It is difficult to even begin talking about this book. It is a monumental addition to Christian literature on the subject of pain and suffering. Alcorn explains this issue in a gentle yet frank way. With his use of blatant truths and inspirational stories, you will come away feeling as if you were talking with a friend. Not everyone may agree with Alcorns logical conclusions to such a messy issue, but few can come away saying that he didnt answer the majority of their questions. With this touchy issue, many who are hurting may not want the logical answers to pain and suffering, but Alcorn delivers the truth with tact and care. One critique of this book is that it is massive and comprehensive. One review I had read criticized the book for not being comprehensive enough. I dont know that they actually read the book. For those who are not really readers or not as familiar with the majority of questions related to this subject, I would refer you to The Goodness of God by Randy Alcorn. It is a condensed version of portions of this massive work.
Randy Alcorns treatment of the doctrine of theodicy is the, go to book on the topic. It is suitable for the neophyte and mature Christian both. If you have ever asked yourself the question, If God is Good why does He allow bad things to happen to good people? Or if anyone has ever asked you that question, this book will aid you greatly in giving an answer. I was briefly exposed to this area of Christian theology shortly before providentially finding out about this book. I was blessed by it and I believe you will be to.
Randy writes this book with a Pastors heart. He understands that people reading this book are going to be from a wide and varied background with all kinds of questions and hurts. If you have lost a child, been struck with a terminal illness, seen horrific violence, or ever wondered how an omnipotent, benevolent being could allow these things, you can read the explanation that has been carefully crafted and laid out so as to heal and not hurt. Ive never read such a thorough and gentile explanation that was also so blatantly honest. Ive read very dry white papers that are accurate, but lack the heart of a Pastor. These works often enrage critics or those who doubt. Ive also read other books that fail to answer the hard questions about God in light of suffering. The, cotton candy theology of men who only want to sell you a book or preach some false life enhancement Christianity only leaves us vulnerable when tribulations occur.
Randy includes real situations, with real people who have been through terrible things. He methodically and caringly explains theodicy so that it will be a comfort and easy to understand as well as explain. If you are an apologist, get this book and study it. They next time you run up against a flaming atheist making the accusation of, Id never believe in a god that would allow a baby to be murdered! Youll be able to give an answer. If you have a loved one who is going through difficult times, perhaps they have read books from those smiling self-help, guru, false preachers and have not been helped, but instead left doubting, GIVE THEM THIS BOOK! I cant say enough good things about this book and how useful it is. I give it 5 starts, two thumbs up, and an emphatic Amen.
I received a free copy from my friends at blogging for books for an honest review of Randy Acorns "If God is Good, faith in the midst of suffering and evil. When i received it i was overwhelmed by the thickness of it, primarily because as a pastor i am looking for resources i can suggest that will be of benefit to those facing life's challenges. I was intrigued by the book as well for the topic. I don't believe I have ever met a person who acknowledges a supreme being of some sort that doesn't ask the question, "If God is good, why did ....... happen?"
That being said, it quickly became obvious as to why the book was so thick. Dealing with issues of good, evil, sin, morality, and divine sovereignty is no "light" subject. Randy does an awesome job of systematically addressing the issue of evil and why God can allow it when it causes us so much pain. He addresses the issues as they are and doesn't "skirt" the issues. This is not a quick read, especially if you are willing to allow it to sink in as you read and contemplate what is being said.
I really appreciate the questions Randy asks and the answers he gives from the word of God. After all if we don't see sin and the consequences in the Bible, your plain and simple not in the Bible.
This book is well worth the time and i would highly recommend it to both pastors and lay leaders specifically to better prepare yourselves for the work of the ministry. Feel free to check out the previews of If God is Good, and then go pick up a copy. Why not invest in yourself and be prepared to face a skeptical world?
I was very excited about getting my copy of "If God is Good" by Randy Alcorn. I even the loved the cover (rose and thorns). I find Randy Alcorn to be an excellent author who is very scripturally sound. He does a pretty thorough job covering a very hard subject, evil and suffering, in this 500+ page book (long but worth it). This subject is a hard one for anyone to totally understand, but I feel Randy Alcorn, the author, did a great job covering the many angles of hand questions that surround this very question, "if God is good, why all this suffering and evil?"
This book is divided into 11 sections and covers practically every aspect of evil and suffering from its origins to various views on the subject. I believe Randy did as good a job on covering the subject as anybody could ever attempt to do. To understand it more thoroughly than this, I believe we'll have to wait until the day we stand before the presence of God, and then that which is now dim and cloudy on suffering and evil, will become totally clear. But until then, I believe this book will help you better understand and deal with the suffering and evil that surrounds all of us. Not one of us is exempt from suffering and the consequences of evil in our world.
I do believe this book will help you to see that you don't need to be getting mad at God over this subject. It is so wonderful to know that through it all our God is in control and that God is good!
I received a free copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for my honest review. I was in no way required to write anything positive, all thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.
I've never read anything before by Randy Alcorn but early last year I went through a very hard season of doubt and struggle and someone recommended I read this book. When I saw it was available for review I decided to pick it up.
When I first saw it I was at Lifeway checking out more books (can you say book junkie?). It's almost 500 pages... to be honest that kind of scared me. Who wants to read that many pages of a non-fiction book, especially on the goodness of God? You could find yourself in deeper waters than you thought, right?
Well, don't let the number of pages scare you. I've read several chapters of this book and it is just so good!! One thing I absolutely enjoy about this book is how it's PACKED with Scripture. Few books nowadays have the Word in them and I think it's a great benefit, especially to a book this important.
Who hasn't asked, God, why does this happen? Why them? Why her? Why ME?
In the midst of trials and suffering and pain we get real and raw and we ask questions, but more than that we start to SEEK. Is this all there is? How do I live after something like _________?
Randy Alcorn uses grace and truth to help guide you through the questions to find yourself growing closer to your Maker and having a better understanding of evil. I wish I had had this book when I was going through doubt and depression and questions because he so beautifully points out all the bits of truth I needed to hear. Not all your questions will be answered, but the ones that really count are addressed here and I think you'll be blessed for reading it. If you know someone who is a skeptic or doubting or just struggling through life, I definitely recommend this book. It's lengthy so grab some coffee or hot chocolate and your Bible and get to work.
Note: I received this book for the exchange of a review.