"Outstanding" The Wall Street Journal "This eloquent statement of a Christian facing, once more, the devastations of what is too easily designated "the natural order" is a lucid exposition of what may and may not be said in the name of Jesus Christ about personal and corporate human suffering." Douglas John Hall "In a lifetime of struggling both personally and pastorally with the problem of evil and suffering, I have come across no brief study more immediately relevant than this one... Hart mounts a searing attack on all accounts of horrendous evil that allow observers to offer packaged comfort while contemplating the suffering of others from a safe distance. His critique of the Reformed tradition should be required reading for those of us who have been shaped by it. Above all, in his "rage against explanation," he shows us how we can be true pastoral companions to those who suffer." Fleming Rutledge "Although David Hart is by training a theologian (one of America's finest), he is also a man of letters. In the terrible wake of the recent Indian Ocean tsunami -- and in the face of a world looking for, even demanding, answers -- his is precisely the voice that is needed, a voice as articulate, incisive, and ultimately inspiring as that of C. S. Lewis." John BetzVom Verlag:
As news reports of the horrific tsunami in Asia reached the rest of the world, commentators were quick to seize upon the disaster as proof of either God's power or God's non-existence. Expanding on his "Wall Street Journal" piece, "Tremors of Doubt," published the last day of 2004, David Bentley Hart here returns to this pressing question: how can the existence of a good and loving God be reconciled with such suffering? Hart clarifies the biblical account of God's goodness, the nature of evil, and the shape of redemption, incisively revealing where both Christianity's champions and its critics misrepresent what is most essential to Christian belief. Though he responds to those skeptical of Christian faith, Hart is at his most perceptive and provocative as he examines Christian attempts to rationalize the tsunami disaster. Many people want a divine plan that will make sense of evil. Hart contends, however, that the history of suffering and death is not willed by God. Rather than appealing to a divine calculus that can account for every instance of suffering, Christians must recognize the ongoing struggle between the rebellious powers that enslave the world and the God who loves it. This meditation by a brilliant young theologian will deeply challenge serious readers grappling with God's ways in a suffering world.
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