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Theo 202

In: Historical Events

Submitted By mdavis62
Words 851
Pages 4
Name: Micah Davis

Writing Style Used: MLA

Course and Section Number: THEO 202-B05

The problem of Evil

No matter the capacity, the act of sin has been a major concern for all of mankind. This concern of moral evil and natural evil are both questions of intellectual dependencies in connection with a broader theological system and more specifically, how God and evil coexisit. There are numerous circumstances throughout scripture where individuals have experienced evil suffering while still pursuing holiness. 1 Peter 3:13-14 expresses this complexity by stating, “Who is going to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened.” This problem is also seen in Plato’s work Euthryphyro, which blueprints a series of questions in regards to God and evil. Through series of questions, Plato disregards the answer to his uncertainty. Christ allows good because He is Holy and is only incomparable of being “good.” Evil is not of God’s character because he is perfect in every aspect of His being; He is good. Evil falls into two categories, moral and natural evil. Moral evil is evil committed by ones’ free conscious that includes acts such as crime and cruelty. [We] are exposed to moral sin in Genesis 4:18 when Cain kills his brother Abel. Natural evil is that in which involves cirumstances of things that happen out of man’s control. Moral agents can not hold responsibility for products of natural sin: tornadoes, huuricanes, earthquakes, etc. How both moral and natural sin is examined should be addressed by using a series of different approachs and deductive reasonings. For example, a child born with Down Syndrome cannot hope to answer why he/she was born with a disorder by appealing to free will. Understanding the issue of why sin exsists in the world is crucial in understanding the problem of and why evil exists. Preceeding the fall of man which takes place in Gensis 3, the world and everything inbound of it was made perfect. This is explained in Genesis 1:31 when God’s creation takes place. Before the fall, Adam and Eve lived in an unblemished world. They were in a perfect relationship with God. Subsequent to Adam and Eve sinning, moral and natural evil was established. God is incapable of doing or performing anything outside of his Holy nature. In order for man not to be a robot controlled by its creator, God had to empower his creation with free will. If God grants free will then He cannot inhibit how evil has influence in the world. However, because of God’s providence he can use evil to ultimately bring about good in the world. This is done through the saving work of Jesus on the cross. John Hick states that “God’s intent was not to create perfect creatures rather he sought to create beings in need of development towards perfection.” (Evil, Problem of; 2001) This view presented by Hick contradicts a biblical worldview because the use of evil in the world seems to turn people away from God instead of drawing near to Him. When developing theology it is extremely important to maintain consistency. If God is all loving and omnipotent and evil exists, one must show that there is no inconsistency within the proponents of his/her theology. In my view, God brought about the best possible world. Since God is the only Metaphysically necessary being, he alone is capable of bringing what [we] know as life to existence. Though evil exists, it does not raise an issue of inconsistency because it can be shown that people are most definitely less perfect than what is necessry because their existence is contingent on God; therefore, evil is consistent with God creating man. Personal experience and life situations can both help and or hinder one’s relationship with God. When a person experiences either moral or natural evil in their life they my ask the question, “why me God?” This often causes tension in the relationship one assumed they had or currently have with God. Joseph accounts how evil is used for good by God in Genesis 50:20. One seeking to dispute a belief about God can only do so if their ideology accurately portrays God. Because theodicies are constructs of human nature and thought, it is possible to reject a theodicy without actually rejecting God. Though the problem of evil will most definitely not go away anytime soon. One can be confident that if their view is consistent it can be used to explain God. This offer and bring hope to not only non-believers, but to believers who are figuring out their theology as well.

Holy Bible, New International Version (New York, 1978)
Feinberg, J. S., “Evil, Problem of.” In Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, ed. Walter A. Elwell, 2nd ed., 413-15. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2001
Lewis, G. R., “God, Attributes of.” In Evangelical Dictionary of Theology, ed. Walter A. Elwell, 2nd ed., 492-99. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 2001

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