Monday, October 10, 2016

Seven Sticky Theological Questions to Ask Ourselves in the Wake of Hurricane Matthew (or Any Tragedy)

Given the relationship between suffering and Christlikeness, is being spared suffering necessarily a good thing? (1 Peter 2:21-25)

Why would the Father ever spare me suffering--especially considering the fact that he did not spare his own Son? (Romans 8:31-32)

Do I secretly believe that the people who weren't spared deserve to suffer in a way that I do not? (Psalm 103:10)

Have I devoted prayer or resources to relieve the suffering of my brothers and sisters who were not spared? (Galatians 6:10)

If I really believe that I live on a fallen planet and that death will usher me immediately into the presence of Yahweh, why am I so relieved to find myself still here? (Philippians 1:20-26)

Am I praising God's name because I escaped suffering or because he is worthy of praise regardless? (Psalm 96)

Would I still be praising his name if I had lost everything? (Job 1:21Job 2:9-10)

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The linked verses are by no means a complete study of overall Scriptural teaching on any given question. They are, however, a good place to start.

For Further Reading:

CS Lewis: The Problem of Pain
Elisabeth Elliot: A Path Through Suffering
Tim Keller: Walking with God Through Pain and Suffering

Photo Credits:

By NASA Earth Observatory image by Joshua Stevens, using MODIS data from the Land Atmosphere Near real-time Capability for EOS (LANCE). Caption by Kathryn Hansen. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

By Barbara Ambrose NOAA/NODC/NCDDC. (NOAA Photo Library: wea02986) [CC BY 2.0 ( or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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