There is pain and suffering all over the world. Even at this very
moment, people are facing death and torture, but the question is if
God is all kind then why is there suffering? Who or what is the cause
of this pain? How can it be stopped? Through this section of the
coursework, I will discuss the answers behind these questions from the
perspectives of the two religions, Christianity and Islam.
According to Christianity, God is wholly good, he does not create evil
nor is he evil. It states in Genesis that God created all things in
the universe 'and it was good'. So if God is all good, then where does
evil come from? The teaching on suffering in Christianity goes back to
the beginning when Adam and Eve were created by God. Humans were given
the one thing above every other living creature in the universe, and
that was the power of free will. God had explicitly told Adam and Eve
not to eat from the tree of knowledge but they were not able to comply
with this one basic rule. They were tempted to eat from the tree by
Satan, the devil, an archangel that was kicked out of heaven due to
his rebellion against God.
This incident 'The Fall' is used by all Christians as a good lesson on
the origins of evil and suffering. Literalist Christians believe that
this incident did happen sometime long ago but liberalist Christians,
for example Baptists, believe that this was not actually a real
incident in time, but only a myth that is used to teach humans of the
consequences of disobedience. Now due to this one event, Christians
believe that all humans are born with 'Original Sin', meaning it is
human nature to be sinful. 'The Fall' was a punishment, a form of
suffering, because of the disobedience and ignorance of Adam and Eve,
therefore it can be said that suffering is a result of sin, and as sin
is brought upon through temptation by Satan who is evil, suffering can
be thought as the consequence evil.
Evil is not the only reason for suffering according to Christianity.
Suffering is part of life because it is needed to find inner strength
and goodness. It is believed that through suffering, human beings
learn to lead better, sin free lives. This same belief can be
illustrated by Jesus' torture on the cross and his resurrection, or
life after death. Christians may think that Jesus showed out of
darkness and death came light and happiness.
In some cases, evil is the result of suffering according to Christian
teachings. Job began to question God for why he was suffering because
Job had led a good life up to the point of his misfortune. The
questioning alone relates to sin because no-one is allowed to question
God in a way of anger. But overall this was a good lesson learnt which
resulted in Job getting back what he lost because he understood his
wrong in questioning God when God gave him...