Satan & the Problem of Evil: Constructing a Trinitarian Warfare Theodicy  -     By: Gregory A. Boyd
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Satan & the Problem of Evil: Constructing a Trinitarian Warfare Theodicy

Inter-Varsity Press / 2001 / Paperback

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Following his book God at War, Boyd here seeks to defend his scripturally grounded trinitarian warfare theodicy with rigorous philosophical reflection and insights from human experience and scientific discovery. He suggests that there is an alternative to the classical Calvinist understanding of the sovereignty of the trinitarian God and of the reality of Satan that sheds light on our fallen human condition. While all may not agree with his conclusions, this book promises to advance the church's discussion over these critical issues.Gregory A. Boyd (Ph.D., Princeton Theological Seminary) is a pastor at Woodland Hills Church in St. Paul, Minnesota. Previously, he was a professor of theology at Bethel College, also in St. Paul. His books include Cynic, Sage or Son of God?, Recovering the Real Jesus in an Age of Revisionist Replies, Letters from a Skeptic, God of the Possible, Repenting of Religion, Seeing is Believing, Escaping the Matrix, Is God to Blame?, and God at War.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 454
Vendor: Inter-Varsity Press
Publication Date: 2001
Dimensions: 9 X 6 (inches)
ISBN: 0830815503
ISBN-13: 9780830815500
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

  • Where does evil come from?
  • If there is a sovereign creator God, as Christian faith holds, is this God ultimately responsible for evil?
  • Does God's sovereignty mean that God causes each instance of sin and suffering?
  • How do Satan, his demons and hell fit into God's providential oversight of all creation and history?
  • How does God interact with human intention and action?
  • If people act freely, does God know in particular every human decision before the choice is made?
In this important book Gregory A. Boyd mounts a thorough response to these ages-old questions, which remain both crucial and contentious, both practical and complex. In this work Boyd defends his scripturally grounded trinitarian warfare theodicy (presented in God at War) with rigorous philosophical reflection and insights from human experience and scientific discovery. Critiquing the classical Calvinist solution to the problem of evil, he advocates an alternative understanding of the sovereignty of the trinitarian God and of the reality of Satan that sheds light on our fallen human condition. While all may not agree with Boyd's conclusions, Satan and the Problem of Evil promises to advance the church's discussion of these critical issues.

Author Bio

Gregory A. Boyd (Ph.D., Princeton Theological Seminary) is a pastor at Woodland Hills Church in St. Paul, Minnesota. Previously, he was a professor of theology at Bethel University, also in St. Paul. His books include and .

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  1. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    September 17, 2008
    Michael V. Baxter
    In contrast to the widely accepted protestant view of Calvinistic Determinism, Dr. Boyd has laid forth the early Jewish and Church's understanding and view of God's foreknowledge, free agency, and evil as it is experienced. This view is definitely in more harmony with the totality of Scripture rather than the selective and illogical view of Calvinism.The main premise is that Love Requires Freedom (choice), thus, a holy, righteous and loving God cannot arbitrarily force or cause agents to "love" Him nor suffer damnation if they are not the initial cause of their "choices." Subsequently, free agents' choices may cause suffering, as we witness today in the physical and spiritual realm. Since Christ never attributed evil to be an element of "God's Plan" neither should His disciples today.Mr. Boyd does, though, get sidetracked addressing various views concerning each premise which is unneeded since once the truth is unearthed, the counterfeits will be clearly exposed. Highly recommended, especially chapters 1-3.
  2. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    December 9, 2003
    John raymond white
    Think you have your Christian theology nailed down? This book will send you back to the Bible for detailed analysis of some popular Christian traditions that are an integral part of some mainline Christian churches. Thank you Greg Boyd!
  3. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    February 28, 2003
    Matt MacKellar
    This is a significant and ambitious book. In essence, it is an attempt to explain the problem of evil from a non-Calvinistic viewpoint. Calvinism would state, briefly, that God foreknows and foreordains all things, including evil, though He is not the author of evil. Boyd (and I agree) finds this unsatisfactory. Calvinism overlooks many other historic Christian ways of explaining evil and sometimes embitters people towards Christianity when it is presented as the only possible explanation.Essentially, Boyd says that evil happens because God wanted His creation (people) to be able to love, and love must be freely chosen and is therefore risky, and that this freedom cannot be revoked at the first sign of abuse or else it is not truly freedom. Thus, evil results from the abuse of freedom in both humans and angelic beings (a.k.a. demons).The final chapters draw practical implications from these ideas in the areas of prayer, "natural" evil (which Boyd contends is caused entirely by the abuse of freedom), and hell. He offers some helpful ideas in these chapters (such as how prayer really does affect things), though his explanation of hell is very dense and not overly convincing.This is an excellent book not afraid to make bold conclusions that offer a satisfying alternative to traditional Calvinistic answers. Those new to these topics might do well to first read Boyd's GOD AT WAR, which is much more accessible to a non-specialist.
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