Answering the Toughest Questions About Suffering and Evil {Book Review}

When it comes to ministering to others, I often find the toughest questions about God have to do with why He allows evil and suffering in the world. This is such a touchy subject and I don't pretend to know the answers, because really I don't. I honestly don't think any of us do. I tend to get curious, however, as to what others have to say about this, and recently read a new book, Answering the Toughest Questions About Suffering and Evil, that touches up on the subject.

When it comes to the big questions about suffering and evil, Bruce Bickel and Stan Jantz don't pretend to have all the answers. But they do know how to wrestle with doubt. They welcome questions, and in these pages they ask some of the most important ones you may have about suffering and evil. There is no shame in asking--after all, even some of the greatest men and women in the Bible had doubts. Don't let your questions go unanswered. What you find might just change your life.

Bruce Bickel and Stan Jantz are the bestselling authors of more than 50 books, including the international bestseller God Is in the Small Stuff and the Christianity 101 series. Their passion is to communicate the truth about God in a way that is clear, correct, and casual. Bruce and his wife, Cheryl, live in Fresno, California. Stan and his wife, Karin, call Orange County, California, home. For more information visit

In many ways I appreciated this book in that it offers a straightforward and honest approach to suffering and evil in the world, and how it relates to the existence of sin, since the beginning of time. The book had some very well thought out discussions and dives into the typical questions that many of use ask ourselves such as...

  • If God is the creator of everything and he is good, then why did he create evil, or even better yet, eliminate it for good?
  • Why is this world full of violence and corruption?
  •  Why do innocent people experience to suffering?
  • What can I do about suffering and evil?
  • Is there a difference between evil in the world and sin in me?

The truth is, we REALLY don't know why God allows there to be suffering and evil in this world. Maybe one day we will have the opportunity to ask Him, ourselves. While the title of the book suggests that it has the answers to these questions, there really is no definitive answer, at least not one that we could possibly know at the moment. I began reading this with that notion in mind, and I strongly recommend anyone else do the same, so they are not disappointed that they are going to walk away with clear answers to this big mystery. While there are a lot of strong arguments, the authors don't pretend to have all the answers, either. If anything, what this book does is provide logical discussions (with examples) to make the reader dig deeper into this quite complex topic, allowing them to come up with their own conclusions.