Evil and the God of Love

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When first published, Evil and the God of Love instantly became recognized as a modern theological classic, widely viewed as the most important work on the problem of evil to appear in English for more than a generation. It has continued to be at the center of discussions ever since. This reissue of the work includes a new preface by the author.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230252790
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 5/11/2010
  • Pages: 432
  • Sales rank: 644,580
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

JOHN HICK is a world-renowned philosopher of religion. He is the author of numerous books, translated into sixteen languages. He has taught in Britain and the United States and lectured in many countries. His Gifford Lectures, An Interpretation of Religion, received the Grawemeyer Award for new religious thinking.

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Table of Contents

Preface to the 1985 Reissue x

Preface to the 2010 Reissue xii

Foreword xv

List of Abbreviations xx

Part I Introductory

I The Problem and its Terms

1 Defining the problem 3

2 Is theodicy permissible? 6

3 The kinds of evil 12

II The Two Poles of Thought - Monism and Dualism

1 Monism and Dualism 15

2 The pure monism of Spinoza 17

3 A contemporary view of evil as illusion - Christian Science 23

4 Plato's dualism 25

5 The external dualism of J. S. Mill 27

6 The internal dualism of E. S. Brightman 30

Part II The Augustinian Type of Theodicy

III The Fountainhead: St. Augustine - Evil as privation of good stemming from misused freedom

I Evil as privatio boni

1 Augustine and Manichaeism 38

2 The Plotinian theodicy 40

3 The goodness of the created order 43

4 Man mutable because 'made out of nothing' 46

5 Evil privative and parasitic 47

6 The identity of being and goodness 49

7 The logical character of Augustine's doctrine 53

II 'The Free-Will Defence' in St. Augustine

8 Sin as the basic evil 59

9 The self-creation of evil 'ex nihilo' 62

10 Sin and predestination 64

IV The Fountainhead: St. Augustine - The principle of plenitude and the aesthetic theme

III The principle of plenitude

1 The Problem 70

2 Augustine's Neo-Platonist answer 72

3 The principle of plenitude in Plotinus 75

4 Emanation and creation 76

5 The pre-existing pattern 79

IV The aesthetic theme

6 The aesthetic theme in Augustine 82

7 Animal pain in a perfect world 85

8 Hell and the principle of moral balance 87

V Catholic Thought from Augustine to the Present Day

1 Augustine's theodicy writ large: Hugh of St. Victor 90

2 Thomas Aquinas 93

3 A contemporary Thomist presentation: Charles Journet 98

4 Journet on sin and hell 107

VI The Problem of Evil in Reformed Thought

1 Augustine and the Reformers 115

I Calvin

2 Fall and predestination in Calvin 117

3 Predestination versus theodicy 121

II Karl Barth

4 Barth's method 126

5 The 'shadowside' of creation 128

6 'Das Nichtige' 130

7 The origin of 'das Nichtige' 133

8 Criticism: (a) the origin of 'das Nichtige' 135

9 Criticism: (b) the status of 'das Nichtige' 137

VII Eighteenth-Century 'Optimism'

1 A product of the Augustinian tradition 145

2 King's 'Origin of Evil' 148

3 Leibniz's 'Theodicy' 154

4 The 'best possible world' 160

5 'Best possible' - for what purpose? 167

VII Dividing the Light from the Darkness

1 The main features of the Augustinian type of theodicy 169

I The theological themes

2 The goodness of the created universe 170

3 Human suffering as a punishment for sin 172

4 'O felix culpa…' versus eternal torment 176

II The philosophical themes

5 Evil as non-being 179

6 Metaphysical evil as fundamental 187

7 The aesthetic perfection of the universe 191

8 A basic criticism 193

Part III The Irenaean Type of Theodicy

IX Sin and the Fall according to the Hellenistic Fathers

1 The biblical basis of the fall doctrine 201

2 From Paul to Augustine 205

3 The beginnings of the Hellenistic point of view 208

4 Irenaeus 211

5 Eastern Christianity 215

X The Irenaean Type of Theodicy in Schleiermacher

1 Schleiermacher on 'original perfection' 220

2 Schleiermacher's account of sin 222

3 The relation between sin and suffering 226

4 God as ultimately ordaining sin and suffering 228

5 Schleiermacher and the instrumental view of evil 231

6 Man's beginning and end 234

XI The Two Theodicies - Contrasts and Agreements

1 The contrast between the two types of theodicy 236

2 Points of hidden agreement 238

Part IV A Theodicy for Today

XII The Starting-Point

1 The negative task of theodicy 243

2 The traditional theodicy based upon Christian myth 245

3 The 'vale of soul-making' theodicy 253

XIII Moral Evil

1 The shape of sin 262

2 The traditional free-will defence 265

3 The recent critique of the free-will defence 266

4 Divine-human personal relationship 271

5 Freedom as limited creativity 275

6 The virtual inevitability of the fall 277

7 Man created as a fallen being 280

XIV Pain

1 Pain and suffering 292

2 Physical Pain 294

3 Has pain a biological value? 297

4 Pain and the structure of the world 304

5 Animal pain 309

XV Suffering

1 Suffering as a function of meaning 318

2 Pain as a cause of suffering 319

3 A paradise without suffering? 322

4 Excessive or dysteleological suffering 327

5 The traditional answer: nature preverted by fallen angels 331

6 Soul-making and mystery 333

XVI The Kingdom of God and the Will of God

1 The infinite future good 337

2 Theodicy versus hell 341

3 The intermediate state 345

4 Some residual problems 350

5 The biblical paradox of evil 352

6 Its source in the duality of the Christian life 357

7 Its eschatological resolution 362

XVII Recent Work on the Problem of Evil 365

Index 387

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