Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Dare We Doubt Evil?

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Dare We Doubt Evil?

Article excerpt

THERE'S been a thought-provoking discussion on a computer bulletin board I've been reading the past few weeks. A number of people interested in Christianity have been struggling with the issue of the place of God in a world where evil is so prevalent. Three points have been postulated: 1. God is good and all-loving. 2. God is omnipotent. 3. Evil is real. All who have written so far have agreed that these three points are not reconcilable. Several have suggested that points one or two must be wrong. Others have proposed that suffering and injustice are good in ways that we don't understand. But to date no one has challenged the truth of the third point--evil's reality. I find this surprising, because the more I read the Gospels, the clearer it seems that Jesus affirmed the first two points, God's goodness and omnipotence, and challenged and disproved the last. One of the most inspiring points to draw from Jesus' experience is that evil is not a reality, but a deception. Consider the following. As Jesus approached the city of Nain he met a funeral procession. A widow had lost her only son. Not only was this new grief added to her widowhood, but what hope did she have for the future? Who would provide for her? Who would care for her in old age? Here, in a way, is the same confluence of issues that are being discussed on the bulletin board. Christ Jesus came to bear witness to the goodness and love of God and to His all-power. The widow was experiencing the injustice, cruelty, and evil that death had brought into her life. What happened to these irreconcilable points? Here is the account from Luke: "When the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her, and said unto her, Weep not. And he came and touched the bier: and they that bare him stood still. And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak. And he delivered him to his mother" (7:13-15). Who blinked? Death, grief, deprivation, all yielded, all gave ground to the reality of God's, divine Love's, omnipotence. They were not as real or unquestionable as had been thought. …
Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.