The Problem Of Evil And Suffering: Toward A Contextualized Ewe Christian Theodicy
The problem of evil and suffering constitutes an enigma people everywhere and every religious system must deal with. It poses a particular challenge to the Christian theist who holds the existence of a wholly good, omnipotent, and omniscient God. This raises the question: "If God is wholly good and omnipotent, why is there the existence of evil?" In the Ewe worldview, the discussion takes on a supernatural dimension because evil and suffering are seen to originate from spiritual beings other than God who are both good and evil. Evil is also seen as whatever disrupts the enjoyment of quality life, which constitutes good health, wealth, procreation, and longevity. This implies that to the Ewe, the problem of evil is an existential issue that poses the key question as "How do we cope with the spiritual beings who can bring both good and evil in order to enjoy quality of life?" Therefore, the fundamental question this thesis resolves is "What is the appropriate theological response to the problem of evil and suffering as it is presented in the Ewe worldview?"
The traditional Christian response to the problem of evil and suffering is to maintain the Christian theistic attributes of God in the face of evil and suffering. This thesis argues that the task that confronts Christian theodicy in the Ewe context is greater. The task is not only limited to the traditional theodicy but includes a theology that accounts for the ambivalent spiritual forces, addresses the existential needs of the Ewe, and is holistic enough to encompass the Ewe worldview. This study therefore seeks to propose a relevant contextualized response to the problem of evil and suffering in an African context. At the heart of this contextualized theodicy is the Incarnation of Jesus.