Re: a question for Dr. van Till

Fri, 03 Apr 98 12:53:20 CT

Ed Moros wrote:

>Dr. van Till said:
>>...what about those real outcomes that are the occasions
>>for intense pain or grief. Did God so control those
>>particular experiences also?
>This is a serious question, is there anything that escapes
>control by God?

I am now reading C.S. Lewis' "Problem of Pain" which
addresses that question. If in your use of "control" you
mean that which is necessitated by God's decision to form
the universe (in entirety, spiritual, material, etc.) as
he did, then nothing is out of his control. I do not have
the book with me at the moment and I realize that implicit
in my use of "necessitated" are assumptions regarding God's
"design" of the universe. Those assumptions have been and
will be discussed better than I could discuss them.

I only bring up the book in hopes that anyone who has read
(and digested) it might enter the discussion with their
thoughts on Lewis' perspective. So far I agree with him
insomuch as he writes that if God is to create a world in
which two souls (including ours and God) can meet there
must be a possibility for pain. I can either recognize
and capitulate to "other", or I can choose to serve my own
interests first (or only), thus introducing pain. Most
importantly, Lewis considers pain to be intrinsic to any
universe in which goodness and choice are to have any

I have no doubt butchered Lewis' thesis, so please again
if anyone has any comments on his work I would
personally appreciate their addition to the discussion.


Jeff Witters
Emporia State University
Emporia, KS