"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Evil in Christian Dogma

The problem of evil is of course one that bedevils us all, and raises often intractable questions for us all. A new collection may help us grapple with it further. It is ecumenical in its sweep, with an Orthodox chapter by Paul Gavrilyuk whom I have interviewed and discussed on this blog over the yeras. David Luy, Matthew Levering, and George Kalantzis, eds., Evil and Creation: Historical and Constructive Essays in Christian Dogmatics (Lexham Press, 2020), 280pp. 
About this collection the publisher tells us this:
Evil is an intruder upon a world created by God and declared good. Scripture emphasizes this: laments are regularly juxtaposed with declarations of God as creator. But evil is not merely a problem for the doctrine of creation. Rather, the doctrine of creation provides a hopeful response to evil.

In Evil and Creation, David J. Luy, Matthew Levering, and George Kalantzis collect essays investigating how the doctrine of creation relates to moral and physical evil. Essayists pursue philosophical and theological analyses of evil rather than neatly solving the problem of evil itself. Including contributions from Constantine Campbell, Paul Blowers, and Paul Gavrilyuk, this volume draws upon biblical and patristic voices to produce constructive theology, considering topics ranging from vanity in Ecclesiastes and its patristic interpreters to animal suffering.

Readers will gain a broader appreciation of evil and how to faithfully respond to it as well as a renewed hope in God as creator and judge.

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