Guests: and

Key Passages:

Isaiah 14:12-15
Ezekiel 28:12-19
Revelation 12:7-9

Key Questions:

If evil is not an eternal reality, it must have had a beginning. Common Christian teaching points to the origin of evil in the devilís desire to claim the place of God.

  1. Can we explain why evil arose? If there is no justification, was there a cause? If there was a cause, isnít that a justification in disguise?
  2. If God knew all the trouble that Lucifer would bring, then why did he create him?
  3. The Bible speaks of evil angels. If God did not create them, who did? Or conversely, by what process did they become evil? Why was there so much trouble in paradise?
  4. Could Lucifer-Satan have been saved?
  5. The figure of a heavenly adversary, Satan, does not loom large in the Old Testament, particularly in the older sections. For instance, compare 2 Samuel 24:1 with 1 Chronicles 21:1. How might we account for this?
  6. What is “sin,” according to the Bible? Is there a difference between “evil” and “sin?”
  7. It has been suggested that John Milton, in the classic, Paradise Lost, describes a more vivid and interesting Satan than his description of God. Is evil inherently more interesting for us humans than goodness?
  8. What is the role of Satan in the world today? If he and his angels were blotted out of existence, would sin cease and sinning stop?
  9. Recent studies of the Holocaust have underlined the banality of evil. Most of the horrors were performed by lackluster and unimaginative lackeys who were not consumed by passionate prejudice or ideologies. Does this mean that evil is just a way of describing the cumulated effect of human weakness and smallness?
  10. Is it possible to imagine a universe without evil, without death, without predators, without suffering, without selfishness? Do we have the knowledge and descriptive tools to describe that sort of world in systematic and scientific terms?

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