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Lastly, my use of the word evil is used in a fashion that is interchangeable with “pain and suffering,” and ultimately that is the intent of this paper: To explore the arguments for and against the existence of the a loving and omnipotent God in contrast with a world full of pain and suffering. As the ancient Greek philosopher Epicurus (341-270 BC) pondered, “Is he willing to prevent evil, but not able? you can never possibly prove, that animal or, at least, human happiness in their life exceeds its misery, you have yet done nothing; for this is not, by any means, what we expect from infinite power, infinite wisdom, and infinite goodness. understanding of evil and its place in God’s world is an important goal for Christians, one where philosophers can perhaps be of some help.” (Plantinga, Supralapsarianism, 355).
In this paper I will present the atheist’s argument of the problem of evil and then thoroughly explore the many responses theists propose to reconcile the problem of evil with God. Other responses seek to clarify exactly who God is to reconcile His existence with evil.
And some address evil with a theodicy, which is a proclamation of what God’s reasons are for evil in an effort to argue He is just in permitting evils.
Clarifying Points Before beginning, I believe there are three important points that should be clarified.
First, many of the arguments made here are for the purpose of defending a theistic worldview, not for solving personal conflicts people may have with instances of evil in their lives.
So if you find yourself unsatisfied with the answers found here it does not mean that there is no satisfactory justification for evil.
Instead, it just means that this essay was not sufficient in doing so.
Probably neither will enable someone to find peace with himself and with God in the face of the evil the world contains.
But then, of course, neither is intended for that purpose,” (Plantiga, The Freewill Defense, 338).
In due course, my goal is to show that the theist does have rational grounds for believing in an all-loving and all-powerful God that exists within a world of evil.
That is, that the problem of evil is of no problem at all for the theist.
If two statements are logically inconsistent it is impossible for both of them to be true.