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Using the book of Job as a guide, author Mark Tabb explores the age-old questions about God, His goodness, and why bad things happen.
Following Christ seems to make life harder, not easier—why should we continue?
Using the book of Job, Mark Tabb searches for the answers to age-old questions about God, pain, and living our lives. Encounter an honest discussion of suffering and find real-world comfort and strength for the trials you face.
How Can a Good God Let Bad Things Happen?
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Available in Spanish
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A Biblical Picture of Suffering
One of the most common objections to the idea of God in general and Christianity in particular is the question of suffering: If God is good, why do bad things happen? Traditionally, the "pro-God" answer falls into one of two categories: Either God is completely good, but not capable of intervening (as argued in Harold Kushner in Why do Bad Things Happen to Good People), or God is capable of intervening, but He's not good.
You won't find either of these in Mark Tabb's book, How Can a Good God Let Bad Things Happen.
Instead, Tabb offers a third explanation, a biblical one, focusing on one of the most important statements in the story of Job: "Should we accept only good things from the hand of God and never anything bad?" (Job 2:10 NLT)
Tabb does a wonderful job conveying the human perspective of suffering—the pain, the confusion, the frustration... everything that comes with it—but never strays from what Scripture has revealed about God. He provides strong answers that don't minimize the struggles people deal with. What he offers instead is the truth that nothing is random, even if we can't understand it. Even if we don't ever get the "why," God is working for our good. But, "[t]he good for which God works doesn't guarantee happiness or comfort or miracles today. He works toward a far more permanent good" (pp. 99-100). But in the end, God owes us no explanation.
That's the rub, isn't it? God is completely good, completely sovereign—and not obligated to explain Himself. For us, this is frustrating, infuriating at times... but ultimately it's a source of comfort. Because a God who we can completely figure out, who we can fit in a cozy box, is no God at all. So we learn to trust Him as He as revealed Himself, and we look toward the promises of Scripture. That there's a day coming when He will wipe every tear, and there will be no more suffering, no more death. But for now, we wait for that day and press forward, serving others in our suffering.
10/12/2009 7:25:23 PM
Every day horrible things happen around the world. Many times we stop to wonder why because our Lord is a good God. How can a good God let bad things happen? And how can these things happen to believers? Mark Tabb attempts to address these questions and more. Can we trust God? Is there a purpose to the suffering? How are we supposed to go on after trials?
I was a bit reluctant to read this book for a couple of reasons. The first being that I was in the middle of some trials and didn't want to read a bunch of cliches. The second was that there are many books out there dealing with the topic, some of which are quite good. Obviously, I read it anyways. By the time I finished the book my trials had subsided and I came to the conclusion that such books are to be read during times of relative peace and calm in our lives so that we can store the Word in our hearts. In times of need, they will come back to us. How does this book rank with the others I have read? I found it to be different, so I can't rank it with others. This book is for the believer. It is for someone who has acknowledge God in his or her life. Many other books on this subject are addressed for the doubters. My one negative thought regarding this title is that it does seem to get a bit repetitive at times. I found myself skimming parts. Overall, I would recommend it if you wonder about accepting both the good and the bad from God.
8/12/2009 8:31:12 AM
A Great Bok on Why We All Go Through Suffering
Mark Tabb takes the story of Job in the Bible, analyzing all the suffering he went through, the pain of losing everything in his life and applies it to the sufferings that we all go through.
The first time I saw this book, I thought that it might be boring to read. I did not know who Mark Tabb was and the cover seems so stark and straightforward. The title, however, caught my curiosity and since our family has been going through some hard times, I thought that this could be a good book to read.
This is not the kind of book you read from cover to cover in just one sitting. From the first chapter, I’ve had to keep putting the book down and digest what the author was saying. I can’t help but apply it to my own life and see how God is working there.
At first, the things he wrote about the Godhood of God were actually hard for me to digest. He wrote about God in such a way that you will actually start being scared of God, but encourages you to keep on trusting Him anyway. He wrote about a God who is capable of doing anything and everything in your life including letting bad things happen to you. Then he explains why God does let bad things happen to us.
The book’s message lets you know more about God through our suffering and is written in a very simple and understandable manner. The message is actually doctrinal but he explained it so that an ordinary person like me can easily understand.
This is a worthwhile book to buy and read. Plan to spend weeks on finishing it because you just have to stop after every few pages and ponder on the message and how good and gracious is our God.
6/29/2009 2:38:19 AM
For the hurting Christian
How Can A Good Got Let Bad Things Happen? is written for parents who have lost their child. It is written for the couple struggling with infertility. It's for the man who has lost his job. It is for the widow. It is for the man whose wife has left him. It is for all hurting, confused, and angry Christians.
Mark Tabb has tackled the difficult topic of why God allows His people to suffer. Looking at the life of Job, Mark Tabb walks the reader through questions like:
* How could God let this happen?
* Can I ever trust God again?
* Could God have some purpose behind all I've been through?
* Why does the road have to be difficult?
* How can my life go on from here?
Mark Tabb deals with these questions honestly and with great respect for God. Mark is open about his own anger and confusion in the face of suffering, but he draws the reader right back to trust in God. He reminds us of God's promises to be with us always, and the ultimate promise of eternal life.
This is a book every pastor, every grief counselor, every leader in the church should read.
5/11/2009 8:37:40 PM
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God Can Be Trusted!
I really appreciated Tabb's honesty and his willingness to tackle the hard questions. We deffinitely aren't going to understand why God allows certain circumstances or people into our lives. That's why we need to trust Him. He sees the big picture. We don't. When there are so many out there complaining or blameing God, I am ecstatic about glorifying Him by exemplifying trust in Him. He deserves it. There is nowhere else to turn. We either partner with Him or we are miserable and alone. Tabb's book is a very simple and easy read despite the difficult subject.
5/7/2009 10:08:30 AM