Evil as Disproof of God

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Evil as Disproof of a Perfect God Proving the existence of God is a tricky matter. The fact that no definitive empirical evidence for God exists is not the proof of non-existence. In other words the “absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence”, (Carl Sagan). To refute the existence of a theistic God, one would have to provide some sort of proof against the notion. Theologians have long struggled over the philosophical problem of evil. The existence of evil logically challenges the theistic conceptions of God and his assumed powers. The classical notion of God implies that he is all-powerful, all-knowing and perfectly good. Furthermore, theism maintains that God is a personal force who presently intervenes in the world. To be clear I take evil to mean anything harmful, malicious, or immoral. Evil is essentially anything that causes human misery or suffering. Evil also has multiple elements. For example, the moral evil of murder is distinguished from the physical evil of a natural disaster. All types of evil have the potential to cause contradiction between reality and the established conception of a personal God. In the following I will examine the problem of evil and attempt to establish why the presence of evil is the most potent argument against theism. The classical notion of a monotheistic God ascribes certain divine qualities to Him and I will proceed with the assumption that he possesses these qualities. God is conceived as an ultimate perfectly good being, with the unique characteristics of omnipotence and omniscience. God is the knower of all things past and present and has the divine power to do anything. The problem of evil is that it calls into question these key features of the theistic God. If he possesses these qualities then how could he allow such a great degree of human suffering in the world? Present evil suggests that God either lacks
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