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Problem Free Will

Essay by review  •  February 5, 2011  •  Essay  •  595 Words (3 Pages)  •  996 Views

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The “problem of evil” is a very hard idea that is very tough to explain or justify especially by Christianity beliefs. The problem itself is that if God is a force for infinite good, why is there so much wickedness, suffering and evil in this world? Further, why do bad things happen to good people and if an all-good, all-powerful, and all-wise God is running the world why does it seem like there is so much bad and he can’t be doing a bad job, because he is perfect. Why God is supposed to be the creator of everything and everything created by God is good.

For St. Augustine, who lived between A.D. 354 and A.D. 430 and is one of greatest Church Fathers of Christianity, the problem of evil was a very hard question to cope with especially in Christian beliefs. Maybe that’s why he was first attracted to a religion called Manichaeism. Manichaeism has a rather simple answer to the problem of evil. Manicheans believe that instead of there being only one God there is actually two. One is all-good, all-powerful, and all-wise God, who is the creator of everything that is good in this world. The other God is an all-powerful malignant, evil and wicked God, who is the creator of everything that is evil in this world. That is why there is there is good and evil in this world according to Manichaeism in this world. However, for Augustine this answer just did not satisfy him and after about nine years he abandoned the religion and joined the Catholic Christianity faith. Once again though, the problem of evil daunted Augustine’s mind.

In Christian faith, it is believed that there is only one God and one God only who is all-wise, all-powerful and perfect in everyway. He is the creator of everything in this world and everything he creates is good. So the problem of evil once again poses the question, how come there is evil in this world? Augustine was obsessed throughout his life in answering this question. He finally came to a conclusion that simply, evil is nonexistent. For example, if a T-shirt as a whole is an example of good and there is a hole in it the hole represents evil. The whole is simply just a nonexistence of the good. This idea is aided by his concept of free will. He believes that in order for love to exist there must be choice and choice requires free will. If God is to create human beings that can love, they must be able to choose not to love. However, humans can use

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