Some have asked, “Why did God allow my baby to die?” or “Yes but I never understood why God brings a child into this world with disabilities? A newborn hasn’t even sinned. So why is this innocent allowed to suffer by God. I’ve always had a hard time with this. Can anyone give insight or help passages on this ~ thanks”
God wants us to be at that point we wouldn’t be able to get to without that suffering. Suffering often makes us more empathetic, stronger, and wiser. As an example, some children were and are being molested, but as an adult if they could go back and change that, because of the Grace of God they wouldn’t, as the experience, regardless of how painful and scarring it was, made them who they are today and without that, their entire world and world view would be altered. So to me, God allows the suffering of the innocent because without that suffering, they wouldn’t experience the spiritual growth or growth of character that He wants from us, and while the suffering is, in the moment, incredibly painful, He is seeing the end result and He is so in love with the souls we will become that the temporary act of suffering is necessary.
As hard as this sounds people are born with disabilities to bring God glory. When the disciples asked Jesus who sinned this man or his parents that he was born blind he tells them it was neither. It was to bring God glory that he was born blind.
The first thing to consider is whether such a thing as “the innocent” even exists. According to the Bible, “the heart is wicked and deceitful above all things” (Jeremiah 17:9), and “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Therefore, no one is innocent in the sense of being sinless. Sin entered the world when Adam and Eve rebelled against God in the Garden of Eden, and mankind has been in rebellion ever since. Sin’s effects permeate everything, and the suffering we see all around us is a direct result of that sin.
But God did not leave us here to suffer pointlessly. Our loving and merciful God has a perfect plan to use that suffering to accomplish His threefold purpose. First, He uses pain and suffering to draw us to Himself so that we will cling to Him. Jesus said, “In the world you shall have tribulation” (John 16:33). Trials and distress are not something unusual in life; they are part of what it means to be human in a fallen world. In Christ we have an anchor that holds fast in all the storms of life, but if we never sail into those storms, how would we know that? It is in times of despair and sorrow that we reach out to Him, and, if we are His children, we always find Him there waiting to comfort and uphold us through it all. In this way, He proves His faithfulness to us and ensures that we will stay close to Him. An added benefit is that as we experience God’s comfort through trials, we are then able to comfort others in the same way (2 Corinthians 1:4).
Second, He proves to us that our faith is real through the suffering and pain that are inevitable in this life. How we respond to suffering is determined by the genuineness of our faith. Those with faith truly from God, “the author and finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2), will not be crushed by suffering, but will come through the trial with their faith intact, having been “proven through fire” so that it “might be found to praise and honor and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:7). Those are the ones who do not shake their fists at God or question His goodness, but instead “count it all joy” (James 1:2), knowing that trials prove that they are truly the children of God. “Blessed is the man who endures temptation, because having been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him” (James 1:12).
Finally, God uses suffering to take our eyes off this world and put them on the next. The Bible continually exhorts us to not get caught up in the things of this world, but to look forward to the world to come. This world and all that is in it will pass away, but the kingdom of God is eternal. Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36), and those who would follow Him must not see the things of this life, both good and bad, as the end of the story. Even the sufferings we endure and which seem so terrible “are not worthy to be compared with the coming glory to be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18).
Could God prevent all suffering? Of course. But He assures us that “all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). So even suffering is part of the “all things” that God is using to accomplish His good purposes. His plan is perfect, His character is flawless, and those who trust Him will not be disappointed.