Along with Tom Wright, Bart Ehrman is one of the world's leading New Testament scholars. Last year, NT Wright released his book on the problem of evil called Evil and the Justice of God. Wright provided fresh and biblical thoughts on the subject by including how terrorism, global disease, and relativistic postmodernism have brought it to the surface again. But now it's Bart's turn. His new book, God's Problem: How the Bible Fails to Answer Our Most Important Question - Why We Suffer, is due out this week. It should prove to be a provoking read.
What is interesting to me is that these men are two of the leading minds on the Bible and they cannot get over this issue. Regardless of what approach one takes on this, man is always left scratching his finite head. No one can put this behind them as resolved. The results are usually either haunting or humbling.
I don't know if this a good question or if it is daring or if I'm just thinking too much or what, but what does God think about the problem of evil? It is certainly not a "problem" to him like it is to us, is it? After praying, reading, and racking my brain thinking about this, the following two thoughts have often brought comfort.
First... The omnipotent, all-wise, all-knowing, omnibenevolent, and loving God of the universe and of the Bible does not sit on his throne and ponder the extent of his sovereignty. This is what it means to be God.
Second [and I stole this from somewhere in Edwards] and metaphorically speaking... "the sun is not the cause of cold and darkness."
I sure hope Bart's words will help to offer peace to those who are on the verge of being made spiritually impotent because of this fragile matter.