The Importance of a Theodicy

Theodicy is a theology of evil.  More specifically, it is a defense of God in light of the existence of evil.  This post is not the place for me to expound upon my theodicy.  I will say, however, that evil and suffering of all kinds (tsunami, terrorists, or tetanus) all exist because we live in a fallen world.  I do not believe that any evil actions/events need a further explanation.  Suffering happens.

Why blog about this today?  Because of the earthquake in Haiti.  We all have seen the pictures (the best I have seen are here) and they are heartbreaking.  For so many of us we feel the need to understand why.  The answer is, because we live in a fallen world. Genesis 3 makes it clear that the earth was broken by the fall and in a broken world, horrible things happen.

If you have a different theodicy, that answer may not be satisfactory.  And for someone who does not have faith in Christ, or maybe doesn’t even believe in God, these events bring up questions.  That is why every time some great disaster happens, some journalist asks some famous preacher why and said preacher gives some answer.

This time around that answer happens to have come from Pat Robertson.   He wasn’t asked a direct question, but he felt the need to justify God by explaining why this happened.  So he blamed the earthquake on the Haitian people.  Robertson’s answer stems from his theodicy.

I don’t have time to go into why his answer is presumptuous at best and superstitious at worst.

For my Christian readers I will say this, you need to think today about why you believe evil exists because one day it will hit close to home.

If you are interested, I will write more about this next week.