“Beata, the Creator does not create evil. He would not create and bestow upon you souls of evil. You have as much potential for good as anyone else, and Anders have a potential for evil equal to anyone.” – Richard Rahl, Soul of the Fire
One of the things that keep people from believing in God, particularly the God of Christianity, is the problem of evil. While the problem is truly quite extensive, it is summed up like this, “If there is a God, and He is as good as people claim He is, then why does evil exist?”
Other than the reality of Satan, there are two prominent answers to this question:
- God is not all-powerful and unable to get rid of evil.
- God is not all-good, and created the evil in the world.
Sadly, these are the viewpoints that many have taken in response to the problem of evil. There is a proper way to respond to this issue, but this is neither the time nor the place.
I want to focus on the quote above from Terry Goodkind’s book, Soul of the Fire.
Within the context of this quote, Richard has just been told by Beata, a Haken girl, that only Hakens are born with vile souls, corrupt, unable to be made pure and beyond salvation. Beata also explains to Richard that the Anders have pure souls. They are unable to be corrupt.
According to Beata, and all Hakens living in Anderith, the Creator made them evil, beyond the reach of salvation.
I love Richard’s response to Beata. Since his adventure at the Palace of the Prophets, Richard has learned a lot about the Creator and his counterpart, the Keeper. Mostly, Richard has learned about the goodness of the Creator and the roles people and magic have in order to keep balance in the world.
Richard knows that the Creator does not create evil. It is not the Creator’s place to create evil.
Martin Luther struggled with much the same concept. Before fully grasping salvation and the work of Christ on the cross, Luther felt that God was unfair, having us born in sin and judging us in the afterlife for something over which we have no control.
I admit, I have struggled with this as well. It is difficult to believe in a “good God” who seems incapable of preventing humanity from being born with “evil” souls.
Thanks be to God! He did not create our souls corrupt! Our corruption is from a long line of disobedience in human history, passed down through the generations as a result of one man’s sin!
I know, I know, it seems unfair that one person’s mistake messed it up for all of us, but we have to remember that the one person who failed, Adam, was one of the only two people on the earth. All of humanity sprang from Adam. With his soul corrupt due to his sin, the rest of humanity lost as well.
We all have the same potential for evil, just like everyone else.
“God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else…Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens.” – James 1:13b, 17a; NLT