Why God allows trouble, sorrows, suffering

Published 12:04 am Saturday, July 4, 2015

By the Rev. Ed Ganus

Job 14:1 states, “Man that is born of a woman is of few days, and full of trouble.” The truth in this statement is real for every person from birth to death. The crying of an abused infant, the weeping of a child over a broken toy, the broken heart of a mother who suffers because of the rebellion of her teenage child, the business Mure of an adult, broken homes, sickness, or the sorrow of death. These are just a few of many troubles persons face in this troubled world. Why does God permit these troubles which come to Christians and to the unsaved?

Some of the most cheerful people I have met have been persons who have experienced much trouble, sickness, suffering, or sorrow; yet are able to testify that God’s grace and love has carried them through each experience.

The first reason I share is that God uses the experience of his people to silence the enemy of the Word of God and the Lord Jesus Christ. A good example of this is the story of Job. Job was a wealthy man, but he was also a spiritual and godly man. When God called Satan’s attention to the fact that Job was a faithful God-fearing man, the devil accused Job of doing it for the gain and profit which came to him as a result of his faithfulness to God. Then God gave Satan the privilege, to take away Job’s possessions and his family.

The result was that Satan was silenced, when Job instead of murmuring and complaining and turning in bitterness against God, praised the Lord and was able to say in Job 1:21,”.. .

The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.”

In the eleventh chapter of John we find the second reason I share why God permits troubles. Lazarus, a very dear friend of Jesus, had died. Jesus had heard that Lazarus was very sick and could have healed him, but allowed him to die in order that He might reveal some truth about the resurrection that could not be taught to Lazarus and his two sisters in any other way. Jesus said to his disciples in John 11:4, when he heard of the sickness, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified by it.” Thus trouble can enable us to glorify God.

The third reason God permits trouble is to make us more like Jesus Christ.

The Bible tells us that Jesus was constantly rejected, accused of blasphemy, and finally crucified. He responded to trouble in a way that pleased God; therefore we should follow his example.

The Lord is interested in more than just saving people from punishment in hell and bring them into heaven. His purpose involves as stated in Romans 8:29, “For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that He might be the first-born among many brethren.”

The fourth reason is that troubles make us see and appreciate God’s blessings, and the fifth reason is that through troubles, sorrow, and suffering we learn that we can depend upon God for as stated in Psalm 46:1, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

-The Rev. Ed Ganus is the pastor at Philadephia Baptist Church.