Shortly after a horrifying battle in one war-torn land, where thousands of women and children had been slaughtered; thereafter, being buried in a mass grave surrounded by markers, the following inscription on each marker was found: “Why?” What a painful question this is for the survivors of a tragedy: “why”? It is most often asked sadly when war, disaster, disease, or crime takes their innocent loved ones, destroying their lives, or brings them untold suffering in other ways, such as extreme poverty, or living in a war-torn country, or under a cruel dictatorship. These ones need to know why such tragedies have befallen them.
Julia, a 32-year-old woman in the United States, was known as the most loving and caring neighbor anyone could ever desire. She was a hardworking mother and a loving wife. Then, what seemed like a cold (a viral infection) just would not go away, so she went to the doctor, only to discover that she had cancer. It came on her quickly and what was once a beautiful young woman was replaced with a lean and haggard shell of a person because of the disease that was ravaging her body. After months of painful suffering, cancer took her life.
Jason and Lisa, a young couple in their 30’s, with their three young children, 10, 8, and 5 went to visit their family on the East Coast of the United States. Only the wife would return home. They were involved in a fatal automobile accident, leaving a tremendous void in the lives of the wife and her family, as her husband and three young children were killed in the accident. To make matters worse, she was thrown from the vehicle, lying paralyzed on the ground and she could only watch as her loving family burned alive inside of the car.
December 14, 2012, Newtown, Connecticut. Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting: 20-year-old Adam Lanza killed twenty-six people and himself. He first killed his mother at their shared home before taking her guns and driving to the school. Lanza brought four guns with him. He killed twenty first-grade children aged six and seven during the attack at school, along with six adults, including four teachers, the principal, and the school psychologist. Two other persons were injured. Lanza then killed himself as police arrived at the school.
Every day when we awaken, it is to news of evil and suffering on our headline news or our social media feeds. There have been so many wars that we are now callused to the news of soldiers dying unless we are directly impacted. By October 2016, Chicago had surpassed 600 homicides and over 2,800 people shot, marking a 32 percent increase in murders and non-fatal shootings compared to 2015. Deadly accidents and crippling illnesses happen regardless of a person’s age or their social status in life. Natural disasters destroy communities in a way that does not show care or judgment of who you are. There is likely no person on earth who has not suffered some kind of tragedy in their life.
It is only natural to ask questions like these:
- Why do bad things happen to good people?
- Is God to blame for the suffering we see?
- If there is an almighty God, who is love and just, why does he not protect good people from harm?
- Will there ever be a time when we are free of evil and suffering?
Herein Andrews will answer the “why” in WHY ME? When Bad Things Happen to Good People. He will address whether God is responsible for the suffering we see. He will also delve into whether God’s foreknowledge is compatible with our having free will. He will consider how we can objectively view Bible evidence, as he answers why an almighty, loving and just God would allow bad things to happen to good people. Will there ever be an end to the suffering? He will explain why life is so unfair and does God step in and solve our every problem because we are faithful? He will also discuss how the work of the Holy Spirit and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit should be understood in the light of wickedness. Lastly, Andrews will also offer biblical counsel on how we can cope when any tragedy strikes, as well as how we can avoid letting any lingering doubts destroy our faith, and how we can prevent our feelings from controlling us, as we overcome the anxieties of life.
 Some names have been changed.
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