Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?
You don’t have to be around for very long before you realize that bad things happen to everyone – even good people. Even as we bring up the subject, specific unpleasant circumstances in your life or the life of someone you love are probably coming to mind. Let’s be honest about these “bad things.” They’re real. They’re frustrating. Often, they really hurt – and in the search to figure out why it happened, people generally are stuck for an answer.
Why do bad things happen to comparatively moral, kind people? This does not seem fair, and it has caused many people to get angry with God, sometimes to the point of denying His existence. However, even taking steps like these does not get you any closer to effectively coping with the problem or understanding why bad things happen.
First, let’s understand that there is only one way to get inner freedom from questions like these. Jesus said, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:32)
Regardless of everyone’s opinion, where can you find the truth – what really is true? Speaking to God the Father, Jesus said, “Thy Word is truth” (John 17:17). As with every issue you deal with in your life, God’s Word has the answer for you – the truth on the matter. What does God say about when bad things happen?
“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned” (Romans 5:12)
So, God sheds light on a few things here:
1. One man – Adam – introduced sin into the world by doing his own way instead of obeying God. (See Genesis 3:1-6 for the historical account of this event).
2. When sin came into the picture, death also came. Death and suffering was not God’s idea. Man messed up God’s perfect creation by sinning, thus introducing death and suffering to the world and everyone who lives on it.
3. Every person in the world is now subject to death and suffering because of sin. God is not the culprit when bad things happen. Sin is the problem. From this verse in the Bible, God is teaching us that we live in a world that is suffering because of sin. We could certainly call it a “sin-cursed world.”
That’s why bad things happen. We live in a once-perfect creation that has been fractued by sin.
However, there’s good news in the midst of this. The God that created you is big enough to take even the worst of circumstances and use them together for good:
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
1. God has the ability to take all things – the good, the bad, and the ugly – and work them together for good in your life. Just like a master chef can take different ingredients – sweet and bitter – and make them into a lovely dish, God can take the circumstances in your life – the sweet and the bitter – and make something beautiful of your life. What a promise! God has the ability to reverse the curse!
2. This promise is only to a certain group of people – to those who “love God” and who are “the called according to His purpose.”
In other words, it is your responsibility to ensure that you are one of God’s people. How do you do that?
“But as many as received Him, to them gave He power [the right] to become the sons of God, even to them that believe [depend] on His name.” (John 1:12).
God’s Word explains how you can receive Him and become His child. Click here to watch a video explanation of this from the Bible.