1)Listen to Podcast
Nonsense! The Paradox of Suffering:
Sources of Suffering
1. The Fall: A ‘worldview’ is a system of belief that explains the universe. The secular, materialist worldview
assumes we are a great, cosmic accident. Just atoms bouncing around in skulls. How does the secular
worldview explain suffering? How does the Christian worldview explain the source and origin of all suffering,
pain, and evil in the world (Gen. 2:17; 3:16-19; Rom. 6:23)?
2. Fall-ing Upward: Dig a little deeper. How does Paul compare what Adam did in the garden with what Jesus did
on the cross (1 Cor. 15:21-22; Rom. 5:12, 15-19)? What WAS true of you in Adam, and what IS true of you
now in Christ? However, as “gravity” is not a satisfying answer for the boy who wants to fly, has “original sin”
ever felt like an unsatisfying answer to you?
3. Joseph’s Humiliation: Sometimes we are our own worst enemy and the unfortunate cause of our own suffering
(Judg. 21:25). Most of the time, perhaps, our suffering is vague, mysterious and completely without
explanation, as with Job. But there are instances when the pain we feel is very much someone else’s fault.
How was this the case in Joseph’s life… repeatedly (Gen. 37:27-28; 39:14-20; 40:12-15, 23)? Have you ever
been severely and unjustly wronged by someone else? What would that experience have been like if you
didn’t know Jesus?
4. Joseph’s Exaltation: Job (Job 1:21-22; 2:9-10; 13:15), David (Psa. 13:5-6), and Joseph (Psa. 105:16-22) each
provide powerful examples of how to endure suffering with faith. What aspects of Joseph’s character are
highlighted in the following stories (Gen. 39:8-9; 40:8; 41:16)? What promise of God to sufferers did God keep
in Joseph’s life (Gen. 39:2, 21, 23)? How have you experienced His similar faithfulness in yours?