The problem with Evil

Batista

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I've got one better.

The existence of God negates our reason to exist.
If you are of the opinion that we are here to prove our worthiness for heaven that is.

Almost the same premise
If God is omnipotent, he knows who will sin and to what extent before they are even born.
Even so, we are still born and those who have sinned still go to hell.

So if God exists and knows all, why are we even born and not sent straight to hell or heaven?

Because Earth is one big reality show and we are the laughing stock of the universe probably.Only reason why we are still here.
 

KT-B

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I think you're overstating the case you're arguing against there, and it doesn't help your argument. There are overlaps in morality between virtually every human culture that suggest that there is at least a basis for a universal human morality. A stand alone moral law of the universe is another discussion altogether that begs a lot of questions we're not in a position to answer.

OK as an example of a moral value that is both universal and that we are able to judge objectively: all cultures agree that murder is wrong, but disagree on the killing of who constitutes murder. Some cultures might no consider the arbitrary killing of someone of a different tribe or nation as murder, but all would agree that the arbitrary killing of someone of your own tribe or nation is murder. Some cultures might not consider killing someone because they insulted your honour as murder. Western society extends the definition of murder to the arbitrary killing of anyone and considers honour killings to be murder, therefore it is morally superior.
We, who consider ourselves civilized, once accepted killing of other humans if they offended our honour. Duels were fought at sunrise. Some saw this as barbaric and others found it acceptable. But it was the norm. What was done. This shows that morality is malleable and it fluctuates depending on who is in charge. So one would assume that evil fluctuates too. It is dependent on the societal norms of the time.
 

Geoff.D

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We, who consider ourselves civilized, once accepted killing of other humans if they offended our honour. Duels were fought at sunrise. Some saw this as barbaric and others found it acceptable. But it was the norm. What was done. This shows that morality is malleable and it fluctuates depending on who is in charge. So one would assume that evil fluctuates too. It is dependent on the societal norms of the time.
and different in different cultures. We see this in our own country every day.

Slaughtering an animal on the beach.
Gang vendettas
Terrible treatment of persons with Albinoism.
Rejection and victimisation on the grounds of sexual orientation.
Settling of Political differences by execution.
It is okay for a woman to cry assault and battery but not okay if the reverse is claimed.
Ministers of Parliament declaring someone is guilty before proven based on social media claims.
Unfounded racism charges based on distorted social media reports.
Mob Justice almost an accepted way of life in some parts.
 

KT-B

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Let's take the idea that God is all powerful. That he can stop things from happening. Let's use the story of Samson and Delilah. If God had known that Delilah was going to cut Samson's hair - he could have stopped her. Made his hair too strong, made the scissors/knife blunt, woken the dude up.... He didn't. What he did do was to make the hair grow again - but only after Samson had been tied up and beaten, blinded and enslaved. He let Samson get revenge. Samson killed a lot of people who had nothing to do with his condition or the betrayal. But because they were in the building - they died.

Let's see if God knows whether people will be good or evil. Take the story of Abraham. He was ordered to kill his son to show that he had faith in God. That he would do whatever it took. The angel even admits that they didn't know whether Abraham feared God enough to do as he was told. If God was all knowing - there would have been no reason for the test or the angels admission.

Even Jesus had to prove himself worthy (The Temptation of Christ).
12 And Jesus answered and said to him, “It has been said, ‘You shall not[g]tempt the Lord your God.’ ”
If God knew that Jesus would manage 40 days in the desert without food - and being tempted by Satan - why would he put his own son through that ?
 

rietrot

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Let's take the idea that God is all powerful. That he can stop things from happening.
No. Because free will needs consequences to be real. And at what level should God intervene? With everything?

Techne explained this a few post up. #42.
 

KT-B

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No. Because free will needs consequences to be real. And at what level should God intervene? With everything?

Techne explained this a few post up. #42.
Ok I went and had a look. And this is my take on it:

If God is morally perfect, then God has the desire to eliminate all evil. --> Only God can be morally perfect. So if God exists then for some reason decided to create things which cannot logically be Pure Goodness. For this proof to work one has to demonstrate that God has no good reason to create things which will logically contain various degrees of evil.
God made the 10 commandments. One of them is not to covet what your neighbour has. Jealousy - in humans - is a sin. Yet he claims, in the same 10 commandments, that he is a jealous God and we shall have no other gods before him. How is that morally perfect ?

And God spoke all these words:​
2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.​
3 “You shall have no other gods before me.​
4 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.​
Oh and he punishes the kids for the sins of the parents - so no mercy even. Not only kids - but all the way to the great grand-kids.

If God is omnipotent, then God has the power to eliminate all evil. --> For this to happen God will have to destroy all created things. He created it so He can destroy it, no problem.
So all of God's creations are evil ? So therefore, no one is good ?
 

Techne

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Ok I went and had a look. And this is my take on it:


God made the 10 commandments. One of them is not to covet what your neighbour has. Jealousy - in humans - is a sin. Yet he claims, in the same 10 commandments, that he is a jealous God and we shall have no other gods before him. How is that morally perfect ?




So all of God's creations are evil ? So therefore, no one is good ?
Just read again and try to figure out for yourself.
 

KT-B

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Just read again and try to figure out for yourself.
I read it very carefully. "Only God can be morally perfect. ", "create things which cannot logically be Pure Goodness. ", "For this proof to work one has to demonstrate that God has no good reason to create things which will logically contain various degrees of evil. ". I was demonstrating that God doesn't have the power to stop things - it is evident several times in the Bible. He reacts and punishes. Noah and his legendary ark is a great example. Sodom and Gomorrah, where the people turned into pillars of salt, is another. The plagues, too, shows how punishment was preferred over prevention.

I originally thought @Techne and I were on the same page - but you insisted I take a closer look and I saw that we probably aren't.
 

Nick333

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Ok I went and had a look. And this is my take on it:


God made the 10 commandments. One of them is not to covet what your neighbour has. Jealousy - in humans - is a sin. Yet he claims, in the same 10 commandments, that he is a jealous God and we shall have no other gods before him. How is that morally perfect ?
I love when people act as if they're the first person to notice an apparent inconsistency in the Bible. As if billions of people over the last 5000 years just failed to notice. Covetousness and jealousy aren't entirely synonymous for a start. Also, the God of the old testament has never been held up as a moral example for mankind. He's very much do as I say not as I do. Just like any parent with a young child, because young children can't understand stuff like reasons.


Oh and he punishes the kids for the sins of the parents - so no mercy even. Not only kids - but all the way to the great grand-kids.
Damaged parents raise damaged kids, and on it goes. It's a consequence inherent in the human condition.


So all of God's creations are evil ? So therefore, no one is good ?
We're all certainty capable of evil. We've all done some evil shyt no doubt. We're all capable of good too.

As to God allowing Jesus to be tempted: Jesus lived a fully human life in order to provide humanity with an example of the path to redemption. You may as well ask why God allowed him to be nailed to a cross. Surely God could have stopped that too? Well sure, but that would have defeated the whole purpose of the incarnation, which was to show the way to redemption, which is to say, to be tempted, and tried and stay true to God.
 

diapason

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Jealousy - in humans - is a sin. Yet he claims, in the same 10 commandments, that he is a jealous God and we shall have no other gods before him. How is that morally perfect ?
The commandment about not coveting refers to ENVY, not jealousy. They are not the same thing.

You envy what belongs to someone else.

You are jealous of what is yours. This can be good or bad, ie protective (as in a jealous God), or possessive.
 

Techne

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God made the 10 commandments. One of them is not to covet what your neighbour has. Jealousy - in humans - is a sin. Yet he claims, in the same 10 commandments, that he is a jealous God and we shall have no other gods before him. How is that morally perfect ?

Oh and he punishes the kids for the sins of the parents - so no mercy even. Not only kids - but all the way to the great grand-kids.
From a logical point of view only only one thing can be morally perfect and all other things have certain levels of goodness less than that. Traditionally this is called God. You can cite and quote mine scriptures all day long but at best you can get to an argument that humans are actually at fault here for trying to understand God and applying or projecting their morality onto God.

So all of God's creations are evil ? So therefore, no one is good ?
Only one thing can be absolutely Pure Goodness. Traditionally this is called God. All other things have various degrees of privations (or lack of) good in them. Given that evil is the privation of good, yes, it simply follows logically that all created things have certain levels of evil or privations of good.
 

DMNknight

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From a logical point of view only only one thing can be morally perfect and all other things have certain levels of goodness less than that. Traditionally this is called God. You can cite and quote mine scriptures all day long but at best you can get to an argument that humans are actually at fault here for trying to understand God and applying or projecting their morality onto God.


Only one thing can be absolutely Pure Goodness. Traditionally this is called God. All other things have various degrees of privations (or lack of) good in them. Given that evil is the privation of good, yes, it simply follows logically that all created things have certain levels of evil or privations of good.
I think differently. I thing the being we call God is capable of the greatest evil known anywhere, but instead perpetually chooses to be Good out of his/her own Free Will. Which is probably why free will is such a pivotal aspect in whats been unsullied in the various scriptures.
 

Techne

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I think differently. I thing the being we call God is capable of the greatest evil known anywhere, but instead perpetually chooses to be Good out of his/her own Free Will. Which is probably why free will is such a pivotal aspect in whats been unsullied in the various scriptures.
But this implies that there can be something more good than God if God chooses not to be good. So what then? Is that something else then all of a sudden God? Does it have choice too?
 

KT-B

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From a logical point of view only only one thing can be morally perfect and all other things have certain levels of goodness less than that. Traditionally this is called God. You can cite and quote mine scriptures all day long but at best you can get to an argument that humans are actually at fault here for trying to understand God and applying or projecting their morality onto God.


Only one thing can be absolutely Pure Goodness. Traditionally this is called God. All other things have various degrees of privations (or lack of) good in them. Given that evil is the privation of good, yes, it simply follows logically that all created things have certain levels of evil or privations of good.
You talk about this Pure Goodness that you attribute to God. I disagree. I do not see a being of pure goodness. At best it/he/she is what created us. Could be better than we are - but doesn't mean it is pure or absolutely good.

Good and bad are attributed to actions and thoughts. When a child is sleeping - we call it good. When it is exploring and pulling things onto the floor and breaking them - we say they are bad. They are neither. In the case of being "good" they are actually not doing anything. And being "bad" is what they do to explore and learn about the world. So for a God to be seen as Good - he would have to do only good things - or nothing. The Bible is full of proof that he/she/it doesn't only do good things, but often does nothing. But both have to be in effect for Pure Goodness to apply.
 

KT-B

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But this implies that there can be something more good than God if God chooses not to be good. So what then? Is that something else then all of a sudden God? Does it have choice too?
Why does it imply that? It could just simply mean that all standards are lowered. God could always be considered the best - even if he isn't perfect or pure. Hypothetically speaking.
 

Techne

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You talk about this Pure Goodness that you attribute to God. I disagree. I do not see a being of pure goodness. At best it/he/she is what created us. Could be better than we are - but doesn't mean it is pure or absolutely good.

Good and bad are attributed to actions and thoughts. When a child is sleeping - we call it good. When it is exploring and pulling things onto the floor and breaking them - we say they are bad. They are neither. In the case of being "good" they are actually not doing anything. And being "bad" is what they do to explore and learn about the world. So for a God to be seen as Good - he would have to do only good things - or nothing. The Bible is full of proof that he/she/it doesn't only do good things, but often does nothing. But both have to be in effect for Pure Goodness to apply.
Either there is something that is Pure Goodness, Being Itself, One etc. or there is not. If there is not then any action (you can cite scripture until you are blue in the face it won't make a difference) is judged against an arbitrary scale that is worthless in determining what is good or not.
 

Techne

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Why does it imply that? It could just simply mean that all standards are lowered. God could always be considered the best - even if he isn't perfect or pure. Hypothetically speaking.
You essentially have to argue then pure or perfect are incoherent notions, logically impossible state of affairs.
 

KT-B

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The commandment about not coveting refers to ENVY, not jealousy. They are not the same thing.

You envy what belongs to someone else.

You are jealous of what is yours. This can be good or bad, ie protective (as in a jealous God), or possessive.
jealousDictionary result for jealous
/ˈdʒɛləs/
adjective

  1. feeling or showing an envious resentment of someone or their achievements, possessions, or perceived advantages.
    "she was always jealous of me"
    synonyms:envious, covetous, desirous; More
    • feeling or showing a resentful suspicion that one's partner is attracted to or involved with someone else.
      "a jealous husband"
      synonyms:suspicious, distrustful, mistrustful, doubting, insecure, anxious; More
    • fiercely protective of one's rights or possessions.
      "the men were proud of their achievements and jealous of their independence"
      synonyms:protective, defensive, vigilant, watchful, heedful, mindful, careful, solicitous, attentive
      "they are very jealous of their rights"
How do you know which one God meant when he used the word?
 

KT-B

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You essentially have to argue then pure or perfect are incoherent notions, logically impossible state of affairs.
Exactly - it is decided by the people in charge. Those that see themselves as the moral guardians of humanity. Doesn't matter if they are religious or agnostic or whatever. They decide what is considered good and bad.
 
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