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Augustine and Irenaeus theodicies - The Problem of Evil

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Georgia Simmonds

on 9 February 2015

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Transcript of Augustine and Irenaeus theodicies - The Problem of Evil


Augustine's theodicy is soul-deciding, whereas Ireanus' is soul-making.
Augustine argues that evil is a 'privation of good'
Augustine believes bad people will be punished, whereas Ireanus does not believe in punishment
Evil is seen as a stage in our development, according to Ireanus
Humans have free will in both of the theodicies.
Both believe we are made in God's likeness.
Augustine's Theodicy
Creation is good
Humans were created
- in his image and likeness and used their free will to turn away from God (The Fall of the Angels) and tempted Adam and Eve (moral evil)
We are all born with the original sin,
'seminally present in the loins of Adam.'
The choice is ours as to whether we follow God or not -
soul deciding theodicy
God makes possible repentance and salvation
Those who do not turn back to God will be condemned to hell.
Evil is therefore a
'privation of good.'
Irenaeus theodicy
We transform from image of God to likness of God. We have free will.
Evil aids this development, and God does not intervene in the world because that would mean we are not truly free.
Lastly, he argues that EVERYONE will be sent to Heaven
Augustine and Irenaeus theodicies - The Problem of Evil
Strengths and Weaknesses

Our own opinion of the theodicies and the problem of evil
Consistent with classical theistic belief

Its a logical contradiction to say a perfect world went wrong (Schleiermacher)

The idea that we are all "seminally present in the loins of Adam" is biologically inaccurate

It is true that some people develop good qualities once they have suffered

Compatable with God of classical theism

Does everyone go to Heaven?
Doesn't really explain natural evil
There are people who develop good qualities through suffering
Explains Natural evil as well as Moral
Why should people be good if their path to Heaven is inevitable?
Full transcript