Introduction:“I can’t believe in a God who would allow so much suffering,” is a statement many make when justifying their reasons for NOT believing in and trusting God. Is there purpose in the pain? Can you put your total trust in a God who allows unjustified pain and suffering?
· The Book of Proverbs offers wisdom about self-induced suffering.
· Parent wisely, handle your money, and control your sexuality, anger, and words wisely.
· The Book of Proverbs says to not blame God for the mess you’ve made.
The Mystery of Suffering:
The Bible wrestles with the mystery of suffering more than it gives answers to suffering.
· The biblical writers don’t seem to explain suffering.
· They just join with you and me in protest of suffering to others and to God.
· The Bible was written by people who are overwhelmed by human suffering and evil.
Outrage at suffering points toward the existence of God.
The whole idea of justice assumes that there is a right way things should be.
The Two Primary Types of Suffering
1. There is suffering FROM something.
2. There is suffering WITH someone.
Jesus was the master of suffering WITH
· Only Jesus reveals to us what no human being had ever imagined before Him, a wounded, broken, scarred God.
· After the resurrection, Jesus maintained His scars to eternally prove His love for us.
· There is a beauty to a wounded body of Christ that an unwounded body does not know.
God identifies with us in our pain and suffering.
· And He calls us to suffer WITH.
There will at times be nails pounded into your life.
· That is the story of our world, but continue in HOPE. God will make all things right someday – some glorious day.
1. How does Jesus’ suffering help you when you are suffering?
2. How has suffering impacted your relationship with and trust in God?
3. What reservations do you have about fully trusting God because of suffering you have experienced?