that we “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” And then it adds that “the wages of sin is death…” Knowing that we are all part of ‘the evil’ that people say ‘God should do something about’ gives us a new and important perspective. The Bible also says that God will one day judge all evil. No one will get away with anything. But right now, He is patiently giving us an opportunity to turn to Him and receive the forgiveness and life He offers.

 

Prayer

Holy God, thank You for not dealing with me as my sin deserves. You are merciful and compassionate, even though I don’t deserve it. Help me trust Your justice with the same faith I trust Your mercy. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

Mercy is what moves us toward God, while justice makes us tremble in his sight. — Pope Benedict XVI

 

Quote of the Day

I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever. — Thomas Jefferson



Comments

01-30-2019 at 9:24 AM
Kathy McGregor
Thank you, Pastor....these are so good.
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January 29, 2019, 6:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Explore God--Why Does God Allow Pain and Suffering? 2


Why Does God Allow Pain and Suffering?

Job 1 [excerpts]

There was a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job, and that man was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil.

Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them. . . And the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, who fears God and turns away from evil?” Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? Have you not put a hedge around him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But stretch out your hand and touch all that he has, and he will curse you to your face.” And the Lord said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.” So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.

There came a messenger to Job and said, “The oxen were plowing and the donkeys feeding beside them, and the Sabeans fell upon them and took them and struck down the servants with the edge of the sword. . . The fire of God fell from heaven and burned up the sheep and the servants and consumed them. . and Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother's house, and behold, a great wind came across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young people, and they are dead.”

Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head and fell on the ground and worshiped. And he said, “Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”

In all this Job did not sin or charge God with wrong.

 

 

Thought for Today

The Book of Job speaks to the question of God’s responsibility for pain and suffering. Job, a wealthy and righteous man, lost everything he owned, including his children, at the hands of enemies and natural disasters. When Job acknowledges that it was all God’s to give or take away, therefore God has done him no wrong, Satan strikes him with painful sores that cause Job to wish he was dead. Friends come and demand to know the secret sin for which God must be punishing him, for certainly God would not allow all this for no reason. Instead of confessing, Job protests. He has no secret sin. He pleads with God to tell him why this has all transpired. The answer God gives Job is the one we fear. It feels unsatisfactory to us. God’s answer is that He is the One who created and ordered all things and the Creator is under no obligation to explain Himself to His creatures. God says through the prophet Isaiah, “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts” (55:9). The truth is that God is not callous in His response. It is simply that there are things going on in the spiritual world we do not understand. There is a very real enemy working against God. And if we cannot comprehend even the simplest matters of creation how could we possibly fathom God’s actions in world. This leads us to a crucial place. If this is true, we have to ask if we can trust God to do what is best for us even when bad things happen? Only those who have a relationship with Him will know that He is trustworthy. They know that He endured worse pain and suffering fur us in His Passion than we will ever experience. He made way for us to be with Him forever in a place where there will be no more tears or crying or pain. So He asks us in the midst of our suffering the heart of His challenge to Job, “Do you trust me?”

 

One of the most beautiful renditions of the Book of Job is found in Michael Card’s Job Suit. It is beautifully written and orchestrated and theologically solid. This is absolutely worth 9 minutes of your time: https://youtu.be/P7XVS1VIzHc

 

Prayer

Loving God, I know that You are far wiser than I and are doing things in my life I will not understand in the moment. Help me to trust You, knowing that You always do what is best me. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God. ― Corrie ten Boom

 

Quote of the Day

Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time. ― Maya Angelou



Comments

01-29-2019 at 11:48 AM
T Holmes
Thank you for sharing this Pastor K. Great combo of the Book of Job's words, Michael Card's music, and inhonoredglory's visuals.
01-29-2019 at 9:53 AM
Erica Ciro
Beautiful video
01-29-2019 at 7:25 AM
Tom Scott
Do check out the video.
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January 28, 2019, 6:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Explore God--Why Does God Allow Pain and Suffering? 1


Why Does God Allow Pain and Suffering?

Genesis 3:6-11

When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.

And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the LordGod called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?” And he said, “I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.” He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?”

 

Thought for Today

This week’s question is one that we have all struggled with to one degree or another. If God is all-powerful and completely good, how can He allow pain and suffering to exist in the world? As we wrestle with this conundrum, let’s start at the beginning of the problem. Here we find a startling discovery. God created man and woman to live together in the joys of paradise. The garden was perfect. Their relationship with one another was perfect. Then they were tricked by Satan, posing as a serpent, and paradise is ruined by their rebellion. Here is the question: Who was the first person to experience pain and suffering at the Fall of mankind? It was God. God is the first being to experience and have to deal with the reality of pain brought on through the betrayal of His beloved friends, Adam and Eve. God suffered the loss of relationship and trust. If you have ever been betrayed by someone you love you know the depth of that pain and the suffering you endure. God is the first being to experience pain and suffering. God’ response is interesting. While you can hear the pain in His voice as He explains the consequences of their actions, He organizes those consequences in such a way that their punishment will open the door for Him to do what is necessary to fix our broken relationship. The death He pronounces as the punishment for sin will be the vehicle He will use to redeem us. He will suffer so that we can be restored. God’s response to the very first instance of pain in creation is to love.

 

Prayer

Blessed Father, I am sorry for the pain we caused You in the beginning and I praise You for Your response to love us instead of casting us aside. Help me to understand You better as I wrestle with the problem of pain this week. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

God had one son on earth without sin, but never one without suffering. — Saint Augustine

 

Quote of the Day

The only way out of the labyrinth of suffering is to forgive. ― John Green, Looking for Alaska

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