QUESTION: Why does terrible sickness happen-like cancer that goes on for months/years? How can God allow this all over the world?
ANSWER: We live in a broken world where war, cancer, car accidents, plane crashes, brain tumors, human trafficking – suffering – happen every minute of every day. It all started in a perfect Garden, thousands of years ago when the first humans were unable to obey a simple command and sin began to multiply in this world. Since that time, sin, which is at work in all of Adam and Eve’s descendants, has compounded and its destructive power is (or should be) a constant reminder of our great need for God. Living in a sinful world means we deal with accidents and sickness and all kinds of tragedies that happen to good and bad people alike.
If it were not for God’s mercy (when He withholds what we really deserve for our sinfulness) and grace (when He generously gives us what we could never deserve) our lives would be filled with the horror of constant tragedy, pain, and separation from all that is good. At this very instant, God’s goodness is being poured out all over the world because He loves us in spite of our rejection of His only Son, Jesus as the Master, King and leader of our lives.
Is God powerful enough to stop tragedies like the hundreds of refugees dying in the Mediterranean Sea? Yes, absolutely! And He does prevent accidents all the time – but not every time. That’s what we find so difficult to understand and accept.
Why doesn’t God stop all the bad things from happening? Because He loves us; God understands how foolish it would be to remove the consequences of living in a sinful world and let us have our own way all the time. If I got my way and what I want every time, I would soon think of myself as god.