If God Is Good, Why Do People Suffer?

How many times is this statement or versions of it put to Christians? Some people seem to use this statement as a proof that either God is not good, or that he does not exist. Nothing could be further from the truth. And in fact there is a fundamental flaw of logic in this statement. Why, for example, should a person’s suffering be linked at all to whether God is either good or not good? There are many reasons why a person may suffer which have no connection whatsoever to God let alone whether he is good or not.

Let’s examine this matter a little further, for there are two basic reasons why this statement is wrong.

The first I have already alluded to above. Man suffers in many cases at his own hands or at the hands of his fellow man. If you do something wrong you can be sure that you will suffer the consequences of your actions, even when you don’t know you have done something wrong. Let’s take the analogy of a car owner. Every car has a gearbox and for the gearbox to work properly it must have oil. If you fail to put oil in the gearbox your car will break down and you will suffer cost, delays and maybe even physical damage as a result. Let me ask?should you blame God for your suffering? Is God at fault because you failed to put oil in the gearbox of your car? Who is responsible for ensuring there is oil in your car, you or God? Does this suffering for your own failures or omissions somehow make God any less good? Of course not, and to think otherwise is foolishness!

The same situation also applies in many other forms of suffering. Individuals who fail to take responsibility for their actions, or suffer at the hands of someone else. People subject their bodies to drugs, alcohol, nicotine, poor foods and many other things that are bad for them. Or they allow unscrupulous people to con and take advantage of them and thus suffer.

In any of these situations is it valid or logical to blame God and suggest that he is not good? Of course not! What has he to do with the harm suffered that was either self-inflicted or caused by others?

But some might say that if God was good he would take away all forms of evil and hurt in the world; after all he is the God of the world isn’t he? Well this brings me to the second reason why the statement in the title of this article is wrong. The real god of this world is Satan, who is the personification of all that is evil.

The bible shows in a number of places that Satan is the ruler of this world. Satan is referred to as the “ruler of the world” in John 12:31, 14:30 and 16:11. In Luke 4:5-6 it shows that all of the kingdoms of the world are in Satan’s power to give to whomever he wills. In Revelation 13 we see that Satan gave his power and authority over to the beast from the sea, and it was given authority over every tribe, nation, people and tongue (Rev 13:1-7).

So Satan is the god of this world and man is under his power and authority to do as Satan pleases. Satan represents all that is evil, so do you suppose in your wildest imaginations that he will do good in this world? Isaiah 14:12, 17 shows he, “laid the nations low,” and, “made the world like a desert and overthrew the cities,” and, “did not let his prisoners go home.” And do you think that those under his rule and authority will ever receive any good from him? Not a chance!

But you might wonder who put the devil in charge? Was it God and thus he is still to blame? No, it was not God it was man. Mankind chose to be under Satan’s rule rather than God’s. When Adam and Eve chose to break the one law they were given by God; when they heeded the serpent and listened to him and ate the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, that was when mankind chose to listen to Satan rather than God. That was when man chose Satan as the god of this world, rejecting the true God and Creator of all things.

Did that decision by mankind, which was the beginning of his pain, suffering and death, have anything to do with whether God is good or not? No. Man suffers because he chose evil rather than good; he chose to be ruled by Satan rather than God. And it is no different today. Those who choose to do what is wrong suffer and are responsible for the consequences of their decisions.

But God is good because in spite of man’s choice, God provided a way of escape for those who choose to follow him and choose to do what is right. If you want to escape suffering and reject the rule of Satan, God has provided the way: through his son Jesus Christ.

I hope that you found something here to help you or add to your own knowledge. If you have any questions, then please feel free to contact me.