It was a blessing for me to encounter the theologian Austin Farrer a year before his sudden death. With him, I was one handshake away from his friends Tolkien, Lewis, and Sayers. In reflecting on natural disasters and God's action in the world, he said with stark realism that in an earthquake, God's will is that the elements of the Earth's crust should behave in accordance with their nature. He was speaking of the Lisbon earthquake in 1755, which killed about the same number of people counted so far in devastated Haiti. Most were killed in churches on All Saints Day, which gave license to rationalists of the "Enlightenment" to mock the doctrine of a good God. Atheists can suddenly pretend to be theologians puzzled by the contradictory behavior of a benevolent God. On the other extreme, doltish TV evangelists summon a half-baked Calvinism to say that people who get hit hard deserve it.
Read it all.
Filed under: * Anglican - Episcopal Anglican Provinces Church of England (CoE) * Christian Life / Church Life Parish Ministry Ministry of the Ordained * International News & Commentary Caribbean Haiti * Religion News & Commentary Other Churches Roman Catholic * Theology Theodicy
Posted January 26, 2010 at 5:00 am
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