Sunday, February 19, 2012

If God, Why Evil? by Normal Geisler

The question most asked of Geisler has been, “If God exists, then why is there so much evil in the world?” Since there was no short and concise book on the topic, he wrote this one.
He clearly states the issue and uses the Bible as his source for answers.
Some deny that evil even exists. If so, Geisler asks, then why do we experience so much hurt? Some deny that God exists. If so, where do we even get the idea of good and evil?
Theism (Christianity) believes in evil and God. Are an absolutely good God and evil incompatible?
Geisler explores the origin and nature of evil, addressing the proposition that God created evil. He also deals with the sovereignty of God and evil, as well as how evil arose in a good universe.
He writes on the persistence of evil, the purpose of evil, the pain associated with evil, and why God doesn't supernaturally prevent the consequences of evil. He also writes about hell, evidence for its existence, its reasonableness, and answers those who object to it.
He investigates the question of those who have never heard the gospel and their punishment in hell.
There are several appendices, covering animal death before Adam, evidence for the existence of God, and a critique of The Shack.

Since the original triad questioning the existence of God and evil is a logical argument, much of Geisler's book is based on logic. One might want to brush up on the principles of logic to receive the full impact of this book.
It would seem that Geisler is writing for Christians. For example, he speaks of total depravity (21) without defining it. Some readers may be confused here as he seems to assume his readers already want this term means.

This book is somewhat concise (only 122 pages before Appendix 1). Those who have read other book on apologetics and the issue of evil will probably not find anything new in this slim book. This book would be a good introduction for those who are new to the subject.

Bethany House Publishers, 167 pages.

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