Necessary Pain

I am convinced that pain is necessary. If the word “necessary” causes you to put up a wall and stop paying attention, I’ll soften my vocabulary and say that pain is purposeful. (But I really mean necessary.)

At first pass, the concept of “necessary pain” doesn’t make much sense. To most of us our troubles seem at best unnecessary and at worst the cruel work of an uncaring God. Pain causes us to wrestle with the basics of God’s character. If God cares, if He’s good, why doesn’t He remove our pain? Perhaps He doesn’t care; perhaps He isn’t good; perhaps He has no power over pain. Or, perhaps God has His reasons for allowing pain, even horrific pain, to invade our lives.

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Knowing Like God Knows

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You will be like God. Alluring words, but deadly ones, because they flow from a forked-tongue. “Like God” sounds good until you look at the details: knowing like God knows means knowing what is good and what is evil just like God knows what is good and what is evil. How does God know what is good and what is evil? He uses His own goodness to evaluate all else. It works perfectly for Him, but only because He is good through and through. It doesn’t work for any other being, natural or supernatural. The serpent’s alluring words spring from a warped character and lead to death. The same thing happens when we use our own character to evaluate our circumstances, because we also aren’t good through and through – our forked-hearts kill our joy. Knowing like God knows can only be done by God.

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