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The Problem of Evil Explained

Updated on November 17, 2014

The Problem of Evil

The problem of evil relates to how the existence of evil in the world can be reconciled with that of a divine being in either relative or absolute terms, omniscient, omnipotent or perfectly good. Arguments on the problem of evil attempt to reveal that the co-existence of evil and divinity is not possible or unlikely when placed in complete terms. In essence, there have been various responses theological responses in relation to the issue of evil. Moreover, the discussion on this problem is also available in philosophical spheres such as secular ethics and scientific fields including evolutionary ethics.


There are many people who argue that evil is derived from God since he was the one who created all things. According to such people, if God is the one who created all things, then he also have the capability of eliminating it, and its existence despite this capability means that he is contented of its existence (Hume, 1980). In his perspective, such people argue that if God is capable of abolishing evil and he is willing to, why is he allowing it to continue in the first place?

My response in this debate is that indeed, there is existence of evil and the almighty being, who is all aware of this existence, albeit with logical reasons. Though it may look like the world could be a better place if evil had not existed, these evils are necessary for the good of man. In particular, the various frustrations which man experiences in his endeavor to solve the various issues are outweighed by the desire of achieving the solution. This therefore, translates that evils surprising make the world be a better place to live in. Moreover, these evils are necessary in developing the various characters of man such as courage, patient through struggles and or suffering.

In another perspective, we should understand that God created human being in his image and likeness and provided a plan in which they would get to be like Him. This is called the plan of salvation. God’s plan of salvation involves a passage through life and this cannot just happen without both good and evil things. Moreover, God wanted man to differentiate between good and evil and to decide which to choose.

In light to this discussion, we may also need to consider these scenarios, would the world have been a better place if all individual’s actions were determined, or would it be better if individuals possessed libertarian free will? My preposition is that the world is much better with individuals who harbors libertarians free will. This therefore, makes sense that God has logical reasons why he created men with libertarian free will. This also translates that in the libertarian free will, individuals are free to choose what they want including moral wrongs.


Even as the problem of evil stand to be the greatest objection to God’s existence, in the end God is the only solution to this problem. If he does not exist, we are locked in a world full of unredeemed and gratuitous suffering without hope. If he does exist, he created evil. Therefore, he is the final answer to this problem. In addition, it is also critical to understand that God allows evil in order to shape man into his full nature, both physical and spiritual.


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