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.
"This is the best book in accessible English on how to think about the problem of evil. One of the finest theologians in North America, Stackhouse brings to bear insights from Scripture, philosophy and theology on this age-old dilemma. I recommend this first to anyone asking how a good and powerful God can permit radical evil."
"John Stackhouse . . . reduces the tangled issue to one fundamental question--Is God trustworthy?--and offers a careful, wise and well-argued answer."
"[A] clearly written and sweeping consideration of one of the central dilemmas of human existence. It challenges us to take responsibility for our actions, to reexamine the 'celestial blueprint' with less despair, and to see the value of a well-informed faith."
"Stackhouse's work is marked by the same kind of commonsensical yet penetrating arguments that made [C. S.] Lewis such a beloved figure. Readers of Can God Be Trusted? may find that they have discovered something wonderful."
"John Stackhouse . . . [addresses] the problem of evil with theological sophistication, historical depth, and philosophical precision."
Part One: Problems
1. Is There a Problem?
2. What is Evil?
3. Further Problems
Part Two: Responses
4. Other Angles
5. A Good World After All?
6. The Fork in the Road
7. Christianity?s Main Response
8. Why Believe It?
9. Thinking and Living