The Concept of Divine Goodness and the Problem of Evil

Religious Studies 11 (1):49 - 71 (1975)
  Copy   BIBTEX


Traditional theism maintains the view that the world is created by a God who is at once omnipotent and perfectly good. One of the most persistent challenges to this view is that known as the problem of evil. The challenge consists in the allegation that the manifest imperfections of the world are incompatible with its having been created by a God who is both perfectly good and has the power to carry out his will. In the face of this challenge some theists have sought to defend theism by drawing a sharp distinction between human goodness and divine goodness and claiming that the goodness of God is different from human goodness not merely in degree but in kind, and that God's goodness cannot be understood by men. As a consequence of this, they contend, the created world can be judged to be imperfect only if it is measured against the inferior standards of human goodness, which because they are inferior are inappropriate for judging the works of the almighty and infinitely perfect God. The sharp distinction between God's goodness and man's thus allows the theist to maintain that God is perfectly good even while recognising that there is a great deal of evil in the world. Hence, if the distinction can be successfully defended, it provides a neat way of getting out of the problem of evil



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 74,466

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Duns Scotus on the Goodness of God.Marilyn Mccord Adams - 1987 - Faith and Philosophy 4 (4):486-505.
Divine Goodness and the Problem of Evil.Terence Penelhum - 1966 - Religious Studies 2 (1):95 - 107.
The Hiddenness Problem and the Problem of Evil.J. L. Schellenberg - 2010 - Faith and Philosophy 27 (1):45-60.
Thomas Aquinas on God and Evil.Brian Davies - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
God’s Moral Goodness and Supererogation.Elizabeth Drummond Young - 2013 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 73 (2):83-95.
Evil and a Finite God: A Response to McGrath.David Basinger - 1987 - Philosophy Research Archives 13:285-287.
God's Goodness and God's Evil.James Kellenberger - 2005 - Religious Studies 41 (1):23-37.
Against God’s Moral Goodness.Joseph L. Lombardi - 2005 - American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 79 (2):313-326.
Both Red and Green but Religiously Right: Coping with Evil in a Religion of Nature.Donald A. Crosby - 2010 - American Journal of Theology and Philosophy 31 (2):108-123.
Peter Hare and the Problem of Evil.David Koepsell - 2010 - Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 46 (1):53-59.


Added to PP

13 (#760,222)

6 months
1 (#417,143)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Citations of this work

The Unreality of Evil.W. Mander - 2018 - Sophia 57 (2):249-264.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references