Adopting Augustine’s idea of ‘evil’, we are to say that he is not living up to standards expected of human beings. Privation may also concern itself with things not concerned with morality, such as natural evil. For example, a person may have eyesight that falls shorts of perfect eyesight – his eyesight is therefore ‘evil’. This way, God’s omnipotence is justified because evil is defined as an absence of certain qualities. Hence, it doesn’t exist.
In response to the option in which God creates a world with free agents and no evil, a world with no evil would mean a world with no good, so it would be impossible for God to create a free agents that only choose good, since evil does not exist. It would limit free will, and limited free will is not free will. The reason why it would be impossible for good to exist without evil existing is that we need evil to exist so that we can define it and understand what it is and how it works. After we find out that information, we could base what good is off of what evil is not, which is what we do now with
Meaning that since good and evil are opposites, since god created good he would have to have created evil. Another response to this is that some theist think something’s cant exist unless their opposites exist so that being thought leads them to believe that since there is good there must be evil. Which I don’t think is true because some things exist because their opposites don’t like having peace. You cant have peace if there’s war. Since peace and war are opposites and one can only exist when the other doesn’t makes some theist response not very accurate.
He suggests that evil has an instrumental value in developing human virtues, he believes that sins are necessary many good things would be taken away if God permitted no evil to exist, ‘for fire would not be generated if air was corrupted’ therefore evil has some sort of good. For Aquinas God is good and knows about evil in the world however does not predetermine it. The world is not perfect but it is the best it can possibly be, God can still be omnipotent, omnibenevolent and omniscient and still
We cannot judge God, nor his actions because he is a non cognitive being. Only God knows the future, and therefore when it is appropriate to intervene. Therefore, through miracles he is not favouring some of his creation over others, but the good of the whole creation itself. Furthermore, our free will stops God from intervening in every situation, because according to Swinburne, if we do not have the capacity to damn ourselves, we are not truly free agents. However this does not necessarily overcome the problem of God favouring his creation because by having the ability to intervene, but not at every moment he can prevent evil from happening to some but not too others.
This raises problems for Boethius' argument, however he addresses this and creates a counter assertment. As argued above free will is needed for just rewards/punishments, some people say this because it would be unfair to punish people who could not choose to do otherwise. Others such as Augustine believe that free will is necessary because without free will there should be no evil in the world as there is no choice to create evil where as evil does exist, without free will this must have been created by God, contradicting God's omnibenevolence. Irenaeus' view is simelar to Augustine however he adds that human beings could not be perfect, God is all that is perfect so we were given an imperfect world and free will, so that we would be a reflection of God but not perfect. Hick's approach to the necessity of free will grows from the idea that God wants humans to genuinly love him and show faith, without free will we could not make a decision as to whether or not we had faith, belief or even love for God, we would merely be robots designed to love him.
And for morality to require God in such a way, there must be a direct link between the two. I believe that morality is defined by God, therefore immoral actions are wrong solely because God forbids them. Similarly, the “rightness” of moral actions is only because God has commanded them. In today's world things are defined as “right” or “wrong” or “moral” and “immoral.” This is because God, is the one that has allowed us to even understand what morality is. I believe that God is the creator and sustainer of all things, and that we would not even be self aware, let alone aware of right and wrong, if God had not created within us his image, and therefore the ability to make moral distinctions.
Hick argues that if God had created humanity in his presence then the gap between God and humanity would be so small that it would limit our freedom. Hick calls this knowledge gap between God and humanity ‘The Epistemic Distance’. Hick further explains that if we were created too close to God in terms of knowledge, we would be overwhelmed by him and would worship him for the wrong reasons. Humans are not born
Against this statement is that God did not create so many rules to stop us using our free will but to influence and set standards to use our free will for the morally good. A good God would not make so many rules and regulations, for if he had created a world as perfect as it has said to be, and then there would be no need for rules and regulations, unless the world was created imperfectly. If this were the case, then there would be a need for rules and regulations and a bridge for God to interact with the world and his creations. For the world was created imperfectly this allows God to justify what is right and wrong by setting down rules in the world. A good god would not punish his people God gives us rules and regulations as an act of love and concern for humanity as he wants to guide us to live our lives in a good way.
For religious believers, the Irenaean theodicy would solve the problem of evil as it explains how both evil and suffering co-exist with God. However, there may be too many underlying problems with the theodicy, making it hard to convince some religious believers. For example, if God is said to be omnibenevolent, then surely he couldn’t have made such moral spiritual virtues inbuilt in his creation. Even if the Irenaean theodicy is believable, it can’t justify why God would allow such suffering in his world, and surely, he would enable his creations to learn such lessons in a far easier way. Additionally, it’s never justifiable to hurt anyone in order to help them, and so the Irenaean theodicy fails to defend God in the presence of evil.