God’s Permitting Horrific Evils

Dr. Craig

I have attempted on several occasions to have you explain the following .

1) How can a maximally great being possibly have a "sufficient" reason to allow things such as the rape of a child, if as you say such an act is "objectively" evil?

It seems to me that the above is as illogical as a maximally great being having a sufficient reason to allow 2+2=5 .............. If 2+2 =4, then no amount of power, will, or sufficient reason could change that objective truth! I would like to hear you explain how if in the same sense that " Child + Rape = objective evil" then how could a maximally moral being find sufficient reason for permitting it being actualized in any possible world?

Your previous attempts in suggesting that God, allows such evil in order to have more souls come to him freely simply doesn't seem to add up logically. At best that is presupposing that a maximally great being could act contrary to his own objective truths for some greater good. (Allowing the suffering of an innocent child = more saved souls) But does that make any more sense than 2+2=5? Certainly not to me! Could God, for the sake of saving souls permit married bachelors, square circles etc.?

If (child rape) "is" objectively evil as you say, then even God, could not have a sufficient reason to permit it. Allowing the suffering of a child to save a soul makes it an discretionary act of God's subjective decision making, and not an objective truth rooted in his very nature. If God can permit it to occur then it follows that despite our subjective objections to such acts that God, has a purpose in allowing it to be actualized. If God permits it, then it follows logically that it cannot be objectively wrong; how else could God have a sufficient reason for permitting it? It appears you want it both ways: But objective truths has no sufficient reason to be anything other than true or false!

2) A world wherein events such events as the "Holocaust" do not occur is maximally greater than a world wherein such events do occur. The Holocaust occurred! It follows our world is not maximally great!

It would follow logically that if it were even possible that such a world could exist, that only such worlds would exist if in fact a maximally great being does exist.

Why would a maximally great being create a world wherein his maximal greatness is not reflected?

The world we live in is often very cruel and seems as if (so called evil)) is arbitrarily measured out unfairly.

A child is raped and dies leaving behind a loving family and never having known the joys growing up, marrying, or having children of his/her own, yet many Nazi's including (The Dr. Of Death: Josef Mengele) escapes and lives a life of Reilly into their golden age. Fair? A sign of maximal greatness to bring more souls to Christ? The truth is, agnosticism, and atheism is primarily the result of the cruelness and harsh world we live in: Its hard to believe that a maximally great being allows less than maximal greatness to prevail in any possible world. Then what is the agnostic and atheist told? Believe it this this way or that way, or else a much crueler world awaits them: But, what kind of maximally great being hides from his creation and expects blind allegiance in order to make it into the next world wherein we are told it will actually reflects his maximal greatness? Why not create that world in the first place? I used to be a devout Christian, yet have watched both my mother and father be robbed of their mental faculties after years of faithful service. The cruel world my father lives is 24 hrs of pain and the onslaught of dementia, the same disease that claimed my own mothers life...But I am but one of millions of members of the human species that has watched faithful servants be rewarded in this life with Dementia, Alzheimer's , Cancer , Gulags, Nazi's, tornado's, hurricanes, dunk drivers, etc.... The reality Dr. Craig, is that the world does not reflect maximal greatness, it reflects arbitrary measures of pleasure and pain wherein we all must at times ask: Why? I won't say arrogantly with certainty that God does not exist, but it is becoming harder and harder for me to believe that a personal and maximally great one does.


United States

Read Dr. Craig's answer HERE