How to Make Sense Out of Suffering

Romans 8:18-23

Adrian Rogers

Sermon Overview

Scripture Passage: Romans 8:18-23

If we live long enough on this Earth, we will know sorrow, disappointment, and pain in a personal way. Suffering is inevitable, and if we aren’t careful, it can consume us.

If we want to make sense of our suffering, there are three words to consider from Romans 8:18-23: bondage, liberty, and hope.

We must first consider the bondage of yesterday’s curse.

Sin entered the perfect world God created because, in His love for us, God gave us free will to choose. Because mankind chose to sin, we are condemned according to the law of the Bible. God could not destroy evil without destroying freedom. Because there is evil, there is suffering. Though our suffering cannot be destroyed, God has defeated evil.

Romans 8:1 says, “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.”

Liberty is tomorrow’s conquest.

Through Christ’s death and resurrection, we are liberated from the curse of sin. There is no more condemnation for our sin; and when Jesus comes again, He will restore everything. However, though we have been freed from the curse of sin, we can still feel the hurt of it.

Our hope is our comfort for today.

Romans 8:18 says, “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

Adrian Rogers says, “The groans we endure are temporary, but the glory we expect is eternal.”

All of creation groans as a symptom that there is something wrong with this fallen world.

Christians groan, for we are not immune to suffering, and there is a lot of it in our world today. We live in a cursed world with other sinners, in bodies that have not yet been redeemed.

But there is comfort in knowing the Comforter groans, too. God sees our pain, and the Holy Spirit intercedes for us when we hurt so badly we don’t know what to pray for.

Finally, we must remember that we’ve been prepared, predestined, and preserved for glory— that is the Gospel.

Apply it to your life

Are you facing suffering that doesn’t make sense to you? Remember: the Holy Spirit intercedes for us in our pain. Spend time with God and ask for His victory over your life.