Re: Origin of Sin & Theodicy [was [asa] Greg Boyd's Theodicy of Natural Evil

From: Steve Martin <>
Date: Thu Aug 02 2007 - 21:10:04 EDT

Thanks Phil.

I agree that these ideas do not need to be incompatible. And I suspect
that any viable theodicy needs to include several different components. I
also like your point that God planned redemption from the beginning (& not
just a whoops, they ate the apple, on to Plan B) ie. Redemption is
intimately tied with creation. I know much is made of the fact that our
universe seems finely tuned for life; I can't help but think this also means
that it is finely tuned for death. So I believe a redemption plan needs to
be there from the very beginning.

At the start of this thread I asked:

> "Has anyone seen any surveys of modern views (post-Darwin) of the origin
> of sin and theodicy"

I guess I was hoping to see something like George Murphy's survey on divine
action in "The Theology of the Cross and God's Work in the World" (Zygon,
v33, no. 2). I found this very helpful.

I noticed that one of the tracks at the annual meeting and conference is
"Creation, Fall, and Sabbath". All of these sessions look very interesting
to me. Any chance someone attending one or more of these sessions can post
some feedback here to this list?

Steve Martin (CSCA)

On 7/31/07, <> wrote:
> Steven,
> you are right, and I had not thought it through to make a coherent
> statement. I think the key idea here is that the opposite of evil is not
> simply to avoid evil, but to do good. So we had the capacity to fall in
> Eden, and we also had the capacity to positively extend the boundaries of
> Eden throughout the Earth.
> So, if natural evil thus served a purpose for unfallen mankind (so that we
> could positively spread Eden throughout the earth), then I would guess that
> the existence of other fallen beings (angels) along with our own capacity to
> fall are what ultimately explain natural evil. The existence of fallen
> beings (along with our own capacity to fall) provided the need for mankind
> to overcome something even before we ourselves had sinned. Hence, we were
> given the ability to do positive good as the alternative. And we were
> confronted with the evil right there in the garden (the snake).
> This snake didn't want us to emerge from Eden as glorious Sons of God to
> spread God's glory over the earth.
> But at the same time, I'm sure God knew we would sin, and so ultimately
> our presence on a world with natural evil put us into an environment where
> we could also be redeemed after we fell.
> So perhaps the two ideas are not incompatible.
> Phil
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Received on Thu Aug 2 21:10:36 2007

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