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Pain
Why Won't God Remove It?   

Q. If God is so powerful why can't He just rid the world of pain? Why would He create a universe He knew in advance would become filled with evil? Please just give me a short answer.

Answer:

This is a difficult question to answer briefly. But, I'll try.

Who would be First to Go?

If God were to remove all the pain and evil that we see in our world He would need to stop all evil acts. Evil acts are done by people. Because of this we would probably be among the first to go!

He would have to rid the world of human beings. You wouldn't exist, and neither would I. He would have to destroy you and me. This includes not only evil doers but those who "think" evil thoughts, too.

Dumb Robots

God did not create us to be robots. We do not run around stupidly saying, "I love God. I obey God. I do everything God tells me to do." He created us as creatures with free will. We can choose to love God. Or we can choose to commit evil.

Have you ever Sinned?

Do you think you are the only "good" exception in the entire world? Really? Honestly? Have you ever hurt someone's feelings? Have you ever gossiped about someone? Do you favor one child over another? Have you spoken negatively about your spouse to friends or your children? Have you become angry with your sister or your brother? Do you ever ridicule others? Have you been divorced?

The Bible tells us "If we say, 'We have no sin,' we are deceiving ourselves" (1 John 1:8).




Our Standards are not God's Standards

Yeshua boldly warned us,

…"everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment." Whoever "insults his brother" or calls him a "fool" will be "liable to the hell of fire" (Matt. 5:22).

He said that any man who even "looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart" (Matt. 5:28).

He warned that everyone who "divorces his wife" (except for infidelity) makes her "commit adultery" - and "whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery" (Matt. 5:32).

He told us not to take our own revenge but to "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" (Matt. 5:44).

God's standards far exceed ours. According to the Bible we truly err when we compare ourselves to other evil people like Hitler. All human beings have fallen short of God's standards.

"There is no one who does good, no, not one" (Romans 3:10).



He Will Destroy All Evil Soon

God will indeed destroy all evil at some point in the near future. He has told us that He does not wish that "any should perish, but that all should reach repentance" (1 Peter 3:9).

That is why He delays ridding the world of all evil. He desires you and me and our family and friends to accept His provision for sin - the Lord Jesus Christ.

This is why He states:

"For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life" (John 3:16, HCSB).


A Universal Nuclear Event

When He does destroy everything tainted with evil it will be a nuclear event throughout the universe. Listen to His description of this time:

"On that day the heavens will pass away with a loud noise, the elements will burn and be dissolved, and the earth and the works on it will be disclosed" (2 Peter 3:10, HCSB).

The word "elements" in the above passage is where we get our word "atoms." Everything down to the smallest particles will be destroyed - like in a massive implosion. "The heavens will be on fire and be dissolved, and the elements will melt with the heat" (v. 12).




Training for Reigning

Meanwhile, God is putting all believers through training for reigning. Our suffering is not useless or without purpose. (See 1 Cor. 6:2-3, 2 Timothy 2:12, Rev. 20:6, Rev. 5:10, Ps 8:3-6, Luke 19:17,19, for example).

Jesus&the Apostles Died as Martyrs

Remember that Jesus suffered and so did the apostles, too. We are not the only ones who suffer. Peter was crucified upside down. James was stoned. Paul was beheaded. Thomas was speared. All of the apostles but one died horrid deaths. And the one who died "naturally" had been placed in boiling oil - but survived. That was the apostle John who wrote Revelation and other books.

Preparing us for that Place

Alcorn points out that "God is grooming us for leadership. He's watching to see how we demonstrate our faithfulness. He does that through his apprenticeship program, one that prepares us for Heaven. Christ is not simply preparing a place for us. He is preparing us for that place" (Alcorn 2004, 215).
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References:


Alcorn, Randy. 2004. Heaven. Wheaton, ILL: Tyndale.

Billheimer, Paul. 2002. Don't waste your sorrows. Fort Washington, PA: CLC Publications.

Muncaster, Ralph. 2001. Why does God allow suffering? Eugene, OR: Harvest House.








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