Why does God allow terrible things to happen to people that love Him?

mike

Member
Why does God allow terrible things to happen to people that love Him?

I have not had a lot of difficulties in my life. And most of my problems were from my own mistakes. Nonetheless I do know some of the basic principles of trials and tribulations.

First, we are not omniscient. Sometimes we allow our own to go thru a difficult time so they can learn and/or grow, but I don’t have the ability to see thru complex intricacies of life to know if the downside will be overly severe. So I was a bit overly protective with my own when they were growing.

But our Heavenly Father is omniscient…

Isaiah 55:9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

He can see thru the complex intricacies of life to know if a bad suffering will turn out for good.
Then He makes us promises. And His promises are where our joy is at. The circumstances of life can rob us of our happiness, but His promises cannot change. The joy that they give cannot be taken as long as we kling to them.

Look at the promise He made to Joshua as he was leading the nation of Israel into the promised land…

Joshua 1
[5] There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
[6] Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them.

I would love to go to war knowing that I would be victorious in every battle that I fought. What joy that would be.

And it is similar for us with facing terrible events in our life. We have a promise that everything that happens to us, including heart ache, will turn out for good…

Romans 8:28 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.

God uses difficulties, even heart ache, to work out good things for us. To make us more of what He wants us to be. To teach us to love Him better. But that means we suffer. Peter compares it to the purification of Gold…

1 Peter 1
[6] Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
[7] That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

Gold would be put to great heat to burn off the dross, so that the gold would be more pure and precious. It is the same with believers, our loving Father allows us to be put to the fire to burn off the impurities in our life, to make us more like Him.

Consider the blind man whom Jesus healed…

John 9
[1] And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth.
[2] And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?
[3] Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him.

The point that Jesus was making is that we belong to Him. And He can accomplish whatever He wants to with each of us. I can see where someone blind from birth might feel sorry for themselves. They might feel cheated. It might not seem fair to them that everyone else can see, but they are born blind.

But Jesus had a purpose for that man’s life. The purpose was that Jesus would be glorified by his life. And part of that purpose would come from Jesus showing Himself to be God by healing the man.

John 9
[6] When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay,
[7] And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing.

Another part of the glory that Jesus would receive from that man came from the man’s testimony…

John 9
[24] Then again called they the man that was blind, and said unto him, Give God the praise: we know that this man is a sinner.
[25] He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.

That man was born blind, and lived a life of blindness, so that a day would come that Jesus would be glorified by his life. But only if the man gave Jesus the glory. Only if he had faith in Jesus. And he did.

Next consider Job…

Job 1
[1] There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.
[2] And there were born unto him seven sons and three daughters.
[3] His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east.

Job was a believer and a very blessed man. He was rich. And Job loved God.
Then consider this conversation between God and Satan…

Job 1
[8] And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?
[9] Then Satan answered the LORD, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?
[10] Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.
[11] But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.
God points out that Job loved God. And Satan responds that Job’s love is only because of all the blessing. Satan claims that if the blessing are taken away, that Job would curse God.

God allowed Satan to do terrible things to Job. Job lost everything, including his children…

Job 1
[14] And there came a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen were plowing, and the asses feeding beside them:
[15] And the Sabeans fell upon them, and took them away; yea, they have slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
[16] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The fire of God is fallen from heaven, and hath burned up the sheep, and the servants, and consumed them; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
[17] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
[18] While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house:
[19] And, behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and smote the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young men, and they are dead; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.
Then God allowed Satan to take Job’s health…

Job 2
[7] So went Satan forth from the presence of the LORD, and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown.
[8] And he took him a potsherd to scrape himself withal; and he sat down among the ashes.

Turns out though that Satan was wrong, Job did not curse God…

Job 1
[20] Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped,
[21] And said, Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.
[22] In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

Job suffered greatly. But why? If Job loved God, why would God allow such terrible things to happen to Him?

We are not told why, but maybe a little speculation might help us. I suspect that God was working to improve Job’s love for God. I wonder if perhaps, even though Satan was wrong about Job’s love. Maybe in a sense, there was some truth to what Satan claimed.

What I mean is that, maybe Job’s love wasn’t perfect. Maybe Job’s love for God was affected by all of the blessings that God gave him. Like how if a rich relative gave me things, my love for them might be a little skewed. I might love them for who they are to me, but also, because they give me things, my love for them might be a little selfish.

If that is the thing, then Job was put into a place that he was forced to make a decision. He had to either love God more perfectly, or else walk away from God. Hold onto his love for God more tightly, or else quit.

Job held on more tightly. He loved God more perfectly.

If he had quit, then his love for God would not have been perfected. But he still would have suffered the terrible things. But it would have been all for nothing.

Now this seems rather drastic. How could a loving God treat His people this way. But it only seems this way when we have the narrow temporal view.

When we look at the eternal view we see how it makes sense. The struggles of this life, even the heart wrenching things are for a greater eternal purpose. But we will only be able to consider it that way if we have eyes of hope on the eternal.

Consider some of God’s promises…

1 Corinthians 2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

1 Peter 4
[12] Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
[13] But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

Revelation 21
[2] And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
[3] And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
[4] And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

Considered also that Jesus does not make this life without blessings. Job got the blessings back…

Job 42
[12] So the LORD blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning: for he had fourteen thousand sheep, and six thousand camels, and a thousand yoke of oxen, and a thousand she asses.
[13] He had also seven sons and three daughters.

And if that is not enough we have the promise that God will use us to comfort others with the comfort that He gives us through our trials…

2 Corinthians 1
[3] Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort;
[4] Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.
[5] For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.
[6] And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation.

Thank you Jesus for saving my soul.
 

JamesSuth

Well-Known Member
Thank you, @mike for your insightful post. Perhaps we also notice difficult times more now? What I mean is that for most of history life was very precarious, difficult, and often short. People often had their hope in eternity. And now in much of the west we can at times have amazing lives. To be fair, life is often not great, full of trouble; but we can imagine a great life. We see advertisements and Instagram's of allegedly perfect lives and expect that for ourselves.

God uses difficulties, even heart ache, to work out good things for us. To make us more of what He wants us to be. To teach us to love Him better. But that means we suffer. Peter compares it to the purification of Gold…
That is so true. Often God is using difficulties to get our attention, first for salvation or then to grow us in the faith.

I think the only instance of someone saying that having it good turns people away from God was in the book of Job, and it was Satan, the liar who said it! Every other time someone has it hard in the Bible, money worries, hunger, sickness, we are hearing of them turning to Christ. Although, I note that in Revelation, when the really hard times come, hearts will be hardened by that.
 

Armor of Light

Praising my Savior all the day long!
When we look at the eternal view we see how it makes sense. The struggles of this life, even the heart wrenching things are for a greater eternal purpose. But we will only be able to consider it that way if we have eyes of hope on the eternal.
this is key, God wants the best for us, what's best for us is our eyes on Him, looking to him for everything, every need, here is look from Jack Kelley
https://www.raptureforums.com/forums/threads/why-do-bad-things-happen-to-good-people-part-1.178979/
 

Jojo4124

Well-Known Member
With a test, we get a testimony, (if we take suffering to God) with which we overcome, along with the Blood of the Lamb.

My life reads like a fiction novel, one filled with trials. I dont post my testimony here because most ppl wouldnt believe all that the enemy put me thru.
David's Psalms helped me a lot.

I can testify 100 percent that Father God IS Who He says He is!! Faithful n True are 2 of His Names.

The Names of God mean SO much to me, because He has been many of them to me. I wouldnt want anyone to go thru trials, but because I did, I Know that I Know Who God is!!! If I had an easy life, like I had wanted, I doubt that I would know my Abba, Daddy, like I do. He has brought me through so much...praise to Him!!!

He also uses me to encourage those who go thru similar trials...I can empathize more because I understand suffering.
 

Armor of Light

Praising my Savior all the day long!
If I had an easy life, like I had wanted, I doubt that I would know my Abba, Daddy, like I do. He has brought me through so much...praise to Him!!!
No better way to see/learn who he is, and how much he cares for each of his children on a personal basis, he is a personal loving God.

I can testify 100 percent that Father God IS Who He says He is!! Faithful n True are 2 of His Names.
Amen!
 

Spartan Sprinter 1

Formerly known as Shaun
I still struggle with how God blessed Job with new children. I just wonder, well what about his old ones? I imagine Job must have been assured they were in heaven in order to not be so grieved after the fact.
Have you heard some teachers saying that God resurrected Job's children that passed away ?

When i heard that i was like HUH LOL???????

Where are these guys getting that from ?
 

GHoe

Well-Known Member
I still struggle with how God blessed Job with new children. I just wonder, well what about his old ones? I imagine Job must have been assured they were in heaven in order to not be so grieved after the fact.
And yet after reading the original post, I get the feeling Job didn't have to be comforted with the knowledge of his children going to heaven. In this man's case, I don't think he questioned it of God. I think he had faith that told him where they went and it was God's purpose that they left. (That said, I'm sure he mourned his loss and missed them)
 

cheeky200386

Well-Known Member
And yet after reading the original post, I get the feeling Job didn't have to be comforted with the knowledge of his children going to heaven. In this man's case, I don't think he questioned it of God. I think he had faith that told him where they went and it was God's purpose that they left. (That said, I'm sure he mourned his loss and missed them)
I hope so and like thinking that especially since he never cursed God. He obviously knew God and trusted him.
 

mattfivefour

Well-Known Member
Job suffered greatly. But why? If Job loved God, why would God allow such terrible things to happen to him?
I like your post, Mike. You make some interesting points that are relevant to each of us today. If I may, may I offer a related perspective? It's a sermon I have preached in different churches over the years: I posted the text of it as a reply to a Jack Kelley article a number of years ago on RF. https://www.raptureforums.com/forums/threads/jobs-story-part-1.125528/post-842479395
 

cheeky200386

Well-Known Member
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