Or we must say that God is not omnipotent, and although he is wholly good and would prevent evil if he could, he is powerless to stop it.” (Fitzgerald 340). This is a significant problem to the revealed religions because they believe in a wholly good and omnipotent God. Why then, would this God allow evil? In this paper, I will provide, explain, and evaluate St. Augustine of Hippo’s solution to this question. Augustine feels that evil stems from choice and free will.
Studies in the Philosophy of Religion THE PROBLEM OF EVIL “God is the omnipotent and wholly good creator of all things” “There is evil in the world” a) EXPLAIN THESE TWO STATEMENTS AND SHOW WHY THEY ARE SAID TO BE CONTRADICTORY (20) The problem of evil is usually seen as the problem of how the existence of God can be reconciled with the existence of evil in the world. It’s regarded as a logical problem, because it is based on the apparent contradiction involved in holding onto three incompatible beliefs. This being that God is omnipotent, that God is wholly good and that evil exists in the world. The fact that evil exists in the world constitutes the most common objection to the belief in the existence of the omnipotent (all powerful), omniscient (all knowing) and all loving God of Classical Theism. Classical Theism is the traditional understanding of God as worshipped by Christians, Jews and Muslims.
If God is omnipotent then He would be able to stop any evil from occurring. Either way, God would not be what Christianity makes him out to be. Swinburne argues that the theodicist, one who believes that it is not wrong for God to create a world in which there is evil, can logically explain the existence of evil in the world. The main argument that the theodicist uses is the free-will defense, which claims that God gave humans the freedom to choose between doing acts of good and acts of evil. The theodicist argues that the good person could do is greater if it is chosen instead of doing evil.
Evil only comes into play when a member of God's world renounces his/her role in the proper scheme of things. Evil has no positive nature; but instead the loss of good is what constitutes evil. It is because of his definition of evil that Augustine buys into the free will defense. Augustine attributes all evil, both moral and natural, to the free actions of human beings created by God with the capacity to do either good or evil. While God is the embodiment of goodness and cannot make the decision to be anything but good, other members in the Great Chain of Being do have the ability to willfully alter their predisposition... ... middle of paper ... ...l, and knowing, suffering should not exist in the world.
As these questions have been asked, many philosophers have different thoughts and opinions on what kind of higher power really exists, and how evil can come from such a perfect and loving God. The example I have chosen poses the question of whether or not a perfect higher power really does exist. If a perfect God has created this world, why would he include evil? After researching different philosophers and their different views on the problem of evil, Gottfried Leibniz stuck out to me. I found comparing our views very interesting.
Especially to the good people in the world and the millions of innocent people who suffer on a daily basis. Gottfreid Leibniz was a philosopher, who took aim at the problem and wished to point out that the existence of evil and God are compatible of evil and and the typical logic is: (1) if God was an all-powerful, all-knowing and all-good being then this world would be the best possible world and (2) the idea that this is not the best possible world means that (3) God is not some all-powerful, all-knowing and all-good being. The problem of evil that Leibniz speaks of is one that deals with the notion that the existence of evil in the world is incompatible with a completely divine being. It is without doubt that the traditional philosophical concern with monotheism is that if an all-powerful being created everything, then he created evil which means this deity is not omnibenevolent. There is also a problem that Leibniz discusses in which he addresses the thought that evil existing in the world is incompatible with the world not being the best possible one.
Specifically, they disagree on whether or not this world could be the best possible world God created. In this paper, I plan to dissect both men’s solutions to the problem of evil and furthermore argue for Leibniz’s solution that this is the best possible world that God could have created. Before I begin going through these philosopher’s solutions it’s important to understand first why they believed evil was a problem. The problem of evil has been commonly regarded as the main argument for atheism. The argument stems from the logic that if God is a perfect being and created everything; how can evil exist?
Both moral and natural evil exist in the world. If God is all loving and all powerful, why does he allow moral evils, such as humans committing evil act... ... middle of paper ... ...of evil in which we are and aren’t held accountable for. It is God who is accountable for our actions for he is the one who granted us with the power. With that being said, I argue that there is an inconsistency between the three tenets that intelligence and rational Christians affirm. Based on my belief, we cannot label God as all-powerful and loving considering that he has allowed the existence of evil not only to be welcomed into society but also to let it continue.
My logic is that since we know what good and evil is, that proves the existence of God. God created an instinctive sense of right and wrong in our minds from our birth that goes deep into our nature as humans. C.S. Lewis calls this the “Law of Human Nature” since, like gravity, “the subject is governed by the law.” So I believe that God exists, and evil is a result of our free will which is given to us by God. Without free
Is there any satisfactory way of reconciling the existence of an omnipotent and all-loving God with the existence of natural evil (i.e. evil not due to the misuse of human free will)? One of the central claims of the Judaeo-Christian tradition is the existence of an omnipotent and all-loving God. Against this is the observation that people and animals suffer evil. By common sense, we would infer from this observation that God, as conceived in this tradition, does not exist - for, if He did, He would prevent the evil.