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4 Were We Meant to Suffer?

4 Were We Meant to Suffer?

Why It Matters

The answer to this question affects our outlook on life.

To Think About

Does it make sense that the God who created such beauty in the world would consign us to a life of suffering?

Secular-minded people view suffering as a reason to question God’s motives​—or even his existence. They believe that suffering shows that either (1) God is powerless to stop it, (2) God does not care to stop it, or (3) God does not exist.

Are those really the only options?


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What the Bible Says

God did not create us to suffer.

He wants us to enjoy life.

“There is nothing better for [people] than to rejoice and to do good during their life, also that everyone should eat and drink and find enjoyment for all his hard work. It is the gift of God.”​ECCLESIASTES 3:12, 13.

God gave the first two humans a perfect start.

He did not mean for them​—or their descendants—​to suffer.

“God said to them: ‘Be fruitful and become many, fill the earth and subdue it.’”​GENESIS 1:28.

The first two humans chose independence from God.

As a result, they brought much suffering on themselves and all their descendants.

“Through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because they had all sinned.”​ROMANS 5:12. *

God did not create us to live independent of his guidance.

We were no more created to rule ourselves than to live under water.

“It does not belong to man who is walking even to direct his step.”​JEREMIAH 10:23.

God does not want us to suffer.

He wants us to live in a way that, to the extent possible, we avoid problems.

“If only you would pay attention to my commandments! Then your peace would become just like a river.”​ISAIAH 48:18.

^ par. 17 In the Bible, the word “sin” refers not only to wrong acts but also to a condition that all humans have inherited.