Why Does God Allow Bad Things To Happen To Us?

One of the men in our group asked: “Why did God allow slavery to exist for so long?”  I suppose the answer would be that he has given to each human free moral will to make their choices.  Add to that the following Scripture: Revelation 12:9 – “The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.”  And Revelation 20:3 – “He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.”

Would we not ask the same question: “Why does God allow Satan to deceive the world?”  I do not know of any Christian who hasn’t had some troubles in their life.  How we deal with problems during those times depends on a number of factors.  We first must realize no matter how much success we may have received there will always be times of suffering.  Some may be by being deceived through Satan’s temptations, some are caused by our mistakes and others are problems caused by others. Sometimes God allows all these things to happen to prepare us for greater responsibilities.  Since bad things do not always occur because we were deceived by the devil or the devil made me do it; we permit our carnal nature and distractions from the world to bring on negative consequences.  Then there may be times when God wants to change our purpose, direction, improve our faith or build trust in Him.  It reminds me of all of the problems God allowed the apostle Paul to endure.    Paul treated each situation as a challenge and so must we.  It is no time for a pity party.

God does not allow bad things to happen, under grace, to punish us.  He will do it for our own good.  First, He gave us the Holy Spirit to help deal with all suffering.  How we deal with these difficult times depends to an extent on our knowledge and knowing what God promises.  The more we understand the Bible, God and the Holy Spirit the better prepared we will be to handle any negative circumstance.

When we find ourselves in a serious situation we must understand how God operates.  Do we know what God promises during these times?  He says the Holy Spirit will take away fear.  Do we realize that God has a purpose for everything that happens?  Why is He dealing with us?  Could it be our pride, showing us what is important in life or is God just trying to get our attention?  In sports we always seemed to learn more when we lost than when we were successful and would win.  What is God teaching us and what are we to learn?

As I have written previously, when I had a massive heart attack, bypass surgery and not expected to live there was no fear.  I learned that God was in complete control and He knew what was best for my life.  I learned a lot about God.  I knew that He wanted me to completely surrender my life to Him.  I believed that God would do what was best for me and my family.  I was taught that I had no other choice but to turn that circumstance completely over to Him. (For a believer, death is the doorway to Heaven.)   Since 2005 I have repeatedly thanked God for the lessons learned, the assurance that His Spirit was with me and the blessings I have received since.

So how does this all apply to handling life’s pit-falls?  If problems or negative conditions present themselves how we handle them may depend on our trust in God’s Word.  If the Word is planted with a carnal heart, it could cause us to allow deceitfulness and worry to stress us out.  This is when the devil can really work on a person.  However, if we have allowed God’s Word to come into a heart purified through righteousness we will be able to accept the promises that God will meet our need and everything will work for our best.   With the right heart we may expect when it is all over we will be a better more enlightened person.  How do we make the heart right and accept the authority of the Bible?  We must have the self-control to become submissive to God, Christ and the Holy Spirit. Read, study and understand the Word!  Otherwise, the devil will challenge our hearts and our decisions. Many are not above temptation unless their self-control comes from a Bible based commitment to please God.

John 16:33 – “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”


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