About a month ago I received a free copy of the book, If God is Good: Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil by Randy Alcorn under the condition that I posted my review of this book on my blog. Other than the free book I was not paid, and I was not asked to give any specific review. I was to be honest regarding my thoughts. This is my review.
A couple of years ago I found myself sitting on a front porch in Gladstone, Mo. sharing the Gospel with a widower. This man pointed to the window of a bedroom right next to us and explained that he had spent years watching is wife die a slow, painful death from cancer in that very room. He told me of the tremendous pain that she had suffered without relief for years, and of her slow painful death of suffocation as the cancer spread to her lungs and took away her ability to breath. Through tears he told me that he could never believe in a God that would allow that.
Sadly, this story is just one of many that I could share. I talk to people all of the time who see the evil in the world around them, or even the evil in themselves as they think upon past sins such as abortion. They wonder how a perfect and holy God could allow such evil, and they reject Him because of it. In evangelism, this theme is constant, and my heart breaks for people who struggle with this.
As I read through the pages of If God is Good, I began to start thinking that this book would be a great tool in order to equip the evangelist with Biblical answers to these tough conversations. Inside the pages of this book Randy Alcorn offers in depth Biblical answers to the questions surrounding evil and suffering in the world. He explains the nature and origins of evil. He shows the reader the purposes of evil and how God uses it for His glory. He explains evil in light of the sovereignty of God, and so, so, so much more. This book is truly a complete resource for the average Christian on the subject of evil and suffering.
I highly recommend this book for all Christians. Evil and suffering are something that so many struggle with, and we are called to reach out and share the Gospel with these people. We will be unable to do so without having read, solid answers in regards to the subject, and this book helps equip the believer with those answers. It also must be said, that we too may personally experience evil and suffering, and having a theological understanding will help strengthen our faith in God as we go through these times, and see it in the world.
This book should be on every Christians shelf.
J. W. Willard