• The Problem of evil and creating evil sentient beings

    So Christians dismiss the Problem of Evil, at times, using spurious logic and dodgy grasps of causality. JohnM, regular Creationist commenter here, does this a lot.

    I don’t have a problem of evil.

    Evil and wickedness in the world, is no great mystery to me. It’s exactly what we should expect to see, based on what we read in the bible. And I don’t wonder about it’s origin. Because the bible explains that as well.

    We have been round the houses with him about this. It boils down to the logic of this analogy:

    The problem is that you don’t really understand the argument. What is the origin of the origin?

    You have a really bizarre (convenient) understanding of causality.

    Again we return to the analogy:

    I create a sentient lifeform in the lab. I design this from scratch. I could have done it otherwise but I choose to do it like this.

    I know this lifeform will escape from my lab and go and murder people in town. I know this utterly. They do this using the mechanisms which I have designed into them. Imagine one of these people they kill is your daughter. And yet, even knowing this destruction they will cause, I decide to create them anyway.

    The police knock at my door. They say it is my fault.

    But, using JohnM’s logic, I deny this, arguing they used their own mechanisms to murder.

    But the police say that I/ designed those mechanisms, knew what they would do, created them anyway, and then let them run amok.

    The police laugh off my defence. They lock me up.

    That’s the end of the mad scientist who created evil beings.

    I can’t really see how God does not have ultimate responsibility for this. If this happened in an organisation in the modern world, the CEO gets the chop.

    God seems to have immunity.

    Still, the retorts are funny:

    Asking what’s the origin of the origin, is like asking what was before the beginning.

    Keep in mind that creation was the beginning of time. Before that point, no future, no past.

    God has the ability to predict the future in time, like we can predict the path of a ball in motion.

    But how one predict the future, before time? That’s like predicting the path of a ball, that has not yet been set in motion.

    To wit, I said:

    Oh dear. You really don’t get it.

    So, you seem, and rightly so, given your position, that we need to posit a first mover.

    However, the first mover has ultimate responsibility. So, given a causal chain (of responsibility), the buck stops with the corporate boss.

    Then followed the mother (and father) of all false analogies:

    Well, my father and mother are the cause of me. So if I murder someone, we hold them responsible for my actions? Or we hold me responsible for my own actions?

    I did the work for him:

    This is about the worst false analogy ever.

    Your parents didn’t design you.
    Your parent’s didn’t ‘create’ you in the same omni way.
    Your parents didn’t have perfect foreknowledge of your future, and create you anyway even knowing how evil you would be.
    Your parents didn’t have omnipotence to be able to stop you at any point of doing that evil.



    Category: MoralityPhilosophical Argument Against GodProblem of Evil


    Article by: Jonathan MS Pearce