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How to answer “Why does evil and suffering exist?”

Doing some study at the moment, one of the questions has provoked a few thoughts between me and my wife but we have no answer for this question that satisfies either of us. Any help?

Using a story or saying from the life of Jesus, give a one-minute reply to the question: "How can you believe in a loving God who allows so much suffering in the world?"

Not the easiest question in the world, but I thought if there was a place that could provide an answer of some variation, this would be it.

Quick note: our answer:

In John 16:33, Jesus says that there WILL be trouble, but that he has overcome it. He suffered during his illegal trial, punishment and death, but that he came to glory through his resurrection and ascension. I believe not because he allows suffering, but because he suffered for us and because of that resurrection and ascension

Thanks for any other inputs!

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marked as duplicate by David Stratton, Caleb Nov 12 '12 at 10:09

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

2 Answers

I won't answer the philosophical side of this question. Faith or the lack of it rarely rests on pure intellectual reasoning. (Just about every single atheist I know of, when talking about their "conversion" to atheism, has given a testimony about personal experiences, not about a pure intellectual endeavor.)

This question usually burns, because suffering has affected our whole being, not just our logic reasoning capacity.

In the end faith in God is a gift from God. When faced with evil and suffering, the most important thing is that God always brings hope into the equation. Without hope, suffering becomes unbearable.

In fact, I think faith in God can help a person to register the pain in ways that otherwise had not been possible. Gods empowerment might not mean that pain goes away, but that we are given courage to face it, thus in a strange way initially making it worse!

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Let me offer you the 5 second answer:

God makes suffering and death holy by suffering and dying Himself.

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