The problem of evil is an issue that most (if not all) Christians must struggle with especially when speaking with unbelievers. A number of well versed atheists question the validity of God by constructing arguments grounded in the problem of evil, pain, suffering… The atheist argument often goes like this, “…because if there was a God, why do we have so much evil, pain and suffering in this world.” Some of us, Evangelical Christians, accept the fact that evil does exist in this world because the good God gave us free will. I personally believe that evil and God exist in addition to the former because evil is temporary and living with God is better than living in this world. Let’s not forget that ‘evil is absence of good’ proposition comes from Saint Augustine of Hippo who used this analogy in theological doctrine conversations. Most Christians have no problem with the former statement.
During an apologetics workshop delivered by Dennis Anderson and Jesse Stone at Westmore Church of God, in Cleveland, TN, the presenters made excellent arguments for the existence of God including the following statement constructed by Jesse, “A perfectly good being might desire to accomplish greater goods for his creatures that are only possible if evil exists.” I find the former sentence to be of great value for the discussions regarding the “problem of evil” in our region. But if God is love…
Okay, now we have a logical problem again. How can a loving God allow a poor little kid to be eaten by a crocodile? Great question. I have to think a lot deeper about the former in order to fully answer the question for anyone. An Omnipotent God could have stopped that event. As Christians, we must ground our arguments based in scripture, though. The bible says, “This foolish plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength” (1 Corinthians 1:25). Maybe we are not supposed to understand, I don’t know. As of today. I justify horrific tragic events like the kid who was eaten by a crocodile as a divine mystery. My search for a better answer to this question continues and my hope is that your search continues, as well.
By faith we believe.