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Can God Be Trusted?: Faith and the Challenge of Evil [Paperback]

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Item description for Can God Be Trusted?: Faith and the Challenge of Evil by John G. Jr. Stackhouse...

Overview
In a world riddled with disappointment, malice and tragedy, what rationale do we have for believing in a benevolent God? In this book, John Stackhouse explores how great thinkers have grappled with this question--from Buddha, Confucius, Augustine, Hume and Luther to C. S. Lewis. He suggests that perhaps instead of asking the question, "Why does God allow evil and suffering," we should instead ask "Can God be trusted to be good and do good, even when appearances are strongly to the contrary?"

Without brushing aside the serious problems posed by a God who allows incurable diseases, natural disasters and senseless crimes to bring misery into our lives, Stackhouse boldly affirms that this world is the world we actually need. Finally, he points to Christian revelation which promises the transformation of suffering into joy as the best guide to God's dealings with the world.

Publishers Description
In a world riddled with disappointment, malice and tragedy, what rationale do we have for believing in a benevolent God? In this book, John Stackhouse explores how great thinkers have grappled with this question--from Buddha, Confucius, Augustine, Hume and Luther to C. S. Lewis. He suggests that perhaps instead of asking the question, "Why does God allow evil and suffering," we should instead ask "Can God be trusted to be good and do good, even when appearances are strongly to the contrary?" Without brushing aside the serious problems posed by a God who allows incurable diseases, natural disasters and senseless crimes to bring misery into our lives, Stackhouse boldly affirms that this world is the world we actually need. Finally, he points to Christian revelation which promises the transformation of suffering into joy as the best guide to God's dealings with the world.

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Item Specifications...


Studio: Intervarsity Press
Pages   219
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.4" Width: 5.4" Height: 0.7"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Feb 1, 2009
Publisher   IVP-InterVarsity Press
ISBN  0830828869  
ISBN13  9780830828869  


Availability  117 units.
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More About John G. Jr. Stackhouse


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John G. Stackhouse, Jr., is Professor of Religious Studies at Crandall University in New Brunswick, Canada.


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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Apologetics


Christian Product Categories
Books > Theology > Theology & Doctrine > Apologetics
Books > Theology > Theology & Doctrine > General



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Reviews - What do customers think about Can God Be Trusted??

A decidedly even-handed treatment of the topic  May 26, 2007
A concise and highly readable review of the problem of evil and its bearing on theological and philosophical arguments for the existence of a benevolent, omnipotent God. Written from a Christian perspective, but a fine and well-argued treatise for any monotheistic religious tradition. Highly recommended.
 
Well informed book by a Professor of History and Religion  Feb 20, 2007
This is a scholarly but very manageable book about evil in human lives, both natural and social evil. It offers intellectual answers to the problem of evil, a theodicy, setting us on a path to gradually experience the truth in a more direct way, as the author suggests in the conclusion. John Stackhouse proceeds slowly from defining the problem in the first few chapters to offering different answers until, in the middle of the book, he moves to the answer Christianity gives to the human experience of evil.

Personally, I felt slightly shortchanged as I thought the author would continue explore different perspectives on evil according to different philosophies and religions. But, as he explains, his belief is that of a christian and his training as a professor and historian is also on Christianity. So, his approach is highly informed by the religion.

It is a good introduction to the problem of evil but you might feel the need to get another perspective too as the book is rather short which can or cannot be a disadvantage, depending on the level of reflection you are doing on evil and your ability to concentrate. I believe he did an excellent job reviewing the history of the Bible but moved quickly over why Christianity is the best answer to the problem of evil. It was not very convincing to me, to start trying to show us that Jesus had been a historical figure and then, quickly sweeping aside Roman chroniclers of Jesus' time on page 137. Slightly went beyond the scope of this short book, to my humble opinion.

In spite of this, Professor Stackhouse is helping us to look at our own responsibility in what we consider evil and to strenghten our faith that God is doing the best he can instead of perceiving him as "malevolent and/or impotent" in the face of evil. A good start on the subject, worth it.
 
thought provoking and profound, a book to be read slowly  Sep 23, 1999
Few people have explored more profoundly than John Stackhouse an answer to one of life's most puzzling and uneasy questions. Through biblical, historical, and cultural analysis, the author articulates his positions in fresh, compelling language. Stackhouse wears his scholarship lightly. His lucid style and examples make the book accessible to general readers and professional theologians alike. One of the unexpected highlights of the book for me was his re-telling of the Story Line of the Bible (p. 104ff). Only as we understand what God has been doing from the beginning can we begin to make sense of the sorrow and pain in our world today.
 

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