The Problem of Evil
Thomas Aquinas wrote his great Summa Theologica that he could find only two objections to the existence of God. One of the two objections is the apparent ability of natural science to explain everything in our experience without God, and the other is the Problem of Evil. It is the underlying question for the biblical Book of Job: why does God allow bad things happen to good people? That question, more than any other, has caused religious people to abandon their faith.
In a well-developed, argumentative essay, address the following issues:
- In your own words, explain the “Problem of Evil.” In other words, regardless of what you personally believe, if there is a God who is all-powerful, all-knowing, and concerned with justice and the well-being of humanity, explain how there can be so much evil and suffering in the world.
- Next, pursue as far as you can the responses and objections to one of the various attempts in the textbook to resolve the problem of evil. Explain in what ways it resolves the problem of evil AND in what ways it does not. (If you can’t figure out how to start, a good way of doing this is to have a friend act as devil’s advocate and try to refute your efforts to defend a solution to the problem.)
Note: Be careful not to commit a formal fallacy like the one in this example. This argument has an undistributed middle term.
E→F The origin of evil is free will.
G→F God created free will.
∴G→E Therefore, God is the origin of evil.
Please ensure that your essay addresses each component of the assigned questions and that your answer is well-organized, uses excellent, college-level prose, and makes judicious use of textual evidence. Your essay must follow APA formatting and should be 500-750 words long.
If you quote, paraphrase, or summarize from the textbook or any other source, you must include in-text citations and a References page.
Grading Criteria Assignments
Meets or exceeds established assignment criteria
Demonstrates an understanding of lesson concepts
Clearly presents well-reasoned ideas and concepts
Mechanics, punctuation, sentence structure, spelling, APA formatting.