In monotheistic faith God is defined with a triad of attributes as being all good, all powerful and all knowing. This triad is what is empirically derived from God being the prime mover. The fact of evil, or theodicy, possess that there exists evil in this world and that this triad cannot exist through that evil conflicts with all three existing at once. The presence of evil means that God lacks one of these attributes because if he had them all, he would not allow evil to exist. If God and evil are to coexist then God must be: all knowing, all powerful, but good enough to want to stop it, lacking the knowledge to know how to stop it, or lacking the power to be able to stop it.
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.
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.
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.
The Argument of Evil for the Existence of God One of the major arguments proposed against the existence of God in contemporary western philosophy is the problem of evil. It is based upon the inability to reconcile the magnitude of evil in the world with the all-loving nature of God. John Hick describes the problem from the perspective of its proponent, "If God is perfectly loving, God must wish to abolish all evil; and if God is all-powerful, God must be able to abolish all evil. But evil exists; therefore God cannot be both omnipotent and perfectly loving." This thus causes difficulty for the Judeo-Christian-Islamic God who possess both qualities of being all-loving and omnipotent.
They believed that humankind, being a byproduct of the devil, was inherently evil and, therefore, not culpable for evil in the world. With the belief that humans were capable of free will, Augustine ultimately broke ties with the Manichaeans. Human beings as one entity of body and soul were made good by the almighty God and with their free will were able to cause evil phenomenons to occur, which rules out the idea that God is the cause of evil. Peter Kreeft was one that agreed with the ideals of Augustine and offered an answer to why God created the possibility of evil. According to Augustine, there is no such thing as evil.
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.
God is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent, which makes us wonder what kind of morally sufficient reason justifies God to allow evil. We know that evil exists in our world, but so does God, so would God be the source of evil as well as good? We have established that God is the omnipotent and benevolent free creator of the world, but suffering and evil exist. Is God unable to prevent evil? If so, he would not be omnipotent.
In the excerpt from Philosophy of Religion, John Hicks outlines the problem of evil as such: (a) If God were truly omnibenevolent, he would then wish to eliminate all evil; (b) If God is were truly omnipotent, he would then be capable of eliminating evil; (c) Evil exists in the world. Therefore: (d) God is not omnibenevolent or He is not omnipotent. Either element of the conclusion is damaging to the traditional understanding of a Judeo-Christian God. It seems simple enough. A benevolent Creator appears incompatible with what we understand to be the existence of evil.
Philo first begins his argument by stating that if God is truly dominant than he can control everything. Afterwards he continues on to state that if God was willing to avert evil but not able to than he was inept. If he is able to avert it but not willing to, he is malicious. With that being said, Philo concluded that if God truly believed in the well being of man-kind, than there would be no evil in this world. Demea responds by stating that we are only a speck in the whole universe limited to only what we can see.