Why Does God Allow Suffering?

This is probably one of the most-asked questions you’ll hear from people who aren’t believers yet.  If God is truly loving, how can He allow people to die terrible deaths from cancer? How can He allow some people to remain in total poverty? How can He allow hatred, malicious gossip, and many of the other problems that are facts of life on planet Earth?

Unfortunately, many Christians, who should be the ones giving people an accurate answer to this, compound the problem by offering answers that not only aren’t in the Bible, but they also contradict what the Bible actually says on the matter!

For example, they will tell parents of a special-needs child, “You must be a special parent because God gave you a special child.” What a bunch of rubbish! Equally bad is, “Maybe God in His infinite wisdom knew that cancer was the right thing for you to have.”  These answers make it seem like God turns a blind eye to man’s problems, or worse yet, brings them on to “teach” us something or make us “better”.  Ask the parents of a special-needs child how “special” they feel about it!  Often they’re mad at God, even though God does not give people disabilities.

God has no interest in hurting His children. He is not a child abuser.  Would you give your child cancer to “teach” him something? Of course not, and neither would God. Jesus said that if you’ve seen Him, you’ve seen the Father.  Jesus never gave anybody cancer!  Jesus went about healing all diseases, which would certainly include cancer and “special needs!”  If you’ve seen Jesus, you’ve seen God’s will concerning them. Never did He tell anyone, “Sorry, keep your cancer.  God is trying to work a greater good in your life through this experience.”  Jesus hasn’t changed; what He wanted then is what He wants today.  Satan hasn’t changed either; his agenda is still to “steal, kill and destroy.”  Does cancer give life more abundantly, or does it steal, kill and destroy? Then judge for yourself where it comes from!

It was actually never God’s intention that there be tragedies on the earth.  There wouldn’t have been any if Adam hadn’t obeyed Satan rather than God.  When Adam fell, he gave Satan the right to be around and mess up things on the earth. He will continue to have that right until he is locked up during the thousand-year reign of Christ to come. The Bible identifies Satan as the author of disease in Acts 10:38, which says that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil. It certainly wasn’t God doing the oppressing; Jesus would have been undoing the works of God when he healed the sick if that were true!  Thank God, healing is available for cancer, special needs, and other problems. We’ve seen people with cancer healed completely after prayer in the name of Jesus. I knew a “special needs” boy down in Massachusetts who according to the doctors would never walk, never talk, and never see. He’s now a walking, talking, seeing miracle! Thank God his parents knew better than to just accept the doctor’s prognosis as God’s plan for their child!

Many people make the mistake of thinking that if something happens, it must be God’s will because God “allowed” it.  Thus, they figure that all suffering must be God’s plan because He “allows” it. If that’s true, Jesus sure messed up a lot of God’s plans when He healed all who came to Him for healing!  And He’s the same yesterday, today and forever!

God allows people to go to hell if they fail to obey His gospel and receive Jesus.  Does this that mean that it is God’s will for them to perish in the eternal flames?  Of course not!  It’s His will that none should perish and that all would come to repentance.  Do you really think that wars, abortions, gay marriages, terrorist attacks and domestic violence are the will of God?  No, but in this sinful world, these things happen because people make the wrong choices. God didn’t make us robots. We all have the right to choose right or wrong. That doesn’t make it His will when we choose something wrong.

And because we live in a sinful, fallen world, some things that got in, like sickness, can attack you or your family even if you haven’t done anything directly to deserve them.  But thank God, Jesus still stands ready to relieve the suffering of humanity, not just feel sorry for us.