The problem of suffering, objectively speaking

“Let’s be objective,” is a recommendation a mediator might make to opposing parties, or a father to a child who feels she’s been wronged. Objectivity is the perspective which allows one to evaluate a situation or problem apart from personal, emotional, subjective factors which tend to obscure the facts.

When it comes to the problem of pain and suffering and the existence of God, it’s hard to be objective because even the suffering of others stirs up our emotions, as it should. The objection atheists and skeptics raise that a good, all-powerful God and suffering in the world can’t co-exist is a reflection of their concern for and solidarity with other human beings. But we must pursue objectivity even, and in light of its import, especially here because this is a problem which hinders and blinds people to its solution when they come to it from a subjective perspective, and knowing the answer has implications for all of life, and eternity.

As a Christian apologist I consider myself a mediator of sorts, working to reconcile skeptics to the God who created them and loves them. So…let’s be objective about the problem of evil, pain, and suffering. Towards that end, I can do no better than recommend you watch these two short videos from William Lane Craig’s Reasonable Faith ministry. And then, if you like, we can talk.