If God is Good, Why is There Evil and Suffering?
Often time’s people ask, “How can God be good, if He allows all of this evil?” When we look around at our world today, we see death, sickness, fighting, terrorism, racism, hatred and many things that we all wish did not exists. So why is there evil in the first place if God created everything, and why doesn’t he just get rid of all of it?
The answer to the first question is actually quite simple. Evil exists because of mans disobedience. The Bible tells us in the Book of Genesis that God created everything very good. A very good God created His world just like we would think a good world should be. There was no death, sickness, war or fighting. In fact even wild animals and humans lived together in perfect harmony. Man was in perfect fellowship with God. All of this changed the moment Adam disobeyed God. According to the Bible God gave Adam permission to eat the fruit of every tree of the Garden except for one. Genesis 2:15-17 reads, “And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” Unfortunately this is exactly what Adam did. First his wife Eve and then Adam chose to eat the fruit that the Lord commanded them not to. Because of this, sin and death entered our world.
Because of Adam’s sin death, sickness sorrow and pain are now an everyday occurrence. Our world is now far removed from how God originally designed it, and it will only keep getting worse until God returns. God is not responsible for the mess this world is in, we are! God created it very good, we messed it up.
Ok, then why doesn’t God just get rid of the bad things in this world? Sure we made the mess, but why doesn’t he just clean it all up? When considering this question we must first consider what it is that God considers bad. 1 John 1:5 states, “This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” In other words God is perfect and without any sin. There is no level of bad or evil in God at all. God’s level of justice and righteousness is far above and beyond ours. God does not give a pass to even the smallest measure of sin. If God was to get rid of all that is bad on this earth according to His righteous standards, WHAT WOULD THAT MEAN FOR YOU? How many times have you told a lie, stolen something, gossiped about someone, used His name in vain, lost your temper, broke the law? If God were to get rid of all the bad in this world then that would mean every person reading this article (who hasn’t been forgiven through Jesus) would be wiped out. God allowing evil to remain is not cruel on His part; it is HIS MERCY! 2 Peter 3:9 tells us, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
Here is the bottom line, our sin is the reason that the world is in chaos and we are separated from God. If we die in our sins, God will judge us by His righteous standards and we will be lost in hell for eternity. God loves you and stands ready to forgive you. God, not wanting to punish you, sent His only Son Jesus to die in your place. Jesus was punished so you don’t have to be. God commands us to have faith in His Son Jesus, trusting that what He did for us is enough. Believe that and you will be forgiven. God will get rid of all the evil in this world someday, just make sure that doesn’t mean you.