I have gained tremendous respect for David Powlison over the years. He seems to be one of the few level headed Biblical counselors among a confusing lot. In this message he talks about a very challenging subject that we all have, or will, face in our lives, either ourselves, or in counseling others: Our suffering and God’s grace.
Don Carson delivered 4 messages at Omaha Bible Church on the subject of suffering. Though broken into 4 separate session, it reality Don’s discussion is one message that identifies 6 pillars of how to think about suffering. As Carson says at the outset, this is not geared toward those facing the hardship of suffering, rather it’s a theological preparation for how to face suffering and respond to it with wisdom, compassion, and correct theological thinking.
Don draws heavily from Job and James and gives us a very healthy understanding of the place of suffering. Of particular note, one pillar examines suffering as the possible chastening of God. The particular trial allows God to get our attention and speak.
As you would expect from Don Carson, he carefully examines the texts of Scripture that speak about suffering and is able to clean off our theological windshields so that we can see clearly. This is a very important series of messages you should give your attention to before you face suffering.
This series of messages draw from Don’s material found in his very excellent book How Long O Lord?: Reflections on Suffering and Evil, which I highly recommend. Every church and home library should have this book to provide ballast for facing suffering.