Products>Between Pain and Grace: A Biblical Theology of Suffering

Between Pain and Grace: A Biblical Theology of Suffering


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Why is there suffering? When will it end? Where is God in it?

Despite how common suffering is, we still struggle to understand it, and even more to bear through it. Between Pain and Grace gets to the heart of this struggle. Its honest and detailed portrait of life challenges our assumptions about pain, emotion, and God himself.

Born from a popular college course on suffering, this book answers critical questions like:  

  • Is God personally involved in our pain and suffering?
  • How should Christians handle emotions like grief and anger?
  • What does the Bible say about issues like mental illness, sexual abuse, and family betrayal?

Striking an elegant balance between being scholarly and pastoral, Between Pain and Grace is useful in the classroom, churches, and for personal reading. The authors draw from Scripture, personal experience, and even psychological research to offer a well-rounded and trustworthy take on suffering. 

Between Pain and Grace will give you confidence in God’s sovereignty, comfort in His presence, and wisdom for life this side of paradise. It will also make you more tender and better prepared to respond to the suffering of others. Read it today for a richer, more realistic relationship with God.

From the Back Cover

"Not only are Peterman and Schmutzer skilled interpreters of the Bible, they also show that they understand our human condition. If you want fresh biblical insight on suffering, read this compelling and intelligent book." —Tremper Longman III, PhD, Robert H. Gundry Professor of Biblical Studies, Westmont College

"A remarkable book! Scholarly, yet engaging and easily understandable for a layperson."

—Heather Davediuk Gingrich, PhD, Professor of Counseling, Denver Seminary

"The authors arrive at daring conclusions . . . all formulated from a synthesis of the biblical evidence in its totality."

—Robert B. Chisholm Jr., PhD, Dallas Theological Seminary

". . . fills an important niche by providing a clear and nuanced presentation of what Scripture says about pain and suffering."

—Paul D. Wegner, PhD, Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary

In this substantive work,two professors journey boldly to the heart of biblical suffering. With texture from personal experience and even clinical research, their honest and detailed portrait of human life challenges our assumptions about pain, emotion, and God himself. Exploring the reality of evil and the irony of weakness, Between Pain and Grace will prepare you to suffer with wisdom, maturity, and appropriate action, and to help others do the same.

Table of Contents:
Section 1: Suffering and God
Chapter One: The Lord's Prayer
Chapter Two: A Suffering God and the Virtues of Jesus
Chapter Three: The Relational Ecosystem of Sin and Suffering
Section 2: Suffering and Man
Chapter Four: Lament and Ritual
Chapter Five: Redemptive Anger
Chapter Six: Groaning and Creation
Chapter Seven: Leadership and Tears
Section Three: Topics in Suffering
Chapter Eight: Betrayal and Reconciliation
Chapter Nine: Sexual Abuse
Chapter Ten: Mental Illness
Chapter Eleven: Marriage
Chapter Tweleve: Suffering as an Honor
Chapter Thirteen: The Meta-narrative Renewed

"Peterman and Schmutzer’s, 'Between Pain and Grace: A Biblical Theology of Suffering,' is one of the best books that I have read on the topic, in a very long time. I must admit, I was skeptical at first. I thought, 'Oh boy, a book on theodicy coming from Moody, which is probably by a bunch of conservative theologians who are going to spout off their refashioned old-timer, Calvinistic readings of scripture,' but boy was I naïve, and flat out wrong. I found Peterman and Schmutzer’s book fresh, inspiring, challenging, and deeply biblical. They did their homework and are very well-read on the different theological and philosophical views on the topic, and incorporate other’s views throughout. Obviously, questions will still remain regarding the intricate dance between God, suffering, and evil, but I firmly believe many questions will be answered with compassion and wisdom. The reader’s faith, in an immanent, embodied, relational, emotional, sovereign, and loving God, in the midst of pain and suffering, will no doubt be strengthened. I recommend this book to Christians and skeptics alike."

Reviewed by Mark Karris on NetGalley, Feb 28, 2016

"Between Pain and Grace: A Biblical Theology of Suffering by Gerald W. Peterman, Andrew J. Schmutzer answers questions according to the Bible and what God has to say about this subject. When I first started this book I wasn't sure I was going to like it but what an eye-opener it is!

I was very interested in reading this, as I watched my Mother who was dying with cancer, as she suffered and the pain she endured. And as for myself I have suffered many things throughout my lifetime. I am now living with chronic pain. So yes you might understand why this is a book I would be quite interested in.

The authors take us on a journey through the Bible to show us how God is in pain himself. How it must break the heart of God to see how the people he has created behave so badly toward each other and destroy the earth he made for us to enjoy. Let's not forget how Jesus suffered for ALL of us, so that we can one day make Heaven our home. Who are we to expect any less suffering or pain than our Father in Heaven and our Savior?"

Reviewed by Kimberly Scott on NetGalley, Mar 18, 2016

Product Details

  • Title : Between Pain and Grace: A Biblical Theology of Suffering
  • Authors:
    • Peterman, Gerald
    • Schmutzer, Andrew
  • Publisher: Moody Publishers
  • Publication Date: 2016
  • ISBN: 9780802488466

GERALD PETERMAN is Professor of Bible and Director of Biblical and Theological Studies at Moody Bible Institute. Before coming to Moody he taught at Palm Beach Atlantic College in West Palm Beach, FL, spent 4 1/2 years doing church planting for the Evangelical Free Church in central Florida and in south central Iowa, and also served eight years in the Air National Guard as a Chaplain. Peterman also serves part-time at his local church. For Moody Publishers he has written Joy and Tears: The Emotional Life of the Christian (2013) and Between Pain and Grace: A Biblical Theology of Suffering with Dr. Andrew Schmutzer. Research interests include New Testament Greek Language and Exegesis, Greek and Roman Background to the New Testament, and Biblical Theology. Gerald has been married to Marjory since January 1984, with two adult daughters, Bethany and Grace.

ANDREW SCHMUTZER (PhD, Trinity International University) is Professor of Biblical Studies at Moody Bible Institute (Chicago, Illinois). In addition to numerous articles and essays on the Old Testament, he has written the exegetical theology Be Fruitful and Multiply and two forthcoming commentaries on Ruth and Esther.


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    Digital list price: $17.99
    Save $7.20 (40%)