A politically incorrect guide. The Course would agree with Kushner that God doesn’t make suffering happen, but it would absolutely disagree with the idea that suffering persists because God isn’t powerful enough to do anything about it. It is a bedrock Course teaching that God’s Will and our true will are one and the same: “There is no will but God’s” (W-pI.74.Heading). Liberal Jewish View: God’s Power Is Limited (e.g., Rabbi Harold Kushner)1 a. Kushner summarizes the dilemma that the Book of Job addresses as involving three statements, one of which evidently must be false: (1) “God is all-powerful…” (2) “God is just and fair…” (3) “Job is a good person.”2 b. Kushner rightly observes that Job’s friends reason that since the first two statements are true, the third must be false. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1978. In the Course’s view, God never “disciplines” us in this way. The bottom line is that all is actually well now—suffering is an illusion, after all, with no effect on our reality—and we will fully realize all is well when we collectively bring about and experience the Course’s version of the apocalypse. In short, he’s a very puny God. It certainly isn’t okay for Job’s first set of children. The Greek Septuagint also includes the Books of Wisdom and Sirach. On the other hand, the Course definitely doesn’t agree with the idea that suffering is a “mystery” in the sense that term is often used: God somehow has a good reason for suffering that He’s withholding from us now but will reveal someday. (Kushner bases this view on the book of Job, but Ehrman thinks Kushner completely misinterprets Job.) I would recommend this book to everyone. Reviewed in the United States on October 11, 2014. If God is Love, why is there suffering? And even before it brings us all the way home to Heaven, it will transform this world into something joyous to behold: From forgiving thoughts a gentle world comes forth, with mercy for the holy Son of God, to offer him a kindly home where he can rest a while before he journeys on, and help his brothers walk ahead with him, and find the way to Heaven and to God. Your support is critical to achieving our mission of sharing the Course with students across the globe. Whence, then, evil? We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. The following four propositions appear to constitute an intractable contradiction: a. It should be a source of joy and dreams—joy of living for the moment and dreams of trying to make the world a better place, both for ourselves and for others in it. If it's helping people grow and change, it's true in an essential way that can't be proved factually or empirically. The ultimate answer to the problem of suffering is the experience of God in Heaven. If this is because our free will is removed, so much for the importance of loving him freely. He guides us, comforts us, and provides us with a way out of the hell we made. The prophets announce God’s punishment for the sins of the nation, and promise He will bless his people again if they repent. And as I mentioned earlier, I don’t think the Course actually solves the theological problem of evil and suffering in an absolutely airtight way, though some believe it does. This book hit the spot for me: a believer who is not sure of the details of my belief and leery of organized religion. This proves two things: (a) Job 3:25 cannot mean that Job suffered because of a negative confession. The idea is simple, whether it is applied to individuals or the nation of Israel as a whole. We do this by forgiving our brothers and showing them our freedom from suffering. Even though we can learn the error of our ways through the school of hard knocks, the Course is clear that pain is not necessary for learning. Course Hero is not sponsored or endorsed by any college or university. The devil didn’t make us do it. True, all of us are free moral agents, and on the level of earthly experience, we are inflicting suffering upon each other all the time. The author of Ecclesiastes concludes that in the end work is: Oscar Wilde once wrote, "There are only two tragedies in life." Though I’m not convinced by his solution to the problem of evil, the book is a first-rate exploration of the topic.). When his three friends are unable to answer Job, a young man named Elihu8 decides to speak. The truth is that there are certain things he simply cannot do. Ecclesiastes is one of the Wisdom Books of Hebrew Scripture, along with Psalms, Job, Proverbs, and the Song of Songs (Song of Solomon). Should we not do the same for our brothers and sisters? Suffering is the imitation of Jesus’ self-giving love; God, through His Son, suffers with us. We did choose to turn away from Him, and we have suffered as a result. We think this is the best we can do. And if it isn’t removed, what’s to stop us from turning away from him all over again? Third, no one is destined for the lake of fire and brimstone in the Course’s version: “The final judgment on the world contains no condemnation. Thus, suffering is not God’s punishment for our sins, but is instead our self-inflicted punishment for imagined sins. How can evil of any kind exist? God’s answer to Job offers no explanation per se for evil and suffering, but implicit in his speeches are the following lessons: a. This paves the way for God’s last step, which lifts everyone back to Heaven. For Further StudyOn the Book of JobHartley, John E. The Book of Job. Since the world was made by Sons of God in Heaven with infinitely powerful minds, and those minds have taken the form of everything we see in this world, this version of free will can account for natural evils such as earthquakes, tornados, and disease just as well as it can account for human depravity. Something we hope you'll especially enjoy: FBA items qualify for FREE Shipping and Amazon Prime. A number of answers have been proposed, answers that often take the form of denying one of the three statements that generate the problem. It makes sense that genuine love requires freedom and freedom means we can choose to rebel against God and inflict suffering on others. However, in the tradition of both Jews and Christians, there is a long and strong attestation of authorship to the person of Solomon, son of David, King in Jerusalem. Everything under the sun is vanity (futility), a chasing after wind. The path God’s Love has given us to relieve our suffering and return to Him is purely loving and joyful; no suffering is required on the journey. In the Course’s view, this is the way home for all of us. It can build strength and character. Excellent shorter commentary.Zuck, Roy B., ed. (Since the Course denies the ultimate reality of suffering, I wonder what he would think of it.). One positive aspect of this view, in Ehrman’s eyes, is that it takes evil seriously; it is not just a matter of humans behaving badly, but of dark cosmic forces at work. In its view, there is an all-powerful, all-loving God; therefore, there is no suffering in the ultimate sense. So, I want to make clear that while the Course does regard suffering as illusion in an ontological sense—it has no ultimate reality—the Course does not deny the experience of suffering in this world, and in fact urgently calls us to alleviate suffering while we are here: “Look about the world, and see the suffering there. The Book of Job: God’s Answer to the Problem of Evil, Modern Culture and the Conceit of Affluence, Examining the Evidence for Systemic Racism, How Then Do We Live as Christians in a Broken World, Walking the Line Between Church and State, Beware of Philosophy: A Warning to Biblical Scholars, The Biblical Basis of the Doctrine of the Trinity: An Outline Study. Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die. In the Course’s view, suffering is never redemptive; it is not something God brings about in order to produce some greater good or to save others. Suffering is the temporary product of evil forces persecuting the faithful; all will be well when the apocalypse comes. And if they are, is it not appropriate to judge his behavior by those standards, which would require him to give a good reason for causing such immense suffering?

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