THEISM AND THE PROBLEM OF EVIL: A CRITICAL STUDY
The presence of evil in a world said to be created by a “Being” who is not only omnipotent, omniscience and perfectly good is problematic. It is a problem that has perturbed man for ages and coupled with various natural disasters still make the concept problematic one. How can there be a loving God, all-powerful and all-knowing God and still face the problem of evil, if really he is perfectly good and created everything then where does evil originate from?
Atheist or agnostics base their case on the lack of evidence for God's existence, however, atheists have at least one very powerful positive argument for their position that there cannot be a living, all-loving, all-powerful God because there are so much evil and suffering in the world. Atheists raise questions like this: If you were a parent wouldn’t you do everything in your power to prevent your children from needless suffering? Many innocent children suffer from painful diseases, with this kind of problem how can we affirm for a loving and all-powerful God in the world.
In this study, we are going to look through the lenses of a philosopher who talks about the problem of evil and God’s existence. Our main focus on this work is theism and the problem of evil which will dwell on chapter four of this work. Before going to the main work, we will first look at the problem which is evil, the different types of evil and different explanations (philosophical and religious explanation) of evil.
We will talk more about chapter four that deal with the problem Theism and the problem of Evil.
According to Augustine, evil is not a being, it is a result of privation of good, so it was not and cannot be created, evil cannot exist on its own. John Hick on his analysis gave some point about why it is evil in the world. On his Greater Good Defence: God himself could not achieve certain results without allowing us to struggle against evil and to endure suffering some evil are necessary for achieving certain good end. The good that is achieved outweighs the evil and the same or a greater amount of good could not have been attained by any means that did not involve the presence of those evils.