Why is life so unfair to me?
Updated: Jul 1
When you hear of bad things happening, do you ever think that it was unjust? Why do I have to suffer like this? I've caught myself saying that the events in Ukraine are so unfair -- but what would Jesus say?
In Jesus’ day people reacted in the same way. In Luke 13 we read about some Galileans who came to Jerusalem to worship and Pilate had them slaughtered. People were outraged but inwardly reasoned that they must have deserved it.
Jesus responded by reminding them of the tower of Siloam collapsing and killing 18 hapless souls. He asked the rhetorical question of that incident, “Were they worse sinners than everyone else in Jerusalem?”
The answer is, of course, no. God doesn’t attribute suffering to sin.
So why do bad things happen?
Jesus answered this by adding a cryptic comment, “I tell you again that unless you repent, you will perish, too.”(Luke 13:5).
He’s talking to the people with Him. He’s talking to us. Life is unpredictable and death can be sudden but there is no meaning to it. Death strikes down one as well as the other. We all are sinners and we all deserve death.
Our life may be fragile but Jesus stresses an urgency to repent. We are all heading to doom and destruction, eternally. Only when we admit our own personal guilt and sin, decide to change, can we escape the imminent destruction.
Jesus didn’t immediately spell it out but all the repentance in the world will not save you. Merely saying sorry and wanting to change is not enough. There is nothing inherently good in you despite a lifetime of your repenting that would warrant God saving you from eternal destruction.
The key to the salvation that Jesus offers comes shortly afterwards in the narrative when a bent-over woman, crippled for 18 years, was healed by Jesus of her disabling posture. Jesus demonstrated that He is the only source of our freedom from the suffering that comes with our sin. He heals our sins and sicknesses today but His healing of our souls is eternal. We are the sin prone creatures who can only receive forgiveness and salvation when we look to Jesus.
The irony is that Jesus was perfectly sinless but He willingly and intentionally suffered and died to take away our sins and sicknesses today. “I will keep on casting out demons and healing people today and tomorrow; and the third day I will accomplish my purpose” (Luke 13:32). His purpose was to save our souls.
We offer nothing. All we contribute is our sin for Jesus to take it away on the cross.
We all do deserve suffering eternally for our sins but ONLY because of the graciousness and mercy of God, not our own merits, can we be blessed with living with Jesus forever.
*All quotes from NLT.