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We share our final thoughts on The Groaning of Creation. Despite its relatively small size, it was densely packed with rich ideas to discuss and explore as Southgate covered a broad range of theologians and philosophers.
Here we give our final thoughts on this book.
We look forward for all our readers to join us for our next book in 2018.
We’re coming to the end of Christopher Southgate’s The Groaning of Creation. Here are our essays for Chapter 7.
Is God Responsible for extinctions that happen throughout nature? Does he cause them? Is there something good that can come about through the extinction of a species? Or is it a total waste?
Yesterday, we discussed how extinction may not be a total loss, the role of humans in God’s creation, an eschatological ‘need’ for redemption, a response to Ivan Karamazov, and whether or not God played a direct role in the evolution of homo sapiens.
Our response are here.
Above is a reading from a scene between Ivan (a skeptic) and his religious brother Alyosha from Fydor Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov regarding the difficulty of believing in a loving God in the face of the abuse and suffering of innocent children.
Though Southgate’s book focuses primarily on the suffering of animals, he uses the illustration above in this chapter to convey his thesis that “[T]he crux of the problem is not the overall system and its overall goodness but the Christian’s struggle with the challenge to the goodness of God posed by specific cases of innocent suffering.”
We completed our first session of our new book last Sunday.
One of the takeaways of the session was the discovery that when dealing with issues in theodicy, it wasn’t necessarily that we had a problem with the horror of suffering, death, and randomness in the world, but rather the real issue was that we had an issue with God – namely the goodness with God that we were having a hard time with.
You can read our essays here.
The youtube clip above gives us an interesting overview of the moral issues we have over animals. Why is it that we have no qualms eating a cow, but we are repulsed by the idea of eating a pet cat? They are both animals right? Why is one right and the other wrong? Answer seems simple and obvious, but it’s interesting to think about at another level.
We will begin a new semester this year as we focus on topics in theology and science. This time, we will cover Christopher Southgate’s The Groaning of Creation: God, Evolution, and the Problem of Evil.