Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People – 4

index 2The Surrounding of Trials. James said, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials” (ESV). The verb, “meet” (ESV) or “fall” (NKJV) here is from peripipto, a compound of peri, “around,” and pipto, “to fall” (Strong); “to fall into something that is all around, i.e. be surrounded with” (Strong); literally, “to fall around (into the midst of), to fall among as in Lu 10:30 lêistais periepesen (he fell among robbers).”[1] It means, “encounter, fall into esp. misfortunes” (BAGD). The picture here is some trouble or problem that falls on you and surrounds you. It means, “to experience somewhat suddenly that which is difficult or bad.”[2] It carries the idea of a difficulty that suddenly falls on you. Have you experienced a sudden difficulty that falls on you?

When Mylene had transient amnesia in Manila, it came suddenly. It struck her out of nowhere. She forgot her flight back to Cebu on Wednesday night. She forgot that she withdrew P15,000 from her ATM, for her office bills.  She forgot where she slept Tuesday and Wednesday. She was missing in action. Her cell was unreachable for 3 days. Her amnesia surrounded her. And her whereabouts surrounded our minds.

As if that were not enough, she was diagnosed with aneurysm. She had a bulge in her blood vessel. It could burst anytime. When it bursts, most people either get paralyzed, comatose, or die suddenly. It was a trial that suddenly fell on us and surrounded us. She had to undergo angiogram and coiling procedure. The whole thing cost us P500, 000.00 ($ 10, 638.00).


[1] Robertson, Word Pictures, Power Bible CD.

[2] Johannes P. Louw and Eugene A. Nida, eds., Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament Based on Semantic Domains, s. v. peripi¿ptw, Bible Windows CD.

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