1.1 States that the world is the best of all possible worlds because it allows humans to
fully develop. Also proposes that creation is incomplete, as humans are not yet fully
developed, and experiencing evil and suffering is necessary for such development.
1.2 Irenaeus proposed a two-stage creation process in which humans require free
will and the experience of evil to develop. Another early Christian theologian,
Origen, presented a response to the problem of evil which cast the world as a
schoolroom or hospital for the soul
1.3.1 Leibniz; proposed that the world is the best of
all possible worlds because it balances all the
possible goods the world could contain.
22.214.171.124 Schleiermacher; argued that God must necessarily create
flawlessly, so this world must be the best possible world
because it allows God's purposes to be naturally fulfilled.
126.96.36.199 Plantinga; supported the idea that this
world is the best possible world, arguing
that the good in the world (including God's
infinite goodness) outweighs the evil and
proposing that the ultimate good of God's
sacrifice when Jesus was crucified
necessitated the existence of evil.
1.3.2 Swinburne; proposed that, to make a free moral
choice, humans must have experience of the
consequences of their own actions and that natural
evil must exist to provide such choices.
1.4.1 Rowe, D. Z. Phillips and Dostoyevsky; challenged the
instrumental use of suffering, suggesting that love cannot
be expressed through suffering.
188.8.131.52 Tooley; argued that the magnitude
of suffering is excessive and that, in
some cases, cannot lead to moral
1.4.2 Blocher; criticised Hick's universalism, arguing
that such a view negates free will, which was
similarly important to the theodicy.
2 Free Will Defence
2.1.1 God can create free creatures, but He can't cause or
determine them to do only what is right. For if He does
so, then they aren't significantly free after all; they do
not do what is right freely. To create creatures capable
of moral good, therefore, He must create creatures
capable of moral evil; and He can't give these
creatures the freedom to perform evil and at the same
time prevent them from doing so.
184.108.40.206 Plantinga's argument is that even though God is
omnipotent, it is possible that it was not in his power
to create a world containing moral good but no moral
evil; therefore, there is no logical inconsistency
involved when God, although wholly good, creates a
world of free creatures who chose to do evil.[
2.2.1 Mackie and Flew; presupposes a libertarian, incompatibilist view of free
will (free will and determinism are metaphysically incompatible), while their
view is a compatibilist view of free will (free will and determinism, whether
physical or divine, are metaphysically compatible).God could have created
a world containing moral good but no moral evil. In such a world people
could have chosen to only perform good deeds, even though all their
choices were predestined
2.2.2 Does not address the problem of natural
evil, since natural evil is not brought about by
the free choices of creatures. Plantinga's
reply is a suggestion that it is at least
logically possible that perhaps free,
nonhuman persons are responsible for
natural evils (e.g. rebellious spirits or fallen
3 Augustinian Theodicy
3.1 Evidential Problem of Evil
220.127.116.11.1 There exist instances of intense suffering which
an omniscient being could have prevented
without giving up the greater good or creating
more evil. An omniscient, wholly good being
would prevent the occurence of any intense
suffering it could, unless it would make things
18.104.22.168.1.1 Therefore, there does not exist a wholly
good, all-powerful, all-knowing being.
22.214.171.124 Human suffering; man
attacks woman on two
finally returning to rape
and kill her five year
126.96.36.199 Animal suffering; Lightning
strikes a tree and causes a
fawn to burn for days.
188.8.131.52 No amount of suffering is ever justifiable.
3.2 Rejects the idea that evil exists in itself, instead regarding it as a
corruption of goodness, caused by humanity's abuse of free will.
Augustine believed in the existence of a physical Hell as a punishment
for sin, but argued that those who choose to accept the salvation of
Jesus Christ will go to Heaven.
3.3.1 John Calvin; supported Augustine's view
that evil is the result of free will and argued
that sin corrupts humans, requiring God's
grace to give moral guidance.
3.4.1 Fortunatus; (a Manichaean) contended that God must still be implicated in evil.
3.4.2 Zaccaria; criticised Augustine's concept of evil for not dealing with human suffering.
3.4.3 John Hick; criticised Augustine's theory for being "implausible" in light of Darwin's theory of evolution, as it
would make Augustine's idea of a fall from perfection inaccurate
4 Process Theory
4.1.1 it is an essential attribute of God to affect and be affected by temporal processes, an idea
that conflicts with traditional forms of theism that hold God to be in all respects
non-temporal (eternal), unchanging (immutable), and unaffected by the world (impassible).
4.1.2 God is not all powerful, and He did
not create the world. He merely
developed on what was already there.
184.108.40.206 When the world suffers, God suffers.
4.1.3 Self-determination characterizes everything in the universe, not just human beings.
5 Logical Problem of Evil
5.1.1 Hume argues that it is not logically possible for
all three of God's qualities to exist as well as
evil, so only two must exist. (Mackie's Inconsistent Triad).
5.2 Holds that the existence of evil is
incompatible with the existence of the
God of Classical Theism. As a result, it is
logically inconsistent to accept both can