The Bible’s View of Suffering

262017sufferingHuman suffering is a universal problem. As nurses, we see plenty of it. We know there are no easy answers, so how do we address the problem of suffering?

People often treat Scripture like a manual, looking for a single clear response that explains the presence of evil and suffering. Brian Han Gregg thinks we should take a different approach. He explores twelve themes related to the issue of human suffering in his book, What Does the Bible Say About Suffering? by InterVarsity Press.

Here is an excerpt:

“A survey of the various biblical approaches to suffering makes it clear that the biblical authors seek to do more than help us understand the why of suffering. In fact, in many instances answering the question Why? seems to be of secondary concern to the biblical authors.

Rather, the focus seems to lie on God’s various responses to suffering. What is God doing through suffering? What is God doing to address suffering? What is God doing to defeat suffering? If these are the points of emphasis in the Bible, we would be wise to pay attention to them.

The reality is the Bible doesn’t tell us everything we might wish to know about suffering, but it doesn’t set us adrift either. The Bible simply keeps God front and center. God knows about suffering. God cares about suffering. God is at work against suffering. God reigns over suffering. God suffers. God will one day declare final victory over suffering.”

The problem of suffering is painful, complex, and mysterious. This book does not have any simple answers, but it may lead you to discover a different path on the journey through it.

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Become an NCF member and receive a 30% discount on all books from InterVarsity Press. Members also received the Journal of Christian Nursing which is loaded with biblically-based articles for nurses, including “Entering into Suffering: Becoming a Transformed and Transforming Healer” from JCN, Jan-March 2017 (1.5 credits).

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