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The Evidential Problem of Evil and Skeptical Theism

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The evidential problem of evil claims the God of classical theism doesn't exist. William Rowe argues for this conclusion using an example of a fawn suffering an agonizing death in a forest fire. No good we know of justifies an omnipotent, omniscient, perfectly good being in permitting the evil of the fawn's intense suffering. Rowe infers inductively that no good at all justifies an omni-God in permitting the fawn's suffering. Then Rowe deduces that such a God doesn't exist.

The skeptical theist claims that the first premise doesn't make probable the second. Just because no good we know of justifies God in permitting the fawn's intense suffering, this doesn't make it likely that no good at all justifies God in permitting the fawn's suffering. Given our limited cognitive capacities in relation to the infinite mind of God, our lack of knowing a good that justifies God in allowing the suffering doesn't mean that no good at all justifies God in permitting it.

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