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He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou find refuge: His truth is a shield and buckler
Psalms 91:4

Be it ours,when we cannot see the face of God, to trust under the shadow of His wings. C.H. Spugeon

Monday, August 02, 2010

The Problem with Evil

"The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering." Ben Okri

Genesis 1:1, "In the beginning God created ..."
Genesis 1:26-28, "Then God said, 'Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion ... and God said 'Be fruitful and multiply; fill the Earth and subdue it; have dominion ...'"

Man is a living being capable of embodying God's communicable attributes. Man is God's representative ruling over creation. In this, it is the functions of reason, creativity and self-determination that enable the mandate of fruitfulness and subjugation to be achieved. Creativity is predominantly expressed in the ability to have dominion over this Earth, to alter, to adapt, to assimilate, to create. Some believe that this creative ability exists without any corresponding authority. Man's volitional acts are powerless, they are merely choreographed. It seems to me then there should be freedom from accountability.

Evil exists as a creative expression of man's free-will. The ability to creatively alter our environment is not restricted to the purposes of propagation, but also allow for perversity. Man acts volitionally for good or for evil. I believe history is resplendent with the selfish and evil purposes of man achieved through the suffering, torture and destruction of fellow human beings and even nature itself. Man has the ability to adapt with astonishing wisdom to where he resides and to whatever occupations come to mind.

It may be difficult to accept by some believers, that evil exists as part and parcel of the free-will activities of man, however the objections that are given in terms of a nullifying of God's powers are without substance. I am not saying that a man's desires for evil thwart or subdue the will of God, or diminish God's ability or power to act. God is ominiscient and omnipotent and it is those attributes that make Him not only God, but allow for the existence of miracles.

Man acts upon his desires and lusts, these being either for the benefit of a general population or the selfish interests of an individual. Whether harm or good to others is done in the name of desire, it is nevertheless contained in the free-will decision of the perpetrator or initiator of an act. God's presence or power is not subdued by this act. God can at any time and in any capacity intervene. This is truly what makes a 'miracle' a miracle God acting and altering the events and volitional actions of man and 're-creating' from those actions an alternate outcome or ending. In this lies what people see as the incredible injustice of God, "How could God allow such evil?"; "How could God be the God of love and allow such things?". It isn't about God, it is man himself, and each man will be held accountable for his decisions and actions and the accountability will be to God. Evil actions are not without responsibilty.

*As an aside: We always seem to relate miracles to a positive outcome, some form of rescue or restoration, may I throw out a thought which occurred, in that, possibly what we see as destruction or abandonment may be the result of miraculous intervention of God as well.

The presence of evil in our world is the proof positive of the free-will activities of man.
If the first action, in this case Adam and Eve picking the apple, was not a free-will decision, then every subsequent action was an involuntary consequence. This, in effect, leaves you and I without an original thought or action, consequently even the writing of and your reading of this blog was a planned consequence of Adam's sin. It kind of 'sticks in the craw' abit when you think about it. There really is nothing more disconcerting or offensive than telling a man he is a puppet.

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