God and Suffering

Why, in any faith, does God allow pain and suffering? How are the suffering, human or otherwise, viewed by Him?

Saint Paul writes a great deal about suffering, if your looking for some sections of the bible to relate to this topic.

Suffering in general is very important in Catholicism, we must suffer to understand Jesus and what he did to abolish our sins, as Pope John Paul II wrote. “Each man, in his sufferings, can also become a sharer in the redemptive suffering of Christ”.

but simply we suffer so we can understand love, etc.
if we didn’t feel pain how could we feel joy, how can we truly understand happiness if we never felt pain or sorrow.

Do I think God is personally allowing human suffering? Nah,
we have free will.


But doesn’t God know what we will do with our free will?

When God does intervene (saving somebody involved in an accident, for example) doesn’t that interfere with free will?

So He must know how much we will suffer, which means it must be part of the plan.

We live in a fallen world. If there were no suffering here, then this would be heaven.

This is not heaven.

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God doesn’t allow suffering, He experiences it.

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Is there a passage in the bible that explains that we must suffer in order to know much better heaven is?


At least not the way you worded your question.

Thanks. I see this response a lot by Christians so I thought there may be a direct passage.

It is a strange concept to me. It seems like a parent who makes their kid suffer so they know what life is like without suffering.

I often refer to Uzzah’s fate. (2 Samuel 6.6)

When they came to the threshing floor of Nakon, Uzzah reached out and took hold of the ark of God, because the oxen stumbled
The LORD’s anger burned against Uzzah because of his irreverent act; therefore God struck him down, and he died there beside the ark of God.

Humans would have cut Uzzah some slack. His intent was to stop the holy arc from falling. But God is not human. His values are different. And also he knows that this mortal life is not the end.

But I know that doesn’t really address “suffering” that may linger on a thousand thousand times longer than it took for Uzzah to die.

So there is Job.

This is where I look for understanding of suffering. Again… his ways are not man’s ways.

(Isaiah 55.8)
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.

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Sounds like he did Uzzah a favor by calling him to heaven.

Or there is no plan and â– â– â– â– â– â–  things happen to good people because there are â– â– â– â– â– â–  people making â– â– â– â– â– â–  decisions that impact others.

There are plenty of direct passages that compare the suffering of earthly life with the glory of Heaven. And passages that say, here is here (earth) and there is there (heaven), and they are far different places. As noted earlier, St. Paul writes a lot about it.

They just don’t say we have to suffer to know what heaven is, or to appreciate heaven more when we get there (or whatever else your question was trying to ask.)

Then I really don’t get your post about this being a fallen world. Why can’t God just make it heaven?

You’ll have to take that up with Him.

I’m not one who follows the “God has a plan”, I’m more of a God is a observers on us.
Suffering is very much part of the human experience, like I said could we truly understand happiness if we never felt sorrow or sadness.

my personal opinion.

Earth could easily be heaven if we choose to make it one.
Free Will is a test, we need to strive to make the world we live in better place, Sadly sin is very appealing.

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Ay, many kotis of years they may pass without ever having mentioned my name, the law, or my congregation. That is the fruit of sinful deeds.

  1. But when mild and gentle beings are born in this world of men, they immediately see me revealing the law, owing to their good works.

  2. I never speak to them of the infinitude of my action. Therefore, I am, properly, existing since long, and yet declare: The Ginas are rare (or precious).

  3. Such is the glorious power of my wisdom that knows no limit, and the duration of my life is as long as an endless period; I have acquired it after previously following a due course.

  4. Feel no doubt concerning it, O sages, and leave off all uncertainty: the word I here pronounce is really true; my word is never false.

  5. For even as that physician skilled in devices, for the sake of his sons whose notions were perverted, said that he had died although he was still alive, and even as no sensible man, would charge that physician with falsehood;

  6. So am I the father of the world, the Self born, the Healer, the Protector of all creatures. Knowing them to be perverted, infatuated, and ignorant I teach final rest, myself not being at rest.

  7. What reason should I have to continually manifest myself? When men become unbelieving, unwise, ignorant, careless, fond of sensual pleasures, and from thoughtlessness run into misfortune,

  8. Then I, who know the course of the world, declare: I am so and so, (and consider): How can I incline them to enlightenment? how can they become partakers of the Buddha-laws?

No. The future does not exist to be known.

Not if someone with free will asked him to intervene.

He knows the maximum we could suffer, having suffered torture, crucifixion and hell and the complete wrath of God himself on our behalf. But that does not mean our particular measure of suffering is prescribed by God beforehand, rather than determined by ourselves and others.