Why does God allow suffering?

+52 votes
asked May 14, 2015 in Culture & Society by irina (600 points)
I’m confused. If God really loves us all as his children and he truly is all powerful, why God allows suffering and tragedies like the recent murders in the South Carolina church? Why doesn’t he use that power to stop the heartbreak and agony?

2 Answers

+29 votes
answered May 21, 2015 by candace (820 points)
That is a question humans have been asking themselves throughout time. Great philosophers have pondered it and not come up with an answer. Some people believe the answer is that God does not exist at all, that He is a myth. Many more people, however, believe there is a God, a Creator, a Greater Power, or whatever name they decide to call it. So why doesn’t he stop the crime, the natural disasters, wars, and painful, incurable illnesses?

The most universally accepted answer is that God loved us enough to give us the gift of freedom of choice, or free will. That gift can be used in a positive or a negative way. Someone may decide to shoot up a movie theater and take lives indiscriminately while others decide to give up an organ to help someone they love.

And that doesn’t just involve individual choices. We also make choices as a society. We choose to go to war and fight other humans. Sometimes society’s choices affect the climate and in turn may be a catalyst to some natural disasters. Of course, many of those are also the result of the earth’s natural geologic conditions.
commented May 31, 2015 by Nermeen (620 points)
This is an awesome answer to why does God allow suffering. Thanks for sharing!!
+6 votes
answered May 16, 2015 by krystina (920 points)
Is there anything God may want us to learn from these agonizing events? I believe there is. We learn empathy for others who suffer. We learn to help in whatever way we can even if prayer is all we can offer. We figure out how to work together to overcome catastrophes. Compassion is an invaluable lesson discovered through donating food, clothing, money or time to help those in need, sitting next to a sick family member holding their hand, or letting a broken hearted friend weep in your arms.

Another point of view is that suffering encourages us to turn to God. Many people forget to pray when all is well but rather it only occurs to them when they are in need and it reminds them how much they need Him in their lives.

Questions like why does god allow suffering are those questions we’ll probably never know the answer to. In my mind, perhaps we are not supposed to understand…well, at least not in this life.
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