Title: The Many Faces of Evil
Author: John Feinberg
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Genre: Non-Fiction Theology
How to reconcile an Omnipotent, Benevolent God with all the various evils in the world is a question that has plagued Christianity since it’s inception.
Various answers have been put forth and various counters to those answers have also been set out.
Feinberg sets out to examine various answers and counters based on various denominational outlooks. Basically, Feinberg sets out to show how there can be various answers that all work, no matter your underlying sectarian tenants.
I can not say that I loved this book. However, it fulfilled its purpose.
First, it made me realize that when I [and many other people] ask “How can God allow…” they are actually asking “WHY would God allow…”. The difference is immense. Feinberg is a totally logical person and shows the various ways that that “How” can work out. It was an enlightening but frustrating read.
I have to admit, I felt pretty stupid in reading a lot of the stuff. There is an underlying assumption that the reader knows “X” or is at least familiar with it. Maybe in a couple more re-reads I’ll be familiar enough that I won’t have to re-read pages at a time.
Thankfully Feinberg does address the “Why”, which is the “Religious Problem of Evil” in the last chapter. He opens up about the experience he and his wife dealt with in learning about a condition she had. It devastated him and no amount of head knowledge made things easier for him.
This book took me months to read. I’d read 5 or 10 pages, then have to digest and think about it for a day or two. It will be a book that I plan on re-reading just to refresh and encourage myself during the dark times.
Highly recommended if you’ve ever thought about God and evil.