Christians and tragedies

Why do some Christian families tend to suffer so much more than others? My best friend has gone through so much in losing family to cancer and accidents and now tonight just lost her son who just married a year ago and just became a father. Her family has lost her brother and sister. Does God make us suffer from our ancestors evil?

There is no question that God’s ways can be mysterious to us (Isaiah 55:9; Romans 11:33-34). For the child of God, God’s ways always have his or her good in mind (Romans 8:28).

The account of Job (especially chapters one and two) illustrates that the tragedies a child of God might encounter in life are not punishments for sin—neither ours nor our ancestors. Jesus was punished for our sins, and “there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1).

“Does God make us suffer for our ancestors’ evil?” In the case of Christians, the answer is “no.” Exodus 20:5 (“I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me…”) speaks of the actions God can take in the case of families who reject him generation after generation.

Continue to keep your friend in your prayers. Be a good listener, and encourage your friend to utilize the spiritual resources available to her.  God bless you and her.