Concept Of Good and Evil
There are three types of evil:
- Natural evil - suffering caused by events that have nothing to do with humans, and which are to do with the way the world is, eg, natural disasters such as volcanic eruptions, floods or earthquakes
- Moral (or human) evil - suffering caused by humans acting in a way that is considered morally wrong eg, bullying, murder, ****, theft or terrorism
- Metaphysical evil - That which limits all things to birth and death. For some this is seen as God's design for the world. For some it is an inevitability that cannot change.
Christianty Teachings About Good and Evil
God has given people free will – the ability to choose between right and wrong for themselves. God has shown people how they should live, in the 10 commandments.
The story of humanity’s battle with good and evil is told in the story of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3). Adam and Eve chose to disobey God by eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. This is called the Fall.
Some people believe that as a result of Adam and Eve’s first sins, each human is born with a tendency towards evil. This is called Original Sin.
When Jesus came to earth (the Incarnation), human beings were given a chance to escape everlasting punishment after death by following the teachings of Jesus and asking God’s forgiveness for their sins.
As well as a power for good there is also a power for evil. Traditionally this is said to be Satan, one of the archangels who disobeyed God and was thrown out of heaven (Luke 10:18). In the form of a serpent, Satan tempted Eve to eat the fruit in the Garden of Eden. Satan tempted Job, and also tempted Jesus to give up his ministry.
Nature Of God
Christians are monotheists. This means that they believe there is only one God.
The Trinity is a way of describing the three ways of being God – God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. It describes the relationship between these three ‘persons’ which are all part of the one God.
Statements about the Trinity are found in the Nicene Creed (the Christian statement of faith)
"We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son."
Why Is There Evil And Suffering In The World?
God is letting evil occur is so that on the day of judgment, the condemned will have no right to say that their sentence is unjust. God is not stopping people from exercising their free will.
Without evil in the world we wouldn't know what good is. You need a balance of both good and bad (Ying and Yang)
God does have the power to change lives of innocent people who suffer evil eveyday but doesn't do anything about it. There is evidence for this - Starvation in Africa. However a weakness is - God cannot be all loving and all powerful at the same time according to the Inconsistant Triad.
Responses To Suffering
God wants Christians to help those who suffer because The New Testement teaches that Jesus regarded evil and suffering as something to be fought against. Give money to charities that help those in need.
Just say that suffering is a part of what God does which cannot be explained. People need to except suffering as a part of life as we cannot change it. Example: "But trust Him for His grace" which is from hymn by William Cowper. You can ease pain but not erase it.
People pray to God during their time of suffering as it releases their pain and sets them free and keeps them peaceful. When on the cross Jesus prayed, "Forgive them Father for they know not what they do." People should stay faithful to God as he is always listening.
The Bible: It is full of stories that can be adapted into everyday situations. Christians make their dicisions by wondering how God would want them to behave following the example of Jesus and his life and teachings. They have faith in Jesus as their saviour and he is the Son Of The God.
Conscience: Conscience tends to be defined as that feeling which may make us believe that certain actions, or failures of actions are inherently wrong. When we ignore these feelings we feel guilt or remorse.
Faith In Christ: One who has this faith believes him to be the living Son of God, trusts in his goodness and power, repents of one's sins, and follows his guidance. Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is awakened as individuals hear his gospel.