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If God is Real, Why is there Suffering?

Life is a difficult journey for most people. Why does God allow suffering? What steps does the Bible offer people who want to be forgiven of their sins?


Brother Bob Pellien: I’m Brother Bob Pellien. Thank you for joining us on this podcast episode of That’s in the Bible.

Our next question came in via e-mail from Chris Panama in San Diego, California. He asks, “If there is a God, then why do humans suffer?” Well all who are suffering surely have asked that question and do ask that question, “Why? Why are we suffering?” Some [ask] the question like this, “Why does God allow suffering?”

Well, in fact, not only does God allow suffering, here in the writings of the prophet Isaiah, the Bible records this important truth. Verse 4, 5, and 6, states:

The earth mourns and fades away, the world languishes and fades away; the haughty people of the earth languish. The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants, because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore, the curse has devoured the earth, and those who dwell in it are desolate. Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men are left.

[Isaiah 24:4-6 New King James Version]

All have sinned

Brother Bob: Yes, it’s true. There is much human suffering and the Bible makes clear the reasons why. Man has chosen to change the ordinances of God, defile His laws and His commandments, and no one can exempt themself, because Romans 5:12 makes very clear the all encompassing nature of human sin in these terms. 5:12 reads this way:

Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned–

[Romans 5:12 New King James Version]

Brother Bob: So, dear friends, all have committed sin and God made clear [that] because of man’s insistence upon sin, the world—He considered it defiled, cursed it, and thus human suffering continues to plague humanity. 

How to be forgiven of sins

Brother Bob: However, Apostle Paul also made very clear in Romans chapter 3. Let’s turn to the book of Romans 3:25. This important statement was made. There’s a chance for humanity, the Bible says:

God gave him as his sacrifice to pay for sins. So he forgives the sins of those who have faith in his blood. God did all of that to prove that he is fair.

[Romans 3:25 New International Reader’s Version]

Brother Bob: Yes it may be so, dear friends, that humanity is suffering and there’s a world filled with woes. But God is fair. God is love. God is compassionate and merciful, and to ensure that mankind had a chance to be forgiven for the sins, which brought the curse and the suffering upon this world, He gave His son to bring about the forgiveness of man’s sins, but that forgiveness had a direct connection to the blood to be shed by our Lord Jesus Christ. Why? Is there no other way for man to be forgiven for the sins and have the curse of suffering removed from their life? Is there another way? I’d like to read the book of Hebrews for the Bible’s answer to that in chapter 9, verse 22, wherein the following is stated.

In fact the law requires that nearly everything be made “clean” with blood. Without the spilling of blood, no one can be forgiven.

[Hebrews 9:22 New International Reader’s Version]

Brother Bob: Is there then an essential connection between the blood spilled by our Lord Jesus Christ and being forgiven? The Bible’s answer is explicitly yes. Without the shedding of that blood there cannot be any forgiveness. One therefore must make sure there under the umbrella of the saving power, the forgiving power, of the blood of Christ. Many would say, “well that’s for anyone and anybody.” But the Bible is also very clear. For whom was the blood shed by our Lord Jesus Christ for? Was that the redeem to purchase, bring about the forgiveness of everyone who just simply proclaims it on their own? In the book of Acts 20:28, the Bible makes clear. Acts 20:28 reads.

Take heed therefore to yourselves and to all the flock, over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers, to feed the church of Christ which he has purchased with his blood.

[Acts 20:28 LAMSA]

Brother Bob: The church was redeemed or purchased by the blood of Christ. And what’s the name of that church? That’s the Church Of Christ. If then one wants to be removed from the onslaught of human suffering, they have no choice but to be in that one safe haven, the place where God has promised the forgiveness of sin, the place where He has promised His love, His compassion, and ultimately eternal life in the Holy City, and that blood of Christ was shed to redeem or purchase The Church Of Christ.

We invite everyone, therefore, to be here with us, inside the Church Of Christ, to be forgiven for sin, and a chance to live forever in the Holy City, the kingdom of our Father above. Thanks for listening. I’m Brother Bob Pellien and we hope you join us next time on That’s in the Bible. Please feel free to email your questions to For more programming of the Iglesia Ni Cristo, Church Of Christ, and to find a local congregation near you, please visit