Let’s assume that this argument is valid. Therefore, God is both all-good and all-powerful. God is the creator of all things – material or not. Therefore, if God is all-good then he would have created only good things. However, the existence of evil in this world suggests that not only God has allowed evil to challenge the morality and mentality of people, but He is also responsible for perpetuating this situation: the eternal conflict between Good and Evil. Augustine clearly states that God is willingly letting people to choose between Good and Evil, and hence He is all-powerful in order to eliminate Evil. However, Evil usually translates into suffering, and more specifically into suffering of the weak or the innocent. It would be one thing to let e.g. admirers of Hitler to suffer from diseases and another thing to let thousands or even millions of good-hearted people to suffer being victims of crime, extortion, etc. Therefore, an all-good God would have propelled a life of justice. This is not the case, therefore there are two explanations: Either God willingly allows good-hearted people to be hurt (and, hence He is not all-good) or he is unable to prevent the prevalence of Evil in this world (and hence He is not all-powerful). In other words, both statements (good is all-good and all-powerful) cannot be true.
- What is the conclusion of your classmate’s argument?
- What is the main argument for this conclusion?
- What form does the main argument have?
- Are there any subarguments, i.e. arguments for premises of the main argument?
- If there are subarguments, what do these look like? What form do they have?