St. Augustine and Evil

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St. Augustine and Evil
As a Christian Theologian and Philosopher in the first century following the famous council of Nicea, Saint Augustine was faced with many problems in faith and God, but these things would shape a theology most influential to Christianity today. While the Council of Nicea focused primarily on the person and being of Christ Jesus, Augustine was much more interested in the One and all being, God. Specifically he was concerned with the problem of evil. The problem of evil is one of which claims that a perfectly loving and omnipotent God cannot exist in a reality that includes evil. If God were omnipotent then God would posses the power to avert evil and promote goodness. If God perfectly loved, then God would desire that this would be so. Evil would be abolished and goodness would reign supreme. However, the quandary still remains that evil exists. Augustine was intensely concerned to hold on to these beliefs of God's nature: God's omnipotence, immutability, omniscience, and that God is perfectly loving, yet he wants to solve this problem of evil. I will attempt to present Augustine's beliefs in a clear and precise manor. St. Augustine held the belief that God made a perfect world. However, he maintained that God's creatures turned away from God of their own free will, and that is how evil came into being in the world. Augustine's approach to a solution to the problem of evil can be expressed in three main parts. First, Augustine assumes that evil is a privation and cannot be properly said to exist at all. He upholds Aristotle's teachings that all thing that are good come from God. All things that are good are a measure of goodness and evil is the absence of good. Aristotle's notion that all good things come from God leads Augustine to think that all things are from God and that all things that God does are good. Evil is nothing, it is not anything that is created, rather it is simply nothing. He continues by explaining what we perceive as...
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