A Jewish Approach to Suffering
Suffering and the Existence of God
Part One: Our Human Outcry
As Ellis watched the police car enter his driveway, he braced himself for the bad news. The officer handed Ellis the driver’s license of his seventeen-year-old daughter, Heather, and then delivered the tragic news that she had just died in a fatal car crash. (Read more about Ellis’ story on page six.)
“When Heather died, I questioned God’s love for a long time,” Ellis recalled.
Years later, Ellis’ wife began suffering from Lou Gehrig’s Disease, and she eventually succumbed to it. Ellis remembers crying out, “God, you have taken away my entire family!”
He admitted that the loneliness he felt was beyond description. However, his experience in losing his wife was different compared to the loss of his daughter. This time, he found strength in knowing that his wife and his daughter were in heaven because of their faith in Yeshua the Messiah. In the midst of his loneliness, Ellis began to experience the presence of God.
“I saw God’s grace and His mercy in a way that I had not expected,” he declared.
Ellis Goldstein experienced a time of intense pain and suffering, but he emerged from his loss with his faith intact and thriving. However, some people have difficulty relating to Ellis’ faith-filled response to pain and suffering in the world. Some might say the evil in the world is too overwhelming and too purposeless to make belief in God reasonable…