[b-hebrew] FW: origin of evil

Lisbeth S. Fried lizfried at umich.edu
Mon Sep 11 10:24:46 EDT 2006


Dear Harold, I believe that God causes evil as he says and that the Tsunami
was evil and that ra' means evil.
I agree that God is holy, but perhaps we also define holiness differently. I
don't define it to include "good." God exhibits his holiness through his
awesome power, as is said repeatedly. 
We could discuss the biblical flood as well. That too was evil and God
regretted it.
It seems that if God regretted it, it couldn't have been good. 
Unless you define good so that anything that happens in nature is good. If
cancer is good, a judgment for sin you'd say, why should we have doctors? If
polio was good, why should we have had doctors who eradicated it completely?
Should we not try to eradicate cancer as we did polio?
Should we not build earthquake-proof houses and better warning systems to
protect against the times when God's holiness bursts out?
Liz


> -----Original Message-----
> From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org [mailto:b-hebrew-
> bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Harold Holmyard
> Sent: Sunday, September 10, 2006 9:35 PM
> To: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] FW: origin of evil
> 
> Dear Liz,
> 
> >
> >>Are not disasters evil??? What about the Tsunami, which killed over
300,000
> men, women, children, babies? You say that God as only good must have some
> >>ulterior good motive for killing all those people? If God has free will,
> >>acts, is a moral agent, and commits disaster, then he also does evil, as
he is
> quoted as saying.
> >>
> >>
> 
> 
> 
> HH: Isaiah 45:7 says that God creates RA(, and that word can mean
> "disaster." We agree that God is responsible for disasters. But Abraham
> knew the following (Gen 18:25): "Will not the Judge of all the earth do
> right?" God does what is right, and what is right is not morally evil.
> Moral evil concerns what is morally wrong. This is the distinction being
> made. God does not do what is morally wrong because he is holy. When
> Adam and Eve sinned, their sin brought a series of divine judgments,
> including pain in childbirth, multiplied conception, toil in work, an
> unproductive earth, and physical death.  We believe other negative
> conditions came in the wake of these, such as disease, savageness in
> animals, and disordered climate patterns. The Lord altered the
> environemnt in which mankind would live as a result of its sin. This was
> a divine judgment, so we certainly cannot call it morally evil.  All
> these agencies are ultimately under  God's sovereignty, but they also
> operate according to various laws in a naturalistic way. We know the
> cause of the tsunami can be traced all the way back to the sin of Adam
> and Eve. While it may have been a disaster, it was a token of divine
> judgment on human sin, and was not ultimately a moral evil. However,
> these disorders in nature do not necessarily connect directly with
> particular sins or sinners. That is, there is a certain randomness about
> them so that they are a condition of human life, affecting the innocent
> as well as the guilty.
> 
> Yours,
> Harold Holmyard
> 
> 
> >>
> >>
> >>>HH: God says that he creates evil, so of course you can say that. But
> >>>clearly moral evil is due to moral agents, and God as a moral agent
does
> >>>not produce moral evil because he is holy. However, angels and men do
> >>>produce moral evil by contravening God's good will.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>HH: Right, but I think Isa 45:7 is using the term "evil" in the sense
of
> >>>"disaster." I understand what you are saying about moral evil being a
> >>>by-product of God's creation of the world. However, it was not a
> >>>necessary by-product, since it is due to the free will choices of moral
> >>>beings. He was not the direct Creator of moral evil, since it arose
> >>>through angels and human beings.
> >>>
> >>>Yours,
> >>>Harold Holmyard
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
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