If God is good, why is there pain, suffering, and evil in the world? If God is good and loving, how can people who have never heard the Good News spend eternity in hell?

In The Case for Faith Lee Strobel recounts how he asked Barna Group to commission a poll, asking people what question they would ask God if they knew He would answer. Those 2 questions were the top questions people said they would ask.

If you have ever struggled with how to answer these questions in your everyday faith conversations, then God’s Provision For All: A Defense of God’s Goodness may be just the book for you. Leighton Flowers proposes not only is God good, but He is recognizably good.

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We say God is good – but how do we know?

A few months before my mother died, she asked me the same questions people responded to the Barna poll with:

if God is good and loving, why is there so much evil and suffering in the world? And if God is so good and loving, what happens to the people who have never heard the Good News of Jesus? Do they spend eternity in eternal torment? Does God really desire all people to spend eternity with Him?

Many Christians do not feel confident in their ability to effectively answer these questions. We know God is good, but do we know why we believe He is good? How can we articulate His goodness, especially to those who might be in the midst of suffering?

Telling someone we believe God is good because the Bible says He is good is not a convicning argument. These are good questions, and good questions deserve good answers.

"Recognizably good means His goodness is evident and demonstrable, not just an empty platitude we say because we feel that we must" – @leightonflowers @Soteriology101 @GoodReads #GoodnessofGod #Apologetics #ProblemofEvil #AmReading Tweet This

Making the case for the recognizable goodness of God

In God’s Provision For All: A Defense of God’s Goodness, Leighton Flowers aims to demonstrate not only is God good, but He is recognizably good. Flowers begins by defining for the reader what he means when he says God is recognizably good. Each chapter proceeds from the previous, following a nice and neat logical progression.

Flowers addresses common questions such as:

What about people who have never heard the Gospel? Are God and His ways knowable? Are humans responsible to God’s revelation? Can everyone believe the Gospel? Does God’s grace need more grace to work? What means does God use to make Himself known? Why does God provide the Gospel, and does He provide it to all? Why should Christians evangelize?

Having not read Dr. Flowers’ previous book The Potter’s Promise, I was pleasantly surprised by Flowers’ approachable, congenial tone. He never condescends to the reader, instead assuming his reader is intelligent enough to follow his logic as he makes his case.

Not only does Flowers make his case for the goodness of God, but he also addresses the problems in a way that does not marginalize but honors the questions with thoughtful and honest responses.

A quick and easy read, God’s Provision For All is an excellent introduction to the philosophical problem of evil for the everyday Christian. After reading this book you will feel more confident in your ability to address these difficult questions in your everyday faith conversations.

God’s Provision For All: A Defense of God’s Goodness by Leighton Flowers

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God’s Provision For All by Leighton Flowers makes a strong biblical case for the loving character of a God who treats His creation in a recognizably good way.

A God who does not arbitrarily play favorites or show biased partiality, Who makes Himself known in a clear and believable way, A God who is not most glorified at the expense of His creation, but at the expense of Himself for the sake of His creation, Who demonstrates His love by providing the means of salvation for every individual.

This book addresses questions such as: What about those who never hear about Jesus? How can we say God is good when he seems to be so harsh in some of the stories within Scripture? What does it mean to call God good if we do not actually recognize Him as good?

About the Author: Dr. Leighton Flowers is Director of Evangelism & Apologetics for Texas Baptists and a Professor at Trinity Seminary. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Theology from Hardin-Simmons University; a Masters of Divinity with Biblical Languages from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary; and completed his Doctorate at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He has previously published The Potter’s Promise: A Biblical Defense of Traditional Soteriology

Connect With Author: Goodreads Amazon Facebook Twitter Soteriology 101 Podcast Youtube

Conclusion

Written jargon-free, God’s Provision For All: A Defense of God’s Goodness is winsome and wonderfully accessible to the everyday Christian. If you have never felt confident in your ability to effectively answer the difficult God questions in your everyday faith conversations, God’s Provision For All is the perfect introduction to making a case not only for God’s Goodness but also His provision of grace and the human responsibility to respond.

I’d love to hear what you think

When was the last time you encountered the problem of evil and suffering in your everyday faith conversations? Did you feel confident in your ability to respond effectively, and in a way that honored the questions?

Resources I Recommend:

If you’d like to learn more about God’s sovereignty and human responsibility after reading God’s Provision For All, I recommend Determined to Believe?: The Sovereignty of God, Freedom, Faith, and Human Responsibility by John C. Lennox.

If you’d like to see what else we’re reading, check out our other book reviews!

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