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If God Is Good: Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil Hardcover – September 15, 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
If God Is Good is the latest book from Randy Alcorn's who is probably best-known for his last major release, Heaven, which has sold well over a half million copies in hardcover. From my experience, Alcorn primarily writes three types of books: novels, very small books and very large books. If God Is Good, like Heaven before it, fits squarely in the final category. Weighing in at 512 pages, this is a good-sized hardcover that offers a thorough examination and defense of faith in the midst of suffering and evil.
The topic Alcorn deals with in this book is a particularly difficult one. Humility and practicality, trademarks of his ministry, are evident in the books earliest pages. "If I thought I had no helpful perspectives on the problem, it would be pointless for me to write this book. If I imagined I had all the answers neatly lined up, it would be pointless for you to read it.Read more ›
After 9/11 I can remember sitting with the teens and college students in the class room- all of us seemed shell shocked and confused. "How could this have happened?"
After Katrina ripped into New Orleans and the Gulf Coast I gathered with some students in the gym as we tried to make sense of what we were witnessing on television. "What can we do?"
After the Virginia Tech massacre I struggled to help my students process through why something so senseless could have happened. "Why?"
Asking questions about evil and suffering when world events happen is one thing. But how do you deal with pain and hurt and cancer and evil and suffering and death when they strike closer to home?
Many have wrestled with the question: "If God is good why does evil and suffering happen?" As a minister I wrestle with find a resource out there that will help me walk alongside someone as they struggle through personal pain, agony, and questions. Unfortunately, finding the right resource has been next to impossible. There are just way too many mixed messages out there.Read more ›
The major drawback to this book is it's sheer size. Five hundred pages is daunting enough for the average reader. When I realized that the small font makes this book equal to about 850 normal pages, I began to wonder who the target audience was. Most people I know wouldn't have the time or interest in reading such a large book, no matter how good the material. This is too bad since the information is excellent.
Part of the length problem is that there was a lot of repetition. In each section, he answers the question of evil and suffering from a slightly different angle and often repeats previous material in the argument. Yet you can't skip any part without potentially skipping the bits of excellent new material woven into it.
If you get into debates about evil and suffering and need to know all of the possible questions and answers, this is an excellent book to read. If you want to understand the idea of free will better, this is an excellent resource. If you're a pastor or ministry leader, you owe it to those you lead to know the information in this book. However, if you're suffering deep sorrow, I'd highly recommend "Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow" by Nancy Guthrie. It gives many of the same points in a sympathetic, caring manner and with much fewer words.
Reviewed by Debbie from ChristFocus Book Club
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is an in depth look at the reason for evil and how God will bring us through it for the good. Romans 8:28Published 1 month ago by Lesha
If you frequently ask 'Why does God allow this?' then this book might help. I have not finished reading the book but I am glad I have the book. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Lynn C.
I was struggling for good reference material to help my son (and myself) to understand pain and evil in a word designed by a sovereign God. Could not buy into this book. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
I will sing of the mercies of the LORD for ever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations.
One of the best books available. The second best life reference book ever written. One experience connects every human that has ever walked the face of the earth: suffering. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Jodie Cowan
Well written and really goes deep in the understanding of why evil is permitted. I hope this will help me use any suffering that may come to build a stronger relationship with... Read morePublished 8 months ago by RJL1010