“The Beginning of Bad”

God of the Bible is described as being infinitely powerful, good, and knowledgeable. However, if God exists, and has the three attributes just mentioned, “He would have both the desire and the power to rid the world of evil.” In addition, He would know how to do so.

In Genesis 6, “the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was on evil continually” (Gen. 6:5). However, how did this happen? All throughout the creation account in the beginning of Genesis, God affirms that His creation is “good.” “Then God saw everything He had made, and indeed it was very good” (Gen. 1:31). What happened between chapter 1 and chapter 6 of Genesis? From where did this evil come?

Darkness is really an absence of light and is therefore not a thing but rather the absence of a thing. This is similar to the relationship between evil and good in that evil relies on good for its very definition. The analogy of light and dark is still in need of clarification because evil is more than just the absence of good; it is the privation of good.

Absence only implies that something is not there. Privation implies that something ought to be present and it is not. An example that would illustrate the difference between an absence and a privation would be a blind man versus a blind rock. In the rock, sight is not expected; therefore, blindness would be an absence of sight. However, for the man, sight is expected; therefore, the blindness is a privation of sight. Evil is a privation of good.

Although God is not the creator of evil, He is the creator of the good creatures that choose to do evil. God created a world in which evil was possible, but it was creatures that made evil actual by choosing things that were not good. “He created the fact of freedom; we perform the acts of freedom. He made evil possible; men made evil actual.”

THOUGHT: Suffering can make us BETTER or BITTER.

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