Rethinking My Beliefs about God Apart From Traditional Christianity

Maybe It’s Time We Face Some Facts About God and Suffering

In God, Suffering on November 14, 2010 at 9:35 pm

I’ve often heard Christians say that we must blame humans who cause suffering, not God. However, did God create the world or not? Did God create humans? If so, then why did God create a human world of suffering?

I have also heard the argument that God needed to give humans a free will and we freely chose sin instead of God and therefore we must experience suffering as the result of our free will…. But again, are humans more powerful than God? And if we are so inclined to sin or ignorance, then where exactly is our free will?

If suffering is so wrong and horrid, then how can God do nothing while it occurs, especially when there is injustice? Would it be considered right if we saw a child being abused and did nothing to intervene? Well, if God is in control of the world, this is exactly what happens. Why?

Is our sin and selfishness really the cause all suffering? What about earthquakes, freezing temperatures… or a mishap like slipping in a puddle?

Not to mention Bible stories like curses, floods, plagues, Satan’s torment of Job…. This is part of Gods’ created world – the world he created, runs and controls, at least as far as the Bible seems to say. If true, maybe it’s time we face some facts.

It seems to me that God ordains suffering, but not in the sense of abuse such as is included in the pointless theory of eternal torment without escape, a.k.a. hell.

These are the two extremes: God will go over and above any due punishment or God has nothing to do with pain and suffering. The Christian religion generally perpetuates both of these ideas, I think.

The only adequate answer to pain that I’ve found is 2 Cor 4:16-18 et al. Suffering opens our eyes, creates strength within us, compassion, etc. It carves out a depth in our soul that otherwise wouldn’t be there. It brings us peace, joy and all kinds of other good things. It gives us personalities. The eternal result far outweighs in glory the temporary suffering.

“Therefore we do not become discouraged. Though our outer man is decaying and wasting away, yet our inner self is being renewed day after day.

For our light, momentary affliction is ever more and more abundantly preparing and producing and achieving for us an everlasting weight of glory,

Since we consider and look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen; for the things that are visible are temporal , but the things that are invisible are deathless and everlasting.”

~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

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