Bible Studies/Suffering


is the question of suffering answered anywhere in the bible or is it something that remains one of Gods mysteries - maybe to be answered in the next life?

Hi Pete,

My quick answer is that the Bible regularly addresses the problem of evil and suffering.  From Genesis we see a world corrupted by sin (the cause) and God's attempts to redeem mankind (the response).  This redemption offers us forgiveness and pardon from the eternal consequences of sin, but so long as we are in this world we will see the results of sin.  The Bible itself, after establishing sin as the root of suffering, is more concerned about helping us to cope and help others through it than it is about the "why".  For specific Scripture, there is a compilation at:

A slightly longer answer has to address a few key concepts.

Why does God allow suffering?
In short, because it is the consequence of our sin.  Yes, God is perfectly loving.  He is also perfectly just.  The consequence we earned from sin is death, disease, imperfect and all the other suffering we see so readily in our world.  Our individual salvation saves us from eternal punishment, but because individuals will still chose evil and sin we cannot avoid earthly problems.

If God loves mankind he wouldn't allow suffering.
The problem with this statement is that we begin with an assumption - love forbids the allowance of suffering.  But love also includes the provision of free will, which allows us to chose to sin (and thus cause suffering).  When I rebelled and took off my training wheels before my parents allowed me I fell and ended up with a bloody knee.  The cause wasn't my father, it was my disobedience.  Not to mention (as James points out in James 1:2-4) suffering builds Godly character, and without it our faith would be weak and immature.

There are many more aspects to the problem of suffering, so if I can assist further or with any specifics please don't hesitate to follow up.

Kris Browning

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Rev. Kristopher Browning


Prolegomena: Theology of Inspiration, Theology of Revelation, Theology of Authority, Doctrine of the Holy Trinity (historical and contemporary), Cosmology (creation), Theodicy (existence/creation of evil), Hamartiology (Sin), Salvation, Ecclesiology (Theology of the Church) especially missiology, Eschatology (Last things, second coming, rapture).


Independent academic research, guided study, practical application via the local church ministry. 2013 to Present: Family Life Pastor, Shawnee Alliance Church (Lima, OH) 2010 to 2013: Lead Pastor, Fellowship Alliance Chapel (Huber Heights, OH) 2009-2010: Shawnee Alliance Church (Lima, OH) 2008-2009: Hope Community Church (Mount Vernon, OH) 2006-2007: Bladensburg Church of Christ (Bladensburg, OH)

The Christian and Missionary Alliance

Inspire Magazine, Spring 2012

BA in Religion, Mount Vernon Nazarene University M. Min, Mount Vernon Nazarene University Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership (expected 2017), Indiana Wesleyan University

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