So even if God wants to prevent evil, he cannot because free will is important. Simply stated or broken down, the problem of evil claims that the following prepositions cannot be held consistently together: If God has these features, then it follows that God can and should want to prevent evil. Belmont: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2008. But what exactly is God’s nature? And if so, then it is possible that God has a good reason for creating a world containing evil (Plantinga, 190-191).” It is not to be taken in any way that Plantinga declares his proposition is true, but rather logically sound. In conclusion, the problem of evil exists because man believes in an omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent creator. Nevertheless, there are several problems that result from a defense of this sort, which primarily revolve around the notion that God foreknows all choices that we will make and all events that will occur. But if that were the case, people would not really have free will; they would know they could not freely do anything they wanted. Teach the text to your reader, don’t just read it to them. Philosophy of Religion: An Anthology. The problem of evil is the notion that, how can an all good, powerful, loving God exists when evil seems to exist also. In efforts to refute the logical problem of evil, Plantinga tries to show that Mackie’s argument is not contradictory. Disclaimer: This work has been submitted by a university student. Explaining all the natural and personal disasters without a belief in God and why evil exists is paramount to impossible. Taking this into deliberation, man (being created in His image) has the ability to do wrong and create evil. God uses evil as a vehicle for bringing about the greater good. From this, such a God should want to prevent evil, yet much evil exists. I take this as saying that God acts as an accomplice to evil because He knows what will happen before the action is done, and yet he does nothing to get involved. 4 (it is recommended that you use the First Way). Therefore, free will does not exist. Preview. He argues that God, even being omnipotent, could not create a world with free beings that never chose evil. Natalie Casas Professor B. Chung Phi 2011 2 March 2006 The Problem of Evil To some evil … That means that believing in E and believing in God is like believing in a five-sided square.Most philosophers today reject this argument (Rowe 1979: 335). Gillett, Grant. Problem of Evil Argument Essay. “Free Will and the Problem of Evil.” Religious Studies: An International Journal for the Philosophy of Religion (2004): 437-456. Looking for a flexible role? To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below: If you are the original writer of this essay and no longer wish to have your work published on UKEssays.com then please: Our academic writing and marking services can help you! In his essay, Mackie examines what he calls “so-called” solutions to the problem: evil being a necessary counterpart to good, the universe being better off with some evil, evil acting as a means to good, and evil being the result of human free will. In my paper, I have examined the problem of evil and the concept of the free will argument, using Mackie and Plantinga’s arguments on the subject. The larger is how anyone can go to heaven. Plantinga, in his response against Mackie, suggests that atheologicans (specifically Mackie) are wrong to believe that evil and God are incompatible. Thus, the problem of evil leads to a contradiction in at least one, if not all, of the attributes of God (that being omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent). This is called “the problem of evil.” Aquinas argues that the God he has proven to exist is entirely consistent with the presence of evil in the world. Do you have a 2:1 degree or higher? Don't use plagiarized sources. 1545 Words 7 Pages. The dilemma of the problem of evil is, if God is perfectly loving he must wish to abolish evil. From simple essay plans, through to full dissertations, you can guarantee we have a service perfectly matched to your needs. These tend to fall, however, into two main groups. God’s creation of beings with considerable free will is something like the greatest gift that can be given, or in another sense, the greater good. Does this inability take away from His omnipotence? The Problem of Evil can be written out in four propositions, all of which theists would agree with, in order to complete the argument an atheist would add the final two premises: 1. Plantinga’s argument is a valid justification for God’s permission of evil, but he seems to speak only in terms of one nature of evil. There have been many proposed solutions to problem of evil, … An all-powerful God would destroy evil. I am sure that there is free will and absolutely no evil and suffering. 173-180. When it comes to the problem of evil and God’s existence, there are many questions and concerns that come to mind. He maintains the idea that God granted free will, but then asks, “If God has made men such that in their free choices they sometimes prefer what is good and sometimes what is evil, why could He not have made men such that they always freely choose the good (Mackie, 178)?” Being all powerful, God could have created a world with both free will and no signs of evil. Your email address will not be published. Gale, Richard M. “Freedom and the Free Will Defense.” Social Theory and Practice: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal of Social Philosophy (1990): 397-42. He has no control over natural evil and is completely powerless to prevent its occurrences. Be sure you represent the problem in all of its due force; consider looking up the formulation attributed to Epicurus in David Hume’s Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion. Describe the function of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. Philosophy Essay - The Problem of Evil Part A - Compare and contrast the theodicies of Augustine and Irenaeus Both Augustine and Irenaeus attempt to explain the existence of evil in their theodicies, though have different explanations for its existence. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of UKEssays.com. Theist Problem Of Evil Essay. On another note, I believe that it is reasonable to say that it is better that the world contain beings with significant freedom than that it contains only automata. At the same time, evil existing alongside God seems to detract from both his omnipotent and good status. Moreover, evil occurs because God does not want to compromise this free will be preventing evil. Not everyone hold the same beliefs or interpretations of Adam, Eve, and the forbidding fruit scenario. An omniscient, wholly good being would prevent the occurrence of any intense suffering it could, unless it could not do so without thereby losing some greater good or permitting some evil equally bad or worse. The existence of evil seems to indicate that God is not preventing this evil. Hume, David. The religious believers assume that God is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent, yet evil exist. Firstly, it is written in the Book of Genesis that God created man in His image. Of all the atheistic arguments, this is the one that has been around for longest, that has had the most words written about it, and that draws the most diverse responses from Christians. “The Argument from Evil.” Pojman, Louis P. and Michael Rea. Why does our world contain so much evil? The problem simply stems from basic beliefs or assumptions pertaining to the attributes of God: God is perfectly good, omniscient, and omnipotent. Designed and Developed by. Get Your Custom Essay on, © Copyright Eikra 2020. Polkinghorne (14) defines it as the process of reconciliation between evil and good. Good is interpreted as anything in harmony with God’s character, will, and goal, whereas evil is any state or condition that is contrary to His character, will, and goal. Why does it contain any evil at all? So it seems that either God does not exist, or His characteristics are very different from what we think. The Problem of Evil argument focuses on the fact the existence of evil in the universe contradicts with God’s existence. Whence then is evil (150)?” Being that there is more evil than good in the world, it is difficult to see how one can reconcile the existence of evil with the existence of an all-powerful, omnibenevolent God. Author: Created by pippaatkin. We're here to answer any questions you have about our services. The free will defense illustrates that God allows evil for the sake of human free will. As used in this paper, free will is identical to freedom of choice, or the ability to do or not to do something. Free resources to assist you with your university studies! You will then present the problem of evil with special attention given to the apparent tension between the presence of evil and these attributes proven to belong to God. I challenge the soundness of the argument, especially two particular premises which deal with omnipotence and omnibenevolence. He says that “The heart of the Free Will Defense is the claim that it is possible that God could not have created a universe containing moral good (or as much moral good as this world contains) without creating one that also contained moral evil. If this is true, then what do you consider heaven? Study for free with our range of university lectures! Speaking in terms of evil, I will further examine two types of evil, as one will be introduced later on in the paper. Would it be safe and logical to say that God, being the Creator of all things (nature in particular), is to blame? SPECIAL RESTRICTION: You are prohibited from using quotations from any text in the body of your paper. *You can also browse our support articles here >. If evil exists then God cannot be all perfectly loving. He is also all good meaning He cannot sin nor do evil. These objectors argue that since there are so many cases of significant pain and suffering in the world that God could easily prevent, the fact that all this evil was not prevented means it is very unlikely (if not impossible) that God exists. The problem of evil is the notion that, how can an all good, powerful, loving God exists when evil seems to exist also. The Problem Of Evil Essay Samples. Many philosophers, such as Mackie, argue that if one abolishes God himself, or at least some of His attributes, then evil needs no explanation. As men… Home — Essay Samples — Social Issues — Evil — The Problem of Evil This essay has been submitted by a student. Do you feel socializing with your colleagues is beneficial in creating a better learning environment. So does this fact alone contradict God’s omnibenevolence? The Problem of the Evil ...The most weighty of the arguments against God’s existence is the problem of evil. Without being aware of the one, chances are you would not know how to distinguish between the two. Yes, the evil that exists around us is a consequence of the abuse of our freedom. On the other hand, there is the logical challenge to belief in God, which says that it is both impossible and irrational to believe in the existence of a good, powerful God with the existence of evil in the world. One of the most controversial ideas of medieval Christians was … The Problem of Evil is an argument that shows that God cannot be either all- powerful, all-knowing, and/or all good. Journalist and best-selling author Lee Strobel commissioned George Barna, the public-opinion pollster, to conduct a nationwide survey. The problem of evil exists because of the fall of man. This is not an example of the work written by professional essay writers. Belmont: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2008. Not all natures of evil, however, can be explained in this way. There is much evil that is not inflicted by man. More so, there is a possibility that such knowledge is beyond our means of reasoning at present. Evidential arguments claim that there is no good reason for God’s permission of evil. Read this Philosophy Essay and over 89,000 other research documents. In response, some philosophers offer justifications for God permitting evil. Everyone would always freely choose to do good acts because God would constitute everyone to do so. In the body of your paper, you may paraphrase the quotation, but you MUST explain the meaning of the text you are referencing and how it establishes your point. In your paper, following closely, step-by-step, the texts and arguments of Aquinas, you will first demonstrate the existence of God from any of the Five Ways or from the De Ente ch. Your paper will present the problem of evil in its strongest possible terms and then resolve it. Created: Oct 1, 2018. A sample logical challenge would in the following form: 2. The aspects that will be focused on in the essay will be the logical problem of evil where the concept of God and the key attributes that are in conflict with the existence of evil will be discussed. Ultimately, perhaps God allows evil and suffering so that in the end, man will be born again and accept God’s grace and live by His word. However, a literary analysis of the work s of prominent philosophy gurus has provided one with the realization that inference is just as important as direct conclusions from definite statements. All work is written to order. The traditional monotheistic response to the problem of evil is that human free will leads to evil in the world, as in the case of Original Sin. We are the most reliable web custom writing service providers, guaranteeing original top notch mark papers. He is all powerful because “through Christ all things are possible”, or at least all things logically possible. For Mackie, the existence of evil is logically incompatible with the existence of a Christian God. However, the conclusion that we’re wrong about God follows only if God has no good reason for allowing evil. The problem simply stems from basic beliefs or assumptions pertaining to the attributes of God: God is perfectly good, omniscient, and omnipotent. Philosophy Reference this. Thus, we are not “all-good”. Copyright © 2003 - 2021 - UKEssays is a trading name of All Answers Ltd, a company registered in England and Wales. If God is all-powerful, all-knowing and perfectly good, why does he let so many bad things h… And at this rate of thinking, his argument would only hold strong for the theist himself. It is deemed necessary that man go through struggles in order to gain strength, a means of soul promoting, or to be conscious of certain emotions. The Problem of Evil. “The Problem of Evil and the Problem of God.” Journal of Applied Philosophy (2007): 435-438. On theone hand, there are metaphysical interpretations of the term: God isa prime mover, or a first cause, or a necessary being that has itsnecessity of itself, or the ground of being, or a being whos… Problem of Evil Evil has always been with humanity. This essay is a conclusive look at the problems and contradictions underlying a belief in God and the observable traits of the world. From these it follows that a good, omnipotent thing eliminates evil completely, and then the propositions that a good, omnipotent thing exists, and the evil exists, are incompatible (174).” For sake of clarity, I will define the terms “good” and “evil”, as they will be used throughout this paper. Read this Philosophy Essay and over 89,000 other research documents. The problem of evil is usually seen as the problem of how the existence of God can be reconciled with the existence of evil in the world. Registered office: Venture House, Cross Street, Arnold, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG5 7PJ. This response would probably be the safe way out, but again it does not necessarily pose a solution to the problem of natural evils. In a sense, I think of it as a limitation on his power because He created something that He has no control over or at least it seems that He does not. Some critics believe that this argument fails due to the fact that God could give us free will and still stop people from doing evil. The most credible of these is the free will defense, which states that there are no contradictions in God’s attributes; He is capable of destroying evil, but not at the expense of taking away free will. Company Registration No: 4964706. From this, such a God should want to prevent evil, yet much evil exists. Belmont: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning, 2008. Problem of Evil. The free will defense successfully solves the problem. Of course for Plantinga he would rely on Augustine’s perspective to say that these particular evils are a result on moral evil, relating the incidents of Adam and Eve and the concept of original sin. The problem of evil also gives way to the notion that if hell exists then God must be evil for sending anyone there.I believe hell exists in light of the idea that God is holy. These questions and many others, particularly the presence of evil, reflects the most persistent argument raised against theism. The purpose of this paper is to show that evil is everywhere, and that, while good is also in abundant supply, evil will never totally be removed from society. In these statements, Rowe suggests the inductive, probabilistic view of the evil argument justifies atheism (defined as either a rejection of theism or a position that deities do not exist). The argument simply says that God is not responsible for the evil that takes place, but rather, beings are at fault; at some point in life, a being will be faced with a situation that requires moral choice and the ability to act freely, and they may possibly choose evil (Cain). Then, again following Aquinas, you will proceed to demonstrate that the God thus proven to exist necessarily possesses certain attributes, and specifically you must show God’s omnipotence, omniscience, goodness, and perfection. A popular response to the problem of evil contends that there is a necessary connection between free will and the existence of moral (or human-caused) evil. The Problem Of Evil Cannot Be Solved Philosophy Essay Evil is a problem, not because there is evil in the world or that there is so much of it in the world. In this essay I am going to examine the problem of evil. 181-199. The problem of evil can be distinguished between two types of philosophical aspects or challenges to faith in God: the evidential challenge and the logical challenge. There exist instances of intense suffering which an omnipotent, omniscient being could have prevented without thereby losing some greater good or permitting some evil equally bad or worse. Natural evils (as described earlier in the paper) or disasters, for instance, cause great destruction, but there is nothing that man could have done to prevent them. The problem stems from the concept of an omnipotent, omniscient and perfectly good and just God; that if such a God exists, then evil should not exist. There are many possible replies and solutions to the problem of evil, but I will only limit focus to one particular argument. This paper will discuss the problem of evil, state the main claims that have been argued by John Mackie and Alvin Plantinga, and show some of the arguments that other scholars have raised with regard to the problem of evil. If God is all-good and all-powerful, how come there is … Type of paper: Essay Topic: God, Ethics, Evil, Suffering, Criminal Justice, World, Punishment In Evil and Omnipotence, Mackie argues that the traditional conceived God cannot possibly exist with so much evil and suffering in the world. Nevertheless, there are several problems that result from a defense of this sort, which primarily revolve around the notion that God foreknows all choices that we will make and all events that will occur. Why could not have God create the physical world (in which we live) as such? If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help! This is not an example of the work produced by our Essay Writing Service. The argument gives the impression that God knows that evil occurs, God does not want evil to occur, and God has the ability to prevent evil, but evil still exists because God wants us to have free will. But some object that the fact of evil in the world stands in clear contradiction to such a God. Philosophy of Religion: An Anthology. The evidential challenge (also known as the inductive argument) seeks to show that the existence of evil counts against the probability of the truth of theism (defined as the belief in at least one deity). This is called “the problem of evil.” Aquinas argues that the God he has proven to exist is entirely consistent with the presence of evil in the world. “The problem of evil” is one of the most discussed objections to the existence of God and is a top reason many unbelievers give for their unbelief. The Riddle of Epicurus: The Problem of Evil Introduction The problem of evil has been addressed by philosophers for centuries. Heaven is supposed to be a “perfect” world. Therefore, there cannot possibly be such a good and powerful God. The logical challenge attempts to demonstrate that the assumed propositions lead to a logical contradiction and cannot therefore all be correct. In this case, in order for a person to possess happiness or feel sorrow, they must have been faced with a situation that evokes such feelings or emotions. Your email address will not be published. You will receive no credit from quoting and paraphrasing alone. Show More. No plagiarism, guaranteed! Therefore, there does not exist an omnipotent, omniscient, wholly good being (Rowe, 201). There is a belief that moral and natural evil exists because there is a vacuum left where God does not exist. For instance, murder is an evil brought about by man and therefore it is a moral evil. In this essay, I will examine the argument for the Problem of Evil, a possible theodicy against the argument, and reply to the theodicy. Despite Plantinga’s success and acceptance, his free will defense still presents a conflict between reasoning and the characteristics of God. Philosophy William L. Rowe illustrates this challenge as such: 1. The term “God” is used with a wide variety of differentmeanings. 4. 3. This is an exmplar essay I have written for GCSE Religious Studies students in response to the title ‘The existence of evil and suffering proves there is … The evidential version of the problem of evil (also referred to as the probabilistic or inductive version), seeks to show that the existence of evil, although logically consistent with the existence of God, counts against or lowers the probability of the truth of theism. I will only limit focus to one particular argument presents a conflict between reasoning and characteristics! And absolutely no evil in its strongest possible terms and then resolve it the problem of evil essay through to full dissertations, can! 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