Sunday, December 13, 2009

Thoughts on God and Evil (god)

This is the section dedicated to understanding God's character inlight of the evil that I defined and described above. Answering questions like Why Would God Let Evil Persist? etc.


God’s very essence is to be in relation or in community with others. This is witnessed in God’s relationship with Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Out of God’s relational essence came his desire for creation. Heyward, describes real relation as one founded in love, humility, and God . This is the context that humans were created out of. Because right relation rests on the capacity to choose and not be forced into relationship, God is restricted by his loving desire for genuine relationship to give humans free choice. Yet, there is undoubtedly something in this world that corrupts the choices people make.

This is sin not evil. In my terms sin is separation and disconnection from God. Heyward would put this as not being in right relation with God. This disconnection (sin) blinds us from seeing each others as equals (evil) and hence there lies the justification for evil actions. The devaluation of a person is rooted in the problem of sin that leads to evil as the concept I have described which leads to evil actions. Yet, without free will God could not be in a right loving relation with humanity. This paradox of sorts can be summed up like this.

Free will and choices lead to evil.
Love is dependent on free will.

As well, love and right relation with God and others in the only way to remove evil from the perpetual paradoxical cycle.
From this we can establish how God feels about Evil. The prophet Amos tells us that God hates evil and Isaiah tells us that God loves justice . God would prefer there to be no evil, because he would prefer us to love others equally, or as Jesus says in Matthew 22 to love your neighbor as yourself. In this God reminds us of our humanity, that we are all on equal playing fields and valuing one life over another is evil. God does not desire a world full of genocide, murder, or any other action caused by the devaluing of life but a world of mutuality, equality, and solidarity.

God's View and Our View of the World

Greek influence on Christianity has lead to a place where it has been commonplace to separate the physical from the spirit. This has lead to theological interpretations that have created a God who places paramount importance on the soul and that does not care about the physical that is fading away. This has had extreme implications for the justification of evil throughout history and very much so today. It is not out of the ordinary to hear someone say, “Jesus is coming back soon, this is Earth is going to explode and be done away with, and so why not use it up.” This is an example of what may happen if this perspective that God does not care about the physical is taken on. There is a disregard for the value of the Earth and raping and pillaging it dry of its resources is not only justified it is what God wants us to do.

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