7/16/2011

Bad Things and Good People

"Why do bad things happen to good people? That only happened once, and He volunteered." - R.C. Sproul


“Why do bad things happen to good people” as a philosophical problem for Christianity assumes the presence of “good people.” There simply are none in the world today. Only Jesus Christ was a truly good person, and, as Sproul points out above, He volunteered for the duty.

Like it or not, no one is free from sin (Romans 5:12-21). Since we are not, we should suffer. As R. C. Sproul points out above and John Gerstner pointed out in “The Problem of Pleasure,” we do not deserve anything but punishment. Earthquakes, tornados, floods, tsunamis, and other natural disasters are what we deserve.



[This is a brief note on one approach to the philosophical problem of natural evil. This kind of thinking does no good to persons who are wrestling with the personal problem of evil. The personal problem of evil is what you experience when you go through it yourself. Please see this post and this post for some different approaches if you find yourself suffering.]

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Like it or not, no one is free from sin (Romans 5:12-21). Since we are not, we should suffer."

Somehow this will be the furthest thing from your mind the next time your child becomes ill or injured. If not, I pity you.

J. K. Jones said...

What would I say to God? That's unfair?

How do you know what illness or injury my daughter has undergone?

What is the alternative? To have all of her suffering to have no ultimate meaning or purpose? That is what a world without God looks like. Our suffering is no different from the suffering of an other animal. Our suffering has no value, and neither do we.

Anonymous said...

"How do you know what illness or injury my daughter has undergone?"

Statistics.


You're desire for things to have a purpose requires your belief in a god to set that purpose. This is known as begging the question.

Value is subjective. To me you are not that valuable to your daughter we could not even begin to calculate your value.

Bad things happen to Good people. Bad things also happen to Bad people. This doesn't mean that all people are equally bad, it means that Bad things happen equally.

J. K. Jones said...

Anonymous,

Please define "bad" things. Is there a moral connotation to the word "bad" you are using?

JK

J. K. Jones said...

"You're desire for things to have a purpose requires your belief in a god to set that purpose. This is known as begging the question."

That is not an argument. Tha is an explaination. I can just as easily say that your desire for the universe to not contain a God to whom you must be accountable requires your disbelief in a God to fulfill that desire.

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