The Evidential Problem of Evil (Part 1)
William Rowe tells the story of a fawn (think Bambi) severely burnt in a forest fire and left to die slowly over several days amidst the burning embers of the ravaged forest floor. It’s just one fawn, right? Who cares? But if God really is all-good and all-powerful then presumably he would not allow gratuitous evils, i.e. those that fail to serve any greater purpose. And that one fawn, smoking, blistered, and bleating for its mother, certainly appears to be a gratuitous evil.
In this episode of The Tentative Apologist Podcast we take on this vexing problem of gratuitous evil. Our way into the discussion will be a 2013 interview with philosopher Erik Wielenberg from the Reasonable Doubts Podcast on skeptical theism and the problem of evil. In this podcast and the next I will be interacting with several excerpts from this fine interview of Wielenberg by doubtcasters Jeremy Beahan and Justin Schieber.
Does the presence of evil that appears gratuitous present a problem for theistic belief? We shall see…