The Problem of Evil
What is the Problem of Evil?
Augustine in his Confessions defined the problem of evil:
'Either God cannot abolish evil, or he will not; if he cannot then he is not all-powerful; if he will not then he is not all good.'
A problem is, should Christians drop one of God's characteristics (omnipotence or omnibenevolence) so that his existence is compatible with evil?
David Hume in Dialogues Concerning Natural Religions argues that either:
- God is not omnipotent
- or God is not omnibenevolent
- or evil does not exist
Evil does exist and as the idea of God must include omnipotence and omnibenevolence, then God cannot exist
- based his theory on two passages in the Bible: Genesis 3 (the story of the Fall) and Romans 5:12-20 (St Paul describes how Jesus' crucifixion wipe out the sin committed by Adam and Eve)
- His theodicy states:
- that a good God created the world and at the time of creation the world was good.
- evil is a 'privation of good' not an entity itself
- evil came as a result of angels who turned away from God and misused their free will- tempted Adam and Eve- origin of moral evil
- humans are born with …