We live in a world full of pain, suffering, and brokenness. These tragedies we see a daily point to the age-old question: Is God good? What love would God allow His people to experience such misery?
When we face tribulation, we doubt that God is for us, not against us. But this doubt is all too strategically planted by the enemy, as an attack on our faith.
In life, no matter our calling, we are all going to experience some difficult situations. The level of life’s severity will also differ from one individual to the next.
In every facet of our lives, everywhere man lives, there is constant conflict and tension.
From silly daily inconveniences like a noisy neighbor to losing a job or a loved one, life is hard.
However, though life is hard, hope is always there. The pure and indisputable truth is that God is good, even if we are too blind to see it.
When our lives are flowing smoothly, and everything is sweet, it’s easy for us to see the goodness of God. Our eyes are prone to being open to God’s beauty and presence when our souls are at peace and hearts happy.
We see the beauty of His creation everywhere. But life is sometimes just plain hard. We must hold fast to the simple truth that permeates throughout the Bible: All the time, God is good.
Why is God described as good?
The Bible’s earliest description of God and His marvelous acts of creation repeatedly uses the word “good”.
God Himself described what He had done on the different days of creation as “good”, and summarized the overall creation work as “very good” (see Genesis 1:4-25).
In the Book of Psalms 14 verse 3, David is recorded as lamenting about the evil people living during his day,
“They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one”.
Yet, in verse 8 of chapter 25, he proceeds to say,
“Good and upright is the LORD: therefore will he teach sinners in the way”.
Despite the ups and downs of our lives – whether wallowing in the deepest of the valleys or gladly rejoicing at the mountaintop – God is good. There is no better foundation upon which to build our faith than His goodness.
The Bible gives a standard of goodness and says in Acts 4:12 that for man to be saved, no other way exists except through the name of God’s Son, Jesus Christ, the epitome of good during His time here on earth.
Why is God good and not evil?
We often find it hard to wrap our minds around someone perfect, holy, and incapable of doing wrong. This is only to be expected; our minds are finite. Our God is far beyond human understanding.
God did not have to create us; the angels and the universe declared His glory long before we arrived on the scene. But He chose to create us so that we could know the joy of a relationship with Him.
And many years after creation, He decided to send His son to die on the cross so that we could be saved. This was the ultimate act of goodness and love, which no human could ever replicate.
And we can see countless displays of that perfect love in our world and our lives.
God’s Goodness in Our Lives
The question “Is God good?” is often followed by a similar thought: “Why does God allow bad things to happen?” There are several components to that answer, but let’s focus on the main points.
- Foremost, we need to understand that God did not create sin. Sin is not the creation of evil, but the absence of good.
Genesis teaches that man brought sin into the world by disobeying the perfect will of God. Adam’s pride and doubt in the goodness of God caused evil to arise. Since then, every human has been born with a bent toward sin.
But if God is so good, why doesn’t He stop the existence of sin?
The answer is this: choice. Love is not love unless it is chosen.
He wants His people to worship Him not out of monotonous obligation, but because they genuinely love Him.
Sometimes trials can test that love, but God knows that those trials only serve to strengthen our faith if we trust in Him. It is through a struggle that we learn to depend on His grace.
Until Jesus comes back again, sin must exist in the world. But until then, God will continue to use evil as a vessel for His plan.
He can use anything for His glory and our joy – and that makes Him good.
Sin – Rejection of God’s goodness
The Bible tells that rejection of God and the sin which entered the world as a result of Adam and Eve disobeying God and eating from the forbidden Tree of Knowledge results in suffering, death, and eternity in Hell.
However, because of God’s love for us, He became man in the physical form of Jesus Christ. He died a substitutionary death that atoned and paid the ultimate penalty for our transgressions. Jesus saved us from our sins and restored our broken relationship with the Father.
The keyword to note here is “but”. Because of God’s goodness, we can now have communion with Him through the redeeming blood of Jesus Christ that was shed at Calvary. His blood was the only entirely acceptable form of atonement for our sin (see Hebrews 10:10).
If God is good, why is there suffering?
If God really is good, if He loves us if He is sovereign and is mighty enough to prevent any harm from coming to us, why do we face evil in our life?
This is one of the major questions that keeps flowing up from generation after generation, and we could see these questions being asked even in the Bible.
Even sometimes, great Christian faith holders get stumbled upon by the contradiction is between the existence of a loving God and evil when they face suffering.
If God is good, why is there suffering these questions arises only when we face suffering such as the death of the loved ones, sudden business collapse, a relationship breakup, road accidents, poverty.
Paul said in 1 Thess 4:13:
We would not be having any hope of getting a better world without his mighty power and love. Only a God who can bring good out of evil can solve this world’s problems.
Can God Relate to Our Pain?
In John 16:33, he said:
Going through the path of suffering is inescapable for all. Thinking of all the sufferings happening in this world, you might think that does God care about us?
The answer is that God not only does care, but He cares enough to send His only-begotten Son as a living sacrifice for our sins to suffer and die for our sins. Because of this suffering sacrifice and love over us, we now have a way to be reconciled with God through Jesus Christ.
This doesn’t mean that we won’t be going through sufferings in this world, but God has made a way to spend our eternity with Him.
Romans 8:18 clearly says this:
Yes, there will be a time when all our cries will be wiped; there will be no death or mourning.
Thoughts to Remember in Times of Suffering
One thing we can understand if God is good, why is there suffering is that nothing happens in our life without His knowledge and approval. We can’t understand why He let the suffering flow over us with our finite perspective.
God, in His wider knowledge, does everything for good, and we need that kind of trust with God. Job had such faith despite losing out everything in his life. There was nothing left for him or no reason to live in his life after losing out on everything.
But he never said a word bad against God, and he had the faith that God can restore everything in my life.
Job had an in-depth faith that could not be taken out, and we can see that from his words.
We might need to cross the worst phase of our life; we might lose our loved ones, we might never go through ever circumstances which can turn our life upside down. But still, hold on with God, pray to him, never lose hope in suffering.
He knows our pain, suffering, and the path we are going through. In his perfect timing, he will restore everything and comfort us in times of disasters.
Though life is hard for a variety of different reasons, through it all, we are in the process of being made more into the holy, the image of a good God.
God is undoubtedly greater than every kind of hardship we face.
All of life’s sorrows, tragedies, and iniquities ultimately should lift our gaze to that day when all the difficulties of this sinful life will vanish, pointing us toward the endless glory and goodness of God.
A Christian’s journey leads over high mountains, high and through low valleys. God doesn’t promise a life that is only full of joy, without sorrow; He, however, promises to stand by our side through it all, for He is a good God. (Romans 8:38-39)