Mackie's Philosopher J. L. Macke And The Problem Of Evil

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As a believer of the divine, one could make three statements about the world: 1, God is omnipotent 2, God is wholly good and 3, evil exists. J.L. Mackie takes a logical approach to why there is evil in this world and concludes that if God is what He is defined as – omnipotent, omniscient, and wholly good – evil should not exist for either God is not omnipotent, meaning all powerful, or He is not wholly good. Mackie claims that at least one characteristic of the divine must be untrue because it is clear that bad things do happen. Wouldn’t an all-powerful God choose to create a world completely comprised of good or does “‘omnipotent’ does not mean what it says?” [1;333]. If the Creator created evil, can He be wholly good? These types of roadblocks …show more content…
Mill proceeds by stating the powers of God are limited. Mill suggests that God works within limitations that He, himself, set forth in the form of nature. Gravity, inertia, etc are natural laws that are to always be abided. A natural disaster is an effect of a natural cause. In this case, we cannot define this action as an evil that God creates or necessarily warrants. However, evil exists because humans have free will to choose cruelty over good. However, Mackie responds, “why could He not have made men such that they always freely choose the good?” [1;334]. Mill proposes that perhaps, God just didn’t know how. And for the same reasons, this is why God couldn’t make humans to live longer or not wear down. “It is as unphilsophical as presumptuous in us to call Him to account for any imperfections in his work” [2;193]. Just as it is possible for a machine to act in opposition of what the mechanic wills, humans can act out of the Creator’s intentions. Perhaps God granted free will so that His followers would freely choose the good however, in doing so, he also granted to power to freely oppose. “God has made men so free that he cannot control their wills” …show more content…
Plantinga believes, like Mill, that human free will is the explanation as to why evil exists. However, in doing so, he does not belittle the powers of God, nor the good intentions. The Free Will Defense is used as an “effort to show that there may be a very different kind of good that God can’t bring about without permitting evil” [1;347]. This different kind of good is free will. God created humans with the will to choose the good in a battle between good and evil. However, He also granted the power to choose evil. Mackie argues why, then, did God not use His powers to create a world that always freely choose right? “His failure to avail himself of this possibility is inconsistent with his being both omnipotent and wholly good” [1;348]. Humans describe things using comparative methods. How is light, light without having darkness as a contrast? In addition, how is good, good without knowing evil? Plantinga explains that free will along with the evil that accompanies is morally significant and is more worthy to God than a world with no free creatures. It is important to distinguish moral evil and natural evil. Humans with free will create the former while the latter is simply nature’s course of action. For if He were to create creatures that were only capable of choosing what is right, “then they aren’t

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