Monday, July 14, 2008

Why do we suffer?

Do you ever wonder why God does not fully explain the reality of pain? John Piper has written an excellent post on that topic.

He writes:

"One of the reasons God rarely gives micro reasons for his painful providences, but regularly gives magnificent macro reasons, is that there are too many micro reasons for us to manage, namely, millions and millions and millions and millions and millions.
God says things like:

a) These bad things happened to you because I intend to work it together for your good (Romans 8).

b) These happened to that you would rely more on God who raises the dead (2 Corinthians 1).

c) This happened so that the gold and silver of your faith would be refined (1 Peter 1).

d) This thorn is so that the power of Christ would be magnified in your weakness (2 Corinthians 12).

But we can always object that there are other easier ways for God to accomplish those things. We want to know more specifics: Why now? Why this much? Why this often? Why this way? Why these people?

The problem is, we would have to be God to grasp all that God is doing in our problems. In fact, pushing too hard for more detailed explanations from God is a kind of demand that we be God."


toothdoc said...

These questions always lead me to God's response in Job 38-41. Reading that list puts me in my place very quickly.

Todd Pruitt said...

Isn't that true!

Sometime all we can do is cover our mouths before the mystery.

case.jess said...

In the midst of craziness and trials I think of John 11 and can't help but rehearse the words of Jesus...

"Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?"

(Also, the work of John Frame is a helpful resource :)