Author(s): Nancy Guthrie
When life becomes difficult--when we face deep disappointment, agonizing loss, or on-going pain--we set out on a search to find answers to significant questions: Why would God allow this to happen? What good could come out of this? What will it look like to trust him? In this collection of insightful essays and excerpts, classic and contemporary theologians and Bible teachers--ranging from John Calvin, Charles Spurgeon, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer to Tim Keller, John Piper, and D. A. Carson--explore Scripture in regard to the causes and purposes of suffering, as well as what it means to trust God in the midst of hardship and pain.
Nancy Guthrie teaches the Bible at conferences around the country. She and her husband, David, are the co-hosts of the GriefShare video series used in more than 8,500 churches nationwide and they also host Respite Retreats for couples who have experienced the death of a child. Guthrie is the author of numerous books including Holding on to Hope, Hearing Jesus Speak into Your Sorrow, and the five-book Seeing Jesus in the Old Testament Bible study series. Joni Eareckson Tada is founder and CEO of the Joni and Friends International Disability Center, which ministers to thousands of disabled people and their families through programs of practical encouragement and spiritual help. She is also an artist and the author of numerous best-selling books such as Joni; Heaven: Your Real Home; and When God Weeps. JOHN CALVIN (1509-1564) was perhaps the preeminent theologian of the Reformation. Known best for his Institutes of the Christian Religion, he also wrote landmark expositions on most of the books in the Bible. J. I. Packer (DPhil, Oxford University) serves as the Board of Governors' Professor of Theology at Regent College. He is the author of numerous books, including the classic best-seller Knowing God. Packer served as general editor for the English Standard Version Bible and as theological editor for the ESV Study Bible. John Piper (DTheol, University of Munich) is teacher and founder of desiringGod.org and chancellor of Bethlehem College and Seminary. He served for 33 years as pastor at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis and is author of more than 50 books, including Desiring God, Don't Waste Your Life, This Momentary Marriage, Bloodlines, and Does God Desire All to Be Saved? Jerry Bridges is a longtime staff member of the Navigators and currently serves with their collegiate ministry. In addition to his international speaking ministry, he has authored ten books and three devotionals; among them The Pursuit of Holiness, which has sold well over a million copies, and the award-winning The Discipline of Grace and I Will Follow You, O God. R. C. Sproul (Drs, Free University of Amsterdam) serves as senior minister of preaching and teaching at Saint Andrew's Chapel in Sanford, Florida, and is the founder and president of Ligonier Ministries. He has taught at numerous colleges and seminaries, has written over seventy books, and is featured daily on Renewing Your Mind, an international radio broadcast. CHARLES H. SPURGEON (1834-1892) was an English Baptist pastor at New Park Street Chapel, London (which later became the Metropolitan Tabernacle), for thirty-eight years. As the nineteenth century's most prolific preacher and writer, his ministry legacy continues today. D. A. Carson (PhD, Cambridge University) is research professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, where he has taught since 1978. He is president of the Gospel Coalition, and has written or edited nearly 60 books including Scandalous, Memoirs of an Ordinary Pastor, and The Difficult Doctrine of the Love of God. He and his wife, Joy, have two children and live in the north suburbs of Chicago. MARTIN LUTHER (1483-1546) was professor of Bible at Wittenberg University, and this exposition of Galatians came out of his classroom. Undoubtedly the most powerful discussion of justification by faith prepared by any of the Reformers, this commentary on Galatians has had a profound impact on many through the centuries, including both John and Charles Wesley. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981), minister of Westminster Chapel in London for 30 years, was one of the foremost preachers of his day. His many books have brought profound spiritual encouragement to millions around the world. JONATHAN EDWARDS (1703-1758) was a pastor, theologian, and missionary. He is generally considered the greatest American theologian. A prolific writer, Edwards is known for his many sermons, including "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God", and his classic Treatise Concerning Religious Affections. Edwards was appointed president of the College of New Jersey (later renamed Princeton University) shortly before his death. TIMOTHY KELLER is founder and pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York. He is the best-selling author of The Prodigal God and The Reason for God. Sinclair B. Ferguson (PhD, University of Aberdeen) is professor of systematic theology at Redeemer Seminary in Dallas, Texas, and the former senior minister of the First Presbyterian Church in Columbia, South Carolina. He is the author of several books, the most recent being By Grace Alone: How the Grace of God Amazes Me. Sinclair and his wife, Dorothy, have four grown children. PHILIP YANCEY is editor at large of Christianity Today and cochair of the editorial board for Books and Culture. Some of his books include Rumors of Another World (2003), Reaching for the Invisible God (2000), The Bible Jesus Read (1999), What's So Amazing About Grace? (1998), The Jesus I Never Knew (1995), and Where is God When It Hurts (1990). OS GUINNESS (DPhil, Oxford University) was born in China, raised and educated in England, and moved to the United States in 1984. He directs the Trinity Forum and is a former fellow at the East-West Institute in New York. His books include The American Hour, No God But God, and The Dust of Death. THOMAS MANTON (1620-1677) played a prominent role in the Savoy Conference and the drafting of the Westminster Confession. He was pastor of a noted Puritan congregation in London but was later ejected from the official church for nonconformity, though he continued to preach wherever and whenever he had opportunity. Archbishop Ussher called him "one of the great preachers in England." His sermons formed the basis of his published commentaries.