Now suffering does serve a purpose in the material world. 2. . This does not make suffering easier. Righteousness thus defeated raw power. Aquinas wrote: “Just as man was overcome and deceived by the devil, so also it should be a man who should overthrow the devil. If so, are we also expected to die to our suffering? (See also his words on the day of his ascension, Luke 24:44–46.) He wrote that, in the Passion, “many other things besides deliverance from sin came together for man’s salvation.”, First, he observed, Christ’s Passion moves us not only to have faith and hope in God, as Augustine had pointed out; it also motivates us to a grateful love for God. Many times we believe that the presence of suffering means the absence of God. He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, will he not also give us all things with him?” (Rom. He gave humans the gift of free will. Still, the presence of evil and suffering can baffle us. So in Christ’s Passion, said Aquinas, we aren’t simply pardoned. There are those who can barely take care of themselves. Nevertheless, as Aquinas pointed out, there’s a difference between being. In all these ways Augustine and Aquinas concluded that God’s decision to have Christ suffer to save us was good and wise. We are to become holy in order for us to become instruments of God’s grace for others. . and be killed, and on the third day be raised” (Luke 9:22, emphasis added). To some observers, there are only two possibilities here: If the Crucifixion was the only means God could find to redeem us, then he must be limited in his power and wisdom. And his foreknowledge of these events had already been manifested in divine revelation to the prophets and recorded in Scripture. God may now suffer in union with all who suffer—and those who espouse a suffering God boast this to be of singular value—but in so suffering, humankind, and even God Himself, are deprived of any hope of ever being freed from evil and so the suffering that it causes. If we hold that God could have chosen an alternative means to our salvation, then we seem to be left with a disturbing conclusion: God must be wicked to have willed such suffering for his Son. So glorify God in your body’” [reference needed]. In addition to the reasons we’ve already noted, Augustine offered this one: “The devil was to be conquered not by the power of God but by his righteousness. Why shouldn’t an all-powerful God have decided against innumerable other ways to free us in order to choose this death? 8:31–32). Because Christ is the head of the Church, his merit overflows to the members of his body. . Absolutely! Even though God is all loving and all powerful He allows us to suffer, but by doing so He reveals that He has a greater purpose for allowing it. Long before its scheduled release on Ash Wednesday of this year, Mel Gibson’s film The Passion of the Christ stirred sharp controversy. Satan, who had fallen away from God through pride, was humiliated. Why submit himself to such torment? But now it has been manifested to his holy ones,to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory. Christ suffered and died on the cross in order that we can be saved and His suffering is redemptive In Luke 14:27 Jesus said, "Unless you carry your cross and follow me you cannot be my disciple. But God doesn’t always love us (try to save us) by showing us His anger and disappointment towards us with punishments and allowing us to suffer greatly as a consequence of our sins. Thus, they believe that God causes us to suffer. Christ’s suffering doesn’t just move us to respond in love. Because of his sovereign power, Augustine and Aquinas thus concluded, God could have found another way to save us. Most of all (they say), the answer to our own suffering is found in God’s joining with us in our pain. And since man deserved death, so it should be a man who, by dying, vanquishes death. . Many of the great Saints suffered horribly and were joyful because of it. In this loving response lies the perfection of human salvation. . If we are to grow up into “the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ” (Eph. After the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ we are redeemed. How could he possibly will such a thing if he could have fulfilled his purposes otherwise? Luke 22:42). Given this reality, we should examine it more closely to discern some reasons that it would be in accordance with the Father’s perfect wisdom and love. https://www.defendingthebride.com/misc.html#suf. We are called to die to ourselves, and to unite our sufferings to the sufferings of Christ. No other way than to will that the only-begotten Son . New replies are no longer allowed. Augustine summed it up this way: “Other possible means were not lacking on God’s part, because all things are equally subject to his power” (, 8:10). Redemptive suffering becomes a powerful means for the conversion of others–thus when you embrace your sufferings and offer them up to God as a sacrifice in union with the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, your suffering becomes a powerful means of sanctification for others and the conversion and salvation of sinners. God’s own Son suffered so why should we not carry ou r crosses as well. Those who are further along in their spiritual journey are to be patient, understanding and nonjudgmental of those who are “behind.” If God loves us all equally, why does it matter when we turn to him? The tables were turned; the roles were reversed; the victor was vanquished. 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