Some just can’t comprehend how a just and fair God could allow such unjust and unfair things.
If you are one of those people pondering this, this article is for you. There are lots of reasons Christians go through pain we’d rather not experience and the Bible touches on this very topic.
In the word of God, there are five Bible stories (and many others that won’t be mentioned here) that can unlock the answers you seek and shift your perspective:
When Adam and Eve succumbed to temptation of their own volition, this introduced sin into the world and now, the fallen state of man accounts for many of the greatest injustices and atrocities we see unfold today. The existence of sin proves our need for a Savior.
#2 Joseph Forgives His Brothers (Genesis 50:15-21). Joseph was a great ruler in Egypt, but before that, he was hated by his brothers, sold into slavery and imprisoned for a crime he did not commit. Joseph suffered greatly and was treated in ways that were inconsistent with what he deserved. How unfair, right?
But that’s not the end of the story. After it was all said and done, Joseph realized that God used all those things to get him in position to save many lives from famine. Divine purpose was born out of intense suffering. This is proof positive that God causes all things to work together for our good. He allows hard times to fulfill His will and produce great outcomes.
#3 Jesus Heals a Man Born Blind (John 9:1-6). When the disciples noticed that a man was born blind, they immediately assumed it was divine punishment for sin. But they were wrong. In verse 3 of Chapter 9 (NIV), Jesus says, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned… but this happened that the works of God might be displayed in him.”
At times, your suffering is for the glory of God. For example, after this miracle was performed, the blind man became a believer of Christ and worshipped Him (verse 38). See how his bad situation, once it was turned around, drew him to Christ? The Lord will use the hard times to draw you closer to Himself and the low points to remind you that all your joy and strength comes from Him. Furthermore, through your testimony, others will see that God is real and come to know Christ.
#4 The Life of Job. Job suffered many things. He lost his children and his possessions, as well as his health, although he was a man of great integrity and incredible faith. Why did God allow the enemy to torment a man the Bible said was “perfect and upright?” That seems so unjust.
But Job’s life shows us that, like it or not, there will be times when it seems like God is punishing you for no reason, but this is not so. We may not always understand why God is letting us go through a difficult season, but we can rest assured that the Lord’s ways are just, and He will bless those who remain faithful to Him through the struggle.
We learn through Job that our faith is tested to prove its genuineness. This is so well laid out in 1 Peter 1:7 NLT: “These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold–though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.”
Our foundation of faith must not be contingent upon our circumstances. If it is, then that is not true faith. Job’s declaration must be our own: “Though He slay me, yet will I trust in Him” (Job 13:15).
#5 Jesus Crucified (John 19:1-30). The ultimate example of a good person falling victim to unpleasant circumstances is Jesus Christ. He was perfect in all His ways. He had never sinned. He helped the poor, healed the sick and devoted His life to the good of others. He was God in the flesh and even this did not exempt Him from suffering! Why do we think we should be?
Jesus was flogged, spit on, mocked, and crucified. Why? To save us from our sins. His suffering blessed all of mankind.
So if Jesus is our consummate teacher, we learn through Him that suffering is not evidence that God is not good, but rather, the method by which He accomplishes His plan and receives glory.
If you are suffering for the cause of Christ, 1 Peter 4:12-13 ESV reminds you that God’s glory is revealed through suffering. It says, “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.”
Again, suffering is the path to glorification.
When life gets rough, remember Romans 8:28 (KJV), “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”